Friday, April 8, 2016

REBELS IN BLUE--A 2000 Book--How Research has Changed for the better

It looks to me as if Peter F. Stevens did a terrific job of research on REBELS IN BLUE, about the Bushwhacker Keith Blalock, enemy of my Moore cousins, one of whom shot out one of his eyes. See picture
keith blaylock2.jpg

But in the 1990s a researcher was apt to miss specific details, contemporary testimony, the sort of thing you can find now in newspaper databases, for example. I will apologize if I am wrong, but I don't see in Stevens's book any of the Lenoir TOPIC articles on Keith Blalock, or one in the Durham Recorder, He might have mentioned the entire book JAMES DANIEL MOORE  (1907), since JDM wrote a terrific account of Blalock in the Raleigh Morning Post for 1900. This is not to be ungrateful but to emphasize what has been clear to me for several years--that the way I did research for the second volume of the Melville biography (2002) is not the way I did research for MELVILLE BIOGRAPHY: AN INSIDE NARRATIVE (2013), except that many of the manuscripts I consulted for the biography have not yet been digitized. Anyone anywhere can do research that almost no one could do before the Internet.

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