Harriet Beecher Stowe

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Biographical Summary

Uncle Toms Cabin, written by Harriet Elizabeth Beecher Stowe in 1852, made her the most widely known American woman writer of the 19th century. She was a housewife with six children, who opposed slavery with a passion. With the advice of her sister-in-law she decided to write this novel.

Harriet or nicknamed “Hattie” Beecher was born on June 14, 1811 in Litchfield, Connecticut. She was the sixth out of eleven children and was born into a family of powerful and demanding individuals. With her mom, Roxanna Foote Beecher dying when she was only 4 years old, Harriet only had a father figure to look up to growing up. Her father, Lyman Beecer, was a leading Congregationalist minister who preached anti-slavery sermons. He was remarried to a beautiful women named Harriet Porter, who supplied three more children into their family. The oldest daughter, Catherine opened the Hartford Female Seminary in Hartford Connecticut to give young women a more improved education. Isabella, the youngest daughter, found the NWSA (National Woman’s Suffrage Association) along with Susan B. Anthony and Cady Stanton in 1869. All seven brothers, James, Thomas, Henry Ward, Edward, William Henry, Charles, and George grown to all be ministers. Harriet, along with the rest of her family, made an extensive impact on the belief of equality at the time where slavery divided our country.

In october 1832, when Stowe was 21 years old, she moved with family to Cincinnati. Harriet lived here for 18 years just across the Ohio River from slaveholding Kentucky, where she was exposed to the institution of slavery. She met many freed and fugitive slaves while living here, along with making friends with people who participated in the underground ra...

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...essing the idea of humans being completely racially and morally free.

Works Cited


Langston Hughes, introduction to Uncle Tom's Cabin in Critical Essays on Harriet Beecher Stowe, edited by Elizabeth Ammons, G.K. Hall, 1980, pp. 102-4.

Stowe, Harriet Beecher. Uncle Tom's Cabin, Or, Life among the Lowly ; The Minister's Wooing ; Oldtown Folks. New York: Literary Classics of the United States, 1982. Print.

"Uncle Tom's Cabin." Novels for Students. Ed. Marie Rose Napierkowski and Deborah A.

Stanley. Vol. 6. Detroit: Gale, 1999. 297-317. Gale Virtual Reference Library. Web. 22 Oct.2013.

Shmoop Editorial Team. "Uncle Tom's Cabin" Shmoop.com. Shmoop University, Inc., 11 Nov. 2008. Web. 21 Nov. 2013.

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