Bret Harte

August 25 (1836) is the birthday of Bret Harte, known for his short stories about characters in the California gold rush. Born in New York, he moved across country to California in 1853 and stayed there until 1871. The publication of his short story “The Luck of Roaring Camp” (1868) made him famous, but “The Outcasts of Poker Flat” (1869) is much better known. The latter has been made into movies several times. 

In California Harte was a miner, a teacher, messenger, journalist, and eventually a magazine editor. In 1871 he moved to New York and then to Boston. And in 1878 he moved to Europe, as a diplomatic consul, and in 1885 settled in London. All his life he produced a stream of short stories, poetry, plays, book reviews, magazine sketches, and lectures, but it was those two short stories about the California gold rush that cemented his fame. 

He died in England in 1902.