Book SynopsisKate Douglas Wiggin (1856-1923) was an American educator and author of children's stories. She started the first free kindergarten in San Francisco in 1878. Kate Wiggin devoted her adult life to the welfare of children in an era when children were commonly thought of as cheap labour. Excerpt: "On the afternoon before Christmas of that year, the North Station in Boston was filled with hurrying throngs on the way home for the holidays. Everybody looked tired and excited, but most of them had happy faces, and men and women alike had as many bundles as they could carry; bundles and boxes quite unlike the brown paper ones with which commuters are laden on ordinary days. These were white packages, beribboned and beflowered and behollied and bemistletoed, to be gently carried and protected from crushing."