Chinese Gordon

Chinese Gordon

Chinese Gordon

Chinese Gordon

Excerpt

The principal source on which I have drawn in this study of Gordon is his own letters. Of these by far the most important collection consists of his letters to his sister Augusta, which have never before in their entirety been at the disposal of any of his numerous biographers. This collection is now in the possession of Lieutenant-Colonel F. W. Moffit, the son of Gordon's sister Helen, and thanks to him I have had full and unimpeded access to the whole of the 1600 odd pieces which comprise it. I think it will be agreed that the result has been to present a more human, if less partial, view of the extraordinary personality of their writer.

I am also indebted to Colonel Louis Gordon, the present head of that branch of the family, for the loan of those of his uncle's letters which are in his possession. Colonel Gordon has given me much assistance in other ways. Besides acknowledging his kindness, I should like also to put on record that of Mrs. Freese, Gordon's neighbor and friend at Gravesend. Mrs. Freese is now in her hundredth year, but her memory is unimpaired, and she has been able to supplement in some important particulars her own vivid little book about Gordon. This rare monograph -- it was withdrawn from circulation almost immediately after it was published -- is our principal source of Gordon's life during the important years of his spiritual development, from 1867 to 1871.

For the events recorded in Book II (China) I have relied, apart from his own letters, on A. E. Hake The Story of Chinese Gordon. This is obviously based on Gordon's own . . .

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