Editing a collection featuring the work of an outstanding group of scholars has been a genuine pleasure. I am deeply appreciative for the enthusiasm, professionalism, and commitment the contributors have exhibited. Tim Minchin merits special mention, combining as he has done his role as contributor with that of series coeditor.
Meredith Babb, director of the University Press of Florida, played a key role in launching and nurturing this project. Heather Thompson also provided support and encouragement in the critical initial stages. The press's readers, Alex Lichtenstein and David Zonderman, offered challenging critiques. The introduction has benefited from thoughtful readings by Bill Link and LeRoy Ashby, while Andrew Battista directed me to important work by political scientists and to key electoral data. Jonathan Lawrence's copy-editing was exemplary. My ongoing association with the women and men of the North Central Florida Central Labor Council and with my colleagues in the United Faculty of Florida has enriched my understanding of southern labor.