Franklin wrote his autobiography in the form of an extended letter to his son. While recording the events of his life, he adds instructions for good living which makes this work America’s first “How to Succeed” book.
Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass is a memoir and treatise on abolition written by famous orator and ex-slave, Frederick Douglass. It is generally held to be the most famous of a number of narratives written by former slaves during the same period. In factual detail, the text describes the events of his life and is considered to be one of the most influential pieces of literature to fuel the abolitionist movement of the early 19th Century in the United States.
This short work of Wilde's was written during his two year incarceration for "gross indecency". This work is a letter which sorts out his life, and his love toward Lord Alfred Douglas. Wilde wrote this as a farewell letter to Douglas.
Barnum, P. T.
Phineas Taylor Barnum (July 5, 1810 – April 7, 1891) was an American showman, businessman, and entertainer, remembered for promoting celebrated hoaxes and for founding the circus that became the Ringling Bros. and Barnum and Bailey Circus.
His successes may have made him the first "show business" millionaire. Although Barnum was also an author, publisher, philanthropist, and for some time a politician, he said of himself, "I am a showman by profession...and all the gilding shall make nothing else of me," and his personal aims were "to put money in his own coffers".
This is the first of five volumes. - Giacomo Casanova (1725 in Venice – 1798 in Dux, Bohemia, now Duchcov, Czech Republic) was a famous Venetian adventurer, writer, and womanizer. He used charm, guile, threats, intimidation, and aggression, when necessary, to conquer women, sometimes leaving behind children or debt. In his autobiography Histoire de ma vie (Story of My Life), regarded as one of the most authentic sources of the customs and norms of European social life during the 18th century, he mentions 122 women with whom he had sex.
Although he is often associated with Don Juan because both seduced many women, Casanova is in fact very different from his fictitious counterpart. While Don Juan is a legend, Casanova is a historical character.
The Story of My Life is a personal account of Helen Keller's life, from her early days to those as an adult. It includes how she came to meet her teacher Ann Sullivan, and learnt to communicate using the manual alphabet. It then goes on to chronicle her days as a college student.
Authentic Narratives of the Most Celebrated Sea Robbers.
Dyer, Frank Lewis
A detailed biography of Thomas Alva Edison, inventor of such things as the telephone, the microphone, the electric motor, the storage battery, and the electric light. In the words of the authors, "It is designed in these pages to bring the reader face to face with Edison; to glance at an interesting childhood and a youthful period marked by a capacity for doing things, and by an insatiable thirst for knowledge; then to accompany him into the great creative stretch of forty years, during which he has done so much. This book shows him plunged deeply into work for which he has always had an incredible capacity, reveals the exercise of his unsurpassed inventive ability, his keen reasoning powers, his tenacious memory, his fertility of resource; follows him through a series of innumerable experiments, conducted methodically, reaching out like rays of search-light into all the regions of science and nature, and finally exhibits him emerging triumphantly from countless difficulties bearing with him in new arts the fruits of victorious struggle." (written by Justin Barrett, with authors' quote taken from the work itself)
The Autobiography of Charles Darwin is the autobiography of the British naturalist Charles Darwin which was published in 1887, five years after his death.
Darwin wrote the book, which he entitled Recollections of the Development of my Mind and Character, for his family. He states that he started writing it on about May 28, 1876 and had finished it by August 3.
The book was edited by Charles Darwin's son Francis Darwin, who removed several passages about Darwin's critical views of God and Christianity (see Charles Darwin's views on religion).
The Lives of the Most Excellent Italian Painters, Sculptors, and Architects, from Cimabue to Our Times, or Le Vite delle più eccellenti pittori, scultori, ed architettori, as it was originally known in Italian, is a series of artist biographies written by 16th century Italian painter and architect Giorgio Vasari, which is considered "perhaps the most famous, and even today the most- read work of the older literature of art", "some of the Italian Renaissance's most influential writing on art", and "one of the founding texts in art history".
Vasari's work has been described as "by far the most influential single text for the history of Renaissance art" and "the most important work of Renaissance biography of artists". Its influence is situated mainly in three domains: as an example for contemporary and later biographers and art historians, as a defining factor in the view on the Renaissance and the role of Florence and Rome in it, and as a major source of information on the lives and works of early Italian artists.
