The first edition of this volume appeared in England in 1855, where it was printed for private circulation only. Many expressions of the interest that has been felt in its perusal, and of the value that has been attached to the record it contains, have reached the editor and the family of the departed. Several applications to allow its publication in America have also been received; and, after serious consideration, the editor feels that he ought not to withhold his consent.
In order that it may be more interesting and worthy of the largely-extended circulation that it is now likely to obtain, additions have been made, and particulars inserted, which a greater lapse of time from the occurrence of the events narrated, seems now to permit. A slight thread of biographical notice has also been introduced.
But it is not to this part, which merely serves to render the volume more complete, by enabling the reader to understand the circumstances by which the writer of the Diary was surrounded, but to the Diary itself, that the editor desires to commend attention, believing that those who enjoy to trace the operations and effects of Divine grace on the heart will find much that is interesting and valuable therein, and that the young may reap instruction and encouragement from the spiritual history of one who early and earnestly sought the Lord.
William Southall, Jr.
EDGBASTON, Birmingham, 2d mo. 12th, 1861.
Eliza Southall, wife of William Southall, Jr., of Birmingham, England, and daughter of John and Eliza Allen, was born at Liskeard, on the 9th of 6th month, 1823.
As she felt a strong attachment to the scenes of her childhood, and an interest in the people among whom she spent the greater part of her short life,—an attachment which is evinced many times in the course of her memoranda,—it may interest the American reader to know that Liskeard is an ancient but small town in Cornwall. The country around is broken up into hill and dale, sloping down to the sea a few miles distant, the rocky shores of which are dotted with fishing-villages; in an opposite direction it swells into granite hills, in which are numerous mines of copper and lead. There is a good deal of intelligence, and also of religious feeling, to be met with among both the miners and fishermen, Cornwall having been the scene of a great revival in religion in the time of John Wesley, the effects of which have not been suffered to pass away. A meeting of Friends has been held at Liskeard from an early period in the history of the Society; but, as in many other country places in England, the numbers seem gradually to diminish, various attractions drawing the members to the larger towns. Launceston Castle, so well known in connection with the sufferings of George Fox, is a few miles distant.