O'Henry's real name was William Sydney Porter. He was born in Greensboro, a little town in North Caroline in 1862.
O'Henry is one of the most widely published American authors. His works have been translated into nearly every language. He has been caled "the American Maupassant" and is ranked among the world's outstanding short-story writers. The best of these were published in books: "Cabbages and Kings", "The Four Million", "Heart of the West", "The Voice of the City" and others.
The works of O'Henry reflect a specific period in American literature - the turn of the century. O'Henry's comments on society had considerable force. His credo was - art should be true, democratic, it should address contemporary life and embrace all aspects of life.
O'Henry was an outstanding humourist. He worked out and enriched all the types of the short story: the anecdote, the adventure story, tales and sketches. He was most famous for his stories of city life. O'Henry wrote about 150 stories with a New York background.
O'Henry could work out a plot that would keep the reader in suspense up to the surprising end. He was a born writer of great talent. The conversation is witty, humorous, and often exact and precise.
His works has considerable influence on American literature. His love for humanity, for the common people, his critical attitude towards injustice attract readers to this day.