Louisa Alcott was born in Germantown, Pennsylvania, on 29th November, 1832. Alcott was educated by her father, Bronson Alcott, the head of Temple School in Boston. As a young woman she was befriended by Ralph Waldo Emerson and Henry David Thoreau, she wrote her first book, Flower Fables, when she was only sixteen.
During the American Civil War Alcott worked as a nurse in a Union Army hospital (1861-63). However, after contracting typhoid in 1863 she was sent home. She documented her war experiences in her book Hospital Sketches (1863). Alcott also had some of her short stories published in Atlantic Monthly.
Alcott achieved literary success with the publication of her autobiographical novel Little Women (1868) and its sequel, Good Wives (1869). Other novels aimed at the youth market included An Old Fashioned Girl (1870), Little Men (1871), Eight Cousins (1876) and Rose in Bloom (1876). Alcott later described these books as "moral pap for the young". Alcott also wrote two feminist novels, Work, A Study of Experience (1873), and A Modern Mephistopheles (1877).
Louisa Alcott died in Boston on 6th March, 1888.