Richard Malcolm Johnston


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(1822–98), Georgia jurist, educator, and author, wrote humorous local-color stories for the Spirit of the Times and similar publications, which he gathered in Georgia Sketches (1864), a work indebted even in its title to Longstreet's Georgia Scenes. Republished as the Dukesborough Tales (1871) under the pseudonym Philemon Perch, the sketches are vivid studies of Georgia life in the best humorous tradition of the Old Southwest. In several editions between 1864 and the early 1890s, the revived sketches evolved from the coarse and direct Longstreet type to a more subdued and precise pattern. Among his other books are Old Mark Langston, a Tale of Duke's Creek (1884), a rambling, sketchy novel set in a rural Georgia town; Mr. Absalom Billingslea and Other Georgia Folk (1888); Mr. Billy Downs and His Likes (1892), six stories; Widow Guthrie (1890), a serious novel of life in a small Georgia community; Old Times in Middle Georgia (1897); Pearce Amerson's Will (1898), a melodramatic novelette; and an Autobiography (1900).

From The Oxford Companion to American Literature in Oxford Reference.

Subjects: Literature.

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