Welcome to the LitCharts study guide on Horatio Alger's Ragged Dick: Or, Street Life in New York with the Boot Blacks. Created by the original team behind SparkNotes, LitCharts are the world's best literature guides.
Ragged Dick: Introduction
Ragged Dick: Plot Summary
Ragged Dick: Detailed Summary & Analysis
Ragged Dick: Themes
Ragged Dick: Quotes
Ragged Dick: Characters
Ragged Dick: Symbols
Ragged Dick: Literary Devices
Ragged Dick: Theme Wheel
Brief Biography of Horatio Alger
Historical Context of Ragged Dick: Or, Street Life in New York with the Boot Blacks
Other Books Related to Ragged Dick: Or, Street Life in New York with the Boot Blacks
- Full Title: Ragged Dick: or, Street Life in New York with the Boot Blacks
- When Written: 1867
- Where Written: New York City
- When Published: 1867
- Literary Period: American Naturalism
- Genre: Bildungsroman, serial novel, novel,
- Setting: New York City
- Climax: Ragged Dick jumps into the East River to save a drowning boy.
- Antagonist: Micky Maguire, Jim Travis
- Point of View: Third-person
Extra Credit for Ragged Dick: Or, Street Life in New York with the Boot Blacks
Fake News. Amazingly, no decent biography of Horatio Alger existed until 1985. Prior to that, all Alger biographies relied heavily on a 1928 edition written by Herbert Mayes—a memoir that Mayes almost entirely made up!
A Hasty Mistake. Alger is notorious for having written his books so quickly that he often forgot what details he’d already included. This resulted in Alger occasionally contradicting or repeating himself. An example of this occurs in Ragged Dick, when Mr. Whitney is given two entirely different life stories.