Nathaniel Hawthorne, The Literary Genius.
Nathaniel Hawthorne was a great man of American literature in the 1800's. Most people know him only for his work The Scarlet Letter, but there is much more to this man than just one book. Scholars rate his work with authors such as Emerson and Poe. He was a genius in creating short stories and was a very active political man. His life was one of very many tales. .
Nathaniel Hawthorne came from a family that had played an important role in the early history of Salem, Nathaniel's hometown. Nathaniel's first relative in the colonies was William Hathorne, Nathaniel began to add the "w" in the spelling of his name after his graduation from college. William Hathorne was a rebel against Charles II and a speaker in the House of Delegates. One of William's sons, John, was one of the three infamous judges in the Salem witchcraft trials of 1692. Further down the family tree comes a person by the name of Nathaniel Hathorne, who was a man of the sea. In 1801 he married Elizabeth Clarke and bore three children, Elizabeth Manning in 1802, Nathaniel, the subject of this paper, on July 4th,1804, and Marie Louise in 1808. Shortly after Nathaniel Hawthorne was born, his father died at sea in 1808, therefore he didn't have a father figure in his life. After his father's death, the widow and her three children moved to the Manning House to live with Elizabeth's relatives. Nathaniel had poor health in his early years, something that his future children wouldn't have; at the age of nine, he injured his foot while playing ball. He was unable to do much active activity in the next three years, thus be quickly picked up a habit of reading. Some of the books he read at this time was Spenser's Faire Queene, Thomson's Castle of Indolence, and Shakespearian works. In the summer of 1816, Nathaniel was twelve years old, his mother moved her family to Raymond, Maine.