Some Wild Visions: Autobiographies by Female Itinerant Evangelists in Nineteenth-Century America

By Elizabeth Elkin Grammer | Go to book overview

Acknowledgments

Each of the itinerant preachers whose autobiographies I examine in this book considered herself a pen in God's hands. I wasn't called to be such a pen, but I was lucky enough, in the years in which this book has taken shape, to have found myself and my manuscript in the hands of many people who have greatly enriched the pages that follow. Now I wish to give them thanks.

Without the love and support of my parents, this book would not have been possible. They fostered my love of reading from an early age and sacrificed much to send me to three remarkable schools where that love blossomed into my life's work. I know this book has been long in the making; I hope they will find it worth the wait.

Nor would it have been possible without the seven evangelists who graciously shared their Lives with the world. They have shown me, as they must have shown their nineteenth-century audiences, what a life of faith, wild visions, and itinerancy looked like; their lives as preachers and autobiographers have taken me places—intellectually and spiritually—that I never expected to go.

I would like to thank Sue Armentrout and Andrew Moser, at the University of the South, for their help in securing interlibrary loans over the last several years, saving me from extensive travels to libraries elsewhere. Tammy Scissom and the Print Services office at the university served me well all these years when my computer skills proved inadequate. I also received kindly assistance from the staff at the Bridwell Library of the Perkins School of Theology at Southern Methodist University, the Bentley Historical Library at the University of Michigan, and the American Antiquarian Society.

Dean Tom Kazee offered me a grant to cover child care expenses so I could spend some quiet hours in my office revising the book. The career women in this study, many of whom were also mothers, were rarely as fortunate in securing money, sitters, and time as I have been. I have been blessed by a host of women who have nurtured my children while I wrote this book. To the instructors at the Sewanee Children's Center and the University Day Care Center, and to Ellie Bostwick, Martha Lynn Coon, Rhonda Mims, Jeannie Williams, and Elizabeth Young, I offer here a heartfelt thank-you. I owe a special debt of gratitude to Elisha Hodge for her disciplined and loving care of my

-vii-

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