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George Washington Cable

Cable, George Washington, 1844–1925, American author, b. New Orleans. He is remembered primarily for his early sketches and novels of creole life, which established his reputation as an important local-color writer. Cable served as a Confederate soldier in the Civil War and afterward was a writer and reporter for the New Orleans Picayune. His short stories of New Orleans culture began to appear in Scribner's Monthly in 1873; they were collected and published as Old Creole Days (1879). Among his novels are The Grandissimes (1880), Madame Delphine (1881), Dr. Sevier (1884), and Gideon's Band (1914). Cable's works depict the picturesque life of creoles in antebellum Louisiana with charm and freshness. Discernible in some of them is the author's moral opposition to slavery and class distinction. After 1884, Cable lived in Northampton, Mass. His later works, notably the essays collected in The Silent South (1885) and The Negro Question (1890), reveal his concern with social evils, particularly with the betrayal of the freed African American slaves.

See his letters, ed. by L. L. Leffingwell (1928, repr. 1967); biography by L. D. Rubin (1969); study by P. C. Butcher (1959).

The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.

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