FIRST AND FOREMOST, we would like to thank the following individuals who shared their private postcard collections, military artifacts and photo albums, enhancing the creation of a collective portrait of the Fort with the greatest possible variety of images. Many thanks to Tom Armstrong, Henry C. Blackiston, Peter Burr, the Estate of Winifred Bartlett Clark, Barbara Coyle, Roger Davis, the Estate of Col. Charles O. Dawes, Jim Diaz, Francis Doyen, Matthew Edwards, Harry Ferguson, Henry H. Fisher, Mary Cyr Grebe, Marilyn Greaves, Hubert J. Hughes, Anna May Janas, Frank Kamradt, Lewis Lamb, Clayton E. Lathrop, George R. Laughlin, Sandy Gaston, Hector F. Methot, Herbert Moss, Nancy Newman, Mary Pankiewicz, George Payne, Mary Collings Pillsbury, Norbert Raith, Clyde K. Rickard, Jim Righter, Alfred K. Schroeder, Briscoe Smith, Thomas B. Sweeney and Jim Wall. It should be noted that the list includes some whose material was not included in the final edit, but whose efforts for the book were as much appreciated as any other.
We would like to give special thanks to Sandy Esser for her generous contribution of images from her Fort Wright collection; to Donna Shoop, whose grandfather C.K. Rickard served at the Fort in the 1910s, for providing his unique images of daily life at the Fort, and for donating the collection to the H.L. Ferguson Museum; to Fred E. Saner, whose father Master Sgt. Fred Saner, USA (Ret.), served in the 11th Coast Artillery Band for 35 years, for sharing his collection with us, and donating it to the Museum. We are indebted to Helen Best for the photographs taken by and of her father, Major Howard Best, who served at Fort Wright with the 11th Coast Artillery for many years, and was wounded in France during World War I; and to Maj. Gen. George Ruhlen, USA (Ret.), whose father, Col. George Ruhlen, Jr., USA (Ret.), served at the Fort from 1914-16, for providing not only his father's photographs, but also his own recollections of Fort Wright during that early period.
A great contribution to this project was made by George R. Laughlin, who tirelessly researched Fishers Island and Fort Wright in various Connecticut libraries and historical societies. This book would not have been the same without his assistance. We are also very grateful for the extended and painstaking research done by Brian Rafferty in the text files at the National Archives branch in Waltham, Massachusetts; the research done in newspaper microfilm files by Anja Hanson in Portland, Maine; and the preliminary stills research done by Joan Yoshiwara in Washington, D.C. Essential to our book was the lifesaving editorial work done by Arnoud Hekkens and the proofreading performed under adverse conditions by Sandy Crimmins.
We would also like to express our gratitude to all the Coast Defense Study Group (CDSG) members who gave us invaluable help, in particular William C. Gaines, for answering innumerable questions and for writing articles on the Fort's military history; Nelson H. Lawry and Edward R. Robinson for their patient assistance in interpreting and identifying emplacements and ordnance; and Robert G. Borrell, Sr., for providing the 11th Coast Artillery's Coat of Arms. Numerous other members of the CDSG generously shared information and documents relating to the history of Fort Wright, including: Frederick M. Baldwin; Gerald W. Butler; Roger W. Davis; Elliot L. Deutsch; Theodore L. Gatchel; Alexander M. Holder, Jr.; Gary P. Paliwoda; and Leo K. Polaski.
For their support of this project, and their ongoing efforts to preserve and display Fishers Island's history, we would like to extend our heartiest thanks to all the board members of the H.L. Ferguson Museum, Fishers Island, New York, especially the Museum's indefatigable president, Charles B. Ferguson; and Edward Horning, Curator; Katherine Horning, assistant curator; Marie Gaillard, collections director; and Bagley Reid, member of the board.
Fort H.G. Wright Association members Peter Burr, George Esser and Pat Kibbe each made important contributions to the project, including the establishment of links to the dispersed Fort Wright community and the gathering of many images. Peter Williamson's research on the 1902 maneuvers greatly facilitated our efforts.
We are also most appreciative of the assistance provided by the following individuals and institutions: David M. Johnson, The Casemate Museum (Fort Monroe, Virginia); B.J. Linck, Connecticut State Library (Hartford); the staff of the Prints and Photographs Division, The Library of Congress (Washington, D.C.); Steven Seames, Massachusetts Military Archives (Worcester, Massachusetts); Helen Keith and Janet Godwin, Mystic River Historical Society (Mystic, Connecticut); the staff of the Military Museum - New York State Division of Military and Naval Affairs (Latham, New York); Jack Green, Naval Historical Center (Washington, D.C.); Richard H. Smith, Cartographic and Architectural Branch, National Archives and Records Administration (NARA) II (College Park, Maryland); Gregory J. Plunges, NARA - Northeast Region (New York City); George Young, NARA - Northeast Region (Waltham, Massachusetts); the staff of the Still Pictures Branch, NARA II; the staff of the New York State Library, (Albany, New York); Col. Rene C. Provost, (Ret.) AUS, Office of the Adjutant General Connecticut (Hartford); Robert Whiteman, Ripley's Believe It or Not (Rye, New York); Kenneth S. Carlson, Rhode Island State Archives (Providence, Rhode Island); Randy Heckenburg, U.S. Army Military History Institute (Carlisle Barracks, Pennsylvania); Judith A. Sibley, USMA Library and Alicia Mauldin, USMA Archives, U.S. Military Academy (West Point, New York); Rose Hutchinson, Watervliet Arsenal Museum (Watervliet, New York).
Next to last, but not least, we are grateful for the general assistance provided by Richard Ahman, Deborah Borgert, Bob and Louisa Evans, Kevin Green, Phil Knauff, Joe Rogan, Peter Rogan and David Thaxton.
And last, but absolutely not least, Margaret Crimmins gets the biggest thanks of all, for her constructive criticism and her unflagging support.
Each and every one made this book possible.