Randall's Lincoln: An Academic Scholar's BiographySkip other details (including permanent urls, DOI, citation information)
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 3.0 License. Please contact firstname.lastname@example.org to use this work in a way not covered by the license. :
For more information, read Michigan Publishing's access and usage policy.
James Garfield Randall was born in Indianapolis on June 4, 1881, and named for the newly inaugurated president so soon to be assassinated.  Randall's interest in Abraham Lincoln began in his youth when he read Ida Tarbell's articles on Lincoln in McClure's Magazine. These prompted him to sketch and paint several portraits of Lincoln,  one of which hung in Randall's apartment in Urbana at the time of his death.
Randall attended Butler College, writing papers on Aristotle, Hobbes, and Macauley.  Upon graduation in 1903, he went to the University of Chicago where he earned a master's degree in sociology. Randall then transferred to history, receiving instruction in American constitutional history from the new chairman, Andrew C. McLaughlin. Needing to recoup his finances, Randall taught for a year at Illinois College, then for a year at the University of Michigan. At Michigan he enrolled in a seminar taught by Claude H. Van Tyne, in which Randall launched the research that became his dissertation at Chicago directed by McLaughlin. The next year Randall taught at Syracuse while working on his dissertation; then, his Ph.D. awarded, he returned to Butler for a year. The next year, 1912, he secured his first tenured position at Roanoke College in Virginia. In 1913 Randall saw his dissertation through a press back in In- Page [End Page 1] dianapolis; the book's title is The Confiscation of Property during the Civil War.  Meanwhile, articles from his study had been published in the American Historical Review. 
In 1911 Randall had married a Butler classmate, Edith Laura Abbott, who died in 1913. In 1917 he married Ruth Elaine Painter, the daughter of a Roanoke colleague. She had studied literature with Will D. Howe while getting a master's degree at Indiana University. Howe had been one of Randall's teachers at Butler.
Both of Randall's graduate mentors practiced the discipline of scientific history, still in the process of getting established in American academia. Van Tyne had sent Randall to Washington to study government documents. The methodology as well as the results made a great impression on the young scholar. Discussion of methodology became a preeminent element in Randall's teaching and a theme for lectures, including his final one, entitled "Historian-ship," the presidential address written for the American Historical Association but delivered in 1952 by a colleague because of Randall's mortal illness.  Discussion of the methodology involved in his own research had become a recurrent topic woven into the fabric of all that Randall wrote.
Randall's graduate teachers had guided his interest toward constitutional history, especially how governmental structure functioned under the pressure of war. As a researcher, Randall first encountered Lincoln as a wartime president faced with urgent challenges to act but with his initiatives constrained by constitutional limitations. Exploring in the documents, Randall went beyond property (his dissertation theme) to study arbitrary arrests, military rule, emergency expenditures, and emancipation. 
The broader agenda proceeded as Randall taught at Roanoke; his research was aided by a year's leave as Harrison Research Fellow at the University of Pennsylvania.  When America entered World War I, Randall sought to enlist but was rejected because of low Page [End Page 2] weight. Instead, he served as historian of the U.S. Shipping Board.  At war's end, he took a position at Richmond College but was forced after a year to relocate because an established professor decided to return. Friends high in the profession, sensing Randall's potential, helped him secure the type of stable position he desired, at a university with graduate students to teach and an atmosphere committed to supporting research. In 1920, at the age of thirty-nine, Randall moved to Lincoln country, joining the history department at the University of Illinois. The Randalls moved into an apartment a short distance from the campus where they were to dwell for the rest of their lives, researching, writing, and entertaining students. Lincoln was ever on Randall's mind and in his diary. He chatted with Senator Albert J. Beveridge at a historical convention, and he heard former Vice-President Thomas R. Marshall lecture on the wartime president.  Marshall recalled being taken as a child to the Lincoln-Douglas debate at Freeport and sitting on Lincoln's lap while Douglas spoke and on Douglas's lap while Lincoln spoke.
