Harriet Elizabeth Stowe
HARRIET BEECHER STOWE (1811-1896) Harriet Beecher Stowe was born in Connecticut, the youngest member of a family of six brothers and four sisters. Her father was a famous preacher and her brothers and sisters shared an interest in religion. The America that Stowe grew up in was very different from country we know today. There were many divisions between North and the South, the most important being the issue of slavery. Many in the North accepted the slavery in the South as necessary for the national economy, although they knew how unfair and immoral this was. Men held all the power and women were expected to be religious and obedient. Until Uncle Tom's Cabin first appeared in a Washington newspaper, Stowe's writings were mostly small articles and stories. She was inspired to write her first novel by the stories of cruelty she had heard and read, and by the introduction of the Fugitive Slave Law which obliged the northern states to send runaway slaves back to the South.