Douglas L. Wilson

Douglas L. Wilson is a co-director of the Lincoln Studies Center at Knox College, in Galesburg, Illinois, and the author of Honor's Voice: The Transformation of Abraham Lincoln (1998).
  • Keeping Lincoln's Secrets

    William H. Herndon, Abraham Lincoln's law partner and biographer, made a record of "secret and privatethings" about Lincoln in two memorandum books that long ago disappeared. Now diary entries have materialized, written by a woman who saw the memorandum books in 1866, and who recorded her shocked reactions to accounts of "profligacy" and "debauchery." A distinguished Lincoln scholar describes the discovery, and considers anew the collision of privacy and history

  • Thomas Jefferson and the Character Issue

    As the two hundred and fiftieth anniversary of Thomas Jefferson’s birth approaches, a Jefferson scholar reflects on Jefferson’s life—and in particular on the enigma at its core: that a slaveholder should be the nation’s most eloquent champion of equality, To understand how this could be so, the author explains, is to appreciate the perils of “presentistn “ and the difficulties that may impede the historical assessment of motive and character

  • What Jefferson and Lincoln Read

    For both men books and the written word mattered deeply; and were essential to their greatness—but in substantially different ways. A reflection on the meanings of literacy