“So you are the little woman who wrote the book that started this great war.” According to her son, this is what President Abraham Lincoln said upon meeting Harriet Beecher Stowe for the first time in 1862. This classic is extremely readable, and gives you a fascinating view of race and slavery in the United States 160 years ago.
Uncle Tom, Eliza, George and Topsy are African slaves struggling to survive in the pre-Civil War South. Each chooses a different response to their white owners and the laws of the day. Their stories are both inspiring and heartbreaking. In addition, you’ll meet the Shelby family in Kentucky, Eva and Augustine St. Clare of New Orleans and the infamous Simon Legree from rural Louisiana. These individuals are white slave owners, but with complex lives, morals and outcomes.
You’ll be surprised at how relevant this book still is today. Take the time to read it with your child and you’ll find much to discuss. Did Uncle Tom’s Cabin actually start the American Civil War? Read it and see what you think.
High School Reading Level, 384 pages, Historical Fiction, Civil War, Published 1852.