Samuel Clemens (Mark Twain) began writing his autobiography long before the 1906 publications of these Chapters from my Autobiography. He originally planned to have his memoirs published only after his death but realized, once he’d passed his 70th year, that a lot of the material might be OK to publish before his departure. These chapters were published in serial form in the North American Review during 1906-1907. While much of the material consists of stories about the people, places and incidents of his long life, there’re also several sections from his daughter, which he calls “Susy’s biography of me”.
Rockefeller, John D.
A good book by the oil revolutionist of the 20th century. As they say "Men should listen to experience" and this book is all about the experience of the second highest taxpayer of the US during the 20's. Though it is not in the book, this is a small poem he wrote:
I was early taught to work as well as play,
My life has been one long, happy holiday;
Full of work and full of play-
I dropped the worry on the way-
And God was good to me everyday.
Robert G. Ingersoll
Col. Ingersoll begins his lectures on famous people as follows: "It is hard to overstate the debt we owe to the men and women of genius. Take from our world what they have given, and all the niches would be empty, all the walls naked—meaning and connection would fall from words of poetry and fiction, music would go back to common air, and all the forms of subtle and enchanting Art would lose proportion and become the unmeaning waste and shattered spoil of thoughtless Chance." One of the most famous orators of his day, a contemporary and personal friend of Mark Twain and General Grant, Ingersoll's lectures on famous people in this series include: SHAKESPEARE, ROBERT BURNS, ABRAHAM LINCOLN, VOLTAIRE, WALT WHITMAN; followed by inspiring speeches on THE GREAT INFIDELS; WHICH WAY? (science or superstition); and ABOUT THE HOLY BIBLE.Each lecture in Volume 3, plus 2 lectures on HUMBOLDT and THOMAS PAINE from Volume 1, and an essay on ERNEST RENAN from Volume 11 (of the 12 volume Dresden Edition), are presented on Librivox as a separate audiobook in the series called Ingersoll Lectures, Famous People. ( Michele Fry)
An intriguing look at well known women in history from BC 500 to the mid 1800's. Each chapter is a brief overview of one woman's life. An interesting read.
Gordon, Irwin Leslie
A short, humorous biography of famous people from 5000 BC to 1914. -- S. McGaughey
From the Introduction, "The editor begs leave to inform the public that only persons who can produce proper evidence of their demise will be admitted to Who Was Who. Press Agent notices or complimentary comments are absolutely excluded, and those offering to pay for the insertion of names will be prosecuted. As persons become eligible they will be included without solicitation, while the pages will be expurgated of others should good luck warrant."
Lodge, Henry Cabot
Its purpose … is to tell in simple fashion the story of some Americans who showed that they knew how to live and how to die; who proved their truth by their endeavor; and who joined to the stern and manly qualities which are essential to the well-being of a masterful race the virtues of gentleness, of patriotism, and of lofty adherence to an ideal.
It is a good thing for all Americans … to remember the men who have given their lives in war and peace to the service of their fellow-countrymen, and to keep in mind the feats of daring and personal prowess done in time past by some of the many champions of the nation in the various crises of her history.
Eastman, Charles Alexander (Ohiyesa)
EVERY age, every race, has its leaders and heroes. There were over sixty distinct tribes of Indians on this continent, each of which boasted its notable men. The names and deeds of some of these men will live in American history, yet in the true sense they are unknown, because misunderstood. I should like to present some of the greatest chiefs of modern times in the light of the native character and ideals, believing that the American people will gladly do them tardy justice.
Guyon, Jeanne Marie Bouvier de la Motte
Jeanne-Marie Bouvier de la Motte-Guyon (commonly known as Madame Guyon) (April 13, 1648 - June 9, 1717) was a French mystic and one of the key advocates of Quietism. Quietism was considered heretical by the Roman Catholic Church, and she was imprisoned from 1695 to 1703 after publishing a book on the topic, A Short and Easy Method of Prayer. This translation is by Thomas Taylor Allen was first published in 1897. Allen's dates are unknown.
Bryant, Walter W.
