In collecting material for these volumes, most of those of whom we solicited facts have expressed themselves deeply interested in our undertaking, and have gladly contributed all they could, feeling that those identified with this reform were better qualified to prepare a faithful history with greater patience and pleasure, than those of another generation possibly could.
A few have replied, "It is too early to write the history of this movement; wait until our object is attained; the actors themselves can not write an impartial history; they have had their discords, divisions, personal hostilities, that unfit them for the work." Viewing the enfranchisement of woman as the most important demand of the century, we have felt no temptation to linger over individual differences. These occur in all associations, and may be regarded in this case as an evidence of the growing self-assertion and individualism in woman.
Woven with the threads of this history, we have given some personal reminiscences and brief biographical sketches. To the few who, through ill-timed humility, have refused to contribute any of their early experiences we would suggest, that as each brick in a magnificent structure might have had no special value alone on the road-side, yet, in combination with many others, its size, position, quality, becomes of vital consequence; so with the actors in any great reform, though they may be of little value in themselves; as a part of a great movement they may be worthy of mention--even important to the completion of an historical record.
To be historians of a reform in which we have been among the chief actors, has its points of embarrassment as well as advantage.