Fun Facts Friday: Harriet Beecher Stowe

June 15, 2012

Yesterday was the birthday of Harriet Beecher Stowe (14 June, 1811 – 1 July, 1896). Stowe is known mostly for her novelUncle Tom’s Cabin but she was an avid writer all of her life.

Harriet Beecher StowePicture from Nation’s history is embedded in portrait of a famous writer –

Books by Harriet Beecher Stowe

1 ) Uncle Tom’s Cabin was originally slated to be a short series in an abolitionist magazine

2 ) Stowe was often criticized for not having firsthand knowledge of slavery. In response Stowe published A Key to Uncle Tom’s Cabin which revealed her sources.

3 ) After the American Civil War, Stowe bought a home in Florida and started schools for African American children.

4 ) It is said that Stowe danced in the streets when Lincoln announced the Emancipation Proclamation.

5 ) When Stowe met President Abraham Lincoln he reported to have said: “So you’re the little woman who wrote the book that made this great war!

6 )Uncle Tom’s Cabin sold 300,000 copies.

7 ) In 1853 Stowe was welcomed in England as a literary hero.

8 ) In November 1857 Stowe was one of the original contributors to The Atlantic along with Ralph Waldo Emerson.

9 ) When living in Hartford, CT Stowe’s next door neighbor was Samuel Clemens (Mark Twain), it is said that the two were on friendly terms. Once Clemens visited without a cravat (tie). When his wife chastised him, Clemens put a tie on a tray and had his butler delivering it with an apologetic note. Stowe replied that Clemens discovered a new principle “that a man can call by instalments”.

10) Stowe’s Hartford home is a museum (The Harriet Beecher Stowe Center) which can be visited if you’re in the area.

Books by Harriet Beecher Stowe

Zohar – Man of la Book

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  • Alex BaughJune 15, 2012 at 8:49 am

    I read Uncle Tom’s Cabin when I was in the 8th grade, but remember it very well. My Baugh family comes from Garrard County, KY where there was a family named Kennedy owned a plantation there. Rumor has it that Harriet Beecher Stowe used the Kennedy Plantation as the model for Uncle Tom’s Cabin. No one has proven this, but it was also a story handed down in my family, so who knows (some Baughs married some Kennedys somewhere along the line) The Kennedy’s were rich compared to most of the other farmers in the area.

    • Kenneth DabreraSeptember 7, 2012 at 1:26 pm

      What a gripping story, so touching and sad – rattles our very skelletons.

  • RyanJune 15, 2012 at 12:23 pm

    Uncle Tom’s Cabin is also the first American novel to feature a black protagonist.

  • Hira Hasnain (Enamored Soul)June 15, 2012 at 2:34 pm


    I love “Uncle Tom’s Cabin”, but now I love the author far more. I mean, what a fantastic woman! Took a stand, as a woman and an author, at a time when such things were considered taboo. I can’t stop chuckling at the phrase “that a man can call by installments.” lol 😛 I love the entirety of Man of La Book, but “Fun Facts Friday” has to be one of my most favorite features of this amazing blog 😀

    • Zohar - Man of la BookJune 15, 2012 at 3:24 pm

      She was vilified all across the South.
      Thanks for stopping by and for the kind words.

  • RyanJune 15, 2012 at 10:04 pm

    I just finished read The American Bible by Stephen Prothero which includes Uncle Tom’s Cabin as part of the American Cannon. I’m really thinking I should read it one of these days.

    • Zohar - Man of la BookJune 17, 2012 at 6:53 am

      It’s an important book, no doubt. You should probably read it before your kids get it as reading assignments in school.

  • C.E. HartJune 16, 2012 at 2:00 pm

    Interesting facts! I never read Uncle Tom’s Cabin.

  • Stephanie @ Read in a Single SittingJune 17, 2012 at 8:57 pm

    Wow, thanks for this. I listened to Uncle Tom’s Cabin in audiobook form last year and loved it.

  • JaneGSDecember 13, 2012 at 11:12 pm

    Nice set of fun facts. I read Uncle Tom’s Cabin earlier this year and really thought it wonderful in so many ways. Hoping to visit the museum in 2013.

  • tiffyJanuary 23, 2013 at 3:41 pm

    Very helpful, I thank you so much.

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