the Thoreau Log.
1855
Æt. 38.
January. 1855.

Boston, Mass. Walden is reviewed in the North American Review.

Cambridge, Mass. Walden is reviewed with A Week on the Concord and Merrimack Rivers in Harvard Magazine.

1 January. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “P. M. - Skated to Pantry Brook with C. [William Ellery Channing]. All the tolerable skating was a narrow strip, often only two or three feet wide, between the frozen spew and broken ice of the middle” (Journal, 7:99).

Nantucket, Mass. The Nantucket Inquirer reviews Thoreau’s lecture of 28 December 1854: “Notwithstanding the damp, uncomfortable weather of Thursday evening, and the muddy streets, a large audience assembled to listen to the man who has rendered himself notorious by living, as his book asserts, in the woods at an expense of about sixty dollars per year, in order that he might there hold free communion with Nature, and test for himself the happiness of a life without manual labor or conventional restraints. His lecture may have been desultory and marked by simplicity of manner, but not by paucity of ideas…” (Studies in the American Renaissance 1996, 269).

2 January. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “I see, in the path near Goose Pond, where the rabbits have eaten the bark of the smooth sumachs and young locusts rising above the snow; also barberry…” (Journal, 7:99).

4 January. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal:

To Worcester to lecture. Visited the antiquarian Library of twenty-two or twenty-three thousand volumes. It is richer in pamphlets and newspaper than Harvard…

Saw after my lecture a young negro who introduced himself as a native of Africa, Leo L. Lloyd, who lectures on “Young Africa!!”…

Higginson told me of a simple strong-minded man named Dexter Broad, who was at my lecture, who I should see.

(Journal, 7:99-100)

New Bedford, Mass. Daniel Ricketson writes to Thoreau:

Dear Walden, -

We should be glad to hear of your safe arrival home from your “perils by land and by flood,” and as we are not likely to know of this unless you receive a strong hint, I just drop a line for that end.

(The Correspondence of Henry David Thoreau, 361)

Thoreau replies 6 January.

5 January. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “A. M. - Walked to Quinsigamond Pond via Quinsigamond Village, to southerly end, and returned by Floating Bridge… Higginson showed me a new translation of the Vishnu Sarma. Spoke of the autobiography of a felon older than Stephen Burroughs, one Fitch of Revolutionary days. R. W. E. [Ralph Waldo Emerson] told [of] Mr. Hill, his classmate, of Bangor, who was much interested in my Walden but relished it merely as a capital satire and joke, and even thought that the survey and map of the pond were not real, but a caricature of the Coast Survey…” (Journal, 7:100-3).

6 January. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “P. M. - To Great Meadows…” (Journal, 7:103-4).

Thoreau also writes to Daniel Ricketson in reply to his letter of 4 January:

Mr Ricketson,

I am pleased to hear from the shanty whose inside and occupant I have seen. I had a very pleasant time at Brooklawn, as you know, - and thereafter at Nantucket.

(The Correspondence of Henry David Thoreau, 362)

Ricketson replies 9 January.

Cambridge?, Mass. Franklin B. Sanborn writes in his journal: “This morning I met Mr [A. Bronson] Alcott in Cambridge and had a talk with him in the book-store - I gave him the names of the writers for the H. M. [Harvard Magazine] he was pleased with Morton’s article on Thoreau” (Transcendental Climate, 216).

7 January. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “P. M. - J. P. Brown road and Hubbard’s Bridge…” (Journal, 7:104-6).

8 January. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “7.30 A. M. - To river… 10 A. M. - To Easterbrooks place via old mill site…” (Journal, 7:106-7).

9 January. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “P. M. - To Conantum…” (Journal, 7:107-10).

New Bedford, Mass. Daniel Ricketson writes to Thoreau in reply to his letter 6 January:

Dear Walden, -

I have just received your very welcome reply. I am also happy to learn of your safe arrival home, and was much amused by your account of your voyage to Nantucket - also that you found an appreciative audience there.

(The Correspondence of Henry David Thoreau, 363-4)

10 January. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “P. M. - To Beck Stow’s… As I go toward the sun now at 4 P. M., the translucent leaves are lit up by it and appear of a soft red, more or less brown, like cathedral windows, but when I look back from the sun, the whole bed appears merely gray and brown…” (Journal, 7:110-1).

Worcester, Mass. The Worcester National Aegis reviews Thoreau’s lecture of 4 January.

11 January. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “P. M. - Skated to Lee’s Bridge and Farrar’s Swamp - call it Otter Swamp…” (Journal, 7:111-2).

12 January. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “P. M. - To Flint’s Pond via Minott’s meadow… On Flint’s Pond I find Nat Rice fishing…” (Journal, 7:113-5).

13 January. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal (Journal, 7:115).

14 January. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “Skated to Baker Farm with a rapidity which astonished myself, before the wind, feeling the rise and fall, - the water having settled in the suddenly cold night, - which I had not time to see…” (Journal, 7:115-6).

15 January. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “P. M. - Skated to Bedford…” (Journal, 7:116).

16 January. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “To Cambridge and Boston. Carried to [Thaddeus W.] Harris the worms - brown, light-striped - and fuzzy black caterpillars (he calls the first also caterpillars); also two black beetles; all which I have found within a week or two on ice and snow; thickest in a thaw…” (Journal, 7:116-7).

Thoreau also checks out The History of English Birds by Thomas Bewick and Histoire du Canada by Gabriel Sagard from Harvard College Library (Companion to Thoreau’s Correspondence, 291).

Thoreau inscribes a copy of A Week on the Concord and Merrimack Rivers for Franklin B. Sanborn “To the ‘Unknown’ (but guessed at) Critic of the Harvard Magazine, from the Author. Jan. 16 1855” (The Parker Dexter Howe Library, Part 2: Thoreau and Emerson, 12; Rare Books Library, University of Florida).

Franklin Sanborn writes in his journal on 18 May: “The first time I ever saw him was when he made a flying visit to my room in Cambridge, H’y 16, [Holworthy Hall, Harvard University] last January, and left a book with me for [Edwin] Morton. Then I did not know him, and supposed it might be some book agent or expressman” (Transcendental Climate, 1:225; MS, Pierpont Morgan Library).

17 January. Worcester, Mass. 1855.

The Worcester Palladium reviews Thoreau’s lecture of 4 January.

