Ingraham, Joseph (1809 - 1860)

Genre: General Fiction

Joseph Holt Ingraham was born and raised in Portland, ME where his family owned a shipyard. He shipped out on one of their ships before he was 17. Anecdotal information has him graduating from Bowdoin College, but there is no record of that. There is also anecdotal evidence of him attending Yale, but not graduating. He moved to New Orleans, then Mississippi where he became teacher at Jefferson College. He published his first novel while there (1835) and continued to write voraciously (claiming 20 novels in one year). Many of these were probably run as serials and were never collected into volumes.

In 1849, he moved to Nashville, TN to establish a school for young ladies and continued to write, including a set of letters published in the Philadelphia Saturday Courier under the guise of a New England governess residing in the South. They were meant as a defense against Uncle Tom's Cabin and were later collected into a book with the title The Sunny South.

He was ordained an Episcopal priest in 1852 and served in several churches throughout the South, continuing to write novels described as "dime novels of the Bible." He died of an accidental, self-inflicted gunshot wound at the age of 51.

Selected Bibliography

  • The American Lounger: Or, Tales, Sketches, and Legends, Gathered in Sundry Journeyings (1839)
  • Morris Graeme, Or, The Cruise of the Sea-Slipper: A Sequel to the Dancing Feather, a Tale of the Land and the Sea (1843)
  • Black Ralph, or, the Helmsman of Hurlgate: A Tale (1844)
  • The Dancing Feather (1844)
  • Montezuma, the Serf: Or, The Revolt of the Mexitili; A Tale of the Last Days of the Aztec Dynasty (1845)
  • Scarlet Feather, Or, the Young Chief of the Abenaquies: A Romance of the Wilderness of Maine (1845)
  • Captain Kyd, Or, the Wizard of the Sea: A Romance (1852)
  • Lafitte: the Pirate of the Gulf (1856)
  • Pillar of Fire, Or, Israel in Bondage (1859)
  • Will Terril, Or, the Adventures of a Young Gentleman Born in a Cellar (1860)
  • The Sunny South, Or, the Southerner at Home: Embracing Five Years' Experience of a Northern Governess in the Land of the Sugar and the Cotton (1860)
  • The Prince of the House of David, Or, Three Years in the Holy city: Being a Series of the Letters... (1860)
  • The Throne of David: From the Consegration of the Shepherd of Bethlehem, to the Rebellion... (1860)