Political Theory

Civility and the Press, 1776–1872


This colloquium explored the topic of civility and the press from the founding of the United States until the end of Reconstruction and the debates over woman suffrage, with the goal of discussing whether civility is a necessary prerequisite for democratic governance.


From Liberty Fund

Growth of the American Revolution: 1766–1775

by By Bernhard Knollenberg
Edited by Bernard W. Sheehan

In the fall of 2002, Liberty Fund published noted historian Bernhard Knollenberg’s Origin of the American Revolution. Now Liberty Fund proudly announces the publication of the second volume of Knollenberg’s masterwork on the American Revolution.

Knollenberg describes Growth of the American Revolution as “. . . an Account of the…

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Additional Readings

Frohnen, Bruce P., eds. The American Nation: Primary Sources, Indianapolis: Liberty Fund, Inc., 2009.

Washington, George. “Speech to A Continental Congress Camp Committee” at Valley Forge, January 29, 1778 (selection). https://founders.archives.gov/documents/Washington/03-13-02-0335.

Oxford English Dictionary. New York: Oxford University Press, 2010.

Schlesinger, Arthur M. Prelude To Independence: The Newspaper War On Britain 1764-1776. New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 1958.

New York Tribune. “Counsel to Fire-Eaters.” December 4, 1860.

Thoreau, Henry David. “A Plea for Captain John Brown.” (A speech delivered at Concord, Massachusetts, October 30, 1859).

The New York Times. “Butler and the Poor Negro.” September 11, 1880.

Stanton, Elizabeth Cady. Speech, "The Revolution.” May 20, 1869.

Cincinnati Enquirer. “Suffrage, Female and Colored.” April 1, 1867.

New York Tribune. “Woman’s Suffrage: Discussions between Catherine Beecher and Miss Livermore.” December 22, 1870.

Anthony, Susan B. “Letter to Elizabeth Cady Stanton" in re: Anthony casting an (illegal) vote. November 5, 1872

A Collection of Public Articles and Documents printed in the American Colonies [1770-1776]

A Collection of Press Articles and Documents from the Founding Era [1782-1791]

A Collection of Press Articles and Documents from the end of the American Civil War (1865-1866)

Budiansky, Stephen. The Bloody Shirt: Terror After Appomattox. New York: Viking, 2008.

Condon, Shawn. Shays’s Rebellion. Baltimore: Johns Hopkins Press, 2015.

Douglass, Frederick. “The Report of the Committee on a National Press.” The North Star (January 14, 1848): 1-2.

Douglass, Frederick. “John Brown.” Speech at Harper’s Ferry, West Virginia, May 30, 1881.

Douglass, Frederick. The Frederick Douglass Papers: Volume 4, 1864-1880. Edited by John W. Blassingame and John R. McKivigan. New Haven: Yale University Press, 1991.

Lienesch, Michael. In Debt To Shays. Edited by Robert A. Gross. Charlottesville: University Press of Virginia, 1986.

Lincoln, Abraham. “A House Divided.” Speech, Illinois State Capitol in Springfield, June 16, 1858.

Mill, John Stuart. The Collected Works of John Stuart Mill, Volume XVIII - Essays on Politics and Society. Edited by John M. Robson. Toronto: Toronto University Press, 1977.

Milton, John. Areopagitica and Other Political Writings of John Milton. Indianapolis: Liberty Fund, 1999.

Morton, Oliver P., “Speech on Reconstruction at the Indiana Republican Convention, June 20, 1866” In Life of Oliver P. Morton, Vol. I, Indianapolis: The Bowen-Merrill Company, 1899. 469-478.

Morton, Oliver P., “Fifteenth Amendment.” In Life of Oliver P. Morton, Vol. II, Indianapolis: The Bowen-Merrill Company, 1899. Page(s): 103-126.

Plato. The Dialogues of Plato. Translated by Benjamin Jowett. London: Oxford University Press, 1892.

Pressman, Richard S. “Class Positioning and Shays’s Rebellion: Resolving the Contradictions of The Contrast.” Early American Literature (Fall 1986): 87-100.

Whitman, Walt. “Tis But Ten Years Since.” New York Weekly Graphic (Jan. 24, 1874): 1-3.