19 January. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “I never saw the blue in the snow so bright as this damp, dark, stormy morning at 7 A.M., as I was coming down the railroad… At noon it is still a driving snow-storm, and a little flock of redpolls is busily picking the seeds of the pigweed, etc., in the garden… P. M. - The damp snow still drives from the northwest nearly horizontally over the fields, while I go with C. [William Ellery Channing] toward the Cliffs and Walden…” (Journal, 7:117-22).

20 January. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “P. M. - To Conantum and C. Miles with [William] Tappan… We came upon the tracks of a man and dog, which I guessed to be [William Ellery] Channing’s…” (Journal, 7:122-8).

21 January. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “2.30 P. M. - The sky has gradually become overcast, and now it is just beginning to snow… P. M. - To Andromeda Ponds via railroad; return by base of Cliffs…” (Journal, 7:128-9).

22 January. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “P. M. - To stone bridge, Loring’s Pond, Derby’s and Nut Meadow…” (Journal, 7:129-31).

23 January. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “P. M. - The water is still higher than yesterday. I found [it] just over the Red Bridge road, near the bridge…” (Journal, 7:131-2).

24 January. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal:

I am [reading] William Wood’s “New England’s Prospect”…

P. M. - To Walden and Andromeda Ponds…

Meeks, the carpenter, said that he could not get home to-night if he could not find Rhoades, with whom he rode into town, for the water was more than a foot deep over half the causeway. This was at 8 P. M.

But the ice is not thick enough on the meadows, so I go to Walden a-skating…

(Journal, 7:132-41)

25 January. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “P. M. - To Andromeda Ponds…” (Journal, 7:141-4).

Brattleboro, Vt. Ann E. Brown writes to Thoreau (Studies in the American Renaissance 1982, 363; private owner letter)

26 January. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “P. M. - To Walden… In the deepest hollows on the Brister Hill path it [the snow] has already lodged handsomely…” (Journal, 7:144-50).

New Bedford, Mass. Daniel Ricketson writes to Thoreau:

Dear Sir, -

I fully intended to have gone to Boston yesterday; but not being very well, deferred it until to-day, and now we are visited by a severe snowstorm, so that I fear the railway track may be obstructed. I shall not, therefore, be able to reach Concord this time.

(The Correspondence of Henry David Thoreau, 366)

27 January. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “P. M. - Up meadow to Cliffs and Walden road” (Journal, 7:150-3).

28 January. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal (Journal, 7:154).

29 January. Concord, Mass. 1855

Thoreau writes in his journal: “Not cold. Sun comes out at noon” (Journal, 7:154).

30 January. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “Minott to-day enumerates the red, gray, black, and what he calls the Sampson fox…” (Journal, 7:154)

Hampton Falls, N.H. Franklin B. Sanborn writes to Thoreau:

My dear Sir, -

I have had it in mind to write you a letter ever since the day when you visited me, without my knowing it, at Cambridge. I saw you afterward at the Library, but refrained from introducing myself to you, in the hope that I should see you later in the day. But as I did not, will you allow me to seek you out, when next I come to Concord?

(The Correspondence of Henry David Thoreau, 367-8)

31 January. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “At 10 A. M., skated up the river to explore further than I had been… At 8 A. M., the river rising, the thin yellowish ice of last night, next the shore, is, as usual, much heaved up in ridges, as if beginning to double on itself, and here and there at 9 o’clock, being cracked thus in the lowest parts, the water begins to spurt up in some places in a stream, as form an ordinary pump, and flow along these valleys…” (Journal, 7:155-9).

February. Buffalo, N.Y. 1855.

The Western Literary Messenger reprints an excerpt from the “Sounds” chapter of Walden (Studies in the American Renaissance 1990, 323).

1 February. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “At 4 P. M., I find that the river rose last evening to within eight and a half inches of the rise of April 23rd, 1852, and then began to fall…” (Journal, 7:160-2).

Thoreau also writes to Ann E. Brown in reply to her letter of 25 January:

Dear Madam,

I have not contemplated visiting Brattleboro next summer, as you have heard; but it is pleasant to entertain, if only for a moment the idea of such an excursion.

(MS, Pringle Herbarium, VtU)

Thoreau also writes to Daniel Ricketson:

Dear Sir, -

I supposed, as I did not see you on the 24th or 25th, that some track or other was obstructed, but the solid earth still holds together between New Bedford and Concord, and I trust that as this time you stayed away, you may live to come another day.

(The Correspondence of Henry David Thoreau, 369)

2 February. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “Brown is again filling his ice-house, which he commenced to do some weeks ago. I got another skate this afternoon, in spite of the thin coating of snow… Snowed again half an inch more in the evening, after which, at ten o’clock, the moon still obscured, I skated on the river and meadows…” (Journal, 7:162-4).

Thoreau also writes to Franklin B. Sanborn:

Mr F. B. Sanborn.

Dear Sir,

I fear that you did not get the note which I left with the Librarian for you, and so will thank you again for your politeness. I was sorry that I was obliged to go into Boston almost immediately.

(The Correspondence of Henry David Thoreau, 369-70)

3 February. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal:

P. M. - Skating through snow.

Skated up the river with Tn [William Tappan] in spite of the snow and wind…

We went up the Pantry Meadow above the old William Wheeler house, and came down this meadow again with the wind and snow dust, spreading our coat-tails, like birds, though somewhat at the risk of our necks if we had struck a foul place…

At Lee’s Cliff we made a fire, kindling with white pine cones, after oak leaves and twigs, - else we had lost it; these saved us, for there is a resinous drop at the point of each scale, - and then we forgot that we were outdoors in a blustering winter day…

(Journal, 7:164-9)

4 February. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “Saw this afternoon a very distinct otter-track by the Rock, at the junction of the two rivers… It is better skating to-day than yesterday…” (Journal, 7:169-71).

5 February. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “Found Therien cutting down the two largest chestnuts in the wood-lot behind where my house was… T. soon after broke his axe in cutting through a knot in this tree, which he was cutting up for posts… Several choppers have broken their axes to-day” (Journal, 7:171-2).

6 February. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “Our thermometer stands at -14 at 9 A.M… I was walking at five, and found it stinging cold… At 9 o’clock P. M., thermometer at -16º…” (Journal, 7:172-3).

