Excerpt from Memories of Fifty Years In launching my first literary effort, I do so with the greatest diffidence; and these few words of Preface are intended to ask my readers to be charitable to what appears to me w to be a very rash attempt to provide them with a little amusement in turning over the pages of my book. I am confident that thing is more difficult to write than an interesting book of reminiscences, because one is confronted at every moment with the fact that what would most surely tend to make it amusing and interesting is exactly what cant be published. The personal te which gives it the particular claim to be worth reading, and invests it with a certain individuality, must be struck with a moderation and discretion which at once deprives it of its greatest recommendation in the opinion of some critics. The happy authors of fiction can give wings to their imagination, and soar where their fancy leads them; and the historian who can write fearlessly and openly of the lives of those who lived before his own day, can never realize the pitfalls and dangers that beset any essay in contemporary biography. Indeed, a feeling almost of despair arises as one realizes how much the interest of ones book is curtailed by the elimination of so much which, for obvious reasons, could t w be published. About the Publisher Forgotten Books publishes hundreds of thousands of rare and classic books. Find more at www.forgottenbooks.com This book is a reproduction of an important historical work. Forgotten Books uses state-of-the-art techlogy to digitally reconstruct the work, preserving the original format whilst repairing imperfections present in the aged copy. In rare cases, an imperfection in the original, such as a blemish or missing page, may be replicated in our edition. We do, however, repair the vast majority of imperfections successfully; any imperfections that remain are intentionally left to preserve the state of such historical works.