She starts with her family
Simon Finch fled England to escape religious
In America, he bought some slaves
and built a plantation called Finch’s Landing on the
banks of the Alabama River.
Finch’s Landing passed
from son to son until the present generation
Atticus, became a lawyer in Maycomb,
Her Uncle Jack is a doctor in Boston, while
her Aunt Alexandra runs Finch’s Landing.
Chapter 1 Part 2
Maycomb is a small Southern town suffering through
the Great Depression.
The Finch’s aren’t rich, but
they are comfortable enough.
Atticus’s wife died when Scout was
Chapter 1 Part 3
One year when Scout is six and Jem is nine,
small and imaginative seven-year-old named Charles
“Dill” Baker Harris comes to spend the summer with
Miss Rachel Haverford, his aunt and the Finch’s
neighbor. The children become friends.
Chapter 1 Part4
Soon, Dill becomes fascinated with the nearby Radley
house, and more particularly with the legendary
Boo Radley who lives inside.
As Maycomb legend
tells it, Boo got into trouble with the law as a youth
and was shut up in his house by his father. Fifteen
years later Boo stabbed his father in the leg with a
pair of scissors, but his father refused to send Boo
to an asylum.
After Boo’s father died, his brother,
Nathan Radley, came to run the house.
Chapter 1 PArt 5
Dill tries to think of ways to get Boo to come out, but
settles on a dare: he’ll give Jem a Gray Ghost comic
book touches the Radley house. Jem does it.
thinks she sees someone watching them from behind
a curtain inside the house.
Chapter 2 PArt 1
When summer ends,
Dill returns to Mississippi.
Scout starts her first year of school.
She hates it from
the first day.
Her teacher, a newcomer to the town
actually criticizes Scout for
knowing how to read.
Chapter 2 part 2
Just before lunch, Miss Caroline Fisher discovers that one
boy, Walter Cunningham, has brought no food
and does not go home to eat.
Miss Caroline offers
to lend Walter a quarter, but he refuses.
tries to explain that the Cunningham’s are so poor
they couldn’t pay Miss Caroline back, and that Miss
Caroline is “shaming” Walter by trying to force the
quarter on him.
Miss Caroline gets annoyed and
“whips” Scout by tapping her palm with a ruler.
Chapter 3 part 1
Outside, Scout beats Walter up because helping him
got her into trouble.
Jem stops her, and invites Walter
to come eat at their house.
Chapter 3 part 2
During lunch, Walter talks with Atticus about farm
work like a grown up.
He says he can’t pass first grade
because he has to help his father in the fields.
Chapter 3 part 3
As he eats, Walter pours molasses all over his food.
Scout is disgusted and says so.
Calpurnia pulls her
from the table and scolds her, saying Scout should
never comment on someone’s “ways like you was so
high and mighty.”
Chapter 3 part 4
Back at school, Miss Caroline screams when she
sees a louse in the hair of a filthy boy named Burris
She tries to send him home to wash his hair,
but Burris says he’s “done his time for the year.”
kid in the class explains that all the Ewell’s come to
school one day a year to keep the truant officer off
their backs, then never come back.
Chapter 3 part 5
That night, when Scout says that Miss Caroline
wants her to stop reading at home,
that instead of getting angry, Scout should try
standing in Miss Caroline’s skin to see things from
her point of view.
He also says he’ll keep reading with
Scout if she keeps quiet about it.
Chapter 4 part 1
One day, while running past the Radley house on her
way home from school, Scout notices some gum in
the knothole of a tree overhanging the Radley’s fence.
And on the last day of school, Scout and Jem find two
old pennies in the same knothole.
Jem stares at the
Radley place, deep in thought.
Chapter 4 part 2
Dill arrives for the summer. After an accident rolling
a tire that leaves Scout lying on the pavement right
next to the Radley’s house, Jem comes up with a new
game: they’re going to act out Boo Radley’s story.
Atticus catches them playing. Jem lies and says they
weren’t impersonating the Radley’s.
Chapter 5 part 1
Jem and Dill start excluding Scout,
who begins to
spend more time with Miss Maudie Atkinson, a
neighbor who grew up with Atticus.
Scout asks Miss Maudie why Boo Radley never
comes out. Miss Maudie says it’s because Boo
doesn’t want to.
She says Boo was always polite as a
boy, and that Boo’s father was a Baptist so religious
he thought all pleasure was a sin.