7 February. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “My pail of water was frozen in the morning so that I could not break it… Neighbor Smith’s thermometer stood at -26º early this morning… R. Rice says that alewives used to go into Pelham Pond, - that you may go up Larned Brook and so into the pond by a ditch…” (Journal, 7:173-5).

Thoreau also writes to Thomas Cholmondeley:

Dear Cholmondeley,

I am glad to hear that you have arrived safely at Hodnet, and that there is a solid piece of ground of that name which can support a man better than a floating plank in that to me as yet purely historical England.

(The Correspondence of Henry David Thoreau, 370-2)

8 February. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “Continues to snow finely all day” (Journal, 7:175).

9 February. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “P. M. - Up river to Hubbard’s Swamp and Wood…” (Journal, 7:175-8).

10 February. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “P. M. - To Walden… Silas Hosmer tells me that a wild deer was killed in Northboro this winter…” (Journal, 7:178-9).

11 February. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “P. M. - To J. Dugan’s via Tommy Wheeler’s… Smith’s thermometer early this morning at -22º; ours at 8 A. M. -10º” (Journal, 7:179).

Ellen Emerson writes to her father, Ralph Waldo Emerson: “Mr. Thoreau will lecture here next week and I am going to write to Mrs Tappan tonight” (The Letters of Ellen Tucker Emerson, 1:85).

12 February. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “P. M. - To Walden…” (Journal, 7:179-81).

13 February. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “10 A. M. - To Walden Woods…” (Journal, 7:181-5).

14 February. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau lectures on “What Shall It Profit” at the Centre School House for the Concord Lyceum (Studies in the American Renaissance 1996, 272-3).

Thoreau also writes in his journal: “Aunt Louisa says that her cousin Nahum Jones, son to that Nathan whom her mother and sisters visited with her down east, carried a cat to the West Indies, sold his vessel there; and though the same vessel did not return, and he came back in another vessel without the cat, the cat got home to Gouldsboro somehow, unaccountably, about the same time that he did. Captain Woodard told her that he carried the same cat three times round the world…” (Journal, 7:185-6)

Brooklyn, N.Y. Elizabeth Oakes Smith writes to Thoreau (Studies in the American Renaissance 1982, 364; MS, private owner). Thoreau replies 19 February. See also entry 17 February.

15 February. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “All day a steady, warm, imprisoning rain carrying off the snow, not unmusical on my roof… Without, it is not walking but wading…” (Journal, 7:186).

16 February. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “P. M. - To Cliff via Spanish Brook… Are those little scratches across pallescent lichens which C. [William Ellery Channing] made by squirrels?…” (Journal, 7:186-9).

17 February. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “The bridge at Sam Barrett’s caved in; also the Swamp Bridge on back road… P. M. - A riparial excursion over further railroad bridge; return by Flint’s Bridge. At 2 P. M. the water at the Sam Wheeler Bridge is three inches above straight truss, or two inches higher than at 9 A. M…” (Journal, 7:189-93).

18 February. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal:

8 A. M. - Water four and three quarters inches above truss, nearly two inches higher than yesterday at 2 P. M… At 9 A. M. sun comes out…

P. M. - To Great Meadows and around Beck Stow’s…

A man came to our house at noon and got something to eat, who set out this morning to go from Waltham to Noah Wheeler’s in Nine Acre Corner. He got as far as Lee’s Bridge on the side of Lincoln, or within three quarters of a mile of Wheeler’s, and could not get over the river on account of the freshet; so he came round through Concord village, - he might have come over the railroad a little nearer, - and I directed him over the railroad bridge, the first by which he could cross dry-shod down the stream, and up-stream he would have been obliged to go to Saxonville.

(Journal, 7:193-6)

Ellen Emerson writes to her father, Ralph Waldo Emerson:

Mrs Tappan did not come to hear Mr Thoreau. She wrote to say she was engaged and Mr Tappan had gone to New York… Mr. Thoreau came yesterday with a letter from Mrs Oakes-Smith, [Elizabeth Oakes-Smith] asking if she could give a lecture here at the Lyceum on Margaret Fuller. The Lyceum evening are all filled but Mother and Mr. Thoreau are going to try to raise money to have her come, I believe.

(The Letters of Ellen Tucker Emerson, 1:86)

19 February. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “Rufus Hosmer says that in the year 1820 (?) there was so smooth and strong an icy crust on a very deep snow that you could skate everywhere over the fields and for the most part over the fences…The water is about a foot deep on the Jimmy Miles road. E. Conant thinks that he Joe Miles causeway is rather worse than Hubbard’s in respect to water…” (Journal, 7:196-7).

Thoreau also writes to Elizabeth Oakes Smith in reply to her letter of 14 February:

My Dear Madam,

I presume you will like an early, though it should be an unfavorable, answer to your note. After due consultation and inquiry, I am sorry to be obliged to say that we cannot make it worth your while to come to Concord at this season.

(The Correspondence of Henry David Thoreau, 372-3)

20 February. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “I have caught another of those mice of February 16th and secured it entire, - a male…” (Journal, 7:197-202)

21 February. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “P. M. - To Fair Haven Hill via Cut…” (Journal, 7:202-6).

22 February. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “P. M. - To J. Farmer’s… J. Farmer showed me an ermine weasel he caught in a trap three or four weeks ago…” (Journal, 7:206-9).

23 February. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “Saw at Walden this afternoon that that greyish ice which had formed over the large square where ice had been taken out for Brown’s ice-house had a decided pink or rosaceous tinge… Mr. Loring says that he and his son George fired at white swans in Texas on the water, and, though G. shot two with ball and killed them, the others each case gathered about them and crowded them off out of their reach” (Journal, 7:209).

24 February. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “P.M. - To young willow-row near Hunt’s Pond road… Minott says that Messer tells him he saw a striped squirrel (!) yesterday… Thermometer at 10º at 10 P. M.” (Journal, 7:210-2).

25 February. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “Thermometer at 7º at 7.30 A. M… Pretty good skating” (Journal, 7:212).

26 February. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “P. M. - To Clamshell Hill, across river… C. [William Ellery Channing] says he saw a lark to-day close to him, and some other dark-colored spring bird” (Journal, 7:212-5).

27 February. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “Another cold, clear day, but the weather gradually moderating” (Journal, 7:215).

