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    [Harriet Beecher Stowe]. [Bound Periodicals]. Collected Set of The National Era, Vol. IV, No. 26 - Vol. V, No. 44. June 27, 1850-October 30, 1851. Washington D.C.: G. Bailey, 1850-1851. A bound volume containing 71 consecutive issues. This bound volume of the National Era has the issues tightly bound together. The hard bound covers are present, but detached from the newspapers at the spine. All of the 71 weekly newspapers between the dates above are present. The highlight of this bound volume is the FIRST PRINTING in any form of chapters I through XVIII of the famous novel: Uncle Tom's Cabin by Harriet Beecher Stowe in the issues dated between June 5 and Oct 23, 1851. There is also news of the death of U.S. President Zachary Taylor; the admission of California to the Union as a state, and many reports of the debates on slavery within the U.S. Measuring approximately 26 x 18.5 inches. Some foxing, toning and dampstaining. Some creasing and chipping, with some closed and open tears and loss along edges. Good.


    More Information:

    Uncle Tom's Cabin; or, Life among the Lowly is an anti-slavery novel by American author Harriet Beecher Stowe. Published in 1852, the novel "helped lay the groundwork for the Civil War", according to Will Kaufman. Uncle Tom's Cabin first appeared as a 40-week serial in the National Era, an abolitionist periodical, starting with the June 5, 1851 issue. Because of the story's popularity, the publisher John Jewett contacted Stowe about turning the serial into a book. While Stowe questioned if anyone would read Uncle Tom's Cabin in book form, she eventually consented to the request. At least 50,000 people read Uncle Tom's Cabin in its first published form, the 41 weekly installments that appeared between 5 June 1851 and 1 April 1852 in the National Era, a Washington, D.C., anti-slavery paper with a national readership. This means that Stowe's story would have been one of the most widely read 19th century American novels even if it had never been published in book form.

     

    In March, 1851, when Stowe first wrote Gamaliel Bailey, the Era's publisher and editor, to offer him a story that she thought would last for three or four installments, the paper had about 15,000 subscribers. When she sent in the final installment, almost a year later, the paper had 19,000 subscribers - many of whom had written Bailey to say how much they looked forward to Friday, when the mail brought the new Era and the whole family would gather together to hear the latest chapter in the story read aloud.

     

    There are significant differences between the Era text of Uncle Tom's Cabin and the book version first published by Jewett on 18 March 1852. Stowe, a Connecticut-born teacher at the Hartford Female Academy and an active abolitionist, focused the novel on the character of Uncle Tom, a long-suffering black slave around whom the stories of other characters, both fellow slaves and slave owners, revolve. The sentimental novel depicts the reality of slavery while also asserting that Christian love can overcome something as destructive as enslavement of fellow human beings. Uncle Tom's Cabin was the best-selling novel of the 19th century, and the second best-selling book of that century, following the Bible. It is credited with helping fuel the abolitionist cause in the 1850s. In the first year after it was published, 300,000 copies of the book were sold in the United States alone. In 1855, three years after it was published, it was called "the most popular novel of our day." The impact attributed to the book is great, reinforced by a story that when Abraham Lincoln met Stowe at the start of the Civil War, Lincoln declared, "So this is the little lady who started this great war." The quote is apocryphal; it did not appear in print until 1896, and it has been argued that "The long-term durability of Lincoln's greeting as an anecdote in literary studies and Stowe scholarship can perhaps be explained in part by the desire among many contemporary intellectuals... to affirm the role of literature as an agent of social change." The book, and even more the plays it inspired, also helped popularize a number of stereotypes about black people, many of which endure to this day. These include the affectionate, dark-skinned "mammy"; the "pickaninny" stereotype of black children; and the Uncle Tom, or dutiful, long-suffering servant faithful to his white master or mistress. In recent years, the negative associations with Uncle Tom's Cabin have, to an extent, overshadowed the historical impact of the book as a "vital antislavery tool.



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    26th Thursday
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