Constitutional Problems under Lincoln was published in 1926. A reviewer asserted that Randall had shown "a quality of mastery, which will give his treatment such finality as one may expect from mortal historians."  Randall next collaborated with his colleague, Theodore C. Pease, in editing The Diary of Orville Hickman Browning, a Quincy lawyer and friend of Lincoln who succeeded Stephen A. Douglas in the Senate. Randall pondered writing a constitu- Page [End Page 3] tional history of the nation, but instead he vastly expanded the scope of his study of both the Civil War and Lincoln, the first academic historian to undertake this enormous challenge. His decision was confirmed when he was invited to prepare the Lincoln sketch for the Dictionary of American Biography. This was the DAB's longest entry, and Randall wrote eleven other sketches, including that of Mary Todd Lincoln.
Urged by Allan Nevins, Randall devoted the early 1930s to manuscript research, leading to a scholarly synthesis in The Civil War and Reconstruction, published in 1937. The book proved to be a best-seller among specialized textbooks and was revised by Randall's student, David Herbert Donald, in 1961.  The textbook finished, Randall turned to his magnum opus, Lincoln the President.  The first two volumes, subtitled Springfield to Gettysburg, were published in 1945. The third volume, Midstream, mostly about the year 1863, was published in 1952 and won the Loubat Prize. Randall lived to write half the concluding volume and to draft suggestions for themes to be included in the second half. At his death, he left the suggestion that his final volume be completed either by Allan Nevins or by a young Illinois colleague, Richard N. Current, with whom Randall had become acquainted. When Nevins declined, Current accepted the responsibility and concluded the Lincoln biography in a way he deemed consistent with Randall's per- Page [End Page 4] spectives. Last Full Measure, published in 1955, was accorded the Bancroft Prize, a tribute to the overall biography.
While working on his Lincoln biography, Randall delivered many lectures and wrote numerous articles that appeared in historical journals and in more popular sites such as the New York Times Magazine. An initial apologia for his major undertaking was published in the American Historical Review in 1936: "Has the Lincoln Theme Been Exhausted?" Randall's answer, of course, was no, the specifics of which he elaborated in such detail that the article became a scholarly watershed often referred to in ensuing years.  Others of Randall's lectures and articles were assembled into books. Lincoln and the South (1946) contained his Walter Lynwood Fleming Lectures given at Louisiana State University. Lincoln the Liberal Statesman (1947) contained some of Randall's most significant articles on the wartime president. Living with Lincoln (1949), a collection of Randall's more popular essays, was arranged and presented by his students to their mentor on the occasion of his retirement. 
Randall announced his frankly revisionist approach in the preface to The Civil War and Reconstruction.  Up to that time, most writing on the war had been "superficial, traditionally narrow, and partisan," featuring military and political events and deeming the war inevitable because of allegedly irreconcilable differences between the industrial North and the agrarian South. His book, based on a fresh study of the sources and the newest scholarship, would "very frequently depart from familiar generalizations." He would hold open the possibility that war "could have been avoided, supposing of course that something more of statesmanship, moderation, and understanding, and something less of professional patri- Page [End Page 5] oteering, slogan-making, face-saving, political clamoring, and propaganda, had existed on both sides." But such had not been the case. In Randall's book, extremists in both sections emerged as villains, the abolitionist radicals worst of all. "Reforming zeal, in those individual leaders in whom it became most vociferous and vocal, was often unrelieved by wisdom, toleration, tact, and the sense of human values.... It was a major cause of the conflict itself." 
Randall's Lincoln, in the Civil War book, is a complex figure, possessing "innate conservatism, shrewdly combined with crusading zeal, ... [a] Jeffersonian philosophy, ... [a] power of invective, and ... [a] mastery of terse, epigrammatic English." He came to Washington not very well known and widely distrusted, his program unknown, even his homely appearance against him, the epithets ranging from "simple Susan" to "baboon" and "gorilla," and his surreptitious arrival in the capital a further blow to his already low prestige.  Lincoln did not lack self-confidence but was very cautious in early action, asserting in his inaugural address a spirit of conciliation combined with "gentle firmness," avowing the Union would not consent to its own destruction.  Randall concluded that Lincoln, while favoring many peace efforts, himself showed insufficient leadership in the crisis, leaving the South ignorant as to his specific plans and his true character.
This was particularly so with respect to the policy toward Fort Sumter. Although Lincoln intended to be nonaggressive, this was not clearly understood in the South. Lincoln's quick proclamation calling state militia to arms when Sumter was fired upon, Randall considered perhaps too precipitous; conciliation might have been given a longer trial. Despite the outcome, Randall was to argue elaborately and vigorously in his future writing, Lincoln's purpose in seeking to provision Fort Sumter was peaceful, not a maneuver to get the Confederacy to begin a war.