Thoreau also writes to Thaddeus W. Harris:

Dear Sir,

I return to the Library, by Mr Frost, the following books, viz

Wood’s N. E. Prospect,

Sagard’s “Histoire du Canada,”

& Bewick’s “British Birds.”

Yrs respectfully

Henry D. Thoreau

(The Correspondence of Henry David Thoreau, 373)

28 February. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “P.M. - To further railroad bridge and Ministerial Swamp… We crossed the river at Nut Meadow Brook…” (Journal, 7:215-9).

March. New York, N.Y. 1855.

Walden is reviewed in Knickerbocker Magazine.

John Lewis Russell writes an article entitled “Visit to the Locality of the Climbing Fern” in the Magazine of Horticulture. [See 16 August 1854]

1 March. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “10 A. M. - To Derby’s Bridge and return by Sam Barrett’s, to see ice cakes and meadow crust. The last day for skating” (Journal, 7:220-4).

Thoreau writes to [Mrs. Simon] Brown (MS, Virginia Polytechnic Institute & State University, Blacksburg, Va.).

2 March. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “9 A. M. - To Great Meadows to see the ice… I made a burning-glass of ice, which produced a light sensation of warmth on the back of my hand, but was so untrue that it did not concentrate the rays to a sufficiently small focus. Returning over Great Fields, found half a dozen arrowheads, one with three scallops in the base…” (Journal, 7:224-7).

3 March. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “P. M. - To Conantum. This afternoon it is somewhat overcast for the first time since February 18th inclusive. I see a dirty-white miller fluttering about over the winter-rye patch next to Hubbard’s Grove…” (Journal, 7:227-9).

4 March. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “P. M. - To Bee Tree Hill over Fair Haven Pond… We go over the Cliffs… Returning by the Andromeda Ponds, I am surprised to see the red ice visible still, half a dozen rods off…” (Journal, 7:229-30).

5 March. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “P. M. - To Beck Stow’s. A strong but warm southwesterly (?) wind, which has produced a remarkable haze. As I go along by Sleepy Hollow, this strong, warm wind, rustling the leaves on the hillsides, this blue haze, and the russet earth seen through it, remind me that a new season has come…” (Journal, 7:230).

6 March. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “To Second Division Brook… There is a peculiar redness in the western sky just after sunset…” (Journal, 7:230-2).

7 March. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “P. M. - To Red-Ice Pond… It is now difficult getting on and off Walden. At Brister’s Spring there are beautiful dense green beds of moss, which apparently has just risen above the surface of the water, tender and compact…” (Journal, 7:232-4).

8 March. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “P. M. - To old Carlisle road… This morning I got my boat out of the cellar and turned it up in the yard to let the seams open before I calk it… Daniel Clark tells me that on his part of the Great Meadows there is a hole just about the breadth and depth of a man, commonly full of water…” (Journal, 7:234-6).

9 March. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “Painted the bottom of my boat. P. M. - To Andromeda Ponds… C. [William Ellery Channing] says he saw yesterday the slate-colored hawk with a white bar across tail…” (Journal, 7:236-8).

10 March. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “Miss Minott says that Dr. Spring told her that when the sap began to come up into the trees, i. e. about the middle of February (she says) then the diseases of the human body come out… Minott tells me that Henry Hosmer says he saw geese two or three days ago! Jacob Farmer gave me to-day a part of the foot probably of a pine marten, which he found two or three days ago in a trap he had set in his brook for a mink, - under water, baited with a pickerel…” (Journal, 7:238-41).

11 March. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “P. M. - To Annursnack… On Abel Hosmer’s pasture, just southeast of the stone bridge, I sse where the sod was lifted up over a great space in the flood of the 17th of February…” (Journal, 7:241-3).

12 March. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “6.30 A. M. - To Andromeda Ponds… Elbridge Hayden and Poland affirm that they saw a brown thrasher sitting on the top of an apple tree by the road near Hubbard’s and singing after his fashion on the 5th…P. M. - To Great Meadows…” (Journal, 7:243-4).

Thoreau also writes to Charles Sumner:

Dear Sir

Allow me to thank you for the Comp’d’m of the U. S. census, which has come safely to hand. It looks as full of facts as a chestnut of meat. I expect to nibble at it for many years.

I read with pleasure your pertinent Address before the Merc. Lit. Association, sent me long ago.

Yrs truly

Henry D. Thoreau

(The Correspondence of Henry David Thoreau, 374; MS, Charles Sumner correspondence. Houghton Library, Harvard University, Cambridge, Mass.)

13 March. Concord, Mass. 1855

Thoreau writes in his journal: “6.30 A. M. - To Hill… P. M. - To Hubbard’s Close… Coming through the stubble of Stow’s rye-field in front of the Breed house, I meet with four mice-nests in going half a dozen rods…” (Journal, 7:244-6).

14 March. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “P. M. - To Andromeda Ponds… That ice of February has destroyed almost the whole of Charles Hubbard’s young red maple swamp in front of the Hollowell place…” (Journal, 7:246-8). 

15 March. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “Jacob Farmer gave me to-day the foot of an otter, also of a fisher, to put with my pine marten’s foot… Now, at 9 P. M., a clear sky… Mr. Rice tells me that when he was getting mud out of the little swamp at the foot of Brister’s Hill last [a blank space left for the day], he heard a squeaking and found that he was digging near the nest of what he called a ‘field mouse’…” (Journal, 7:248-9).

17 March. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “H. Hosmer [Henry Hosmer] says he has seen black ducks. Edmund Hosmer’s meadow, i. e. the Hunt house meadow, is covered with great pieces of meadow, the largest thick and dense cranberry meadow… Higher up on the North Branch I see where the trees, especially the swamp white oaks, have been chafed smooth and white by the ice (at that time)…” (Journal, 7:253).

18 March. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “P. M. - Round by Hollowell place via Clamshell. I see with my glass as I go over the railroad bridge, sweeping the river, a great gull standing far away on the top of a muskrat-cabin which rises just above the water opposite the Hubbard Bath…” (Journal, 7:253-5).

19 March. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “Launched my boat. P. M. - Paddled to Fair Haven Pond… The wind has got round more to the east now, at 5 P. M., and is raw and disagreeable, and produces a bluish haze or mist at once in the air…” (Journal, 7:255-8).

20 March. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “A flurry of snow at 7 A. M. I go turn my boat up… P. M. - Up Assabet…” (Journal, 7:258-60).

