writers of imaginative literature who have been most emphasized by our literary historians, we have attempted to do a new service by giving a place in our record to departments of literature, such as travels, oratory, memoirs, which have lain somewhat out of the main tradition of literary history but which may be, as they are in the United States
, highly significant of the national temper.
In this task we have been much aided by the increasing number of monographs produced within the past quarter of a century upon aspects of American literary history.
Such collections as A Library of American literature
, edited by Edmund Clarence Stedman
and Ellen M. Hutchinson
in 1889-90, and the Library of Southern literature
(1908-13), compiled by various Southern men of letters, have been indispensable.
In the actual preparation of the work we have been indebted for many details to the unsparing assistance of Mrs Carl Van Doren
, who has also compiled the index.
W. P. T. J. E. S. P. S. C. V. D.