Category: Biography vs Memoirs

Anthony Trollope – The Three Clerks

All the English world knows, or knows of, that branch of the Civil Service which is popularly called the Weights and Measures. Every inhabitant of London, and every casual visitor there, has admired the handsome edifice which generally goes by that name, and which stands so conspicuously confronting the Treasury Chambers. It must be owned […]

Andy Adams – Reed Anthony, Cowman

I can truthfully say that my entire life has been spent with cattle. Even during my four years’ service in the Confederate army, the greater portion was spent with the commissary department, in charge of its beef supplies. I was wounded early in the second year of the war and disabled as a soldier, but […]

Agnes Mary Clerke – Great Astronomers John Pond

John Pond was born in London in 1767. His father soon afterwards withdrew from business, with an ample competence, to live at Dulwich. Pond’s education, begun at the Maidstone grammar school, was continued at home under the tuition of William Wales, from whom he imbibed a taste for astronomy. His keenness was shown by the […]

Up from Slavery; An Autobiography – Booker T. Washington

I was born a slave on a plantation in Franklin County, Virginia. I am not quite sure of the exact place or exact date of my birth, but at any rate I suspect I must have been born somewhere and at some time. As nearly as I have been able to learn, I was born […]

Two Wars; An Autobiography of General Samuel G. French – Samuel Gibbs French

Inasmuch as the government of this country cannot grant any title to nobility, nor can it be conferred by any foreign power, the people of the United States have, to gratify a natural pride, been obliged to obtain distinction in various ways. Among them may be mentioned the accumulation of money, political preferment, the pride […]

Thirty Years a Slave – Louis Hughes

I was born in Virginia, in 1832, near Charlottesville, in the beautiful valley of the Rivanna river. My father was a white man and my mother a negress, the slave of one John Martin. I was a mere child, probably not more than six years of age, as I remember, when my mother, two brothers […]

Theodore Roosevelt; An Autobiography – Theodore Roosevelt

My grandfather on my father’s side was of almost purely Dutch blood. When he was young he still spoke some Dutch, and Dutch was last used in the services of the Dutch Reformed Church in New York while he was a small boy. About 1644 his ancestor Klaes Martensen van Roosevelt came to New Amsterdam […]

The Story of My Life – Helen Keller

It is with a kind of fear that I begin to write the history of my life. I have, as it were, a superstitious hesitation in lifting the veil that clings about my childhood like a golden mist. The task of writing an autobiography is a difficult one. When I try to classify my earliest […]

The Story of My Heart; An Autobiography – Richard Jefferies

THE story of my heart commences seventeen years ago. In the glow of youth there were times every now and then when I felt the necessity of a strong inspiration of soul-thought. My heart was dusty, parched for want of the rain of deep feeling; my mind arid and dry, for there is a dust […]

The Story of John G. Paton – John Gibson Paton

MY early days were all spent in the beautiful county of Dumfries, which Scotch folks call the Queen of the South. There, in a small cottage, on the farm of Braehead, in the parish of Kirkmahoe, I was born on the 24th May, 1824. My father, James Paton, was a stocking manufacturer in a small […]

The Story of a Strange Career; Being the Autobiography of a Convict – Waterloo

ON my mother’s side I am of an old New York family. My great-grandfather served as colonel in the war of 1812. My father was born in Dublin, being a younger son of an Irish gentleman. He was educated to be a druggist, his father paying a large bonus to have him apprenticed to a […]

The Road – Jack London

There is a woman in the state of Nevada to whom I once lied continuously, consistently, and shamelessly, for the matter of a couple of hours. I don’t want to apologize to her. Far be it from me. But I do want to explain. Unfortunately, I do not know her name, much less her present […]

The Memoirs of Victor Hugo – Victor Hugo

It was at Rheims that I heard the name of Shakespeare for the first time. It was pronounced by Charles Nodier. That was in 1825, during the coronation of Charles X. No one at that time spoke of Shakespeare quite seriously. Voltaire’s ridicule of him was law. Mme. de Staël had adopted Germany, the great […]

The Memoirs of Jacques Casanova de Seingalt, 1725-1798. Complete – Casanova

The Memoirs of Casanova, though they have enjoyed the popularity of a bad reputation, have never had justice done to them by serious students of literature, of life, and of history. One English writer, indeed, Mr. Havelock Ellis, has realised that ‘there are few more delightful books in the world,’ and he has analysed them […]

The Memoirs of Harriette Wilson, Volumes One and Two – Harriette Wilson

I shall not say why and how I became, at the age of fifteen, the mistress of the Earl of Craven. Whether it was love, or the severity of my father, the depravity of my own heart, or the winning arts of the noble lord, which induced me to leave my paternal roof and place […]

The Life of Hon. William F. Cody Known as Buffalo Bill The Famous Hunter, Scout and Guide – William F. Cody—Buffalo Bill

My début upon the world’s stage occurred on February 26th, 1845. The scene of this first important event in my adventurous career, being in Scott county, in the State of Iowa. My parents, Isaac and Mary Ann Cody, who were numbered among the pioneers of Iowa, gave to me the name of William Frederick. I […]

The Life of Flavius Josephus – Flavius Josephus

The family from which I am derived is not an ignoble one, but hath descended all along from the priests; and as nobility among several people is of a different origin, so with us to be of the sacerdotal dignity, is an indication of the splendor of a family. Now, I am not only sprung […]

The Confessions of St. Augustine – Bishop of Hippo Saint Augustine

Great art Thou, O Lord, and greatly to be praised; great is Thy power, and Thy wisdom infinite. And Thee would man praise; man, but a particle of Thy creation; man, that bears about him his mortality, the witness of his sin, the witness that Thou resistest the proud: yet would man praise Thee; he, […]

The Autobiography of Thomas Platter, a schoolmaster of the sixteenth century. – Thomas Platter

I came into this world on the Shrove-Tuesday of the year 1499, just as they were coming together for mass. From this circumstance, my friends derived the confident hope that I should become a priest, for at that time that sort of superstition was still every where prevalent. I had one sister, named Christina; she […]

The Autobiography of St. Ignatius – Saint of Loyola Ignatius

his military life—he is wounded at the siege of pampeluna—his cure—spiritual reading—the apparition—the gift of chastity—his longing for the journey to jerusalem and for a holier life UP to his twenty-sixth year the heart of Ignatius was enthralled by the vanities of the world. His special delight was in the military life, and he seemed […]


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