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Outlining a Compare and Contrast Essay

-- 2014-10-21
I’m trying to learn how to write a compare and contrast essay, and I was wondering if you could give me a quick outline of how to compare and contrast Abraham Lincoln and Jefferson Davis during the Civil War. What should come first in my paper?
-- 2014-10-24 
There is no one size fits all model for this essay, but here are some pointers.

1. Start with Lincoln and Davis's backgrounds as the lead in to their careers. Lincoln was from a poor family in Kentucky; they moved to Illinois, he became a lawyer, ended up in Congress. Jefferson Davis was from a wealthy family of plantation owners in Mississippi, was obviously pro-slavery, was in the military and worked as a government employee before the Civil War.

2. The central part of the essay should be how Lincoln imposed his will on Congress in the North whereas Davis became more of a figurehead leader as the Confederacy faltered and ultimately collapsed.

3.Be consistent when switching back and forth, meaning go in a coherent order when discussing each person.

4. Avoid writing the paper as 2 essays but do not alternate too frequently.

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