With the outbreak of hostilities, Lincoln set "the whole machinery of war ... in operation" by actions some of which he recognized as illegal. Congress finally convened nearly three months later. The House, dominated by Radical Republicans, included—wrote Page [End Page 6] Randall—"few names that rose above mediocrity," while in the Senate moderates lacked influence, and policy was "determined by men of coarser fiber."  Considering Lincoln's "most expansive" views of his war powers and the intention of the Radical congressional leaders to dominate policy, clashes were inevitable.  "Though in many respects Lincoln was a leader of men," Randall wrote, "such a description hardly fits the case when one is speaking of his relations with Congress.... He regarded Congress often as an embarrassment.... He yielded to them where necessary, sinking his own preferences in so doing and using his well-tempered tact to prevent them from taking authority too much out of his hands." Lincoln continued to take arbitrary steps, with respect to freedom of the person and of the press, for example. "The Constitution was indeed stretched," Randall observed, "but it was not subverted.... The harshness of war regulations was often tempered by leniency. The President was generous in releasing political prisoners, ... and in the suppression of anti-governmental activity the government under Lincoln was milder than that of Wilson, though facing greater provocation."
The president's role in foreign affairs, Randall thought, deserved higher marks than did his relations with Congress. "Lincoln's deficiencies in the refinements of international law were more than offset by a common sense which caused his thoughts to turn to arbitration if diplomacy should fail; yet he was determined that governmental reason and tact should not fail."
As he frequently did in writing about disputed matters, Randall made known in his text the existence of an interpretive debate regarding Lincoln's role in military decisions. Was the president's "interference ... a plague to the Union army," or did Lincoln possess an "unusual acumen in matters of strategy?" Randall gave the president credit for "devouring military treatises, poring over maps, attending war councils, ... studying high military appointments," giving orders to his generals, and bestowing and taking away their commands. In his discussion of the tensions between Lincoln and General George B. McClellan, leading to the former's reducing the latter's authority and then ousting him, Randall strongly implied criticism of the president. The Constitution, in Page [End Page 7] making the president commander in chief, Randall observed, does not suggest that the president should "direct an army or command a fleet." As events moved along, a serious "muddle" developed, an "almost hopeless confusion in army control." This situation, "as an element contributing to Union [military] failure in 1862–63, ... cannot be ignored." Randall did not specifically blame Lincoln. The congressional committee on the conduct of the war was also deeply involved. But it is obvious that Randall believed Lincoln shared the blame.
The place of slavery in Lincoln's thought and in governmental policy received extensive attention in Randall's text. Both aspects were distorted in American mythology, he thought, and he sought to arrive at a truer assessment. Lincoln hated slavery, insisted it be kept out of the territories, and thought compensated emancipation the fairest mode of abolition, with some subsequent colonization of freed slaves abroad. Exigencies of war and increasing Radical pressure pushed Lincoln to issue the Emancipation Proclamation, deemed at the time and later in the popular mind to have done more than in fact it did. Randall termed the document "a mixed blessing" that helped the Union cause abroad but made peace with the Confederacy more difficult. Lincoln's moderate Reconstruction plans met fierce Radical hostility and, sadly, were destined to fail.
A final point may be made about The Civil War and Reconstruction, applicable also to Randall's later works: the richness and appropriateness of its illustrations. In 1924 Randall had visited the studio of Mathew Brady's nephew in Washington to see the Brady photographs of Lincoln and to acquire prints. Many Brady and other contemporary photographs were reproduced in the book. Sketches also appeared that had been made in the field to be converted into woodblock engravings for newspaper illustrations. The captions in the book give clues to the care with which Randall chose illustrations. His keen visual sense also was evident in his artistic metaphors and descriptions of individuals.
