Sea commerce at this time had so far outstripped a naval power adequate to protect it that piracy grew more and more profitable, and many a respected sea merchant held private stock in some more than dubious sea venture.-from "Privateers and Pirates"First published in 1919, this now-classic history chronicles the settlement and early life of what would become the greatest city in the world, from the first European traders and settlers to the civic life of the colony in the 18th century. In vivid, dramatic prose, Goodwin describes: .Henry Hudson's arrival in New York harbor.the Dutch West India Company's early charter in the New World.the government of the burghers, and the first English governors.the brutal treatment of Negro slaves in the burgeoning city.the waves of immigration that saw surges in the city's population.and much more.MAUD WILDER GOODWIN (1856-1935) wrote extensively on American history, including The Colonial Cavalier, Or Southern Life Before the Revolution (1895), White Aprons: A Romance of Bacon's Rebellion, Virginia, 1676 (1897), Historic New York (1899), and Sir Christopher: A Romance of a Maryland Manor in 1644 (1901).
This edition of Mr. Fisher's "Franklin" contains an appendix, in which the author presents all the proofs extant in regard to Franklin's alleged daughter, Mrs. Foxcroft. The propriety of this discussion is exceedingly doubtful. It may be conceded that Mrs. Foxcroft was acknowledged by Franklin as his daughter, but as nothing whatever is known of her mother, and almost as little of herself previously to her marriage with Foxcroft, the long discussion in Mr. Fisher's book with the appendix must be regarded as lacking in dignity. In his "Autobiography" Franklin acknowledged so many errata that a discussion of his faults with as much amplitude as Mr. Fisher has given to the Foxcroft story would make a much larger book than this to which Mr. Fisher has given the name of "The True Benjamin Franklin." That Franklin was very far from being a saint, most people who know his history will concede, but his virtues were of a nature that they overbalance his faults, and his services to his country were so important that the great Benjamin Franklin will always tend to make the true Benjamin Franklin of little importance in the opinion of his admirers. This is the age of research in little things, and Mr. Fisher's book is a good example of its kind. It will please readers who like to see the scandals of the past uncovered when these scandals besmirch great names, but his revelations will always give greater satisfaction to the prurient than to the prudent.