Harriet Beecher Stowe was the author of the novel, Uncle Tom’s Cabin, which caused an uproar across the U.S. Readers in the North became acutely aware of the horrors of slavery on a level more than ever before. In the South, the book was met with outrage and branded an irresponsible book of distortions and overstatements. Her story aided the Abolitionist cause north of the Mason-Dixon Line and caused anger in plantation America.
Harriet was born in a prominent family of preachers. Her brother Henry Ward Beecher was an outspoken Abolitionist and became the driving force behind aiding the Free Soil cause in Bleeding Kansas—not permitting slavery in the new territory.
While in Cincinnati, Stowe became exposed to actual runaway slaves. After hearing their tales, she began to write a series of short stories depicting the plight of plantation slaves. She decided to write a novel following encouragement from her sister-in-law. The book described the plight of the slaves.
Uncle Tom’s Cabin sold an incredible 300, 000 copies in the North alone. The book sold more copies in Great Britain than in the United States.
Source: Harriet Beecher Stowe – Uncle Tom’s Cabin
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