Throughout his career, Randall used a life-and-times approach. Times were dominant in the textbook with its continuous concentration on the war, with Lincoln the leading actor in the cast of many characters. As Randall turned to biography, Lincoln became central Page [End Page 8] in a new sense, with the spotlight always focused on him as he acted within his complex environment. This perspective, within the greater length of the biographical enterprise, gave the author an opportunity to consider each facet of Lincoln's life and concerns. The fabric was richer—but the pattern was not significantly different. In reviewing volume 3, Kenneth M. Stampp noted that "further research and reflection had caused ... [Randall] to modify slightly some of his earlier interpretations, but in the main his interpretations had not changed." Reviewing the final volume, David M. Potter wrote: "As has been true with the previous volumes, the present one will offer no startling new hypotheses."  One modification of significance came in Randall's address on "Historianship": a distinct relaxation in his condemnation of abolitionists.
The biography dealt primarily with Lincoln the president, but Randall chose to devote eight chapters to the prepresidential years and to include an appendix written jointly with Ruth Randall that disputed William Herndon's account of Lincoln's alleged love affair with Ann Rutledge.  One chapter, also composed with Mrs. Randall, challenged Herndon's ascription of Lincoln's marriage to Mary Todd as "miserable." Granting some difficulties, the Lincolns in Springfield, in the Randalls' version, were "a typical American family where father and mother were united by love of their children, common interests, ties of affection, and the pattern of daily family life." This strong bond of affection persisted through the presidential years. In Midstream, Randall devoted a chapter to the "Lonely White House Pair."  With each of Lincoln's days "crowded, tiring, and strenuous," and with Mary Lincoln lacking the strength to meet the high demands of domestic management, plagued by emotional instability, the inability to manage money, and concern for her husband's safety, then overwhelmed by the death of a son, she came to view the White House as "a storm center and a kind of dismal trap." Yet "she served with dignity in all the exacting social world of the presidency," and the Lincolns remained "a loving and thoroughly devoted couple." Page [End Page 9]
Randall conceived of Lincoln the President "both as biography and as history," integrating Lincoln's life with "contemporary movements and thought currents."  The four volumes contain a series of chapters on discrete but closely related themes concerned with administrative, constitutional, political, and diplomatic developments during the war. There is more attention to military history than a reader might expect from the author's caveat. Randall frankly avowed a revisionist perspective. 
Randall's Lincoln, arrived in Washington, was a more experienced person than the nation's population at the time or later historians had recognized. A man of broad interests based on travel and association with professional men, Lincoln possessed political savvy, an ability to perceive accurately existing realities, and the gift of clear, even elegant, expression. "He would tug at a problem and wrestle until he could make sense of it.... There were elements in the man yet undeveloped, indeed unsuspected."
Lincoln's tall, gaunt, raw-boned, awkward figure proved easy to caricature, and savage depictions aplenty appeared in the opposition press. However, Randall could cite case histories of visitors to the president who, put off by his appearance initially, were quickly won over by his earnestness, sincerity, kindness, and candor.  Lincoln's tact, shrewdness, and humor made him a skillful negotiator. Walt Whitman said that the "complete limning" of Lincoln would require "the eyes and brains and fingertouch of Plutarch and Aeschylus and Michael Angelo, assisted by Rabelais."
Randall returned again and again to the core principles of Lincoln's faith. "The younger as well as the more mature Lincoln reacted with a kind of Jeffersonian liberalism to the problems and conditions of American society."  He was "to be understood in terms of courageous and undaunted liberalism." He was "a tough-minded liberal realist." "If his conservatism was a kind of brake or saving common sense, liberalism was his vital spark."  Page [End Page 10] Lincoln considered the year 1776 in the United States as "the germ which has vegetated, and still has to grow ... into the universal liberty of mankind."  Randall considered "this world view as to democracy" as "the pivotal factor in ... [Lincoln's] political philosophy." From this faith was derived his sense of the meaning of the war, often expressed—perhaps most eloquently at Gettysburg—as a challenge whether "government of the people, by the people, for the people" should or should not "perish from the earth." In his first inaugural address, Lincoln had insisted that the "Union of these States is perpetual."
Equally central to the dynamics of Lincoln the President was the concurrent battle between Lincoln and the Radical Republicans, especially those in Congress. Randall's sympathies remained wholeheartedly with the president. The "Northern Variety" of fire-eaters, the abolitionist agitators, were "as deadly as the Southern" variety in creating the artificial climate leading to war. When Congress assembled with the Radicals dominant, Randall observed, "a more unlovely knot of politicians would be hard to find. Self important, humorless, itching for power, and scornful of ethical scruple, they sold their wares at their own valuation and paraded behind a front of crusading zeal." The president's lot became excruciatingly difficult. "Pulled at from right and left till he was nearly torn apart, the conservative Lincoln, President of the disUnited States, found among his own Republicans almost a greater vexation than among those of the opposite party, or even among enemies in arms."