This biography of Johannes Kepler begins with an account of what the world of astronomy was like before his time, then proceeds to a look at his early years. Two chapters deal with his working relationship with Tycho Brahe. These are followed by a look at Kepler's laws and his last years.
Mark Twain pulls no punches while exposing the "real" Percy Shelley in this scathing condemnation of Edward Dowden's "Life of Shelley". Even though, as Twain writes, "Shelley's life has the one indelible blot upon it, but is otherwise worshipfully noble and beautiful", Twain shows how Shelley's extra-marital conduct might easily be seen to have been the cause of his wife Harriet's suicide.
“Who can help laughing when an ordinary journalist seriously proposes to limit the subject-matter at the disposal of the artist?”
“We are dominated by journalism.... Journalism governs for ever and ever.”[/i]
One of the nastiest of the British tabloids was founded a year too late to join in the moral panic generated to accompany Oscar Wilde’s court appearances in 1895. Yet there was no shortage of hypocritical journalists posing as moral arbiters to the nation, then as now.
This compendium work - skilfully assembled by the editor, Stuart Mason - ends with transcript of Wilde’s first appearance in the Old Bailey, when he was cross-examined on the alleged immorality of his novel The Picture of Dorian Gray. The disastrous outcome of these trials provides an ironic conclusion to the earlier knockabout exchanges between Oscar and his reviewers. In these he is at his flamboyant best, revelling in the publicity he pretends to disdain. His brave performances in the dock did nothing, however, to save him from hard labour, the treadmill and complete physical and moral breakdown which the law found it necessary to inflict on him.
In contrast to the hacks and lawyers, two refreshingly open-minded Americans write perceptively about the novel, as does Walter Pater, the grand old man of Aestheticism.
This solo Librivox project complements a new dramatised reading of The Picture of Dorian Gray, currently in preparation, featuring the present reader as Narrator.
A Small Boy and Others is a book of autobiography by Henry James published in 1913. The book covers James's earliest years and discusses his intellectually active family, his intermittent schooling, and his first trips to Europe.
Browne, E. Gordon
This book is about the life of Queen Victoria (1819 to 1901). All nine of her children married into the royal houses of Europe. She became the longest reigning monarch and more. This book is a fascinating read about the woman behind the British Empire.
A biography of the Polish composer and virtuoso pianist Frédéric Chopin and a critical analysis of his work by American music writer and critic James Huneker.
Keysor, Jennie Ellis
Biographies of Raphael Santi, Murillo, Peter Paul Rubens, and Albrecht Durer. This is a wonderful tool for art study as there are references for further study, as well as ideas for language arts to incorporate into the study
Abbott, John S.C.
David "Davy" Crockett (August 17, 1786 – March 6, 1836) was a celebrated 19th century American folk hero, frontiersman, soldier and politician. He is commonly referred to in popular culture by the epithet “King of the Wild Frontier.” He represented Tennessee in the U.S. House of Representatives, served in the Texas Revolution, and died at the Battle of the Alamo. This narrative attempts faithfully to record the influences under which David Crockett was reared and the incidents of his wild and wondrous life. It begins with his ancestors' immigration to the American wilderness, his adventures among the Indians, his political career in Tennessee and beyond, and ending with his heroic stand at the Alamo.
Bolton, Sarah Knowles
This book is a collection of short biographies of notable women, including Harriet Beecher Stowe, Louisa May Alcott, Florence Nightingale, and many others.
Henry Walton Bibb was born a slave. His father was white although his identity was not positively known. Bibb was separated from his mother at a very young age and hired out to other slave owners for most of his childhood. Always yearning for his freedom, he made his first escape from slavery in 1842. He was recaptured and escaped, recaptured and escaped over and over; but he never gave up on his desire to be a man in control of his own destiny.
Bibb eventually escaped the bondage of servitude for good and dedicated his life to speaking out against the institution of slavery. In the process he helped others obtain their freedom. He published Narrative of the Life and Adventures of Henry Bibb, and American Slave in 1849 telling the story of his daily life as a slave, as a runaway and as a free man. He also illustrated the depravity of that “man-destroying system” and the “idea of utter helplessness in perpetual bondage.”
