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John C. Calhoun: A Resource Guide

Compiled by Kenneth Drexler, Digital Reference Specialist
John C. Calhoun
John C. Calhoun.
1 print.
Prints & Photographs Division.
Reproduction Number:

The digital collections of the Library of Congress contain a wide variety of material associated with John C. Calhoun. This resource guide compiles links to digital materials related to Calhoun such as manuscripts, letters, broadsides, government documents, and images that are available throughout the Library of Congress Web site. In addition, it provides links to external Web sites focusing on Calhoun and a bibliography containing selected works for both a general audience and younger readers.

Library of Congress Web Site | External Web Sites | Selected Bibliography

Featured Digital Collection

A Century of Lawmaking for a New Nation: U.S. Congressional Documents and Debates, 1774-1875

This collection contains a large selection of congressional material related to John C. Calhoun's political career as a member of the House of Representatives (1811-17), secretary of war (1817-25), vice president (1825-32), secretary of state (1844-45), and U.S. senator (1832-43 and 1845-50).

A selection of Calhoun's speeches:

Digital Collections

The Alfred Whital Stern Collection of Lincolniana

Alfred Whital Stern (1881-1960) of Chicago presented his outstanding collection of Lincolniana to the Library of Congress in 1953. Begun by Mr. Stern in the 1920s, the collection documents the life of Abraham Lincoln (1809-1865) both through writings by and about Lincoln as well as a large body of publications concerning the issues of the times including slavery, the Civil War, Reconstruction, and related topics. The collection contains more than 11,100 items, including eleven items that reference John C. Calhoun.

Andrew Jackson Papers

The Andrew Jackson Papers contain more than 200 items to, from, or referring to John C. Calhoun.

The Frederick Douglass Papers at the Library of Congress

The Frederick Douglass Papers at the Library of Congress presents the papers of the nineteenth-century African-American abolitionist. The collection contains an article written by Douglass that responds to a speech by John C. Calhoun.

Printed Ephemera: Three Centuries of Broadsides and Other Printed Ephemera

The Printed Ephemera collection comprises 28,000 primary source items dating from the seventeenth century to the present and encompasses key events and eras in American history. Search the bibliographic records and the full-text option to find items related to John C. Calhoun.

James Madison Papers, 1723 to 1859

The James Madison Papers from the Manuscript Division at the Library of Congress consist of approximately 12,000 items captured in some 72,000 digital images. The Madison Papers contain five letters to or from John C. Calhoun.

Thomas Jefferson Papers, 1606 to 1827

The Thomas Jefferson Papers contain fifteen items to, from, or referring to John C. Calhoun.

Words and Deeds in American History: Selected Documents Celebrating the Manuscript Division's First 100 Years

In honor of the Manuscript Division's centennial, its staff has selected for online display approximately ninety representative documents spanning from the fifteenth century to the mid-twentieth century.

Chronicling America: Historic American Newspapers

Chronicling America

This site allows you to search and view millions of historic American newspaper pages from 1789-1924. Search this collection to find newspaper articles that reference John C. Calhoun from this time period.

A selection of articles related to Calhoun includes:


American Treasures of the Library of Congress: Compromise of 1850

Exhibit on Senators John C. Calhoun's and Daniel Webster's speeches from the Compromise of 1850 debate.

Prints & Photographs Division

Prints & Photographs Online Catalog (PPOC)

Search PPOC using the subject heading Calhoun, John C.--(John Caldwell),--1782-1850 to find prints, photographs, political cartoons, and other digital images related to Calhoun. Search all text fields in PPOC using the phrase John Calhoun to locate additional images.

Built in America: Historic American Buildings Survey/Historic American Engineering Record, 1933-Present

The Historic American Buildings Survey (HABS) and the Historic American Engineering Record (HAER) collections document achievements in architecture, engineering, and design in the United States, including Calhoun's home, Fort Hill, which is now located on the campus of Clemson University in South Carolina.