21 March. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “6.30 A. M. - To Swamp Bridge Brook… P. M. - To Bare Hill by railroad… Crossed Goose Pond on ice” (Journal, 7:260-1).

22 March. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “6.30 A. M. - To Hill… P. M. - Fair Haven Pond via Conantum… C. [William Ellery Channing] says he has already seen a little dipper…” (Journal, 7:261-2).

23 March. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “P. M. - To Fair Haven Pond… C. [William Ellery Channing] saw geese to-night” (Journal, 7:265-7).

24 March. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “P. M. - Up Assabet by boat…” (Journal, 7:267-9).

25 March. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “P. M. - To Ministerial Lot…” (Journal, 7:269-70).

26 March. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “6 A. M. - Still cold and blustering; wind southwest, but clear. I see a muskrat-house just erected, two feet or more above the water and sharp; and at Hubbard Bath, a mink comes teetering along the ice by the side of the river… P. M. - Sail down to the Great Meadows…” (Journal, 7:270-2).

27 March. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “6.30 A. M. - To Island… P. M. - To Hubbard’s Close and down brook…” (Journal, 7:272-3).

28 March. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “P. M. - To Cliffs, along river…” (Journal, 7:273-4).

Franklin B. Sanborn writes in his journal: “After tea, Mr E [Ralph Waldo Emerson] proposed to set Mr C [William Ellery Channing] and me to read newspapers while he went up to the Town Hall to lecture, but we would not listen to it and went along with him… Waiting in the Hall Mr E introduced me to Mr Thoreau, but we did not talk long. I shall see much of him if I live at Mr Channing’s as I think I shall do” (Transcendental Climate, 221; MS, Pierpont Morgan Library).

29 March. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “P. M. - To Flint’s Pond… Walden is more than half open, Goose Pond only a little about the shores, and Fair Haven Pond only just open over the channel of the river… As I stand on Heywood’s Peak, looking over Walden, more than half its surface already sparkling blue water, I inhale with pleasure the cold but wholesome air like a draught of cold water, contrasting it in my memory with the wind of summer, which I do not thus eagerly swallow…” (Journal, 7:274-5).

30 March. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “6.30 A. M. - To Island…” (Journal, 7:275-7).

31 March. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “I see through the window that it is a very fine day, the first really warm one. I did not know the whole till I came out at 3 P. M. and walked to the Cliffs…” (Journal, 7:277-8).

1 April. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “P. M. - To Conantum End… See, resting on the edge of the ice in Fair Haven Pond, a white duck with black head, and a dark one…” (Journal, 7:279-80).

2 April. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “P. M. - Down the river-bank…” (Journal, 7:280-1).

3 April. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “P. M. - I go to sail down to the Island and up to Hubbard’s Causeway…” (Journal, 7:281-2).

4 April. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “P. M. - To Clematis Brook via Lee’s… I am surprised to [find] the pond, i. e. Fair Haven Pond, not yet fully open… Returning from Mt. Misery, the pond and river-reach presented a fine, warm view…” (Journal, 7:282-5).

5 April. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “9 A. M. - To Sudbury line by boat… By 4 P. M. it began to rain gently or mizzle…” (Journal, 7:285-6).

6 April. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “It clears up at 8 P. M. warm and pleasant, leaving flitting clouds and a little wind, and I go up the Assabet in my boat…” (Journal, 7:287-90).

7 April. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “In my walk in the afternoon of t0-day, I saw from Conantum, say fifty rods distant, two sheldrakes, male and probably female, sailing on A. Wheeler’s cranberry meadow… At six this morn to Clamshell… P. M. - To Hubbard’s Close and Lee’s cliff…” (Journal, 7:291-4).

8 April. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “6 A. M. - Up Assabet… P. M. - Up Assabet to G. Barrett’s meadow… This evening, about 9 P. M., I hear geese go over, now there in the south, now southeast, now east, now northeast, low over the village, but not see…” (Journal, 7:294-7).

9 April. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “5.15 A. M. - To Red Bridge just before sunrise…” (Journal, 7:297-9).

10 April. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “6 A. M. - To river. I see afar, more than one hundred rods distant, sailing on Hubbard’s meadow, on the smooth water in the morning sun, conspicuous, two male sheldrakes and apparently one female… P. M. - To Fair Haven Pond by boat…” (Journal, 7:299-302).

Thoreau personally sells a copy of A Week on the Concord and Merrimack Rivers to Sarah E. Sanborn for $1.25 (Houghton Library, Harvard University, Cambridge, Mass.).

11 April. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “Awake to see the ground white with snow, and it is still snowing, the sleet driving from the north at an angle of certainly not more than thirty or thirty-five degrees with the horizon, as I judge by its course across the window-panes. By mid-afternoon the rain has so far prevailed that the ground is bare…” (Journal, 7:302).

Franklin B. Sanborn writes in his journal:

Tonight we had a call from Mr. Thoreau, who came at eight and staid till ten - He talked about a variety of things - about Latin and Greek, which he thought ought to be studied, and about other things. In his tones and gestures he seemed to me to imitate Emerson - so that it was annoying to listen to him, though he said many good things - He looks, too, like Emerson - coarser, but with something of that serenity - and - sagacity which E - has. Thoreau looks eminently sagacious - like a sort of wise wild beast. He dresses plainly, wears a beard on his throat, and has a brown complexion -

(Transcendental Climate, 1:222)

12 April. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “P. M. - To Cliffs and Hubbard’s Close…” (Journal, 7:302-3).

13 April. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “P. M. - To Second Division cowslips… Returning by the steep side-hill just south of Holden’s wood-lot and some dozen or fourteen rods west of the open land, I saw, amid the rattlesnake-plantain leaves, what I suspect to the Polygala paucifolia…” (Journal, 7:304-6).

Thoreau also writes to George William Curtis:

Mr. Editor

… I see that I was not careful enough to preserve the past tense. I suppose that your objection will be avoided by writing the passage this, - “Not one of those moderate Calvanist, said to be common in the writers day, who, by giving up or explaining away the peculiar doctrines of the party, became, like a porcupine disarmed of its quills, but a consistent Calvanist…” By “Scripture” I mean the bible. I suspected that the line was derived from Elliot’s Indian bible. It will be better if it is printed “the Scripture”…

(The Correspondence of Henry David Thoreau, 374; MS, Henry David Thoreau letters. Special Collections Research Center, Morris Library, Southern Illinois University Carbondale)

14 April. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “6 A. M. - To Island… At 8 A. M. - Took caterpillar’s eggs from the apple tree at the Texas house and found about thirty…” (Journal, 7:306-7).

