18th Century Literature
A list of 18th century literature of classical children's books. This was a time when the world saw major changes. Historical fiction and stories from history makes those changes more understandable for children.
By Walter D. Edmonds
New York village
1756 - French and Indian War
An exciting, true story of a ten year old boy who saves his family during the French and Indian War with his great-grandfather's matchlock gun.
By Lois Lenski
Ohio and Pennsylvania
1958: Frrench and Indian War
The true story of Mary Jemmison, the daughter of white settlers who was captured and made a member of the Seneca tribe. The story is modified for a younger audience, but describes her homesicknesses for her own family and growing love for her adopted family.
By Robert Louis Stevenson
Starts in England, Sail to a fictitious island
A fast moving adventure story from the days of pirates. Almost everyone is familiar with the dreaded Long John Silver and Captain Flint. Enjoy the tale that got the pirate movement started.
By Robert Louis Stevenson
Join David Balfour, a Scottish lowlander, as he flees for his life with an unlikely partner, an infamous highland rebel named Alan Breck Stuart. The story is continued in the sequel Catriona
. The name of Catriona
was later changed to David Balfour
in most modern editions. Stevenson lends his imagination to one of history's most debated "who done it" mysteries.
The Last of the Mohicans
By James Fenimore Cooper
Upper New York
French and Indian War
Reading Level: Middle School and high school - younger edited versions available
Interest Level: This fast paced adventure story is enjoyed by youngsters, but frequent episodes of bloodshed make it inappropriate for many young children.
One of the most famous books of 18th century, Cooper tells the hair-curling tale of of a brave woodsmen and his two loyal Native American friends and their travels through kidnapping, a massacre at a garrison, ambush and treachery.
Swiss Family Robinson
By Johann D. Wyss
Fiction with natural history
Uncharted island in the Pacific
In the era of colonization, one family headed for a new colony is shipwrecked and learn to survive on an uninhabited island. Lessons in self-reliance, character, animal husbandry.
Rip Van Winkle
By Washington Irving
Rip Van Winkle is a loyal follower of King George - and a henpecked husband. He falls asleep and wakes up 20 years later to find some surprising changes have taken place.
Tales of the Wayside Inn
Henry Wadsworth Longfellow
Reading Level: 6th grade and above
Longfellow wrote this collection of poems as an American version of the Canterbury Tales. From within its pages come the famous Midnight Ride of Paul Revere.
Other poetic tales of America's history are also recited at the historic inn, which is still in operation. The book is a treat for those with an interest in American History, literary history, and poetry.
Amos Fortune, Free Man
By Elizabeth Yates
Beautifully written, this true story is about an African man who was captured, sold into slavery, bought his freedom, and became a widely respected citizen in his New England community. Amos lived in the 1700's in Africa and New England. For three centuries people have told the story of his hard work, compassion, and love of freedom.
By Daniel Defoe
The marooned sailor needs to live by his wits. Believed to have been derived from a true story, Robinson Crusoe is a fictitious character who lives stranded from civilization for 30 years.
Benjamin West and His Cat Grimalkin
By Marguerite Henry
The true story of Benjamin West. He loves to paint, but painting is frowned on by his strict Quaker Society. Can he be both an artist and a Quaker? His cat, his Indian friends, and his uncle all have an important role to play as his destiny unfolds.
Benjamin West & His Cat Grimalkin Unit Study Guide
See also The American Revolution
Find more books on 18th century literature in childrens books on the American Revolution
. The battle between the American colonists and the British Empire was one of the most significant events in this era.