Category Archives: 1890-1899

1890-1899

Marie Beale. Jack O’Doon. New York: Henry Holt and Co., 1894.

In this sad melodrama, Mercy Blessington, the daughter of a retired sea captain, must choose between two suitors.  One is Algernon Abercrombie, an artist, half serious about his work and a bit of a ne’er-do-well.  The other is a local fisherman, Jack O’Doon.  Jack is clearly the better person, but he is uneducated and Mercy is a cultured young woman who expects her husband to be cultured too.  Mercy’s good influence turns Algernon around, so that when Jack sacrifices his life to save Algie, it lessens the tragedy, if only just a bit.

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Filed under 1890-1899, 1894, Beale, Marie, Coast, Novels to Read Online

Christian Reid. A Little Maid of Arcady. Philadelphia: H. L. Kilner & Co., 1893.

At the age of four, Bernadette Araud is left an orphan when her mother is killed in a train wreck in the Blue Ridge Mountains. Bernadette is reared by a local family, the Camerons, until a chance meeting leads her mother’s family to her. The Ridgeleys are a well-to-do New Orleans family who are eager to have Bernadette with them. After Bernadette leaves her mountain home, the Camerons are so bereft that they decide to return to Scotland. There their son, Alan, completes his education. Alan then returns to the United States and attempts to woo Bernadette. Going against our current stereotypes, the Camerons are Catholics, and Bernadette’s attachment to her Catholic faith figures in the choices that she makes. A dangerous forest fire pushes the novel to a dramatic conclusion.

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Filed under 1890-1899, 1893, Mountains, Novels to Read Online, Reid, Christian, Religious/Inspirational

Harry Castlemon. Marcy the Blockade-Runner. Philadelphia: Porter & Coates, 1891.

In this novel is set in North Carolina during the Civil War, the protagonists are a bit of a surprise. Young Marcy Gray, his mother, and brother Jack are Union sympathizers, but they must present a Confederate front to their neighbors. The boys are pilots, halfhearted blockade runners who take to this business to deflect the suspicions of their neighbors and thus protect their mother’s land and wealth. Brother Jack eventually shows his true colors by joining the Union fleet. This is one of two books that follows the Marcy family during the Civil War.

Harry Castlemon is the pseudonym of Charles Austin Fosdick. Fosdick wrote numerous adventure stories for boys in the late nineteenth century. Fosdick himself served in the Union Navy in the Civil War, and some of his experiences may be reflected in this novel.

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Filed under 1890-1899, 1891, Castlemon, Harry, Children & Young Adults, Coast, Historical, Novels to Read Online

Maria Louise Pool. Dally. New York: Harper & Brothers, 1893.

It is a bit of a stretch to call this a North Carolina novel. The main character, Dally, is a poor girl from the North Carolina mountains, but early in the novel she is sent to New England to live with a widow lady, Mrs. Jacobs. It takes Dally some time to adjust to her new surroundings, but by the end of the novel she has won over the other characters with her open heart, self-sacrifice, and bravery. (As in many novels of this era, the main character’s dog has a role in the plot.)

Check this title’s availability and access an online copy through the UNC-Chapel Hill Library catalog.

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Filed under 1890-1899, 1893, Mountains, Novels to Read Online, Pool, Maria Louise, Religious/Inspirational

E.A.B.S. (E. A. B. Shackelford). Virginia Dare: A Romance of the Sixteenth Century. New York: Thomas Whittaker, 1892.

In this version of the Lost Colony story, most of the English settlers are killed, but Virginia Dare survives. In 1607, she goes north to Powhatan’s country, but the Jamestown settlers never learn of her existence. The remnants of Manteo’s tribe become Christians, and Virgina marries Manteo’s son Iosco.

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Filed under 1890-1899, 1892, Coast, Novels to Read Online, Religious/Inspirational, Shackelford, E. A. B.

Maria Louise Pool. Against Human Nature. New York: Harper & Brothers, 1895.

A simple novel of the late nineteenth century, crowded with good mountain lore. The story is a coming of age tale centering on a twenty-year old mountain girl’s attempts to avoid the situations and errors that have made her parents’ lives so unhappy. Many of the scenes take place around Asheville, but the action later shifts to Massachusetts.

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Filed under 1890-1899, 1895, Buncombe, Coast, Mountains, Novels to Read Online, Pool, Maria Louise

Louis Pendleton. Corona of the Nantahalas. New York: The Merriam Co., 1895.

Mr. Pendleton must have read the Bard of Avon because this book has many of the elements of a Shakespeare play: mistaken identity, confused lovers, a kidnapping, a child rescued from danger and raised by guardians. As a toddler, Corona is saved from death by the mountaineer Gideon McLeod. She grows up, happy, with the McLeod family in Lonely Cove until a journalist who’s touring the mountains plays with her heart and spreads lies about the family. One consequence of the journalist’s visit is that the botanist Edward Darnell hears about the flora, fauna, and family in Lonely Cove. Darnell, who was also adopted, is taken with Corona. As the plot unfolds, they find that they have much in common.

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Filed under 1890-1899, 1895, Macon, Mountains, Novels to Read Online, Pendleton, Louis

Under Golden Skies, or, In the New Eldorado. Raleigh,NC: Edwards & Broughton, 1898.

Wealthy Winston-Salem resident Dr. Ralph Leslie becomes guardian to the daughter of a woman he loved in his youth. His relationship with his ward deepens into love during the course of the action which moves through popular vacation spots around the state. The publisher characterized this as “A Story of Southern Life by A Southern Author.” The author is thought to be Mrs. D. C. Osborne.

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Filed under 1890-1899, 1898, Anonymous, Forsyth, Novels to Read Online

Shepherd M. Dugger. The Balsam Groves of the Grandfather Mountain: A Tale of the Western North Carolina Mountains. Banner Elk: Shepherd M. Dugger, 1892.

A travel novel that follows an assortment of vacationers climbing Grandfather Mountain. The climbers enjoy the scenery, adventure, and romance. A wedding performed against the backdrop of Linville Falls is one of the high points of the novel, but modern readers may be most interested in the illustrations and tourist information scattered throughout the volume.

Check this title’s availability and access an online copy through the UNC-Chapel Hill Library catalog.

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Filed under 1890-1899, 1892, Avery, Burke, Caldwell, Dugger, Shepherd M., Mountains, Novels to Read Online, Watauga