Bret Harte – 1836-1902
Harte grew up in New York City. He left in 1854 to visit the California mining country and settled in San Francisco, where he became a clerk in the U.S. Mint and a magazine editor. He began writing short stories that evoked the “local color” of the California mining camps, with a sentimental turn and emphasis on remarkable incidents and characters. His 1870 collection, The Luck of Roaring Camp and other Stories, made him world famous—and “local color fiction” henceforth became a major American literary genre.