many of the sketches contained in "Some Folks" were written by me during the past five years, and some of them published by Mr. Leslie in his Illustrated Newspaper and his Chimney Corner, from which journals they have been collected by friends who believe that in these stories is displayed better workmanship than I have since done. For myself, I can claim for them only an unusual degree of that unlit-erary and unpopular quality called truthfulness.
Although at present mildly tolerated in the East, I was "brought up" in the West, and have written largely from recollection of "some folks" I have known, veritable men and women, scenes and incidents, and otherwise through the memories of Western friends of good eyesight and hearing powers.
Should any one accuse me of having imitated Bret Harte's style, I shall accept the accusation as a compliment, for I know of no other American story writer so worthy to be taken as a teacher by men who acceptably tell the stories of new countries. For occasionally introducing characters and motives that would not be considered disgraceful in virtuous communities, I can only plead in excuse the fact that, even in the New West, some folks will occasionally be uniformly thoughtful, respectable and honest, just as individuals sometimes are in the East.