Henry David Thoreau

thoreau1July 12, 1817 – May 6, 1862

“I went to the woods because I wished to live deliberately, to front only the essential facts of life, and see if I could not learn what it had to teach,”

Henry David Thoreau is best remembered as a writer of poems, essays and books and for his leadership in the Transcendentalist movement. He famously removed himself from the grid – if such a thing existed in the 1800’s – and wrote about his intentionally simple life in the woods in his most popular work. Walden. But nothing about him was “simple.” Thoreau was also a noted abolitionist, historian and proponent of “civil disobedience” in objection to an unjust political state. It was his two-year experiment living in the wild at Walden pond that allowed him his greatest ideas and philosophical insight. In his later years, he became a surveyor and immersed himself into the study of natural history and travel narrative.

Thoreau died at the age of 44 from complications due to bronchitis and tuberculosis. His last words were “Now comes good sailing. Moose. Indian” I think that about sums it up.


Sleepy Hollow Cemetery – Concord, MA

Specific Location

Authors Ridge; There are signs that lead to the famed hill where a number of notable American writers are buried, look for them and follow them to the northeastern part of the cemetery, the Thoreau family is buried on the south side of Hillside Ave, directly across from Hawthorne and just to the west of the Alcotts.



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