When the friend whom Mrs. Child
would have chosen above all others consented to write a biographical introduction to this volume, solely as a labor of love, the compiler, though an entire novice at such work, could not refuse his urgent request — seconded by one of Mrs. Child
's nearest relations, to whom she had left her papers — to select and arrange her letters.
Her life was so much richer in thought and sentiment than in events, and so devoted to the progressive movements relating to human weal and woe, that it is thought her letters, given in chronological order, will almost tell her whole story.
If any correspondents miss some favorite letter in the collection, we would remind them of the embarrassment of riches; for her correspondence extended over sixty years; and of the impossibility of suiting all tastes; and we cordially thank them all for the abundant supply of material.