More on the Greenwich Tea Burning

The April 2009 edition of the Readex Report is running a short piece I wrote on my use of Readex’s “America’ Historical Newspapers” in research on the Greenwich Tea Burning. We at Messiah College are privileged to have several Readex databases, including Early American Imprints Series 1 & 2 (Shaw-Shoemaker) and Early American Newspapers. (Thanks Beth Mark!). I recently visited a major northeastern research university and learned that they subscribed to none of these databases!

I first wrote about the tea burning in The Way of Improvement Leads Home, but have since explored the way the event was memorialized in the southern New Jersey town in which it occurred. This piece offers some of my initial thoughts on the subject.

I should add that the “About the Author” section mentions I am completing a book entitled “The Greenwich Tea Burning: History and Memory in a New Jersey Town.” This is technically correct. I have seven of nine chapters of this book written, but have put it on hold temporarily while I finish a book manuscript, due at Westminster/John Knox Press in January, on the idea of “Christian America.” (I should also add that I am still looking for a publisher for the Greenwich Tea Burning book. Any takers out there?).

2 thoughts on “More on the Greenwich Tea Burning

  1. Phil: Thanks for the comment. I am blessed that Messiah has invested in these databases (and thus indirectly in my work and teaching). They are quite expensive, but I can now have my students write research papers based on primary sources without having to make them travel to an archive.A few years ago there was much debate on H-OIEAHC (or maybe it was H-SHEAR)on the fact that only privileged universities and elite liberal arts colleges have access to these databases. Fair enough. But I should also add that Messiah is not particularly wealthy but we were able to work together with other interested departments to make it happen.


  2. Thanks for sharing this piece about the questions that drove your reseach into this topic–and how finding particular sources changed the questions you began to ask and reshaped your (tentative) conclusions. It is a great example of what we do as historians.I’ve had the pleasure of exploring the Early American Imprints for my dissertation, and much of documentary evidence I found for church conflict and pastoral dismissal reshaped and refined the questions I asked; and the sources I found led to conclusions I did not anticipate.That such a large body of published material is searchable and downloadable saves hundreds of hours. I hope your other blog readers avail themselves of this wonderful technological development.Any other e-archival source stories out there?


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