All volumes of the Correspondence of James K. Polk now can be read online at no charge. The Polk Project and the University of Tennessee Press have partnered with Newfound Press, the digital imprint of the University of Tennessee Libraries, to make this possible.
Newfound Press has released searchable, open-access pdf versions of all thirteen published volumes. These feature letters written by or to Polk between July 1817, during his college days, and March 1848, just after the end of the Mexican War.
The fourteenth and final volume in the series is due out in the fall of 2020. It will feature annotated letters from April 1848–June 1849, Polk’s last year as president and his brief retirement. It also will include a calendar summarizing letters that we located too late to include in their chronologically appropriate volumes.
For the first time, in advance of volume 14’s publication, we are making most of the letter transcriptions (without most annotation) available online. Newfound Press has created an easily searchable, TEI (XML)-encoded digital “early” edition of 364 letters from Polk’s final months. Editor Michael David Cohen has written a special introduction to this edition. While the completed volume makes its way through the presses, go ahead and begin using these important primary sources.
You also may be interested in the Library of Congress’s digitized James K. Polk Papers, which include scanned images of many of the manuscripts transcribed and edited in our volumes.