Uncle Remus Cannot Die — New York Times Obituary of Joel Chandler Harris


Written on July 3, 2009 at 2:34 pm, by Lain Shakespeare

Joel Chandler Harris passed away 101 years ago today.  He was 62, give or take.

Here’s what the New York Times Book Review had to say

“Uncle Remus cannot die.  Joel Chandler Harris has departed this life at the age of 60, after nearly forty years of toil (for he went to work at a handpress in his boyhood), but his best creation, the old plantation darky with his fund of folk-lore, will live in literature.  Mr. Harris wrote many other books besides those containing the tales told to a nameless small boy by Uncle Remus, but though they have merit, a true literary charm, and are full of humor, wise observation, and gentle sympathy, not one of them will live with Uncle Remus.  Mr. Billy Sanders of Shady Dale will pass away and be forgotten.  He belongs only to his own hour, while Uncle Remus is for all time.”

That’s just the first paragraph.  Here’s the rest (.pdf).

Related: Harris graced the cover of the Atlanta Constitution on July 4th, 1908.  The words on Harris’ gravestone at the bottom of the post are also well worth your time.

1 Comment to Uncle Remus Cannot Die — New York Times Obituary of Joel Chandler Harris

  1. Knot says:

    I’m a little surprised that there are not many comments here, I expect many people to comment on this article. I like to read something on the internet and I want to see strong discussions on this topic.

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