Harper Lee was born April 28, 1926 and she is currently 88 years old.
She was born in the town of Monroeville, Alabama.
Her real name is Nelle Harper Lee. Her first name, Nelle, was her grandmother’s name spelled backwards.
Harper was born to Amasa Coleman Lee and Francis Cunningham Finch Lee.
Amasa Coleman Lee
Her father was born July 19, 1880, in Georgiana, Butler County.
Amasa was a lawyer, a member of the Alabama State legislature from 1926 to 1938, and edited the Monroe Journal from 1929 to 1947.
He died in the early morning of April 15,1962 at the age of 81.
Francis Cunningham Finch Lee
Her mothers exact birth date isn’t given in her biography.
For most of Lee’s life, her mother suffered from mental illness and rarely ever left the house. It is believed that she had a bipolar disorder.
She died on June 2, 1951 in a hospital in Selma.
Harper has two older sister and one older brother. She is the youngest of four children.
Alice Finch Lee
Alice is the oldest sister. She was born September 11, 1911 and turned 100 in 2011.
Louise Lee Connor
Louise is the second oldest sister. She was born July 2, 1916 and passed October 13, 2009.
Edwin Coleman Lee
Edwin is the only boy and the third oldest. He was born October 13, 1920 and died July 12, 1951.
He died suddenly of a cerebral hemorrhage, on July 12, 1951 at Maxwell Field Air Force Base, in Montgomery.
When Lee was in kindergarten, she became friends with a whimsical young boy named Truman Streckfus Persons.
Truman Persons ( known as Truman Capote)
Lee often stepped up to be Truman’s “protector”, because she was tougher than many of the boys.
While the two friends were very different from each other, they both shared in having difficult homes lives as a child.
They bonded instantly and maintained a lifelong friendship.
Spouse and Children
Harper Lee never got married. She wanted to be “free” of marriage.
She now lives with her sister Alice and visits Monroeville quite often.
In high school, she developed an interest in English literature.
After graduating in 1944, she went to the all-female Huntingdon College in Montgomery.
Lee stood apart from the other students- she could not have cared less about fashion, makeup, or dating.
She focused on her studies and on her writing.
Harper was a member of the literary honor society and glee club.
She left Huntingdon the following year and enrolled in law school at eh University of Alabama.
University of Alabama
Lee was known for being a loner and an individualist.
But, she did make a greater attempt at a social life there, joining a sorority for awhile.
To continue her interest in her writings, Lee contributed to the school’s newspaper and it’s humor magazine, the Rammer Jammer
She eventually became the editor of the Rammer Jammer.
After her first year in the law program, Lee began to express to her family that writing- not the law- was her true calling.
Lee went to Oxford University in England as an exchange