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THE writing of history more than any other literary enterprise puts writers in debt to other people. Historians, if left to their own devices, would never find much of the important data that gives color and life to their work. One of the wonders of civilized life is that there should be so many people willing to go to a great deal of trouble for a handful of infinitely less agreeable individuals who regard it as their mission to write books.
The first debt of the authors of this work is to those two hundred authorities who answered letters and innumerable telephone calls asking for information in their particular fields of knowledge. Of these, Mrs. Lillian Hoffman, City Clerk of Charlotte, deserves special mention for giving to our many requests her gracious and painstaking care. Mr. F. Wm. E. Cullingford gave freely of his tremendous fund of information about Masonry in Charlotte. Mrs. Lily Robertson McMahan shared her vast knowledge of Charlotte's educational activities.
We are grateful to all who responded to requests for pictures. Technical difficulties prevented using a few; space limitations forced rejection of many interesting people and views. Many of our pictures came in answer to appeals made by Julian Scheer, columnist for the Charlotte News. All pictures sent to Mr. Scheer and many others were processed by A.C. (Bill) Summerville without charge. This public service places the entire community in debt to these gentlemen. Collections of rare photographs were loaned by Judge Francis Clarkson and Mr. and Mrs. William Lewis Callum, III.
The tedious task of reading proof and verifying facts, spelling, and other details, was capably handled by Miss Mae Tucker and Miss Mary Louise Phillips of the Public Library staff. Authors would be helpless without such as these.
Charles Raven Brockmann
Charlotte, North Carolina
September 1, 1961
Blythe, LeGette and Brockmann, Charles Raven. Hornets' Nest: The Story of Charlotte and Mecklenburg County. Charlotte, NC: Public Library of Charlotte and Mecklenburg County, 1961.