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No people in their beginnings have left richer or more abundant materials for veritable history than have the Pilgrim and Puritan fathers of New England. And it is a matter of rejoicing that a fresh popular interest in our Colonial times has been awakened in recent years. An indication of this interest is plainly seen in such writings as those of S. G. and S. A. Drake, of Charles F. and Brooks Adams, of Prof. John Fiske, of Alice Morse Earle, and of several other recent writers. The
Margaret Winthrop," by Mrs. Earle, especially, has much authentic and interesting historic material. The original and chief sources from which our work is drawn are, of course, given in the body of the text and need not be mentioned here. If allowed to particularize, however, I should say that perhaps, in a considerable part of my work, nothing has been more interestingly helpful to me than the treasures of the library of the “ Backus Historical Society,” in Newton Center, and of the Massachusetts Archives, in the State House in Boston.
My obligations also are specially due to our great libraries, to the Boston Public Library most of all, which has allowed me, though a country resident, to take out
gratuitously many desired volumes ; also to the Athenæum Library, the Congregational Library, the State Library, and the Library of the Massachusetts Historical Society. In all these libraries there are treasures relating to our theme, which are as yet by no means exhausted.
D. B. F.
HANOVER, Mass., 1896.