Lincoln and the Radicals fought about almost every aspect of governmental policy, most notably the conduct of the war and the nature of the peace. Lincoln's role in military decisions received Randall's generally favorable verdict.  In a detailed reevaluation of the evidence, Randall absolved Lincoln of a deliberate strategy to cause the South to fire the first shot at Fort Sumter.  Although Lincoln's judgment was not infallible, he did not claim to be a master of strategy, and he presented his ideas as questions rather Page [End Page 11] than as orders. General Ulysses S. Grant, coming into top command, planned his eastern strategy with Lincoln's help. Appointing generals and admirals was the president's duty as commander in chief, and this responsibility, Randall concluded, proved to be Lincoln's "most serious as well as ... most harassing and burdensome" function. The joint committee on the conduct of the war, created by the congressional Radicals, however, Randall deemed a source of great military mischief, especially because of its enmity to General McClellan.  Randall presented McClellan as warrior in a favorable light.
Lincoln's stance on slavery is a continuing theme in Randall's biography. Randall made clear Lincoln's early hatred of slavery and opposition to its spread into the territories, while in matters of policy regarding slavery otherwise he held attitudes closer to those of the southerners than to the goals of extreme abolitionists. Lincoln hoped to preserve the Union by not agitating the issue of slavery in the South; then, when war came, he hoped to restore the Union by a plan that would quickly restore southern citizenship in exchange for a loyalty oath and would free slaves by governmental purchase, inasmuch as the whole nation shared the guilt of human bondage. For a while, Lincoln's programs coupled colonization with emancipation. The radicals in Congress thwarted the president's plans both of compensated liberation and of generous restoration of rights to residents of returning southern states.  Events pushed Lincoln to more decisive actions. Randall analyzed the Emancipation Proclamation as both stereotype and reality. Current described White House hospitality to Frederick Douglass and other African Americans and the president's strong advocacy of the Thirteenth Amendment.  Randall, in these and other aspects of the continuing dispute between the moderate Lincoln and the Radical Republicans, sided with the president.
In his preface to the final volume, Current wrote: "On one point ... [Professor Randall] was explicit. 'This biography,' he not- Page [End Page 12] ed, 'knows only the living Lincoln.' He did not intend to deal with the assassination or with the events following it." So Current's final chapter ends on April 14, 1865, with Mary Lincoln complaining of a headache and suggesting that they not attend the play at Ford's Theater. The president, however, insisted on going. "And so they went."
Reviewers of Lincoln the President at the time and students of Lincoln historiography since have praised Randall's biography even while challenging some of his interpretations. Harry J. Carman termed it "the outstanding Lincoln biography"; Avery O. Craven called it "one of the truly great biographical undertakings of our time"; Mark E. Neely Jr. called it "monumental." Critics challenged Randall on—among other things—his explanation of the causes of the Civil War, his exaggeration of the distance between Lincoln and the Radical Republicans with respect to slavery, his misunderstanding of political parties, and his too favorable portrait of McClellan. Randall, an avowed revisionist himself, expected this to happen: "Some day," Randall noted, "the revisionists themselves may be revised." 
Lincoln said in the Illinois State Capitol that, when it came to nations, a house divided portended disaster. Randall wrote, in his final essay, his American Historical Association presidential address, that when it came to interpretation, "There is no supreme court of history."  Page [End Page 13]
- Harry E. Pratt, "James Garfield Randall, 1881–1953," Journal of the Illinois State Historical Society 46 (Summer 1953): 119–28. Pratt's article contains an appended bibliography of Randall's publications prepared by Wayne C. Temple (128–31).
- Randall obituary, New York Times, Feb. 22, 1953.
- Ruth Painter Randall, I Ruth: Autobiography of a Marriage (Boston: Little, Brown, 1968): 95.
- Finding aid for the J. G. Randall Papers, University Archives, University Library, University of Illinois at Urbana–Champaign (hereinafter cited as RP-UI).
