Wlliam Gilmore Simms
The History of South Carolina, From Its First European Discovery to Its Erection into a Republic >> Front Matter >> Preface

image of pageExplore Inside

Preface

History | S. Babcock & Co. | 1840
Transcription viPREFACE.

precedes and follows it�which wraps it, as in a cloud,
and makes it difficult for the memory to compass and
retain the several remote incidents which are necessary to
a true comprehension of the subject. The result is, that
a work which abounds in copious details and much spir-
ited writing, and which relates to periods of the most
exciting interest in our national and domestic history, is
seldom read, and almost as unfrequently referred to. And
yet no work of American biography, could the author
have descended to the humbler task of making an abridge-
ment, would have more amply compensated both publisher
and reader, than the same work stripped of its controver-
sial additaments and contracted to the moderate compass
of a single duodecimo.
To this work of Johnson, we acknowledge our large in-
debtedness. We have relied upon it in preference to all
others, during that long period, crowded with fluctuating
events, which followed the disastrous defeat of Gates at
Camden, to the close of the revolutionary war ; and though
studiously avoiding the expression of any opinion upon
the vexed questions-some of them of very small impor-
tance to the result�which the venerable author was, per-
haps, only too fond of discussing, we freely avow our full
confidence in the general fidelity of his statements, and in
his habitual desire to discover and to declare the truth.
For the account of the early settlements of the
Huguenots, in and about Carolina, as contained in this
volume, the simple and affecting narrative of Laudonniere
in Hakluyt, has been chiefly relied on. The work of
Hewatt, the narrations of Archdale, Glenn and others,
contained in the Historical Collections" have furnished
the authorities next ensuing, down to the conflict of the
colonies with parliament and the repeal of the stamp
act. To Moultrie, Ramsay, Drayton and Johnson we owe
what follows, to the close of the revolution, and the erec-
tion of South Carolina, from a rebelling colony, into an
independent and republican state. These have been our
chief sources of information ; though, in our progress, wo