Today in History

January 13

President Andrew Jackson wrote Vice President Martin Van Buren expressing his opposition to South Carolina's defiance of federal authority during the Nullification Crisis. The crisis was resolved without bloodshed in March 1833. Henry Clay and John C. Calhoun, who had left the vice presidency at the end of 1832 to serve South Carolina in the Senate, drafted a reduced tariff agreement that pacified South Carolina while allowing the Federal government to stand firm.

March 18

On March 18, 1782, John C. Calhoun was born near Abbeville, South Carolina. Calhoun served as a congressman, senator, secretary of war, secretary of state, and vice president of the United States.

Virtual Programs and Services

Digital Reference Section Web Guides

Primary Documents in American History

This site offers a list of some of the most important documents in American history from 1763 to 1877, including documents related to Calhoun such as the Nullification Proclamation and Compromise of 1850.

External Web Sites

Biographical Directory of the United States Congress: John C. Calhoun

This publication contains a short biography of every member of Congress from 1774 to the present, including John C. Calhoun. It also provides a selected bibliography External Link and a list of research collections External Link related to Calhoun.

Clemson University: History External Link

Fort Hill, External Link the home of John C. Calhoun from 1825 until his death in 1850, is located on the campus of Clemson University. This site contains information about Fort Hill, as well as biographical information External Linkon Calhoun and his family.

United States Senate

The Art and History section of the U.S. Senate's Web site contains the following information on John C. Calhoun:

Selected Works by John C. Calhoun

Calhoun, John C. Speeches of John C. Calhoun. Delivered in the Congress of the United States from 1811 to the Present Time. New York: Harper & Brothers, 1843.
LC Call Number: E337.8 .C15 [Catalog Record] [Full Text] External Link

Cheek, H. Lee, Jr., ed. John C. Calhoun: Selected Writings and Speeches. Washington, D.C.: Regnery Publishing, 2003.
LC Call Number: E337.8 .C13 2003 [Catalog Record]

Crall, Richard K., ed. The Works of John C. Calhoun. 1851-56; rpt. New York: Russell & Russell, 1968.
LC Call Number: E337.8 .C143 [Catalog Record] [Full Text] External Link

Meriwether, Robert L., ed. The Papers of John C. Calhoun. 28 vols. Columbia: University of South Carolina Press, 1959-2003.
LC Call Number: E337.8 .C148 [Catalog Record]

Selected Biographies and Other Studies of Calhoun

Bartlett, Irving H. John C. Calhoun: A Biography. New York: W.W. Norton & Co., 1993.
LC Call Number: E340.C15 B27 1993 [Catalog Record]

Coit, Margaret L., ed. John C. Calhoun. Englewood Cliffs, N.J.: Prentice-Hall, 1970.
LC Call Number: E340.C15 C62 [Catalog Record]

-----. John C. Calhoun: American Portrait. 1950; rpt. Columbia: University of South Carolina Press, 1991.
LC Call Number: E340.C15 C63 1991 [Catalog Record]

Marmor, Theodore R. The Career of John C. Calhoun: Politician, Social Critic, Political Philosopher. New York: Garland Pub., 1988.
LC Call Number: E340.C15 M35 1988 [Catalog Record]

Niven, John. John C. Calhoun and the Price of Union: A Biography. Baton Rouge: Louisiana State University Press, 1988.
LC Call Number: E340.C15 N58 1988 [Catalog Record]

Peterson, Merrill D. The Great Triumvirate: Webster, Clay, and Calhoun. New York: Oxford University Press, 1987.
LC Call Number: E339 .P47 1987 [Catalog Record]

Read, James H. Majority Rule Versus Consensus: The Political Thought of John C. Calhoun. Lawrence: University Press of Kansas, 2009.
LC Call Number: JC212.C3 R43 2009 [Catalog Record]

Younger Readers

Brown, Warren. John C. Calhoun. New York: Chelsea House Publishers, 1993.
LC Call Number: E340.C15 B76 1993 [Catalog Record]

Celsi, Teresa Noel. John C. Calhoun and the Roots of War. Morristown, N.J.: Silver Burdett Press, 1991.
LC Call Number: E340.C15 C43 1990 [Catalog Record]

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  April 20, 2017
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