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March 10. 2013 1:43AM

Robert Frost


 

Robert Frost is New Hampshire's most well-known and most beloved poets. But he was born in San Francisco, California in 1874 to William Frost, a journalist, and Isabelle Moody, a school teacher. One gets a sense that he was destined to work with words. His parental influences certainly must have made quite an impression on the young boy.

His father passed away when Robert was eleven years old. He and his mother moved to Lawrence, Massachusetts to live with his paternal grandfather, William Frost, Sr. He graduated from high school in 1892 and attended the prestigious Dartmouth College for a short time before he began working various jobs to help support his family.

Frost's first poem, My Butterfly: An Elegy, was published in 1894 by the New York Independent. He married a former schoolmate, Elinor White, in 1895 and they went on to have six children. From 1897 to 1899, Robert was a student at Harvard, but he left before receiving a degree. He moved to a farmhouse in Derry, where he worked as a cobbler, farmer and teacher at Pinkerton Academy. Frost sold the farmhouse in 1912 and moved to England. There, he published his first collection of poetry, A Boy's Will followed by another collection, titled North Boston, which was published in 1914.

He returned to New Hampshire in 1915, purchasing a farm near Franconia. In 1916, his third collection of verse, Mountain Interval was published. This collection featured one of his most famous poems, "The Road Not Taken". The book highlighted Frost's deep fondness for the woods around him.

In the years that followed, Robert taught at Amherst College and then moved to South Shaftsbury, Vermont, where he co-founded the Bread Loaf School and the Conference of English in 1921. He taught at the school for the next 42 years.

Robert received honorary degrees from Harvard, Bates, Oxford and Cambridge Universities and Dartmouth College. He is famously known for speaking at the Inauguration of President John F. Kennedy on January 20, 1961 at the age of 86. He died in Boston on January 29, 1963 leaving a long legacy behind. Upon learning of his death, Kennedy said, "His death impoverishes us all; but he has bequeathed his nation a body of imperishable verse from which Americans will forever gain joy and understanding. He had promises to keep and miles to go, and now he sleeps."


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