HENRY WADSWORTH LONGFELLOW
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The Writer's Hour: Footprints on the Sands of Time

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Longfellow National Historic Site, Cambridge, Massachusetts

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Longfellow National Historic Site, Cambridge, Massachusetts / Longfellow National Historic Site

The village of Cambridge lies on the meandering Charles River across from Boston. Come stroll through Harvard Square and half a mile down Brattle Street to the beautiful Longfellow House. Surrounded by formal gardens, stately trees, and lilac hedges, the sunny, yellow mansion brightens even a gray February day. The cold outside is all but forgotten in the joyful activities of a happy family. Inside, children's laughter, purring kittens, and whistling teakettles cheer the historic house. It was built in 1759 for Maj. John Vassall, a wealthy English loyalist who fled Cambridge on the eve of the Revolution. Decades later in 1843, Nathan Appleton bought the Georgian style mansion as a wedding gift for his daughter, Fanny, and her husband, Henry Longfellow. They called it Castle Craigie after one of the former owners. Here the poet wrote his most popular works and entertained people from around the world for forty-five years. Let's slip through the front gate and join Alice Longfellow. The family is preparing to host a fabulous birthday dinner for the poet.

 

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