Francis Bret Harte

25 Aug 1836
5 May 1902
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Francis Bret Harte (August 25, 1836 – May 5, 1902) was an American short story writer and poet, best remembered for his short fiction featuring miners, gamblers, and other romantic figures of the California Gold Rush. In a career spanning more than four decades, he wrote poetry, fiction, plays, lectures, book reviews, editorials, and magazine sketches in addition to fiction. As he moved from California to the eastern U.S. to Europe, he incorporated new subjects and characters into his stories, but his Gold Rush tales have been most often reprinted, adapted, and admired.

He died in Camberley, England in 1902 of throat cancer, and is buried at Frimley. His wife Anna (née Griswold) Harte died on August 2, 1920. The couple lived together only 16 of the 40 years that they were married.


  • Bret Harte’s gravestone in the churchyard of St Peter’s Church, Frimley, Surrey, England
  • Inscription on gravestone: “Death shall reap the braver harvest.”
  • Condensed Novels and Other Papers (1867)
  • Outcroppings (1865), editor
  • The Luck of Roaring Camp, and Other Sketches (1870)
  • The Tales of the Argonauts (1875)
  • Gabriel Conroy (1876)
  • Two Men of Sandy Bar (1876)
  • Drift from Two Shores (1878)
  • The Crusade of the Excelsior (1887)
  • The Argonauts of North Liberty (1888)
  • A Protégée of Jack Hamlin’s; and Other Stories (1894)
  • Barker’s Luck etc. (1896)

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