15 April. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “9 A. M. - To Atkin’s boat house… Returning, we had a fine view of a blue heron, standing erect and open to view on a meadow island, by the great swamp south of the bridge… Before we rounded Ball’s Hill, - the water now beautifully smooth, - at 2.30 P. M., we saw three gulls sailing on the glassy meadow at least a half a mile off, by the oak peninsula, - the plainer because they were against the reflection of the hills…” (Journal, 7:307-11).

16 April. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “5 A. M. - To Hill… P. M. - To Flint’s Pond… When we reached Britton’s clearing on our return this afternoon, at sunset, the mountains, after this our warmest day as yet, had got a peculiar soft mantle of blue haze, pale blue as a blue heron, ushering in the long series of summer sunsets, and we were glad that we had stayed out so late and felt no need to go home now in a hurry” (Journal, 7:311-7).

17 April. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “5 A. M. - Up Assabet… P. M. - To Lee’s Cliff…” (Journal, 7:317-20).

18 April. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “6 A. M. - See and hear tree sparrows, and hear hyemalis still… P. M. - To Cliffs and Walden and Hubbard’s Close…” (Journal, 7:320-2).

19 April. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “5 A. M. - Up Assabet… This forenoon, sit with open window… P. M. - To Walden…” (Journal, 7:322-4).

20 April. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “Rains all day, taking out the frost and imprisoning me. You cannot set a post yet on account of frost” (Journal, 7:324).

Thoreau also writes to George William Curtis:

Mr Editor

You may omit the words “in Scripture,” if you will indicate an omission somewhat in this wise— “Somewhere + + ; may be” &c

Yrs

Henry D. Thoreau

(MS, Clifton Waller Barrett collection. University of Virginia, Charlottesville, Va.)

21 April. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “5 A. M. - To Cliffs… Aunt Maria has put into my hands to-day for safekeeping three letters from Peter Thoreau, dated Jersey (the first July 1st 1801, the second April 22nd 1804, and the third April 11th 1806) and directed to his niece “Miss Elizabeth Thoreau, Concord, Near Boston,” etc.; also a “Vue de las Ville de St. Helier,” etc., accompanying the first… P.M. - Sail to meadow near Carlisle Bridge…” (Journal, 7:324-8).

22 April. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “5.30 A. M. - To Assabet stone bridge… P. M. - To Lee’s Cliff…” (Journal, 7:328-30).

23 April. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal:

River higher than before since winter. Whole of Lee Meadow covered…

P. M. - To Cedar Swamps via Assabet.

Warm and pretty still. Even the riversides are quiet at this hour (3 P. M.) as in summer… Soon after I see hovering over Sam Barrett’s, high sailing, a more buzzard-like brown hawk…

C. [William Ellery Channing] says he has see a yellow-legs…

(Journal, 7:330-1)

24 April. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “P. M. - To Flint’s Pond…” (Journal, 7:331-2).

25 April. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “P. M. - To Beck Stow’s… The Andromeda calyculata is out in water, in the little swamp east of Beck Stow’s, some perhaps yesterday; and C. [William Ellery Channing] says he saw many bluets yesterday… After sunset paddled up to the Hubbard Bath…” (Journal, 7:332-4).

26 April. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “P. M. - To Bayberry and Black Ash Cellar…” (Journal, 7:334-5).

27 April. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “5 A. M. - S. tristis Path around Cliff…Hear a partridge drum before 6 A. M…” (Journal, 7:335).

28 April. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “P. M. - Sail to Ball’s Hill… The red maples, now in bloom, are quite handsome at a distance over the flooded meadow beyond Peter’s…” (Journal, 7:335-7).

29 April. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “P. M. - by boat to Lupine Hill…” (Journal, 7:337-40).

30 April. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “P. M. - To Lee’s Cliff… The Garfields had found a burrow of young foxes… I see the black feathers of a blackbird by the Miles Swamp side…” (Journal, 7:340-3).

Thoreau also writes to Ticknor & Fields:

Gentlemen,

Is it not time to republish “A Week on the Concord & Merrimack Rivers”? You said you would notify me when it was; but I am afraid that it will soon be too late for this season.

I have, with what were sent to you, about 250 bound, and 450 in sheets.

Yrs truly

Henry D. Thoreau

(The Correspondence of Henry David Thoreau, 375; MS, Henry David Thoreau papers (Series III). Henry W. and Albert A. Berg Collection of English and American Literature, New York Public Library)

1 May. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “P. M. - By boat with Sophia to Conantum, a maying… The maples of Potter’s Swamp, seen now nearly half a mile off against the russet or reddish hillside, are a very dull scarlet… Went to Garfield’s for the hawk of yesterday…” (Journal, 7:344-51).

2 May. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “P. M. - By boat up Assabet…” (Journal, 7:351-2).

3 May. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “P. M. - To Assabet Bath… On the north of Groton Turnpike beyond Abel Hosmer’s, three distinct terraces to river… Humphrey Buttrick, one of eight who alone returned from Texas out of twenty-four, says he can find wood-cock’s eggs…” (Journal, 7:352-4).

Concord, Mass. Franklin B. Sanborn writes in his journal: “This afternoon at 4, Mr Emerson called at my school house door and we started on our long proposed walk to Baker Farm, whose beauties Ellery Channing has sung, and Thoreau hinted at” (Transcendental Climate, 225).

4 May. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “5 A. M. - To Hill… P. M. - To beeches…” (Journal, 7:354-7).

5 May. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “P. M. - To Beck Stow’s…” (Journal, 7:357-9).

6 May. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “P. M. - To epigæa… Near Jenny Dugan’s, perceive that unaccountable fugacious fragrance, as of all flowers… Two or three rods this side of John Hosmer’s pitch pines, beyond Clamshell, some white Viola ovata, some with a faint bluish tinge…” (Journal, 7:359-61).

7 May. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “5 A. M. - To Island… P. M. - To Lee’s Cliff via Hubbard’s Bath” (Journal, 7:361-8).

