Nathaniel Hawthorne was born, appropriately, on the 4th of July in Salem, Massachusetts. Known primarly for his novels and short stories, he was also the U.S. Consul from 1853-1857. This role, a prestigious one at the time, was in the gift of Hawthorne’s friend (and U.S. President) Franklin Pierce. During his time in Liverpool, he wrote two major works that both looked at the minutiae of his role and the day to day goings on of his time in the region, but also a comparison of differences between historic Britain and the relatively new United States of America. Those works are Our Old Home and the Passages From the English Notebooks.
I have been interested in Nathaniel Hawthorne since my days of studying American Studies at the University of Birmingham, where I first became fascinated by his retelling of Puritan piety and morality in The Scarlet Letter. I currently have approximately 20 different editions of this text, and am continuing to grow the collection.
I am also researching Hawthorne’s time in Liverpool. with the eventual aim of writing a book about his time in Liverpool. On this website, I will host some materials in relation to this project, particularly with regards to the places in the locality that he wrote about, as well as (eventually) some of the texts in relation to his stay.