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One Piece of Advice

I began my research into the 51st North Carolina in 2003. It didn’t take long for me to run into conflicting information from different sources. At the time, I just documented the differences and moved on. When I started researching The Honor of the State, the problem became serious. I had to determine which source was correct or at least seemed more correct. I quickly learned one important rule: don’t trust your sources.

Don’t fully trust any source, not even first-hand accounts. Contemporary reports were “filtered” by the authors. Exaggeration, blame-shifting, and omissions are common. Reminiscences are often fogged by distant memories. Always try to verify facts with multiple sources.

History books can also contain errors. Sometimes writers must make leaps of logic. Historical records leave a lot of gaps in narratives, and writers fill those gaps with fully reasonable assumptions. I made several of these errors myself. I also ran across a few instances where accredited historical writers made the same kind of mistake. It’s always best to directly check the sources cited in a book.

The Information on this Site

To the best of my knowledge, everything I post on this site is factual. I try to list references for all information I share (sometimes I forget or get lazy). You can back-track any of the items’ references and decide for yourselves if the information is accurate. If you have questions or comments, send an email to [email protected].

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