John Stauffer, a Professor of English and African-American Studies at Harvard, received a flurry of criticism after he claimed that “between 3,000 and 6,000 [blacks] served as Confederate soldiers.” Apparently he used literary sources to make the claim without checking out the historical evidence. Opps! Literary sources can be useful to a historian, but the claims made in must either verified by other types of evidence or used as windows into the perceptions of those who wrote the literature. For more on this story:
What Counts as Historical Evidence? The Fracas over John Stauffer’s Black Confederates | Historista.