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1900s Literature


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Awakening of Helen Richie  (1906)

Book

by Margaret Deland

Helena Richie leaves a drunken husband, who had killed their child, and goes to Old Chester with her friend Lloyd Pryor. Most believe the newcomers Helena and Lloyd are brother and sister, and Helena adopts a homeless boy, David, who had been a ward of the town's minister, Dr. Lavendar.

Freckles  (1904)

Book

by Gene Stratton Porter

The hero is an adult orphan, just under twenty years of age, with bright red hair and a freckled complexion. His right hand is missing at the wrist, and has been since before he can remember. Raised since infancy in a Chicago orphanage, he speaks with a slight Irish accent, "scarcely definite enough to be called a brogue."

A Girl of the Limberlost  (1909)

Book

by Gene Stratton Porter

The novel is set in Indiana. Most of the action takes place either in or around the Limberlost, or in the nearby, fictional town of Onabasha. The novel's heroine, Elnora Comstock, is an impoverished young woman who lives with her widowed mother, Katharine Comstock, on the edge of the Limberlost. Elnora faces cold neglect by her mother, a woman who feels ruined by the death of her husband, Robert Comstock, who drowned in quicksand in the swamp.

The House of Mirth  (1905)

Book

by Edith Wharton

The House of Mirth tells the story of Lily Bart, a well-born but impoverished woman belonging to New York City's high society around the turn of the last century.

The Jungle  (1906)

Book

by Upton Sinclair

The Jungle is a 1906 novel written by journalist, socialist, and politician Upton Sinclair.Sinclair wrote the novel with the intent to portray the lives of immigrants in the United States. However, readers were more concerned with the large portion of the book pertaining to the bad practices and corruption of the American meatpacking industry during the early 20th century, and the book is now often interpreted and taught as a journalist's account of the poor working conditions in the industry.

Little Shepherd of Kingdom Come  (1903)

Book

by John Fox Jr

This is a story of Kentucky, in a settlement known as Kingdom Come. It is a life rude, semi-barbarous; but natural and honest, from which often springs the flower of civilization.Chad, the little shepherd did not know who he was nor whence he came he had just wandered from door to door since early childhood, seeking shelter with kindly mountaineers who gladly fathered and mothered this waif about whom there was such a mystery a charming waif, by the way, who could play the banjo better that anyone else in the mountains.

Mrs Wiggs of the Cabbage Patch  (1902)

Book

by Alice Caldwell Hegan

Mrs. Wiggs of the Cabbage Patch is a 1901 novel by American author Alice Caldwell Hegan, telling of a southern family's humorously coping with poverty. The book was highly popular on its release and has been adapted to film several times.

The Right of Way  (1901)

Book

by Gilbert Parker

Charley Steele, a Canadian lawyer, goes missing and is though dead by everyone. Seeing an opportunity to changes his life, he adopts a new name.

The Shuttle  (1907)

Book

by Frances Hodgson Burnett

One of Burnett's longer and more complicated books for adults, it deals with themes of intermarriages between wealthy American heiresses and impoverished British nobles.

Sister Carrie  (1900)

Book

by Theodore Dreiser

Sister Carrie is a novel by Theodore Dreiser about a young country girl who moves to the big city where she starts realizing her own American Dream, first as a mistress to men that she perceives as superior, and later becoming a famous actress. It has been called the greatest of all American urban novels.

Three Men on the Bummel  (1900)

Book

by Jerome K Jerome

A humorous novel by Jerome K. Jerome. It was published in 1900, eleven years after his most famous work, Three Men in a Boat. The sequel brings back the three companions who figured in Three Men in a Boat, this time on a bicycle tour through the German Black Forest.

Trail of the Lonesome Pine  (1908)

Book

by John Fox Jr

Set in the Appalachian Mountains at the turn of the twentieth century, a feud has been boiling for over thirty years between two influential mountain families: the Tollivers and the Falins. The character Devil Judd Tolliver, in the novel was based on the real life of Devil John Wesley Wright, a United States Marshal for the region in and around Wise County, Virginia, and Letcher County, Kentucky. The outside world and industrialization, however, are beginning to enter the area. Coal mining begins to exert its influence on the area, despite the two families feuds

Unleavened Bread  (1900)

Book

by Robert Grant

This turn of the century American novel is an ambitious three-stage portrayal of a woman's rise from rural schoolteacher to Senator's wife

The Virginian  (1902)

Book

by Owen Wister

It describes the life of a cowboy on a cattle ranch in Wyoming and was the first true fictional western ever written, aside from short stories and pulp dime novels. The Virginian paved the way for many more westerns by such authors as Zane Grey, Louis L'Amour, and several others.

Wonderful Wizard of Oz  (1900)

Book

by L Frank Baum

Dorothy is a young orphaned girl raised by her Uncle Henry and Aunt Em in the bleak landscape of a Kansas farm. She has a little black dog Toto, who is her sole source of happiness on the dry, gray prairies. One day the farmhouse, with Dorothy and Toto inside, is caught up in a cyclone and deposited in a field in Munchkin Country, the eastern quadrant of the Land of Oz. The falling house kills the evil ruler of the Munchkins, the Wicked Witch of the East.