Famous 19th Century American Novelists

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 1 
Mark Twain
(Lauded as the 'Greatest Humorist' the United States Has Produced)
Mark Twain
5
Birthdate: November 30, 1835
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Florida, Missouri, United States
Died: April 21, 1910

Mark Twain, “the father of American literature,” was one of the world’s greatest 19-th century humorists and authors. His novels The Adventures of Tom Sawyer and the Adventures of Huckleberry Finn were drawn from his childhood experiences in Missouri. In his later life, he sunk into bankruptcy and also recovered.

 2 
Louisa May Alcott
4
Birthdate: November 29, 1832
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Germantown, Pennsylvania, United States
Died: March 6, 1888
Novelist and short story writer Louisa May Alcott is best remembered as the author of the 1868 novel Little Women and its sequels, Little Men and Jo's Boys. She initially wrote using the pseudonym “A. M. Barnard.” She never married and remained a life-long feminist and abolitionist.
 3 
Jack London
(Novelist & Journalist)
Jack London
4
Birthdate: January 12, 1876
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: San Francisco, California, United States
Died: November 22, 1916

Jack London was an American novelist, social activist, and journalist. A pioneer of American magazines and commercial fiction, London was one of the first authors from the US to become an international celebrity. His life and work inspired several films, such as the 1943 movie Jack London and 1980 film Klondike Fever. He was also portrayed in several TV series.

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 4 
Herman Melville
(Novelist & Short Story Writer of the American Renaissance Period Best Known for His Works 'Moby-Dick' & 'Typee')
Herman Melville
4
Birthdate: August 1, 1819
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: New York, New York, United States
Died: September 28, 1891

Herman Melville was an American short story writer, novelist, and poet. One of his best-known works, Moby-Dick is widely regarded as one of the great American novels, although it did not garner much attention during his lifetime. Livyatan melvillei, a species of an extinct sperm whale, which was discovered in 2010, was named in his honor.  

 5 
Henry James
(British Author Who is Regarded as a Key Transitional Figure Between Literary Realism and Literary Modernism)
Henry James
4
Birthdate: April 15, 1843
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: New York, New York City, United States
Died: February 28, 1916

Henry James was an author, regarded as one of the greatest novelists ever to write in the English language. One of his novellas titled The Turn of the Screw has been the most analyzed ghost story in the history of English language literature. While his works have been adapted into films, he has been the subject of several other stories.

 6 
Nathaniel Hawthorne
(Novelist and Short Story Writer)
Nathaniel Hawthorne
4
Birthdate: July 4, 1804
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Salem, Massachusetts, United States
Died: May 19, 1864

Nathaniel Hawthorne was an American writer, known for dark romanticism and moral-themed novels and short stories. A descendant of judge John Hathorne of the Salem witch trials infamy, the writer was a friend of late American president Franklin Pierce. His well-known books include Twice-Told Tales, The Scarlet Letter and The House of the Seven Gables. Nathaniel was married to painter Sophia Peabody.

 7 
Gertrude Stein
(American Novelist, Poet and Playwright)
Gertrude Stein
5
Birthdate: February 3, 1874
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, United States
Died: July 27, 1946

Gertrude Stein was an American playwright, novelist, poet, and art collector. She is remembered for publishing works about lesbian sexuality, which was considered a taboo at that time. Over the years, Gertrude Stein has been the subject of several works of art. In the 2011 movie Midnight in Paris, Stein was portrayed by Kathy Bates.

 8 
Upton Sinclair
(American writer)
Upton Sinclair
4
Birthdate: September 20, 1878
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Baltimore, Maryland
Died: November 25, 1968
Pulitzer Prize-winning author and political activist Upton Sinclair is best remembered for his novels such as The Jungle and The Brass Check, which mirrored the exploitative and unjust nature of various sectors. He was also an occult and telepathy enthusiast. He was actively involved with the Socialist and Democratic parties.
 9 
Zora Neale Hurston
(Folklorist, Anthropologist)
Zora Neale Hurston
4
Birthdate: January 7, 1891
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Notasulga
Died: January 28, 1960

Zora Neale Hurston was an author, anthropologist, and filmmaker. As an African American woman, she often depicted racial issues in the films she made. Her works also reflected her struggles as a black woman. In her early career, she conducted anthropological and ethnographic research and focused more on writing and film-making in her later years.

