Looking for famous short stories? Try these great American classics. Each story includes teaching ideas. Teach "To Build a Fire" by Jack London, "An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge" by Ambrose Bierce, "The Minister's Black Veil" by Nathaniel Hawthorne, "The Gift of the Magi" by O. Henry, "The Revolt of Mother" by Mary E. Wilkins Freeman, "The Open Boat" by Stephen Crane, "Masque of the Red Death" by Edgar Allen Poe, and "The Lady or the Tiger" by Frank Stockton.
O. Henry (1862-1910) was a prolific American short-story writer, a master of surprise endings, who wrote about the life of ordinary people in New York City. A twist of plot, which turns on an ironic or coincidental circumstance, is typical of O. Henry's stories. William Sydney Porter (O. Henry) was born in Greensboro, North Carolina.