Harriet Beecher Stowe Letter Regarding Slavery to be Auctioned
Stowe, the author of the landmark novel “Uncle Tom’s Cabin,” was a famous abolitionist who supported the Underground Railroad. She and her husband Calvin Ellis Stowe temporarily hosted runaway slaves in their Cincinnati home and traveled extensively through New England. Stowe’s breakthrough 1851 novel depicted slavery’s cruelty and was influential in turning the north against the practice. President Abraham Lincoln was reported to have said to Stowe in 1862, “'so you are the little woman who wrote the book that started this great war.''
The letter being auctioned is a response to a correspondence Stowe received from an unnamed man who sent her an article about slavery’s negative impact on the country. Stowe’s letter written while she was in Andover, Massachusetts is dated October 27, 1852 and reads in part, “…I am obliged to you for sending me the 'text to my subject' enclosed in your letter. It will be a very good one. Any one that stirs up this subject of southern law as a defence of slavery emphatically wakes up the wrong passenger. Nothing more is needed than to awaken the attention of the public to an expose of the slave law system. If they desire law on this subject, they shall have it…” The letter continues with a request from Stowe to send her other advertisements which would help her in her crusade against slavery.
Bidding for the letter begins at $21,000.
Additional information on the letter can be found at