Crane was born 6 years after the Civil War. And yet his best known novel is, of course, “The Red Badge of Courage”, about a soldier participating in the Civil War who struggles with cowardice and bravery on the field of battle, something Crane never experienced himself. But “The Open Boat, ” is based on Crane’s real-life experience while serving as a journalist corresponding from the Cuban War of Independence. The steamship on which he was traveling, the SS Commodore, hit a sandbar and sank. Crane was one of the last to escape, spending days in a small dinghy with 3 others. Enjoy!