Writing & Research

Featured Books

Our American Story

Our American Story features a collection of provocative essays by leading thinkers and public figures addressing the same central question—what is the unifying American story? Following decades of tribal division, we lack a central story to celebrate and enrich with deeper meaning. This book explores whether a unifying story can be achieved and, if so, what that story may be.

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Abe’s Youth

Abe’s Youth, co-edited with William “Bill” Bartelt, unearths vital primary source material and provides the first fully annotated edition of Lincoln Inquiry papers. This volume offers indispensable reading for anyone hoping to investigate Abraham Lincoln’s youth and serves as a gateway for general readers into the environment of Lincoln’s early life.

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Books

Academic / Legal Publications and Teaching

  • Abe Lincoln: An Acceptable Nickname?,” For the People, a newsletter of the Abraham Lincoln Association vol. 20, no. 3 & 4 (Fall-Winter 2018): 8.
  • “The Opportunities and Pitfalls of Local Human Rights Ordinances,” The Network, a publication of the Indiana State Bar Association (July 2016). Winner of the Donald R. Lundberg Writing Award presented annually by the Indiana State Bar Association.
  • Adjunct Professor, University of Evansville, 2013. Taught Business Organizations (LS 350), a course on the legal organization of business entities, emphasizing the role of lawyers in forming various business organizations.
  • Research assistant to Prof. Gerard Magliocca (Indiana University McKinney School of Law). Assisted in the research and composition of Constitutional False Positives and the Populist Movement, 81 NOTRE DAME L. REV. 821 (2006). My research for this article also contributed to a subsequent book: Andrew Jackson and the Constitution: The Rise and Fall of Generational Regimes (Lawrence: U of Kansas Press, 2007).
  • Executive Articles Editor, Indiana Health Law Review, Vol. 3. Solicited and edited articles; ultimately responsible for accepting or rejecting articles submitted for publication in volume 3, which was comprised of two issues featuring ten articles, four student notes, and a symposium.

Book Reviews

Popular Press Publications

Research

Lincoln Research

I focus much of my research on Abraham Lincoln—his youth, his life, and his lasting legacy. Some of the research yielded a book, Abe’s Youth, co-edited with William Bartelt, along with numerous articles. I am also working on a complete history of Lincoln’s youth in Kentucky and Indiana. Read more here.

Civil War Research

My passion for the American Civil War and historic research in this field is strong. I maintain memberships and leadership positions with a number of Civil War organizations. I am also in the process of researching and writing a new regimental history. Read more here.

Claybourn Genealogical Society

I began the Claybourn Genealogical Society (CGS) to assemble and record data and information on ancestors and descendants of the family. CGS also works to preserve and safeguard manuscripts, books, cemeteries, and memorabilia relating to Claybourns. Read more here.

Claybourn Library

Our library collection consists of books with publication dates ranging from the 17th to the 20th centuries along with several signed first editions. We also maintain several other collections of historic printed or published writings. Read more here.

Selected Presentations

  • “Doing Your Homework: Buying and Selling Municipal Property,” co-presenter, AIM, Indiana League of Municipal Clerks and Treasurers – 24th Annual ILMCT Institute & Academy (March 2019)
  • “Our American Story,” University of Southern Indiana Applied History Series, 21 February 2019
  • “Ordinances and Resolutions,” co-presenter, AIM, Indiana League of Municipal Clerks and Treasurers – 23rd Annual ILMCT Institute & Academy (2018)
  • “Consolidation of Local Income Taxes,” Jackson Kelly PLLC Municipal Law Seminar (2017)
  • “The Arc of Our New History,” Indiana Political Science Association (2017)
  • “The American Presidency” (Roundtable), Indiana Political Science Association (2017, 2018)
  • “Little Egypt Goes to War,” Southern Indiana Civil War Roundtable (2017)
  • “Lincoln’s Almanac Trial,” Southern Indiana Civil War Roundtable (2015)
  • “Post-Civil War Fraternities,” Southern Indiana Civil War Roundtable (2014)

Personal Reflections

Travel Diaries