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ONE of the pleasantest features of a task like mine has been the constant kindness received from busy people of diverse sorts, whose varying interests touch mine at some particular point.
My first thanks are due to my cousin, Margaret Bingham Stillwell, Curator of the Annmary Brown Memorial, Providence. The idea of writing this book grew out of a conversation with her, and she encouraged me to undertake the research. She has given constant evidence of her interest, and I owe her a particular debt of gratitude in regard to the illustrations; considerably more than half of those presented here were obtained by her, at no small cost of time and effort.
The largest single source of information, as the reader will discover, was colonial newspapers, and I was fortunate in having access to the admirable collection of the American Antiquarian Society, in Worcester. I am under obligations to each member of its staff, in particular to Mr. Clarence S. Brigham and to his associate, Mrs. Reynolds. Mr. Brigham read my manuscript, and gave me helpful suggestions at every stage of my work. He has aided me also in securing illustrations.
The Worcester Public Library was of great assistance, and I am indebted to the staff of the Reference Department there particularly to my friend Miss Maude E. Wesby.
Dr. George Hubbard Blakeslee, of Clark University; Dr. Harry Elmer Barnes, of Smith College; Mrs. William T. Forbes, of Worcester; and Mr. Howard M. Chapin, of the Rhode Island Historical Society, Providence, gave me suggestions, criticisms, and encouragement, for all of which I am deeply grateful.
The arduous search for illustrations was lightened by the uniform kindness and helpfulness of those who were approached in this undertaking. Mr. George Francis Dow, of the Society for the Preservation of New England Antiquities, was particularly generous and helpful. I wish also to thank Mr. George Parker Winship, of the Widener Memorial Library, Cambridge; Mr. Lawrence C. Wroth, of the John Carter Brown Library, Providence; Mr. John R. Hess, of the Editorial Staff of the Providence Journal; Mr. Harry L. Koopman, of the John Hay Library, Providence; Colonel George L. Shepley and Mr. Norman M. Ishman, of Providence; Mr. Worthington C. Ford, of the Massachusetts Historical Society, Boston; and Mr. Henry W. Belknap, of Essex Institute, Salem.
It is becoming almost a commonplace for an author to express thanks to husband or wife. I sometimes wonder how any unmarried person ever succeeds in writing a book! Who else can be trusted to give absolutely honest criticism, unsugared by one bit of flattery? And who else never loses interest, and day by day encourages a sometimes flagging muse? For his unremitting helpfulness, sympathy, and patience, I thank my husband, Robert Cloutman Dexter.
ELISABETH ANTHONY DEXTER
SARATOGA SPRINGS, New YORK
March 21, 1924