 10 
Edgar Rice Burroughs
(Creator of Tarzan)
Edgar Rice Burroughs
4
Birthdate: September 1, 1875
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Chicago, Illinois, United States
Died: March 19, 1950
 11 
L. Frank Baum
(Best Known for His Children's Books Like 'The Wonderful Wizard of Oz' and its Sequels)
L. Frank Baum
4
Birthdate: May 15, 1856
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Chittenango, New York, United States
Died: May 6, 1919

L. Frank Baum was an author remembered for writing children's books including The Wonderful Wizard of Oz, which inspired the 1902 Broadway musical and the 1939 live-action film of the same name. His works anticipated the invention of gadgets like TV that would be invented later. In 2013, Baum was made an inductee of the Chicago Literary Hall of Fame.

 12 
Edith Wharton
5
Birthdate: January 24, 1862
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: New York City
Died: August 11, 1937
 13 
Sinclair Lewis
(Nobel Prize Winner in Literature)
Sinclair Lewis
4
Birthdate: February 7, 1885
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Sauk Centre
Died: January 10, 1951
 14 
Rose Wilder Lane
(Journalists)
Rose Wilder Lane
5
Birthdate: December 5, 1886
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: De Smet, South Dakota, USA
Died: October 30, 1968
 15 
Willa Cather
(Author)
Willa Cather
4
Birthdate: December 7, 1873
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Winchester
Died: April 24, 1947
 16 
Stephen Crane
(Writer, Journalist, Poet, Baseball player, Novelist, Screenwriter)
Stephen Crane
3
Birthdate: November 1, 1871
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Newark
Died: June 5, 1900
 17 
Zane Grey
(Novelist)
Zane Grey
3
Birthdate: January 31, 1872
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Zanesville, Ohio, USA
Died: October 23, 1939
 18 
Frances Hodgson Burnett
4
Birthdate: November 24, 1849
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Cheetham, Manchester, England
Died: October 29, 1924
 19 
Lewis Wallace
3
Birthdate: April 10, 1827
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Brookville, Indiana, United States
Died: February 15, 1905
 20 
Horatio Alger
3
Birthdate: January 31, 1832
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Chelsea, Massachusetts, United States
Died: July 30, 1899
 21 
Thornton Wilder
(Playwright)
Thornton Wilder
3
Birthdate: April 17, 1897
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Madison, Wisconsin, United States
Died: December 7, 1975
 22 
Djuna Barnes
(Artist)
Djuna Barnes
3
Birthdate: June 12, 1892
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Storm King Mountain, New York, United States
Died: June 18, 1982
 23 
Claude McKay
(Writer)
Claude McKay
3
Birthdate: September 15, 1889
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Clarendon Parish
Died: May 22, 1948

Claude McKay was a poet who played an influential role in the Harlem Renaissance. Remembered for his work If We Must Die, a poem written in response to mob attacks on African-American communities by white Americans, McKay was named the national poet of Jamaica in 1977. For his contribution to literature, he was posthumously honored with the Order of Jamaica.

 24 
Sherwood Anderson
3
Birthdate: September 13, 1876
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Ohio, United States
Died: March 8, 1941
 25 
Henry Adams
(Historian Known for His Work 'The History of the United States of America 1801–1817')
Henry Adams
3
Birthdate: February 16, 1838
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Boston, Massachusetts, United States
Died: March 27, 1918

Historian Henry Adams was part of the famous Adams political family of the U.S and a typical Boston Brahmin elite. His best-known work remains his posthumously published autobiography, The Education of Henry Adams, which won a Pulitzer Prize. He also taught medieval history at Harvard.

