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Will Geer’s Theatricum Botanicum presents TOM, a world premiere stage adaptation of Harriet Beecher Stowe’s ‘Uncle Tom’s Cabin’

Stowe’s most famous novel about a slave who demonstrates great strength in the face of overwhelming brutality rallied abolitionists worldwide. Inspired by the draconian measures of the Fugitive Slave Act of 1850 — which made it illegal to help or harbor runaway slaves — and by the words of former slave, social reformer, abolitionist, orator, writer and statesman Frederick Douglas, Stowe first released ‘Uncle Tom's Cabin’ in serial format in a weekly newspaper beginning June 5, 1851 with the subtitle ‘The Man That Was a Thing.’ Director Ellen Geer sets her adaptation 35 years later, in 1886, following the death of Stowe’s husband. According to historians, that was the year when Stowe’s health began to deteriorate and she succumbed to what is now believed to have been Alzheimer’s. Obsessed with ‘Uncle Tom’s Cabin,’ she devoted the remainder of her life to re-writing it again and again.

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