Bibb stated in his Author's Preface that there were other very popular slave narratives published before his own; nevertheless, the uniqueness of his story is in the details of his experiences which, like the others, shine a glaringly truthful beam of light on the sins of this nation. Ultimately Bibb made his way to Canada where in 1851 he published the first black newspaper of that Country, Voice of the Fugitive. He died in 1854 at the age of 39.
Nicolay, John George
John G. Nicolay was Abraham Lincoln’s private White House secretary. With assistant secretary, John Hay, he wrote the two volume definitive biography of Lincoln, "Abraham Lincoln, a Biography." Although this is a condensation by Nicolay of that biography, it is still a sizable work and a fairly thorough treatment of the life of the 16th president of the United States.
An account given of the lives of five great naturalists (Hippocrates, Aristotle, Galen, Vesalius and Harvey) will not be found devoid of interest. The work of each one of them marked a definite advance in the science of Biology.
There is often among students of anatomy and physiology a tendency to imagine that the facts with which they are now being made familiar have all been established by recent observation and experiment. But even the slight knowledge of the history of Biology, which may be obtained from a perusal of this little book, will show that, so far from such being the case, this branch of science is of venerable antiquity. And, further, if in the place of this misconception a desire is aroused in the reader for a fuller acquaintance with the writings of the early anatomists the chief aim of the author will have been fulfilled.
Williams, Henry L.
The Abraham Lincoln Statue at Chicago is accepted as the typical Westerner of the forum, the rostrum, and the tribune, as he stood to be inaugurated under the war-cloud in 1861. But there is another Lincoln as dear to the common people--the Lincoln of happy quotations, the speaker of household words. Instead of the erect, impressive, penetrative platform orator we see a long, gaunt figure, divided between two chairs for comfort, the head bent forward, smiling broadly, the lips curved in laughter, the deep eyes irradiating their caves of wisdom; the story-telling Lincoln, enjoying the enjoyment he gave to others.
Ellis, Edward S.
Christopher Carson, or as he was familiarly called, Kit Carson, was a man whose real worth was understood only by those with whom he was associated or who closely studied his character. He was more than hunter, trapper, guide, Indian agent and Colonel in the United States Army....His lot was cast on the extreme western frontier, where, when but a youth, he earned the respect of the tough and frequently lawless men with whom he came in contact. Integrity, bravery, loyalty to friends, marvelous quickness in making right decisions, in crisis of danger, consummate knowledge of woodcraft, a leadership as skilful as it was daring; all these were distinguishing traits in the composition of Carson and were the foundations of the broader fame which he acquired as the friend and invaluable counselor of Fremont, the Pathfinder, in his expeditions across the Rocky Mountains.
"If, in these pages, written in remembrance of my father, I should tell you, my dear friends, nothing new of him, I can, at least, promise you that what I shall tell will be told faithfully, if simply, and perhaps there may be some things not familiar to you." So begins chapter one of My Father as I Recall Him, the personal recollections of Mary Dickens, (Mamie, as she was called), the oldest daughter of the great novelist, Charles Dickens.
Warner, Charles Dudley
Warner's thoughtful and often humorous memoir of his life as a young farm-boy in Charlemont, Massachusetts.
Chesterton, G. K.
“The paradox of all this part of his life lies in this--that, destined as he was to be the greatest enemy of Mahomedanism, he was quite exceptionally a friend of Mahomedans.”
Ukawsaw Gronniosaw, also known as James Albert, (born ca. 1705 - 1775) was a freed slave and autobiographer. His autobiography is considered the first published by an African in Britain. Gronniosaw's autobiography was produced in Kidderminster in the late 1760s. Its full title is A Narrative of the Most remarkable Particulars in the Life of James Albert Ukawsaw Gronniosaw, an African Prince, As related by himself. It was the first Slave narrative in the English language. Published in Bath in 1772, it gives a vivid account of Gronniosaw's life, from his capture in Africa through slavery to a life of poverty in Colchester and Kidderminster. It is devoid of the anti-slavery backlash ubiquitous in subsequent slave narratives.
