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Big Dog/Norman Maine Publishing, LLC
P.O. Box 1401
Rapid City, SD 57709

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Soapy and the Island

About the Story

Soapy and the Island O. Henry is the pen name for William Sydney Porter, who was born in Greensboro, NC, and later lived in Texas and in New York City. After cash was found missing at the First National Bank in Austin, TX, where Porter worked as a teller, he was called to stand trial for embezzlement but fled to Honduras. In 1897 when Porter found out that his wife was dying, he returned to Texas, where he was convicted and sentenced to five years in prison for embezzlement, though his guilt was much debated. While in prison, Porter began to write short stories under the pen name of O. Henry. After serving three years in prison, Porter was released and changed his name to O. Henry. Today, his best known works include “The Ransom of Red Chief,” “The Cop and the Anthem,” and “The Gift of the Magi.” O. Henry’s stories are famous for their humorous depictions of ordinary people and use of surprise endings. The O. Henry Award was established in 1918 and is awarded annually for outstanding short stories.

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