A former professor of history at the University of Massachusetts Amherst. He is an expert in 19th-century United States history.Oates has written 16 books during his career, including biographies of Martin Luther King, Jr., Abraham Lincoln, Clara Barton, and John Brown, and an account of Nat Turner's slave rebellion. His Portrait of America, a compilation of essays about United States history, is widely used in advanced high school and undergraduate university American history courses. His two "Voices of the Storm" books are compilations of monologues of key individuals in events leading up to and during the American Civil War. He also appeared in the well-known Ken Burns PBS documentary on the war.He was accused of plagiarism in his biography of Abraham Lincoln, but may have been later cleared by the University of Massachusetts and the American Historical Association. [1:]Oates received the Nevins-Freeman Award of the Chicago Civil War Round Table for his historical work on the American Civil War.