- Wayne C. Temple, "J. G. Randall: Dean of the Lincoln Scholars," Illinois Libraries 67 (June 1985): 499; "Randall, J[ames] G[arfield]," Who Was Who in America (Chicago: A. N. Marquis, 1960), 3:709.
- Randall, The Confiscation of Property during the Civil War (Indianapolis: Mutual Printing and Lithographing, 1913).
- Randall, "Some Legal Aspects of the Confiscation Acts of the Civil War," American Historical Review 18 (Oct. 1912): 79–96, and "Captured and Abandoned Property during the Civil War," id., 19 (Oct. 1913): 65–79.
- Conversation with J. G. and Ruth Painter Randall; the author to Myrna Young, Oct. 20, 1947; Ruth P. Randall, I Ruth, 51–54, 79.
- "Scholars Must Expose Error, Randall Says," unidentified clipping, Dec. 17, 1937, RP-UI; Randall, "Historianship," American Historical Review 58 (Jan. 1953): 249–64.
- Randall, Constitutional Problems under Lincoln (New York: D. Appleton, 1926).
- "Randall," Who Was Who in America, 3:709.
- Randall to the author, Nov. 1, 1943.
- "Randall," Who Was Who in America, 3:709; Ruth P. Randall, I Ruth, 98–99.
- Waldo G. Leland, Carnegie Institution, to Evarts B. Greene, University of Il-linois, Apr. 30, 1920, RP-UI.
- Pratt, "James Garfield Randall," 125–26; Ruth P. Randall, I Ruth, 106–22, 156–70; James Harvey Young, "Professor James G. Randall," in A New Era for the United States: Americans and the War with Mexico, ed. Robert W. Johannsen (Urbana: University of Illinois Press, 1975), 5–10; Temple, "J. G. Randall," 498–506.
- Randall, diary, May 1 and 2, 1924, and Feb. 12, 1924, J. G. Randall Papers, Manuscripts Division, Library of Congress (hereinafter cited as RP-LC). I wish to extend my great appreciation to J. Merton England for checking the Randall diaries in my behalf.
- Carl Russell Fish, review of Constitutional Problems under Lincoln, by J. G. Randall, American Historical Review 33 (Jan. 1928): 419–21. Randall's contract with Appleton called for him to pay the full cost of making the book, estimated at $2,205, in an edition of 1,500 copies. He was to receive one-third of the income from sale of the book at four dollars a copy (Randall, diary, Oct. 9 and Dec. 4, 1925, RP-LC).
- J. G. Randall and Theodore C. Pease, eds., The Diary of Orville Hickman Browning (Springfield: Illinois State Historical Library, 1927, 1933). Randall and Pease edited the first volume; Randall edited the second volume alone.
- Ruth P. Randall, I Ruth, 122–26.
- Ibid., 125–27; Randall, "Abraham Lincoln," Dictionary of American Biography (New York: Charles Scribner's Sons, 1933), 11:242–59. The Mary Todd Lincoln sketch appeared in 11:265–66. Randall's other sketches were of John Calhoun, Salmon Portland Chase, David Davis, Ward Hill Lamon, Stephen Trigg Logan, John George Nicolay, John Reynolds, James Washington Singleton, John Todd Stuart, and Richard Yates.
- Ruth P. Randall, I Ruth, 126–27; Randall, The Civil War and Reconstruction (Boston: D. C. Heath, 1937). A revised edition appeared in 1953. The 1937 edition is cited in the remainder of this essay.
- The cloth version sold 69,580 copies between 1969 and 1984 when it went out of print. A paperback version was published in 1983 that had sold 10,680 copies by March 1993. Earlier figures were not available (Patty Schoeck to the author, Apr. 5, 1993).
- The biography was initially intended to be jointly written by Randall and Paul M. Angle, but Angle soon withdrew, being too busy to continue (Randall, diary, Feb. 2, Mar. 13, Aug. 24, Sept. 4, 11, 12, 15, 1936, RP-LC).
- All the volumes were published by Dodd, Mead, and Company of New York. See Ruth P. Randall, I Ruth, 169–201. Richard N. Current discussed his role in completing Last Full Measurein the preface to Randall, Lincoln the President, 4:vii–viii, in the introduction to a new edition of this volume published in 1991 by the University of Illinois Press, vii–xi, and in a letter to the author, Dec. 12, 1995.
