Few who appreciate the heritage of the short story would question Mary Wilkins Freeman's important position in turn of the century American fiction or her major contributions to the development of the short story form. Freeman (1852 1930), one of the first women elected to the National Institute of Arts and Letters (1927), was a regional writer who excelled in the careful delineation of local characters and customs and in exact transcription of indigenous dialect. She also is noted for her contribution to modern psychological literature.This volume brings together for the first time twenty of the best of her 'lost' tales. It contributes to the growing reevaluation of this exceptional author of such often anthologized stories as 'The 'Revolt' of Mother' and 'A New England Nun.' The stories in this volume are chronologically arranged. They reveal both familiar and new terrain. Freeman once again delves into the inner lives of New England women. Yet, unlike many of her well known stories, in these there are new moods and experiments. Four stories involve male protagonists. Three are mystery stories. Three are tales of women artists. Two illustrate Freeman's attempt in her later fiction to incorporate 'modern' themes. A prolific writer, Freeman published nearly two hundred fifty short stories during her lifetime. Almost a hundred of those stories, however, were not collected. For more than half a century they have remained virtually inaccessible. This volume brings together twenty of the best of Freeman's uncollected stories from such magazines as Century, Collier's, Harper's Monthly, Good Housekeeping, The Golden Book, Woman's Home Companion, Independent, and Frank Leslie's Popular Monthly. This collection restores significant works to the treasury of American literature.Mary R. Reichardt is a professor of English at the University of St. Thomas in St. Paul, Minnesota.