8 May. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “5 A. M. - To Gilead… At noon begins a cold, drizzling rain, which continues at intervals through the next day…” (Journal, 7:368).

9 May. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “P. M. - To Annursnack…” (Journal, 7:368).

10 May. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “P. M. - To Beeches…” (Journal, 7:368-9).

11 May. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “A. M. - To Island… P. M. - To Andromeda Polifolia… I hear some kind of owl partially hooting now at 4 P. M., I know not whether far off or near” (Journal, 7:369-71).

12 May. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “6 A. M. - To Hill… P. M. - To Lee’s Cliff. C. [William Ellery Channing] says he saw upland plover two or three nights ago…” (Journal, 7:371-5).

Franklin B. Sanborn writes in his journal: “Went to Cambridge in the morning with a baggage wagon, and came back with my furniture and [Edwin] Morton and Bliss. We went to dinner at Mrs Holbrook’s, and then went out on the river in Mr Thoreau’s boat” (Transcendental Climate, 1:225; MS, Pierpont Morgan Library, New York, N.Y.)

13 May. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “P. M. - Down river and to Yellow Birch Swamp… As we float down the river through the still and hazy air, enjoying the June-like warmth, see the first king-birds on the bare black willows with their broad white breasts and white-tipped tails… At 9.30 P. M. I hear from our gate my night-warbler…” (Journal, 7:375-7).

14 May. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “P. M. - To Cliffs via Hubbard’s Bath…” (Journal, 7:378-9).

A. Bronson Alcott writes in his journal: (The Journals of Bronson Alcott, 276)

15 May. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “P. M. - To Beck Stow’s… Minott says that some years ago, maybe ten or fifteen, a man in Bedford climbed to an owl’s nest (probably a cat owl’s), and the owl took out one of his eyes and nearly killed him. He read it in the papers” (Journal, 7:379-80).

16 May. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “P. M. - Up Assabet…” (Journal, 7:380).

17 May. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “Waked up at 2.30 by peep of robins, which were aroused by a fire at the pail-factory about two miles west. I hear that the air was full of birds singing thereabouts. It rained gently at the same time, though not steadily” (Journal, 7:380-1).

18 May. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “P. M. - Boat to Nut Meadow…” (Journal, 7:381-2).

Franklin B. Sanborn writes in his journal: “To-night Mr. Thoreau came in as I was reading Demosthenes, and we fell to talking about Greek, Latin, Milton, Wordsworth, Emerson, Ellery Channing, and other things… Since I came here I have often seen him - He is a sort of pocket edition of Mr Emerson (as far as outward appearance goes) in coarser binding and with wood cuts instead of the fine steel engravings of Mr E - He is a little under size - with a large Emersonian nose, bluish gray eyes, brown hair, and a ruddy weatherbeaten face, which reminds one of that of some shrewd and honest animal - some retired, philosophic woodchuck or magnanimous fox - He dresses very plainly - wears his collar turned over like Mr. Emerson, and often an old dress coat, broad in the skirts and by no means as fit - He walks about with a brisk rustic air, and never seems tired. He talks like Mr E - and so spoils the good things which he says, for what in Mr E - is charming, becomes ludicrous in Thoreau because an imitation -

(Transcendental Climate, 1:225-6; MS, Pierpont Morgan Library, New York, N.Y.)

19 May. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “Put my little turtles into the river…” (Journal, 7:382).

20 May. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “Rains a little” (Journal, 7:382).

21 May. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “P. M. - To Island…” (Journal, 7:382).

22 May. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “Bank swallows - ashy-brown above - have holes at Deep Cut… Scared up a nighthawk - from the white on wings - amid the leaves on the edge of a copse on Fair Haven Hill… Harris [Thaddeus W. Harris] tells Emerson [Ralph Waldo Emerson] my cicada is the Noveboracensis (?), known to New-Yorkers…” (Journal, 7:382-3).

23 May. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “A. M. - To barberry via river…” (Journal, 7:383).

24 May. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “A. M. - To Beck Stow’s… P. M. - To Cliffs…” (Journal, 383-6).

25 May. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “8 A. M. - To Hill…” (Journal, 7:386-8).

26 May. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “8 A. M. - By Boat to Kalmia glauca and thence to scouring-rush… At Clamshell…” (Journal, 7:388-92).

27 May. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “P. M. - To Fair Haven Pond, taking boat opposite Puffer’s…” (Journal, 7:392-3).

28 May. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “P. M. - To Middle Conantum Cliff… While we sit by the path in the depths of the woods three quarters of a mile beyond Hayden’s, confessing the influence of almost the first summer warmth, the wood thrush sings steadily for half an hour, now at 2.30 P. M., amid the pines, - loud and clear and sweet… C. [William Ellery Channing] says he has seen a green snake…” (Journal, 7:393-5).

29 May. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “P. M. - To Island Neck…” (Journal, 7:396-8).

30 May. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “Saw bird’s nest on an apple by roadside, seven feet high: one egg… P. M. - Up railroad… Hear a familiar warbler not recognized for some years, in the thick copse in Dennis’s Swamp, south of the railroad…” (Journal, 7:398-400).

31 May. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “See a yellowbird building a nest on a white oak on the Island… In evening hear distinctly a tree-toad” (Journal, 7:400).

June. 1855.

Putnam’s Magazine publishes Thoreau’s travel essays on Cape Cod, unattributed.

1 June. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “Surveying at Holden wood-lot… C. [William Ellery Channing] has found the arethusa out at Hubbard’s Close…” (Journal, 7:401)

2 June. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “P. M. - To Hill…” (JSuper Replay - Resident Evil 4 Episode 10 ournal, 7:401-4).

3 June. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “A rainy day at last. Caraway in garden apparently three days out” (Journal, 7:404).

4 June. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “P. M. - To Hubbard’s Close… Ellen Emerson finds the Viola pubescens scarce to-day…” (Journal, 7:404-6).

5 June. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “P. M. - To Clamshell by river…” (Journal, 7:406-8).

Concord, Mass. Franklin B. Sanborn writes in his journal: “Called this evening at Mr Emerson’s where I found Mr Alcott, and I spent two hours there before the companionable fire in the dining room alone with Mr Alcott and Mr Emerson… Besides [Thomas] Carlyle and the war, the conversation turned on Thoreau, [Barthold George] Niebuhr, Language, the [New-York] Tribune &c - and many good things were said” (Transcendental Climate, 1:226; MS, Pierpont Morgan Library).

