The first farm that Beatrix Potter owned, Hill Top, was an old house with thick walls and many hiding places for rats and mice. In The Tale of Samuel Whiskers this farmhouse is Tom Kitten’s home and the story tells what happens when Tom accidently comes upon the rat Samuel Whiskers living in a secret hideout behind the attic walls.
Beatrix Potter was born on July 28, 1866, at No 2, Bolton Gardens, Kensington, London. She loved nature and drawing as a child. In 1893, Beatrix sat down to write a picture letter to Noel Moore, the five-year-old son of her ex-governess, all about a naughty rabbit called Peter. Noel was ill in bed and so Beatrix wrote to him: “My dear Noel, I don’t know what to write to you, so I shall tell you a story about four little rabbits….” And that’s how The Tale of Peter Rabbit was created. It wasn’t until 1902 that Frederick Warne published what would become one of the most beloved stories in children’s books.