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Tour the Cincinnati home where Harriet Beecher Stowe lived during her formative years that later led her to write the best-selling novel Uncle Tom’s Cabin. Learn about the author, the Beecher and Stowe families, the Underground Railroad and the women’s rights movements of the 1830s–1860s. Average visit time: Allow 1+ hours
Because the Beecher family assisted freedom seekers while living here, the house is also a recognized site on the National Underground Railroad Network to Freedom. While in the Cincinnati area, learn more about slavery and the Underground Railroad by visiting the National Underground Railroad Freedom Center; the Ohio History Connection’s John Rankin House in Ripley; and the John Parker House in Ripley.
This house was home to Harriet Beecher before her marriage to Calvin Stowe in 1836, and to her father, Rev. Lyman Beecher, and his large family, a prolific group of religious leaders, educators, writers and antislavery and women’s rights advocates. The Beecher family includes Harriet’s sister, Catherine Beecher, an early educator and writer who helped found numerous high schools and colleges for women; brother Rev. Henry Ward Beecher, a leader of the women’s suffrage movement and considered by some to be the most eloquent minister of his time; Gen. James Beecher, a Civil War general who commanded the first African American troops in the Union Army recruited from the South; and sister, Isabella Beecher Hooker, a women’s rights advocate.
The Beechers lived in Cincinnati for nearly 20 years, from 1832 to the early 1850s, before returning east. Shortly after leaving Cincinnati (and basing her writing on her experiences in Cincinnati), in 1851–1852 Harriet Beecher Stowe wrote the best-selling book of its time, Uncle Tom’s Cabin, a fictionalized account of the pain slavery imposed on its victims and of the difficult struggles of slaves to escape and travel via the Underground Railroad to freedom in the northern states or Canada. Published just after the fugitive slave laws were enacted by Congress in 1850, the book made Harriet Beecher Stowe a household name. Uncle Tom’s Cabin has been published in over 75 languages and is still an important text used in schools all over the world.
The Harriet Beecher Stowe House is managed locally by the Friends of the Harriet Beecher Stowe House, Inc.
The site is also an American Writers Museum affiliate.
Today it’s easy to wonder how anyone could seriously defend slavery, but in the antebellum US, plenty of people did just that. We’ll look at how one Southerner, George Fitzhugh, tried to make the case. In contrast we’ll consider how effectively two moments of self-expression by George Harris in Uncle Tom’s Cabin anticipate and counter […]
Much of our built environment was specifically designed to avoid the spread of diseases such as cholera, influenza, and tuberculosis. Journalist Elizabeth Yuko connects the early home design writing of Catharine Beecher and Harriet Beecher Stowe to the modern-day impact of disease and pandemics home design today. This event will take place at the First […]
What are we uncovering during the unique, multi-era restoration of this historic site? Explore behind the scenes and get the latest updates. Join volunteer Eric Driscoll to explore behind the scenes and get the latest updates on the architectural investigation and historic restoration underway. Tour participants must be able to navigate narrow and/or steep staircases.
Learn how two pioneering Cincinnati sisters brought medicine to women and women to medicine. “Elizabeth Blackwell believed from an early age that she was destined for a mission beyond the scope of “ordinary” womanhood. Though the world at first recoiled at the notion of a woman studying medicine, her intelligence and intensity ultimately won her […]
Celebrate the power of voice with your community. Enjoy live music, family activities, refreshments and more. There is no admission fee for this event.
James Bradley arrived on a slave vessel, defied death multiple times, and worked tirelessly toward purchasing his own freedom. Once emancipated, Bradley made his way to Lane Theological Seminary, joining a passionate group of students, to be known as the Lane Rebels. These so-called Rebels would find a home at Oberlin College. How does a […]