A Proof Argument? Why Bother?

18 March 2015
A recent discussion of proof arguments triggered a common question: Why can’t we just ‘let the documents do the talking’? Unfortunately, documents don’t talk. They may lie, but they do not talk and they cannot ...

Why Are EE's Source Citations So 'Complicated'?

12 February 2015
We hear this question often. It's usually accompanied by a reference to "scientific style" citations that the questioner considers to be "clean and concise," or to a publisher's house style that strips citations down to ...

Facts vs. Speculation vs. Interpretation

26 December 2014
Jack Webb, the famed Dragnet detective, consistently called for “Just the facts, Ma’am, just the facts.” That stance, a wise one for detectives, has its counterpart among historical researchers who recognize the difference between documented “facts,” speculation, and interpretation.

Using Evidence—A Four-Step Process

17 June 2014
As researchers, we move from inquiry to conclusion in a four-step process. Below, we give you three of those steps. What do you think is missing? ...

Interpreting Agricultural Census Data

29 April 2014
A historical monograph published by a university press invokes the agricultural schedule of the 1850 U.S. census and asserts: "Considering [this individual's wealth], the census statistics ...