- Mark E. Neely Jr., "The Lincoln Theme since Randall's Call: The Promises and Perils of Professionalism," Papers of the Abraham Lincoln Association 1 (1979): 10–70.
- Randall, Lincoln and the South (Baton Rouge: Louisiana State University Press, 1946); id., Lincoln the Liberal Statesman (New York: Dodd, Mead, 1947); id., Living with Lincoln and Other Essays (Decatur, Ill.: Tippett Press, 1949).
- Randall, Civil War and Reconstruction, v–x.
- Ibid., 146–47.
- Ibid., 162.
- Ibid., 222.
- Ibid., 222–28.
- Ibid., 232–42.
- Randall, Lincoln the Liberal Statesman, 88–117.
- Randall, Civil War and Reconstruction, 361.
- Ibid., 362–64.
- Ibid., 385–404.
- Ibid., 459–76.
- Ibid., 289–90.
- Ibid., 433–36.
- Ibid., 459–76.
- Randall, diary, Aug. 5, 1924, RP-LC; Ruth P. Randall, I Ruth, 125; Young, "Professor James G. Randall," x.
- Kenneth M. Stampp, review of Lincoln the President: Vol. 3: Midstream, by Randall, Journal of Southern History 19 (May 1953): 241–42.
- David M. Potter, review of Lincoln the President: Vol. 4: Last Full Measure, by Randall and Current, Journal of Southern History 22 (Nov. 1956): 531–33.
- Randall, "Historianship," 260.
- Randall, Lincoln the President, 1:321–42.
- Ibid., 1:51–74.
- Ibid., 3:40–41; see also pages 5 and 7.
- Ibid., 1:vii.
- Ibid., 2:256.
- Ibid., 1:ix.
- Ibid., 1:1–4.
- Ibid., 1:26–30; Randall, Lincoln the Liberal Statesman, 65–87.
- Randall, Lincoln the President, 3:393–94.
- Ibid., 3:79–80; Randall, Lincoln the Liberal Statesman, x.
- Quoted in Randall, Lincoln the President, 3:399–400.
- Randall, Lincoln the Liberal Statesman, xii.
- Ibid., ix.
- Ibid., 178–79.
- Ibid., 200–201.
- Randall, Lincoln the President, 2:310–11.
- Ibid., 1:298; 3:vii.
- Ibid., 1:83–84, 226–27, 282.
- Ibid., 2:204–5.
- Ibid., 2:25.
- Ibid., 2:75–76, 90, 100–101, 120, 267; 3:373–83; 4:143.
- Ibid., 1:311–50; Randall, Lincoln the Liberal Statesman, 88–117.
- Randall, Lincoln the President, 2:268.
- Ibid., 2:62–69, 79, 81.
- Ibid., 2:69–70, 75–76, 88, 102, 113, 120.
- Ibid., 1:104–9, 114–18, 123–28, 134–37, 207–45; 2:126–203; 3:16–17, 116–25.
- Ibid., 3:83–148; 4:1–33, 359–64.
- Ibid., 2:153–59, 181–89.
- Ibid., 4:298–321.
- Ibid., 4:vii, 379.
- Carman, review of Lincoln the President, by Randall, American Historical Review 62 (1957): 413–15; Craven, review of Lincoln the President, by Randall, Mississippi Valley Historical Review 43 (1956): 128–29; Neely, "Lincoln Theme," 13.
- Early challenges to Randall's view of Civil War causation were Bernard De-Voto, "The Easy Chair," Harper's Magazine 192 (1946): 123–26, and Arthur Schlesinger Jr., "The Causes of the Civil War: A Note on Historical Sentimentalism," Partisan Review 16 (1949): 969–81. Lincoln historiography with evaluations of Randall's biography includes Benjamin P. Thomas, Portrait for Posterity: Lincoln and His Biographers (New Brunswick, N.J.: Rutgers University Press, 1947); Thomas J. Pressly, Americans Interpret Their Civil War (Princeton, N.J.: Princeton University Press, 1954); Don E. Fehrenbacher, The Changing Image of Lincoln in American Historiography (Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1968); Neely, "Lincoln Theme"; and Merrill D. Peterson, Lincoln in American Memory (New York: Oxford University Press, 1994).
- Randall, Lincoln the President, 1:viii; id., Civil War and Reconstruction, vi.
- Randall, "Historianship," 252.