Harper Lee

(1926 - 2016)

Having grown up in Alabama with Truman Capote a next-door neighbor in the late 1920s, Harper Lee moved to New York City in 1949. After she completed To Kill a Mockingbird in 1959, Capote wrote to producer David O. Selznick, “It’s going to be a great success. In it, I am the character called ‘Dill.’ ” She received a Pulitzer Prize for it. The film adaptation starred Gregory Peck as Atticus Finch, and in 1997 the actor remarked, “Hardly a day passes that I don’t think how lucky I was to be cast in that film.”

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“The worst punishment God can devise for this sinner,” wrote Harper Lee—who loved casino gambling—in a 1990 letter, “is to make her spirit reside eternally at the Trump Taj Mahal in Atlantic City.”

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