Peattie, Elia Wilkinson
Elia Peattie was an outspoken journalist and social activist who gave her attention to such areas as orphanages, charity hospitals, the Wounded Knee massacre, capital punishment, and the like. The Precipice is partially based on the life of her close friend Katherine Ostrander, a social work pioneer, and tells of the evolution of Kate Barrington after her college years and with it the evolution of society as a whole and women in particular in pre-World War I America. Friendship, romance, betrayal, searchings of the soul, dreams, and shattered hopes -- all the stuff of life -- bring Kate to full realization of her true self.
Lighton, William R.
Meriwether Lewis and William Clark - In the years 1804, 1805, and 1806, two men commanded an expedition which explored the wilderness that stretched from the mouth of the Missouri River to where the Columbia enters the Pacific,
and dedicated to civilization a new empire. Their names were Meriwether Lewis and William Clark. This book relates that adventure from it's inception through it's completion as well as the effect the expedition had upon the history of the United States.
Ingram, John Henry
A compilation of chronicles of the numerous impostors and impostures of kings, queens, and rulers.
In Benjamin Franklin's lifetime, he kept good record of his life and travels, and although Franklin was never a president, he still plays a crucial part in our American history.
Samuel Taylor Coleridge
Nominally an autobiography, Biographia Literaria ranges widely across the realms of philosophy, poetry and memoir, in Coleridge's trademark discursive style, providing a living glimpse of the great talker, the man who could hold his contemporaries in thrall for hours with his dazzling conversation, and who was famously described as the last man "to have read everything". Summary by Nicole Lee.
Suetonius Tranquillus, Gaius
The Twelve Caesars is a set of twelve biographies of Julius Caesar and the first 11 emperors of the Roman Empire. The work was written in 121 during the reign of the emperor Hadrian, while Suetonius was Hadrian's personal secretary. On the Life of the Caesars concentrates on the acts and personalities of the Julio-Claudians and their immediate successors. Together with Tacitus' Annals, this work is a major source for the historical details in Robert Graves' novels "I Claudius" and "Claudius the God".
Giacomo Casanova (April 2, 1725 in Venice – June 4, 1798, in Dux, Bohemia, now Duchcov, Czech Republic) was a famous Venetian adventurer, writer, and womanizer. He used charm, guile, threats, intimidation, and aggression, when necessary, to conquer women, sometimes leaving behind children or debt. In his autobiography Histoire de ma vie (Story of My Life), regarded as one of the most authentic sources of the customs and norms of European social life during the 18th century, he mentions 122 women with whom he had sex.
Although he is often associated with Don Juan because both seduced many women, Casanova is in fact very different from his fictitious counterpart. While Don Juan is a legend, Casanova is a historical character.
Washington, Booker T.
Up From Slavery is the 1901 autobiography of Booker T. Washington detailing his slow and steady rise from a slave child during the Civil War, to the difficulties and obstacles he overcame to get an education at the new Hampton University, to his work establishing vocational schools—most notably the Tuskegee Institute in Alabama—to help black people and other disadvantaged minorities learn useful, marketable skills and work to pull themselves, as a race, up by the bootstraps. He reflects on the generosity of both teachers and philanthropists who helped in educating blacks and native Americans. He describes his efforts to instill manners, breeding, health and a feeling of dignity to students.
