©Author AdventuresHarriet Beecher Stowe’s classic 1852 book, Uncle Tom’s Cabin, made history as the fastest selling book of its time. Publishers pirated and reprinted it in so many countries that she had to travel to one nation’s court after another, worldwide, to protect her ownership of the work in court.

The best description of her book’s success we found is here: http://specialcollections.vassar.edu/exhibit-highlights/2001-2005/stowe/essay2.html. To this day, pirated copies still turn up in all kinds of places. In the case of the one pictured on this page, a publisher abroad was in such a rush to sell copies of the book that the title was misspelled on the spine as “Uncel.”

The Harriet Beecher Stowe House in Cincinnati is where the author lived before she was married and, given southern Ohio’s role with the Underground Railroad, the location bears some striking similarities to the river-crossing chase scene of her world-famous novel. The House remains available for tours. (Also read about her in our Connecticut section.) Read more about the author here: britannica.com.

The Harriet Beecher Stowe House is the first stop on our Ohio Trail!

Patricia Smart