Wlliam Gilmore Simms
Voltmeier; or, The Mountain Men >> Front Matter >> General Preface to the Centennial Edition

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General Preface to the Centennial Edition

Novel (Romance) | U of South Carolina P | 1969

Work on The Centennial Edition of the Writings of William Gilmore Simms officially began in 1964, when the University of South Carolina and its Press undertook to support the first stage
of the project. At that time I became general editor, and the follow-
ing year James B. Meriwether became textual editor. But the plan-
ning of the edition had been in progress since 1960, when a committee
called together by Donald Davidson and chaired by Edd Winfield
Parks, with Professor Meriwether as textual advisor, established the
general scope and the editorial policy of the edition. The project
received the formal endorsement of the South Atlantic Modern Lan-
guage Association and the Southeastern branch of the American
Studies Association in the fall of 1960. Although the Louisiana State
University Press expressed interest in publishing the edition as early
as 1961, it was found that the editorial work could most efficiently
be done at South Carolina, where nearly all of the relevant manu-
script and printed materials are located. The decision of the Univer-
sity of South Carolina Press to publish the edition made it possible
to begin work on the first four volumes in 1964.
The Centennial Edition of the Writings of William Gilmore
Simms will present a critical, unmodernized text of Simms's selected
prose and poetry, in accordance with the textual principles and
standards established by Fredson Bowers in the Centenary edition
of Hawthorne, and those prescribed by the Modern Language
Association Center for Editions of American Authors in its Statement
of Editorial Principles: A Working Manual for Editing Nineteenth
Century American Texts. The Editorial Board has decided first to
undertake certain of Simms's less well-known and hitherto almost
inaccessible works, concentrating upon previously unpublished manu-