In chapter one, Scout gives the reader background information regarding her family's history and elaborates on how her ancestor Simon Finch came to establish a homestead on the banks of the Alabama River named Finch's Landing. Scout mentions that Simon Finch was a fur-trapping apothecary from England who fled religious persecution and immigrated to the United States. She also mentions that Simon Finch was a Methodist and initially attained wealth in America by practicing medicine. Scout says,
"Mindful of John Wesley’s strictures on the use of many words in buying and selling, Simon made a pile practicing medicine, but in this pursuit he was unhappy lest he be tempted into doing what he knew was not for the glory of God, as the putting on of gold and costly apparel. (Lee, 4)
John Wesley was not only the founder of Methodism but also wrote a book on medicine titled Primitive Physick, which gave practical medical advice and cures to individuals who could not afford to pay to see a private physician. As a follower of John Wesley, Simon Finch was more than likely inspired to practice medicine in order to selflessly help and heal the less fortunate. However, Simon Finch veered away from practicing medicine and purchased three slaves on his way to establishing a self-sufficient homestead on the banks of the Alabama River.