William Tecumseh Sherman
This librivox recording comprises part of chapter 22 and all of chapter 23 (The March To The Sea – From Atlanta To Savannah – November And December 1864) of American Civil War General William Tecumseh Sherman’s Memoirs. Sherman was one of the premier generals fighting for the North. In 1864, Sherman succeeded Grant as the Union commander in the western theater of the war. He proceeded to lead his troops to the capture of the city of Atlanta, a military success that contributed to the re-election of U.S. President Abraham Lincoln. Sherman's subsequent march through Georgia and the Carolinas further undermined the Confederacy's ability to continue fighting. He accepted the surrender of all the Confederate armies in the Carolinas, Georgia, and Florida in April 1865. Sherman’s scorched earth policy marching his army through Georgia from conquered Atlanta to coastal Savannah was a strong factor in breaking the South’s will to fight. The South’s surrender came just five months later. He steadfastly refused to be drawn into politics and in 1875 published his Memoirs, one of the best-known first-hand accounts of the American Civil War. British military historian B. H. Liddell Hart famously declared that Sherman was "the first modern general" ( Wikipedia and david wales)
William Tecumseh Sherman
This LibriVox recording comprises three chapters from American Civil War General William Tecumseh Sherman’s Memoirs. The chapters deal with a posting to California in his pre-Civil War military career in the years 1846-1848. While many of his colleagues saw action in the Mexican-American War, Sherman performed administrative duties in the captured territory of California. Along with fellow Lieutenants Henry Halleck and Edward Ord, Sherman embarked from New York on the 198-day journey around Cape Horn aboard the converted sloop USS Lexington. Due to the confined spaces aboard-ship, Sherman grew close to Halleck and Ord, and in his Memoirs references a hike with Halleck to the summit of Corcovado, notable as the future spot of the Cristo Redentor statue. Sherman and Ord reached the town of Yerba Buena, in California, two days before its name was changed to San Francisco. In 1848, Sherman accompanied the military governor of California, Col. Richard Barnes Mason, in the inspection that officially confirmed that gold had been discovered in the region, thus inaugurating the California Gold Rush. Sherman, along with Ord, assisted in surveys for the sub-divisions of the town that would become Sacramento. In 1853 Sherman resigned from the Army. In 1855-1857 he was in California as part of his bank duties. He returned to the Army in May 1861. Sherman was one of the premier generals fighting for the North in the Civil War. [Sherman] steadfastly refused to be drawn into politics and in 1875 published his Memoirs, one of the best-known first-hand accounts of the Civil War. British military historian B. H. Liddell Hart famously declared that Sherman was "the first modern general"
An autobiography of Helen Keller published when the author was still in her early 20's. The narrative reveals how her mind developed and matured until she began her studies at Radcliffe College
When Helen Keller's autobiography was first published in 1903, she was a young woman studying at Radcliffe College. In it, Helen shares memories of her childhood, describes how Miss Sullivan helped her learn how to communicate, and reflects on her experiences as a college student.This audiobook is divided into a three-part special edition. The first part is Helen's autobiography. The second part is a collection of Helen's letters from childhood through 1901. The third part is a supplementary account of Helen’s education, including in-depth passages from her teacher, Anne Mansfield Sullivan, and additional insightful commentary by editor John Albert Macy on Helen’s extraordinary education, personality, speech, and literary style.
Secondary Title - A supplementary Account of Helen Keller's Education, including passages from the Reports and Letters of her Teacher, Anne Mansfield Sullivan. In fact, over half of the book is Anne Sullivan's written reports for the Perkins Institute on her unique (homeschooling on steroids!) teaching methods, which she invented as she went along. John Albert Macy, Anne Sullivan's husband, was uniquely positioned to gather the written material in this book. He helped Helen edit the now famous "The Story Of My Life" (Part 1 of this trilogy), describing her early life in her own words. He was able to gather Helen's early letters (Part 2), and for Part 3 to gain access to Anne Sullivan's papers, and sundry correspondence from the great influencers in Helen's life. According to Macy, it was Miss Sullivan who discovered the way to teach language to the deaf-blind.
”It was my good fortune to lend a helping hand to the weary travelers flying from the land of bondage.” William Still.
"Dear Sir:—For most of the years I have lived, the escape of fugitives from slavery, and their efforts to baffle the human and other bloodhounds who tracked them, formed the romance of American History. That romance is now ended, and our grandchildren will hardly believe its leading incidents except on irresistible testimony. I rejoice that you are collecting and presenting that testimony, and heartily wish you a great success." Horace Greeley.
William Still is often called the Father of the Underground Railroad. Over 14 years, he helped hundreds of slaves escape to freedom in Canada. Still was committed to preserving the stories of the bondmen and he kept careful records of the many escaped slaves who passed through the Philadelphia “station”. The Underground Railroad was published in 1871 from Still’s records and diaries. In bringing you these stories, Volunteers are reading from the 1878 edition.
This book tells of a girl named Alice falling through a rabbit hole into a fantasy world populated by peculiar, anthropomorphic creatures.