 26 
Emily Post
(Novelist)
Emily Post
3
Birthdate: October 27, 1872
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Baltimore
Died: September 25, 1960
 27 
Ben Hecht
(Screenwriter)
Ben Hecht
3
Birthdate: February 28, 1893
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: New York City, U.S.
Died: April 18, 1964
 28 
Sholem Aleichem
3
Birthdate: March 2, 1859
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Pereiaslav, Ukraine
Died: May 13, 1916
 29 
Katherine Anne Porter
(Journalist, Essayist, Writer, Novelist)
Katherine Anne Porter
3
Birthdate: May 15, 1890
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Indian Creek, Texas, U.S.
Died: September 18, 1980
 30 
Bret Harte
(Author & Poet)
Bret Harte
3
Birthdate: August 25, 1836
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Albany, New York, U.S.
Died: May 5, 1902
 31 
Natalie Clifford Barney
4
Birthdate: October 31, 1876
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Dayton, Ohio, United States
Died: February 2, 1972
 32 
Hilda Doolittle
3
Birthdate: September 10, 1886
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, United States
Died: September 27, 1961
 33 
Nella Larsen
(Author)
Nella Larsen
3
Birthdate: April 13, 1891
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Chicago, Illinois
Died: March 30, 1964
 34 
Robert W. Chambers
3
Birthdate: May 26, 1865
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Brooklyn, New York, United States
Died: December 16, 1933
 35 
B. Traven
(Novelist)
B. Traven
4
Birthdate: February 23, 1882
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Swiebodzin, Poland
Died: March 26, 1969

Best known for his adventure tales and chronicles of rural Mexican society, German author B. Traven was a living enigma, as his real name remains unknown. Some believe he was the German revolutionary Ret Marut. His work The Treasure of the Sierra Madre was later made into an Academy Award-winning film.

 36 
Sarah Josepha Hale
(American author)
Sarah Josepha Hale
4
Birthdate: October 24, 1788
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Newport, New Hampshire, United States
Died: April 30, 1879
 37 
William Dean Howells
3
Birthdate: March 1, 1837
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Martins Ferry, Ohio, U.S.
Died: May 11, 1920
 38 
Frank Norris
(Journalist)
Frank Norris
3
Birthdate: March 5, 1870
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Chicago, Illinois, U.S
Died: October 25, 1902
 39 
Ring Lardner
(Columnist)
Ring Lardner
3
Birthdate: March 6, 1885
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Niles, Michigan, United States
Died: September 25, 1933
 40 
Edward Bellamy
(Journalist)
Edward Bellamy
3
Birthdate: March 26, 1850
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Chicopee, Massachusetts, United States
Died: May 22, 1898
 41 
Thomas Dixon Jr.
(Politician)
Thomas Dixon Jr.
3
Birthdate: January 11, 1864
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Shelby, North Carolina, United States
Died: April 3, 1946
 42 
Edward Stratemeyer
3
Birthdate: October 4, 1862
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Elizabeth, New Jersey, United States
Died: April 13, 1905
 43 
Edith Hamilton
(Educator)
Edith Hamilton
3
Birthdate: August 12, 1867
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Dresden, Saxony
Died: May 31, 1963
 44 
Max Eastman
(Novelist)
Max Eastman
3
Birthdate: January 4, 1883
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Canandaigua, New York, United States
Died: March 25, 1969
 45 
Conrad Aiken
(Writer)
Conrad Aiken
2
Birthdate: August 5, 1889
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Savannah, Georgia, United States
Died: August 17, 1973
 46 
Mary Roberts Rinehart
3
Birthdate: August 12, 1876
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Allegheny City, Pennsylvania (now Pittsburgh), United States
Died: September 22, 1958
 47 
DuBose Heyward
3
Birthdate: August 31, 1885
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Charleston, South Carolina, United States
Died: June 16, 1940
Stephen Vincent Benét
3
Birthdate: July 22, 1898
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, United States
Died: March 13, 1943
 49 
Simon Newcomb
(Astronomer, Mathematician, Economist, Novelist, Writer, Teacher, University teacher, Science fiction writer)
Simon Newcomb
3
Birthdate: March 12, 1835
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Nova Scotia
Died: July 11, 1909

Initially a herbalist’s apprentice, Simon Newcomb later deviated to mathematics and astronomy. Born to a schoolteacher, he had loved math since age 5 but wasn’t formally educated. He later joined Harvard University, taught math at the US Navy, detected locations of celestial bodies, and wrote a science-fiction novel, too.

 50 
Alan L. Hart
(Physician)
Alan L. Hart
2
Birthdate: October 4, 1890
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Coffey County, Kansas, United States
Died: July 1, 1962