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Acknowledgments IT IS A GREAT PLEASURE to thank the individuals and institutions that gave support and sustenance to this project and its author. The long list of those deserving thanks reflects my good fortune. I began thinking about this book while writing a dissertation directed by Linda K. Kerber, Wayne F. Franklin, and the late Sydney V. James at the University of Iowa. Although nearly all vestiges of that original project have vanished, its present form benefited enormously from their guidance. As models of critical engagement, they molded my ap­ prenticeship to the field of early American studies and allowed me to seek my own way of negotiating it. Wayne was unwaveringly helpful, and his attentiveness to texts and textual matters deeply influenced my own reading of early American documents. Sydney hooked me on the early American Chesapeake, pointed me toward local court records, and urged me to listen closely to my sources. I regret that he has not survived to see the final product. Linda has been the best men­ tor imaginable: she gave me rigorous schooling in the vagaries of ear­ ly American law, wise expertise on American women's history, and judicious readings of my work. She continues to be ready with intel­ lectual advice, friendship, and an ability to put things in clear per­ spective; and she has my deepest gratitude. Generous institutional support has aided this project. The Hunt­ ington Library provided a Barbara Thorn Postdoctoral Research Fel­ lowship and a year to devote to thisproject; additional assistance came in the form of a Robert Middlekauff Fellowship. I am particularly in­ debted to Roy Ritchie, the Huntington's director of research, for fos­ tering a lively environment in which to work and study. Aside from giving me time to write and an immense garden for rejuvenating walks, the Huntington was a forum to meet other scholars, many of whom enriched this project. The Virginia Historical Society supported this project with a Mellon Fellowship and,thanks to Nelson Lankford, provided a genial place in which to work. A series of Faculty Research Grants at California State University, Fullerton, sustained this projix X Acknowledgments ect, and I thank Thomas Klammer and Ray Young, dean and associate dean, respectively, of the College of Humanities and Social Sciences at CSUF. Librarians and archivists are the mainstay of research insti­ tutions, and our projects would proceed less agreeably without them. In particular, Lisa Libby of the Huntington Library, Frances Pollard of the Virginia Historical Society, and Sandy Treadway of the Library of Virginia patiently fielded my many questions and responded re­ sourcefully. Linda Rowe of the York County Records Project, Colonial Williamsburg Research Foundation, welcomed me to its outstanding collection of biographical files and always found a quiet corner for me to work. Many other scholars have thoughtfully responded to the ideas and arguments set out in this book. While on fellowship, I benefited from conversations with Chris Brown, Judith Jackson-Fossett, Susan John­ son, Mary Kelley, Dian Kriz, and Elizabeth Young. More particularly, the friendship of Margaret Newell and Roxann Wheeler has continued to enliven both this project and my life. A vital community of early Americanists has also befriended this study. I am indebted to Nina Dayton, Tom Humphrey, John Kolp, David Konig, Michael Meranze, John Phillip Reid, Julie Richter, Carole Shammas, Fredrika Teute, and Karin Wulf, who offered invaluable advice, conversation, and assis­ tance along the way. Kathy Brown's insightful and generous reading of the entire manuscript inspired me to improve it. Chris Daniels and Mary Beth Norton as well as the members of the Early Americanists Seminar at the Huntington Library also read portions of this book and offered critical suggestions. Farther afield, my cohorts from graduate school, Kathy Jellison, Alison Kibler, Leslie Taylor, and Sharon Wood, were, as always, willing listeners and good friends. At Cornell Press, Sheri Englund, and Karen Laun skillfully shepherded the manuscript through review and publication. Their wisdom and guidance in this process were invaluable. Whatever errors of judgment remain are surely my own. My colleagues in American Studies and Liberal Studies at Califor­ nia State University, Fullerton, deserve a huge round of applause. In particular, Allen Axelrad, Wayne Hobson, John Ibson, Karen Lystra, Mike Steiner, Pamela Steinle, Earl James Weaver (now deceased), and Leila Zenderland heard about this project for a long time but never seemed to tire of it. I thank them for their intellectual liveliness, wise counsel, and good humor. Ronald Clapper has provided crucial sup­ port...


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