October 29th, 2009

bird in the sky

Information In-access

I want to read Johnston Pettigrew's travel journals and other writings, but I don't live in North Carolina. Ah, information access is great when it works, but unfortunately, now is not one of those times for me. I could try to see if I could interlibrary loan the microfilm version, but sitting in a dark study hall reading journal pages on film late after work with return dates hanging over my head doesn't sound all that appealing. If there wasn't a lot of material, I'd just order a photo-duplication, but there are far too many pages in this case, I'm afraid. My attempts to track down an expert on the subject have also proved unsuccessful. It's so frustrating to be so close, yet so far. I just wasted the whole evening trying to find a way to get answers from all the information that is preserved (in the form of documents, living historians, etc), but in the end I didn't make any real progress. This is what I get for being too curious about primary sources. While others might be satisfied reading the fictional account, I want to know how the facts have been interpreted, how they have been aligned, how they have been framed. What's the story behind the story?