1815-1850: The Arts: Publications
1815-1850: The Arts: Publications
Henry Ward Beecher, Lectures to Young Men (Boston & Salem: John P. Jewett, 1844)—like many contemporary “advice manuals” aimed at young men, Beecher’s lectures warned readers about the moral dangers found in theaters, some books, and other forms of urban culture;
James Fenimore Cooper, The Pioneers; or, the Sources of the Susquehanna, a Descriptive Tale (New York: C. Wiley, 1823)—in Cooper’s first successful novel he introduced his famous Leatherstocking character, Natty Bumppo, a lone frontiersman who occupied a middle ground between white settlers and Native Americans;
Andrew Jackson Downing, The Architecture of Country Houses (New York: Appleton / Philadelphia: G. S. Appleton, 1850)—landscape and house designer Downing’s last and most complete book. Downing argued that a beautiful house could be morally uplifting and included illustrations that showed a variety of houses and decorative styles that could be adapted according to taste and income;
Nathaniel Hawthorne, The Scarlet Letter (Boston: Ticknor, Reed & Fields, 1850)—a New England-based historical romance that used Puritan history to reflect on nineteenth-century social and cultural difficulties;
Washington Irving, The Sketch-Book of Geoffrey Crayon (New York: C. S. Van Winkle, 1819–1820)—a collection of essays comparing American and European customs, and several stories about settlers in the Hudson River valley, including “The Legend of Sleepy Hollow” and “Rip Van Winkle”;
Charles Edward Lester, ed., Gallery of Illustrious Americans; Containing the Portraits and Biographical Sketches of Twenty-four of the Most Eminent Citizens of the American Republic, Since the Death of Washington. From Daguerreotypes by [Mathew] Brady, —engraved by D’Avignon (New York: M. B. Brady, F. D’Avignon, C. E. Lester, 1850)—a series of lithographic reproductions of photographs of eminent Americans, sent to subscribers across the country;
Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, Evangeline; a Tale of Acadie (Boston: Ticknor, 1847)—Longfellow’s themes of suffering patience and restless travel appealed to male and female readers alike; additionally, the poem functioned as a kind of travelogue, describing the American landscape as viewed by Evangeline as she searched for her Gabriel;
Herman Melville, Typee: a peep at Polynesian life. During a Four Months’ Residence in a Valley of the Marquesas (New York: Wiley & Putnam, 1846)—a lightly fictionalized South Seas romance that implicitly criticized American values through its sympathetic treatment of primitive island society;
Anna Cora Mowatt, Fashion (New York: S. French, 1849)—Published as French’s Standard Drama, no. 215, and first performed in 1845, Mowatt’s popular play addressed the moral issue of virtue swayed by influence and reflected the conflict between pleasure and moral uplift that haunted American theater;
Edgar Allan Poe, The Raven and Other Poems (New York: Wiley & Putnam, 1845);
Catharine Sedgwick, Hope Leslie; or, Early Life among the Massachusetts (New York: White, Gallaher & White, 1827)—Sedgwick’s novel of Massachusetts’s Puritan history made her the first American woman to earn a living by writing;
William Gilmore Simms, The Yemassee: A Romance of Carolina (New York: Harper, 1835);
William Walker, The Southern Harmony and Musical Companion. Containing a Choice Collection of Tunes, Hymns, Psalms, Odes, and Anthems Selected from the Most Eminent Authors in the United States and Well Adapted to Christian Churches of Every Denomination, Singing Schools, and Private Societies (Philadelphia: E. W. Miller, 1835)—the most influential “shape-note” hymnal, it was popular in the South and West.
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