A Note on the Publication of this Edition© 2013, Sarah Lane
This edition of Uncle Tom’s Cabin (see figure 1) has no mention of a publication date within it. However, the publication company, which changed names many times over the years, did not become George Routledge and Sons, Ltd. until 1865 (“Routledge”). Additionally, the inscription inside the novel says that the book was awarded to Lilly Edgley in 1900. Therefore, the publication date of this edition can be best estimated to be between1865-1900. There is also a sticker saying that the book was sold at “Moore’s Uptown-Store Quebec”. Essentially, it was published, in England, after the end of the American Civil War, and somehow made its way over to Canada where it was “awarded to Lilly Edgeley for definitions” (so says the inscription inside the text).
It is also important to note that this edition is unabridged. Since the book’s first publication as a novel in 1852, many altered versions have been published and marketed specifically for children (Hochman 105). Still, this unabridged edition, and all others like it, consisting of Stowe’s original text, was also meant to be read by young audiences. Although the content may seem too mature for children, it was frequently advertised for and read by them. The author herself addresses the child reader in the text and features children as important characters within the novel (103-106). The fact that this edition is one of the unabridged ones and was awarded to a young girl, speaks to the maturity of the 19th century child and the sometimes minimal difference between children’s and adult literature of that time.