Chapter 5 part 2
The next day, Dill and Jem get Scout to help them try
to slip a note through a window of the Radley house
with a fishing rod.
Atticus catches them and tells
them to stop bothering Boo Radley just because he
Chapter 6 part 1
On Dill’s last night in Maycomb, he and Jem decide
to peek into the Radley house. Scout, terrified, tags
They sneak behind the Radley house, but see
the shape of a man on the back porch and run.
A shotgun fires behind them. As they duck under the
Radley fence, Jem’s pants get caught. He leaves his pants behind.
Chapter 6 part 2
The shotgun blast—Nathan Radley had shot into
the air—wakes the neighborhood.
pants cause suspicion, but the kids says Jem lost
them playing strip poker with matches.
night, Jem sneaks out and retrieves his pants, and
returns home unharmed.
Chapter 7 part 1
Scout starts second grade, which is as bad as first
One day as they walk home from school, Jem
tells Scout that when he went back to get his pants, they had been mended and folded.
Chapter 7 part 2
Scout and Jem continue to find things in the knothole
of the tree: twine, soap carved to look like them, gum,
and a broken watch on a chain.
Jem proposes they
write a letter and leave it in the knothole.
Chapter 7 part 3
But the next day Nathan Radley cements the
He says the tree was dying, but Atticus
tells Jem it wasn’t.
Jem stares at the Radley house
for a long time.
Scout thinks he might be crying, but
can’t understand why.
Chapter 8 part 1
That winter it snows in Maycomb for the first time
Scout and Jem use dirt covered with snow
to make a snowman that looks remarkably like Mr.
Avery, an unfriendly neighbor.
Atticus is impressed,
but then sees the resemblance and kindly asks them
to disguise the snowman a little bit better.
Chapter 8 part 2
The snow makes it cold, and everyone keeps their fires
That night Miss Maudie’s house catches fire.
Everyone in the neighborhood pitches in to save what
they can, but the house burns to the ground.
Maudie says the house was too big anyway.
Chapter 8 part 3
Scout and Jem watch the fire from in front of the
Radley house down the street.
When they come
inside, Scout discovers that someone has draped a
blanket over her shoulders.
Jem says it must have
been Boo Radley who gave her the blanket.
Chapter 9 part 1
Students at school start saying that Atticus “defends
When Scout asks why, Atticus says he’s
defending a black man named Tom Robinson.
Atticus says he won’t win the case, but has to take
it in order to keep his integrity.
He cautions Scout
that people, even their friends, might say dirty things
to her, and tells her to keep her head up and avoid
Scout does. It’s the first time she’s ever
walked away from a fight.
Chapter 9 part 2
Every Christmas, Uncle Jack comes down to
Maycomb from Boston and all the Finch’s gather at
Finch’s landing to spend the holidays with Scout’s
dreaded Aunt Alexandra and her awful grandson
At Finch’s landing, Francis calls Atticus
Scout punches him, and Francis
claims she hit him for no reason and also cursed at
him. Uncle Jack spanks her.
Back in Maycomb, Scout tells Uncle Jack why she hit
Francis, but makes him promise not to say anything
because Atticus said she shouldn’t fight anyone
over the Tom Robinson case.
Later that night, Scout
overhears Jack telling Atticus he doesn’t understand
Atticus says you have to be honest with
Chapter 9 part 4
Then Atticus says the trial will be bad, since
“reasonable people go mad when anything involving”
a black person comes up.
He says the trial will be
particularly tough on Jem and Scout.
Chapter 10 part 1
Atticus is older than other kids’ parents, and Scout
and Jem are sometimes embarrassed by their father’s
When he gave Jem and Scout the air
rifles they wanted for Christmas he didn’t teach them
how to shoot, instead only telling them not to shoot
at mockingbirds, since it’s a sin to kill a mockingbird.
Miss Atkinson explains: all mockingbirds do is sing
and create beauty and pleasure, so it’s a sin to hurt
Chapter 10 part 2
One day a rabid dog appears on the Finch’s street.
still far off, and Heck Tate, the sheriff of Maycomb,
says only Atticus is marksmen enough to hit the dog
from such a distance.
Atticus kills the dog in one shot.
Scout and Jem, astonished, learn that when Atticus
was young he was the best shot in the county.
wants to brag at school, but Jem says not to: if Atticus
was proud of it he would have told them.