Strangers to Us All Lawyers and Poetry

John Pendleton Kennedy

Baltimore, Maryland

Evert A. & George L. Duyckinck, The Cyclopedia of American Literature 949
(Philadelphia: William Rutter & Co., 1880)(Vol. 1)

John Pendleton Kennedy, the first son of a Baltimore merchant, was born in Baltimore on October 25, 1795. His studies, interrupted by the War of 1812, were resumed after the war and he graduated from the College of Baltimore in 1812. He went on to study law and was admitted to the bar in 1816 and established a law practice. It has been said that "[h]e never grew fond of his profession, because his tastes were literary, and the office and the court-room proved too confining for him." [Mildred Lewis Rutherford, The South in History and Literature 126 (Atlanta: Franklin-Turner, 1907)(1906)]. In 1818 he undertook the editing of a small periodical, entered politics, and seems to have abandoned his legal career. He was elected to the Maryland legislature, then to Congress and became a prominent Whig party member. He served as Secretary of the Navy under President Fillmore and traveled throughout Europe meeting the literary people of his day.

[Source: Evert A. & George L. Duyckinck, The Cyclopedia of American Literature 949-950 (Philadelphia: William Rutter & Co., 1880)(Vol. 1)]

John Pendleton Kennedy
Biographical Directory of the United States Congress

John Pendleton Kennedy
Early American Fiction
University of Virginia

John Pendleton Kennedy
Appleton's Cyclopedia of American Biography
(New York: D. Appleton and Company, 1887-1889)(James Grant Wilson & John Fiske eds.)(6 vols.)

John Pendleton Kennedy

John Pendleton Kennedy

Introduction to Literature: Antebellum Era
Documenting the American South
University of North Carolina

Literary Baltimore


John Pendleton Kennedy, Swallow Barn, or A Sojourn in the Old Dominion (Philadelphia: Carey & Lea, 1832)(New York: George P. Putnam, rev. ed., 1852) [online text] (New-York: G.P. Putnam, rev. ed., 1861)(Baton Rouge: Louisiana State University Press, 1986)

_________________, Horse-Shoe Robinson (Philadelphia: Carey, Lea & Blanchard, 1835) [vol. 1: online text] (New York: A.L. Burt Co., 1852)(New York: Hafner Publishing Co., 1962) [review by Edgar Allen Poe]

_________________, Rob of the Bowl, A Legend of St. Inigoe's (1838)(Philadelphia: J. B. Lippincott & Co., 1860) [online text] (New York: A.L. Burt, 1907)

_________________, Quodlibet (Philadelphia: Lea & Blanchard, 1840) 1840)(New York: G.P. Putnam's, 3rd ed., 1872) [online text] (Upper Saddle River, New Jersey: Literature House, 1970)

__________________, Defence of the Whigs (New-York, Harper & Brothers, 1844) [online text]

__________________, The Blackwater Chronicle: A Narrative of an Expedition into the Land of Canaan, in Randolph County, Virginia (New York: Redfield, 1853) [online text]

__________________, Discourse on the Life and Character of George Calvert: The First Lord Baltimore (Baltimore: J. Murphy, 1845)(made by John P. Kennedy, before the Maryland Historical Society, December 9, 1845)

_________________, Memoirs of the Life of William Wirt (1849)(Philadelphia: Blanchard and Lea, rev. ed., 1856)(2 vols.)(Philadelphia: J.P. Lippincott, new & revised ed., 1860) [two vol. in one: online text]

_________________, Kennedy's Works (New York: G.P. Putnam & Company, rev. ed., 1854-55)(3 vols.)

__________________, The Border States, Their Power and Duty in the Present Disordered Condition of the Country (Philadelphia: J.B. Lippincott, 1861) [online text]

__________________, Autograph Leaves of Our Country's Authors (Baltimore: Cushings & Bailey, 1864)

___________________, Mr. Ambrose's Letters on the Rebellion (New York: Hurd & Houghton. 1865) [online text]

___________________, Political and Official Papers (New York: G. P. Putnam & Sons, 1872) [online text]

___________________, At Home and Abroad, A Series of Essays: With a Journal in Europe in 1867-8 (New York: G.P. Putnam, 1872) [online text]

___________________, Occasional Addresses; and the Letters of Mr. Ambrose on the Rebellion (New York: G. P. Putnam & Sons, 1872) [online text]

___________________, Horse-Shoe Robinson: A Tale of the Tory
(New York: G.P. Putnam's Sons, rev. ed., 1907)

___________________, The Collected Works, 1871-1872 (Hildesheim, Germany: G. Olms, 1969)(10 vols.)


"John Pendleton Kennedy," in Samuel Albert Link, 1 Pioneers of Southern Literature 223-247 (Nashville, Tennessee & Dallas, Texas: Publishing House M.E. Church, South, Barber & Smith, Agents, 1899)(2 vols.)

J.V. Ridgely, "John Pendleton Kennedy," in Louis D. Rubin, Jr. (ed.), A Bibliographical Guide to the Study of Southern Literature 233-234 (Baton Rouge, Louisiana State University Press, 1969)

Stefan Nesenhöner, Maintaining the Center: John Pendleton Kennedy, the Border States, and the Secession Crisis, 89 (4) Maryland Historical Magazine 412-426 (1994)

Henry T. Tuckerman, The Life of John Pendleton Kennedy (New York: G.P. Putnam, 1871) [online text]

Research Resources

Maryland Manuscripts Collection
University of Maryland
College Park, Maryland

Personal Papers
Peabody Institute Archives
Baltimore, Maryland

Kennedy Papers and Manuscripts
Maryland Historical Society
Baltimore, Maryland

Personal Papers
Baltimore Center for Urban Archaeology
Baltimore, Maryland

Kennedy Papers
Duke University Library
Durham, North Carolina