So many individuals have helped with this project in so many ways that some must necessarily go unnamed, but they do not go unappreciated. My wife, Jeannie, has been a constant source of support, encouragement, faith, confidence, understanding, and love. In my darkest moments of despair that this book would never see the light of day, she was there for me. I am blessed to have her; she is truly a dream come true. Our two sweet little daughters--Hallie Elizabeth, three and a half, and Rebecca Margaret, seven months--have inspired me to work to make them proud and by their very existence remind me of what is most important in life. For as long as Hallie's been alive she's been my sunshine, in her own way, with my work. This book is my gift to her. My parents, Julia Gárate Burgos Feldman and Brian Feldman, have literally, emotionally, morally, financially, and spiritually sustained me. I hope they know how great my love and esteem for them is and how great my appreciation for their countless sacrifices and acts of love, large and small. My siblings, Richard, Vicky, and Danny, as well as lifelong friends John Sherman, Jak and Judy Karn, have been steady beacons of support and aid. Thanks to these special people for their love, friendship, and constancy.
Gratitude is also due those who read parts or all of this work at its various stages. Their efforts have surely helped me to produce a stronger book. Special thanks go to Wayne Flynt for his herculean efforts, discerning eye, unfailing encouragement, and consistent wisdom in this endeavor as in so many others. Allen W. Jones got me involved in, and inspired by, this type of research as a graduate student in History, and I am deeply grateful to him. Robin Fabel, Larry Gerber, and Gerry Gryski at Auburn University also read and commented on the manuscript. I am grateful for the comments