Throughout the research and writing of this book, I have benefited tremendously from the collegial atmosphere of the academic community. In particular, I would like to extend my very deep appreciation to Linda Kealey, Shannon Ryan, and Peter Hart for their wise counsel and friendship throughout my doctoral and postdoctoral work. I owe a tremendous debt of gratitude to John Mannion for sharing his insights on Irish migrations to Newfoundland and to both him and his wife, Maura, for providing me access to their extensive name file collection on Irish immigrants to the island. I also want to thank Greg Kealey, Terry Murphy, Hans Rollmann, Tom Nemec, Christopher English, Robert Sweeny, Valerie Burton, Christopher Youé, Terry Bishop-Stirling, Maudie Whelan, Carla Wheaton, Tracy English, and John Fitzgerald for their interest and encouragement through the years. And to Cyril Byrne, a special thank-you for friendship, support, and sharing "stories."
I wish to acknowledge that earlier versions of portions of this book have appeared in two articles: "The 'Old Hag' Meets St. Brigid: Irish Women and the Intersection of Belief Systems on the Southern Avalon," An Nasc 15 (spring 2001); and "The Riddle of Peggy Mountain: The Regulation of Irish Women's Sexuality on the Southern Avalon, 1750–1860," Acadiensis 31:2 (spring 2002).
I gratefully acknowledge the financial support of the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada and the Institute of Social and Economic Research, Memorial University of Newfoundland, through doctoral and postdoctoral fellowships and research grants. I also wish to thank the American Historical Association and the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation for their financial support in developing this monograph through the Gutenberg-e project.
For their expert and unstinting guidance throughout the production of the book, I am extremely grateful to the members of the Electronic Publication Initiative at Columbia University and the staff of Columbia University Press. I especially wish to thank Paul Erickson and Nick Frankovich for their attentive and sensitive reading of my manuscript and their patience throughout the copyediting process. And I am very grateful to Kate Wittenberg, Sean Costigan, and Gordon Dahlquist for their good humor and calm in the face of many storms. To Sharene Azimi, who steered my project home after transitions at EPIC, a special thank you. Many thanks as well to the production team of EPIC, especially Clif Jackson, who worked so diligently on the final version of this e-monograph.5
I am also heavily indebted to a number of people who volunteered their time and expertise to come to the assistance of this technologically challenged author. In particular, I wish to thank Tracy English for transforming my hand-scrawled graphs into digitized charts and figures, Alice Nolan at the Open Learning and Information Network, Memorial University, for helping me work through numerous technical crises, and the many kind people at TETRA, Memorial University, for their guidance as I worked my way through the brave new world of scanners, digital cameras, and digital voice recorders.
For their patience and expertise, I am also very grateful to the staff members of the various archives and museums I visited in the course of my research. In particular, I wish to thank the staff of the Provincial Archives of Newfoundland and Labrador, especially Cal Best and Melanie Tucker, for their good-natured support throughout my endless visits to their facility. I am also very grateful to the staffs of the Centre for Newfoundland Studies, the CNS Archives, the Maritime History Archives, the Memorial University of Newfoundland Folklore and Language Archive, and the Provincial Reference Library for their invaluable assistance. I extend special thanks to Dorothy Agriesti and Maxine Dunne of the Ferryland Museum for generously sharing their time and historical materials with me.
I owe a very deep debt of gratitude to all the people from the southern Avalon who agreed to be interviewed during my oral history project. They were extremely generous with their time, their knowledge, and their hospitality as they opened their homes and their collective memories to me. They have enriched my understanding of the area immeasurably. In addition, I want to thank Margaret Wakeham for her spirited rendition of "Betsy Brennan's Blue Hen" and Eddie O'Brien for his readings from Jim Joe's community history.
On a personal note, I wish to thank all my friends for their humor, interest, and uncritical acceptance of my academic reclusion over the past several years. To my family, for their infinite patience, encouragement, and support, I am grateful beyond measure. And to Michael, a special thank-you for riding out another very long "two years."
This monograph is dedicated to Julianne, whose life story inspired it, and to Gertrude, who encouraged me to write it.^top