Bret Harte

Who was he?

Harte's Life

Born in New York on August 25th, 1839, Harte was a smart child due to his father being a teacher. Although smart, he was a sick child. Harte moved around a lot as a child due to his father's profession. When his father passed away, he and his mother moved to California. He worked a few jobs here and there, a few being a teacher like his father and in the mining industry. Harte died of Throat cancer on may 5th, 1902 in England.


After childhood Harte continued to move around the country. He worked a number of jobs ranging from a typesetter to a story writer. A lot of the stories of Harte's had to do with the west, in particular California. Due to growing part of his childhood in California, he felt a strong bond to the state and area. Harte wrote multiple stories for news articles, newspapers, magazines, etc. He as well wrote stories for himself, but one of the more widespread fame stories was written in "The Overland Monthly" journal. In this journal he wrote is stories of "The Luck of Roaring Camp," which became very widespread and well known.

Connection with the West

Because of Harte's childhood in California, a lot of his literacy was based around the gold rushes and mining industry. He created many writing for the eastern country to see what the industry was really like. One such writing was the "Drift from Two Shores." In his writing he captured the corruption and greed of those in the west seeking profit from the rush. Harte's writing were an eye opening experience for those of central and eastern america. They could finally see what troubles the west had at this time.