David Henry Thoreau Essay

1066 words - 5 pages

Henry David Thoreau
The life of Henry David Thoreau is characterized by what he believed in, what he wrote, and how he lived. Henry Thoreau was born into a middle class family, went to college at a young age, and spent his life writing in a journal and working to earn his living. He believed in freedom and personal unity.
Henry David Thoreau was born on July 12, 1817 in Concord, Massachusetts (gradesaver). His father was a shopkeeper, and later owned a pencil-making business that brought financial stability (Witherell and Dubrulle). He had three siblings, they were all hardworking; and they even helped pay for his college tuition (gradesaver), which at the time was $179 a year (Witherell ...view middle of the document...

He had two sources for income, the family-pencil making

business and a surveyor (Witherell and Dubrulle). His father started the business in the late 1820’s (Witherell and Dubrulle). Thoreau’s engineering talent had improved the product (Witherell and Dubrulle). He invented the plumbago crushing machine (Witherell and Dubrulle). Thoreau continued to run the business after his dad died in 1859 (Witherell and Dubrulle). Thoreau was a self-taught surveyor (Witherell and Dubrulle). Emerson said that Thoreau had “a natural skill for measuration” (Witherell and Dubrulle). He surveyed house and wood lots (Witherell and Dubrulle).
Thoreau was a profound influence on American literature and philosophy (calliope). He was also an artist (calliope). He grew up with the Transcendentalist movement, and allied himself with the ancient tradition of ascetics (Witherell and Dubrulle). His life-long friend and mentor was Ralph Waldo Emerson (calliope). When Emerson wrote “Nature” Thoreau was only nineteen years old, and still in college (Witherell and Dubrulle). The conviction of immanence enabled Thoreau to write “Civil Disobedience” (Witherell and Dubrulle).In which he spent a night in jail just to act out against an unjust war and

inhuman institutions (calliope). Thoreau was respected but he was always a particular individualist (Witherell and Dubrulle). He didn’t care for group activities and avoided reform movements (Witherell and Dubrulle). Although Thoreau was fascinated by technology, he believed it provoked an excitement that distracted from the important questions of life, which brought him to nature (Witherell and Dubrulle). Nature was the initial thing that enriched his live, and his studies from nature enlivened his ideas (Witherell and Dubrulle). Thoreau was an expert at botany and on wildlife. He was also a member of the Underground Railroad in the 1850’s. Thoreau will always be remembered for his humor, his way with children, and his love of music. He had a long, emotional life and a high-minded principle that may have nourished his art and sparked his actions (gradesaver).
Thoreau had a long writing career and included Walden, which is one of my favorites of his works. Thoreau...

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