Freckles is a novel written by the American writer and naturalist Gene Stratton-Porter. It is primarily set in the Limberlost Swamp area of Indiana, with brief scenes set in Chicago. The title character also appears briefly in Porter's A Girl of the Limberlost.
The hero is an adult orphan, just under twenty years of age, with bright red hair and a freckled complexion. His left hand is missing at the wrist, and has been since before he can remember. Raised since infancy in a Chicago orphanage, he speaks with a slight Irish accent, "scarcely definite enough to be called a brogue." Exhausted after days of walking, he applies for a job with the Grand Rapids lumber company, guarding timber in the Limberlost Swamp. The lumber company field manager, McLean, is impressed by the boy's polite assertiveness and hires him despite his youth and disability. He gives his name only as "Freckles", insisting that he has no name of his own. He claims the name given him in the orphanage (which we never learn) "is no more my name than it is yours". So that he has a name to put down on the books, McLean gives Freckles the name of his own father, James Ross McLean. Freckles' duty is to twice a day walk