A Letter from an Anonymous Referee at a Peer Reviewed Journal
August 1, 2021
“What Oath (if any) did Jacob Henry take in 1809?: The Problem of Conceptual Confusion between State Religious Tests and Religious Test Oaths”
I recommend publication of “What Oath (if any) did Jacob Henry take in 1809?” And I recommend publication with no necessary revisions.
The article’s purpose is to answer the question posed in the title. It does so, and it does so in an especially engaging manner. Indeed, the article might start a new genre: peer-reviewed historical mystery non-fiction.
Among the article’s strengths is its clarity. It poses a question and then answers it. Along the way, we learn of the article’s primary contribution, which is to correct the scholarly record regarding the story of Jacob Henry.
. . . .
The article is very well written. I enjoyed reading it. I could see how some might criticize the essay for not fully revealing its argument until the end, but I thought the presentation was terrific, even suspenseful.
The author may or may not be right about what Jacob Henry did, but he/she presents a compelling case that is well documented and engagingly told. I recommend publication.
Seth Barrett Tillman, A New Genre: Peer-Reviewed Historical Mystery Non-fiction, New Reform Club (Sept. 5, 2021, 5:27 AM), <https://reformclub.blogspot.com/2021/09/a-new-genre-peer-reviewed-historical.html>;
The article is posted here: <https://ssrn.com/abstract=3790115>;