Historian, college professor, librarian. Born– November 19, 1906, St. Louis, Mo. Parents– Roy Prentice and Mary (Olsen) Basler. Married– Virginia Pearl Anderson, August 31, 1929. Children– Five. Education– Central College in Fayette, Missouri, A.B., 1927; Duke University, A.M., 1930, Ph.D., 1931.  High school teacher, Caruthersville, Mo., 1926-28; professor of English at Ringling College, 1931-34; Florence State Teachers College, 1934-43;  University of Arkansas, 1943-46;  and George Peabody College, Nashville, 1946-50. Executive secretary and editor-in-chief for the Abraham Lincoln Association, 1947-52. Chief of General Reference and Bibliography Division, Library of Congress, 1952-54; Associate Director of Reference Department, 1954-58; Director, 1958-68; Chief of Manuscript Division, 1968-75. Member Modern Language Association, National Council of Teachers of English, American Library Association, Society of American Historians, Phi Beta Kappa.  Awarded the Diploma of Honor, Lincoln Memorial University, 1939; Distinguished Alumni Award, Central College, 1949; honorary D. Litt., Blackburn University, 1952. Died October 25, 1989.


American Authors and Books 1640 to the Present Day. 3rd rev. ed.; Who’s Who in America, 1978-1979; and Contemporary Authors online.


“Abraham Lincoln, Artist.” Congressional Record, May 24, 1938. Washington, D.C.; Government Printing Office.

Abraham Lincoln’s Democracy; an Address Delivered at Lincoln Memorial University, Harrogate, Tennessee, on the Seventy-fifth Anniversary of the “Gettysburg Address.” Harrogate, Tenn.; Lincoln Memorial University, 1938.

All the Difference; a Talk on the Occasion of the Dedication of the Robert Frost Room in the Jones Library, Amherst, October 21, 1959. S.l.; s.n., 1959.

As One Southerner to Another; Concerning Lincoln and the Declaration of Independence. Chicago; Abraham Lincoln Bookshop, 1943.

Fenwick Island Poems. S.l.; Bayside Press, 1975.

Lincoln. New York; Grove Press, 1962.

The Lincoln Legend; a Study in Changing Conceptions. Boston; Houghton, 1935.

The Muse and the Librarian. Westport, Conn.; Greenwood Press, 1974.

President Lincoln Helps His Old Friends. Springfield, Ill.; Abraham Lincoln Association, 1977.

Sex, Symbolism and Psychology in Literature. New Brunswick; Rutgers University Press, 1948.

A Short History of the American Civil War. New York; Basic Books, 1948.

Touchstone for Greatness; Essays Addresses, and Occasional Pieces About Abraham Lincoln. Westport, Conn.; Greenwood Press, 1973.


Abraham Lincoln; Collected Works. New Brunswick, N.J.; Rutgers University Press, 1953.

Abraham Lincoln; Collected Works, Supplement. Westport, Conn.; Greenwood Press, 1974.

The Enduring Lincoln; Lincoln Sesquicentennial Lectures at the University of Illinois. Urbana, Ill.; University of Illinois Press, 1959.

Abraham Lincoln, His Speeches and Writings. Cleveland; World, 1946.

A Guide to the Study of the United States of America; Representative Books Reflecting the Development of American Life and Thought. Washington, D.C.; Library of Congress, 1960.

Walt Whitman’s Memoranda During the War & Death of Abraham Lincoln. Bloomington, Ind.; Indiana University Press, 1962.


Abraham Lincoln, A New Portrait.  Putnam, 1959.

Lincoln for the Ages.  Doubleday, 1960l

Twentieth-Century English: A Symposium.  Philosophical Library, 1949.

Walt Whitman in Our Times; Four Essays. Detroit; Wayne State University Press, 1970.


Lincoln’s Gettysburg Address in Translation. Washington, D.C.; Library of Congress, 1972.


The Library of Congress holds a collection of the papers of Roy Prenctice Basler.