portrait of O. Henry
Photo by W. M. Vanderweyde, New York

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Quotes of the Day for 11 September 2003 – O. Henry

William Sydney Porter was born at Greenboro, North Carolina on this day in 1862. His mother died three years later, and he was raised by his maternal grandparents. At fifteen he left for Texas, working on a ranch, as a clerk in a bank, and as a writer. In 1894 he was charged with embezzlement at his earlier bank, and fled to Honduras to avoid trial. He returned to Texas when he heard his wife was dying, and was captured and convicted. He started his trademark short stories in prison, taking the name O. Henry, the name that appeared on over 300 very popular short stories.

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You will find an expanded profile, photo, additional biographical links, and all quotes from this author on the author's Notable Quotable page.

The quotes:

You can't appreciate home till you've left it, money till it's spent, your wife until she's joined a woman's club, nor Old Glory till you see it hanging on a broomstick on a shanty of a consul in a foreign town.

It was beautiful and simple as all truly great swindles are.

Life is made up of sobs, sniffles, and smiles, with sniffles predominating.
     - The Gift of the Magi

Turn up the lights; I don't want to go home in the dark.
     - last words

She plucked from my lapel the invisible strand of lint (the universal act of woman to proclaim ownership).

Whenever he saw a dollar in another man's hands he took it as a personal grudge, if he couldn't take it any other way.
     - All from O. Henry, 1862 - 1910

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