Harriet Beecher Stowe and Uncle Tom’s Cabin Essay

Harriet Beecher Stowe and Uncle Tom’s Cabin Essay

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Harriet Beecher Stowe and Uncle Tom’s Cabin


Harriet Beecher Stowe was born on June 14, 1811. Her father was Lyman Beecher, pastor of the Congregational Church in Harriet’s hometown of Litchfield, Connecticut. Harriet’s brother was Henry Ward Beecher who became pastor of Brooklyn’s Plymouth Church. The religious background of Harriet’s family and of New England taught Harriet several traits typical of a New Englander: theological insight, piety, and a desire to improve humanity (Columbia Electronic Library; “Biography of Harriet Beecher Stowe”).

Harriet studied and assisted as a teacher at the Western Female Institute, a school in Hartford, Connecticut, that her sister Catherine had founded. Harriet moved with her father to Cincinnati, Ohio, as a result of her father’s religious appointment. Harriet’s career as a teacher ended when she married widower Calvin Stowe. Across the river from Cincinnati was Kentucky, where Calvin Stowe’s home was located. Kentucky was a slave state, and Harriet was able to experience firsthand the horrors of slavery. Also, Harriet’s new home with Stowe was a “station” along the “underground railroad”, and Harriet had even more experience and interaction with the slaves. Harriet had always been creative as a child, and she loved to write. Her anger toward slavery in addition with encouragement from her sister-in-law to “use her skills to aid the cause of abolition” (Wells) inspired Harriet to write Uncle Tom’s Cabin (Wells; University of Wisconsin – Milwaukee).

Harriet began to write Uncle Tom’s Cabin as a serial, or an episodic story. These episodes were published in the National Era, a national newspaper in which Harriet had previously published several abolitionist serials. Harr...


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.../nj.essortment.com/biographyharrie_rthp.htm>.

Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia. “Stowe, Harriet Beecher”. Date of Last Revision Unknown. 6 Jan 2002. <http://www.encyclopedia.com/printablenew/12373.html>.

Mark, Mary. “Harriet Beecher Stowe”. Date of Last Revision Unknown. 5 Jan 2002. <http://digital.library.upenn.edu/women/stowe/StoweHB.html>.

Thornton, Tracey. “Between Rhetoric of Abolition and Feminism: Harriet Beecher Stowe’s Uncle Tom’s Cabin”. 1998. 8 Jan 2002. <http://www.womenwriters.net/domesticgoddess/thornton.htm>.

University of Wisconsin – Milwaukee. “The Classic Text: Harriet Beecher Stowe”. 19 Nov 2001. 5 Jan 2002. <http://www.uwm.edu/Dept/Library/special/exhibits/clastext/clspg149.htm>.

Wells, Kim. “Harriet Beecher Stowe”. 28 Aug 1999. 6 Jan 2002. <http://www.womenwriters.net/domesticgoddess/stowe1.htm>.

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