A Summary of the Adventures of Huckleberry Finn

Huckleberry Finn was a thirteen year old boy, who craved for adventure and freedom. He was born out of the imagination of the celebrated author Mark Twain, who published Huck’s story in 1884. This book is a sequel to Twain’s earlier novel The Adventures of Tom Sawyer.

The book Adventures of Huckleberry Finn narrates the story in first person by Huck, the protagonist. This book was banned in the libraries in 1885, as it nonchalantly uses the racial slur ‘nigger’.

A Summary

The incidents in the story take place somewhere between 1835 and 1845.

Widow Douglas gets the custody of Huck. Judge Thatcher puts the money in a bank at an interest, which Huck and Tom Sawyer earned in the The Adventures of Tom Sawyer. They earned 1 dollar apiece all year round. Huck refuses to learn from Miss Watson who was widow Douglas’ sister.

Huck wishes to join Tom Sawyer’s new gang of robbers. He is disappointed as he is required to become civilized in order to join the gang.

Pap, Huck’s father comes back to town. He demands the money which Huck and his friend Tom have earned. He wins the custody of Huck as the new judge believes that Pap is the rightful guardian.

Huck tries hard to reform his father’s old ways. But his father returns to his old way of being a drunk. His drunken father kidnaps Huck for $6000 and locks him up in an old cabin.

Huck fears that his father may give him another bad beating. He escapes from the cabin by faking his own death. He kills a pig and sprays the blood all over the place. He goes to Jackson’s Island. Here he meets Jim, Miss Watson’s runaway slave.

Huck and Jim, journey down the Mississippi river to the free states, in search for freedom. They have many adventures and become best friends. A storm on the Mississippi floods the raft. They come across a house with a dead man.

Jim refuses to let Huck see who the dead man is. Huck later realizes it is his own father. They rob the house and manage to find a wrecked ship. During their journey on the ship, they come across pirates, who steal most of their loot.

Huck and Jim cannot find their way to the river. They meet some men on their way, who are looking for a runaway slave. Huck lies about his father suffering from smallpox. Hearing this the weary men give him some money. Huck and Jim continue their journey down the river.

Huck and Jim get separated. A steamboat crashes into their raft and destroys it. Huck is sheltered by the Grangerfords. They are southern aristocrats in feud with the Shepherdsons.

Huck is caught in the fight between Gangerfords and Sherpherdsons. Many people from both the sides are killed in the feud. Luckily, Huck finds Jim with a repaired raft. They sail off for more adventures.

Huck and Jim meet two men who are being chased by a band of people. They are con men, who claim that one of them is the displaced Duke of Bridgewater and the other, the long-lost heir to the French throne.

Huck and Jim try to get rid of the men but they fail. The Duke and the King scam people from town to town. Their latest scam is pretending to be brothers of Peter Wilks and claim his fortune. They come to Wilks’ house and meet his three nieces. Huck develops some admiration for the girls. He tries to hinder the plans of the con men.

Huck manages to get hold of the gold and puts it back into the grave of dead Peter Wilks’. Huck reveals the true identity of the Duke and the King to Mary Jane, the eldest niece of Peter Wilks.

The real brothers of Peter Wilks also turn up, which creates a lot of confusion. Seizing this opportunity, the Duke and the King escape and get on the raft just as Huck and Jim set off on their journey.

The Duke and the King continue scamming people and they sell Jim to a farmer. Huck goes to the house where Jim was kept in chains. Huck realizes that it was the house of Aunt Sally and Uncle Silas, Tom’s relatives. Sally mistakes Huck to be Tom and welcomes him into the house.

Huck quickly intercepts Tom between Phelpses and the Steam Dock. Tom is supposed to be visiting Aunt Sally that day. He forces Tom to pretend as his younger brother Sid. Huck prepares an elaborate plan to free Jim. He finally succeeds in freeing Jim.

After successfully freeing Jim, Tom gets shot in the leg by pursuers. Huck has to find a doctor and end up where they started off. Jim is enslaved again and kept in chains. The next morning, Tom reveals that Miss Watson has expired two months back.

According to her will, Jim is a free man. Tom apologizes to Jim because he did not mention that Jim was free before and played along with the escape plan, as it was a game for him.

Aunt Sally comes to know about the death of Huck’s father and wants to adopt him. But Huck was weary of Aunt Sally’s motive to “sivilize” him. Huck makes plans to travel west.

Huckleberry has a strong sense of humanity. Throughout his adventures, Huck tries to find his real identity. He is caught in a turmoil between listening to his elders and following his own instinct. He shows a strong character by planning to free his friend who is a slave.

Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, is not only one of the most famous books authored by Mark Twain, but also one of the highly controversial novels of the 20th century.

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