On February 18, 1885, The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, by Mark Twain, was published in the United States. Though a sequel to his book The Adventures of Tom Sawyer, Twain (the pen name of Samuel Clemens) wrote it as a more serious look at slavery and life in the American South before the Civil War. The book follows Huck and his friend Jim, a runaway slave, as they float down the Mississippi River on a wooden raft. Their destination is Ohio, a state where slavery is outlawed.
 
The novel is narrated by the young Huck Finn, who uses his own voice—including slang—to describe the land and its people. Huck questions and pokes fun at many attitudes of Southern society. He takes particular interest of the racism of the time, seen through people's attitude toward Jim. 
Civil War
Noun

(1860-1865) American conflict between the Union (north) and Confederacy (south).

Mark Twain
Noun

(1835-1910, born Samuel Langhorne Clemens) American writer.

novel
Noun

fictional narrative or story.

publish
Verb

to provide a written piece of work, such as a book or newspaper, for sale or distribution.

racism
Noun

governmental or social systems based on the belief that one race or ethnic group is superior to others.

raft
Noun

flat, floating platform.

slavery
Noun

process and condition of owning another human being or being owned by another human being.

society
Noun

large community, linked through similarities or relationships.

South
Noun

loosely defined geographic region largely composed of states that supported or were sympathetic to the Confederate States of America (Confederacy) during the U.S. Civil War.