6 June. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “P. M. - Up Assabet by boat to survey Hosmer’s field…” (Journal, 7:408-9).

7 June. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “In afternoon - mizzling weather - to Abel Hosmer’s Woods…” (Journal, 7:410).

8 June. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “P. M. - Goose Pond… C. [William Ellery Channing] says he saw two other dark ducks here yesterday…” (Journal, 7:410-1).

9 June. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “P. M. - To Wheeler’s azalea swamp, across meadow…” (Journal, 7:411-3).

10 June. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “P. M. - To owl’s nest… C. [William Ellery Channing] finds an egg to-day…” (Journal, 7:413-6).

11 June. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal (Journal, 7:416-8).

12 June. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “Down river to swamp east of Poplar Hill… A crow blackbird’s nest high in an elm by riverside just below the Island. C. [William Ellery Channing] climbed to it and got it…” (Journal, 7:418-20).

13 June. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “C. [William Ellery Channing] finds a pigeon woodpecker’s nest in an apple tree, five of those pearly eggs, about six feet from the ground; could squeeze your hand in. Also a peetweet’s, with four eggs, in Hubbard’s meadow beyond the old swamp oak site…” (Journal, 7:420-1).

14 June. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “Up river… There [were] only four eggs in this nest yesterday, and to-day, to C.’s [William Ellery Channing] surprise, there are the two eggs which he left and a young peetweet beside… It suddenly began to rain with great violence, and we in haste drew up our boat on the Clamshell shore, upset it, and got under, sitting on the paddles, and so were quite dry while our friends thought we were being wet to our skins…” (Journal, 7:421-3).

15 June. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “To Moore’s Swamp…” (Journal, 7:423-4).

16 June. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “P. M. - To Hubbard’s Grove, on river…” (Journal, 7:424-5).

18 June. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “To Hemlocks… At 3 P. M., as I walked up the bank by the Hemlocks, I saw a painted turtle just beginning its hole…” (Journal, 7:425-8).

19 June. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “P. M. - Up Assabet… Mr. Bull found in his garden this morning a snapping turtle about twenty rods from the brook, which had there just made a round hole…” (Journal, 7:428-9).

Concord, Mass. Ralph Waldo Emerson writes to his brother William Emerson: “Henry Thoreau is feeble, & languishes this season, to our alarm. We have tried to persuade him to come & spend a week with us for a change” (The Letters of Ralph Waldo Emerson, 4:512).

20 June. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “A catbird’s nest eight feet high on a pitch pine in Emerson’s heater piece, partly of paper…” (Journal, 7:429).

21 June. Concord, Mass. 1855

Thoreau writes in his journal: “Saw a white lily in Everett’s Pond… On an apple at R. W. E.’s a small pewee’s nest…” (Journal, 7:429).

Lincoln, Mass. Thoreau surveys a woodlot for Augustus Tuttle (Henry David Thoreau papers. Special Collections, Concord (Mass.) Free Public Library).

22 June. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “At 6 P. M. the temperature of the air is 77º, of river one rod from shore 72º Warmest day yet” (Journal, 7:429).

23 June. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal (Journal, 7:430).

25 June. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “Under E. Wood’s barn, a phœbe’s nest, with two birds ready to fly; also barn swallow’s nest lined with feathers, hemisphere or cone against side of sleeper; five eggs, delicate, as well as white-bellied swallow’s” (Journal, 7:430).

27 June. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes to Harrison G. O. Blake:

Mr Blake,

I have been sick and good for nothing but to lie on my back and wait for something to turn up, for two or three months. This has compelled me to postpone several things, among them writing to you to whom I am so deeply in debt, and inviting you and Brown [Theophilus Brown] to Concord - no having brains adequate to such an exertion.

(The Correspondence of Henry David Thoreau, 376-7)

28 June. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “On river…” (Journal, 7:430).

30 June. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “2 P. M. - Thermometer north side of house, 95º; in river where one foot deep, one rod from shore, 82º” (Journal, 7:430).

New York, N.Y. “Cape Cod” is reviewed in the New-York Evening Post.

July. 1855.

Putnam’s Monthly Magazine publishes Thoreau’s travel essays on Cape Cod, unattributed.

2 July. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal:

At 2 P. M. - Thermometer north side of house . 93º

Air over river at Hubbard’s Bath . . . 88º

Water six feet from shore and one foot deep . . 84½º

near surface in middle, where up to neck . . 83½º

at bottom in same place, pulling it up quickly 83½º

(Journal, 7:431)

3 July. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “4 P. M. - Air out-of-doors generally, 86°. On the sand between rails in the Deep Cut, 103°. Near the surface of Walden, fifteen rods from shore, 80°…” (Journal, 7:431).

4 July. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal:

To Boston on way to Cape Cod with C. [William Ellery Channing].

The schooner Melrose was advertised to make her first trip to Provincetown this morning at eight. We reached City Wharf at 8.30. “Well, Captain Crocker, how soon do you start?” “To-morrow morning at 9 o’clock.” “But you advertised to leave at 8 this morning.” “I know it but we are going to lay over till to-morrow.” ! ! ! So we spend the day in Boston, - at Athenaeum gallery, Alcott’s, [A. Bronson Alcott] and at the regatta. Lodged at Alcott’s, who is about moving to Walpole.

(Journal, 7:431-2)

5 July. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal:

In middle of the forenoon sailed in the Melrose…

Went to Gifford’s Union House (the old Tailor’s Inn) in Provincetown… Talked to Nahum Haynes, who is making fisherman’s boots there…

Talked with a man who has the largest patch of cranberries here, - ten acres, - and there are fifteen or twenty acres in all…

(Journal, 7:432)

6 July. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “Rode to North Truro very early in the stage or covered wagon, on the new road, which is just finished as far as East Harbor Creek… Walked from post-office to lighthouse… Board at James Small’s, the lighthouse, at $3.50 the week” (Journal, 7:432-3).

7 July. North Truro, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: C. [William Ellery Channing] says he saw in the catalogue of the Mercantile Library, New York, ‘Peter Thoreau on Book-keeping, London’…” (Journal, 7:433-4).

8 July. North Truro, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “Went over to Bay side. That pond at Pond Village three eighths of a mile long and densely filled with cat-tail flag seven feet high… S. [James Small] said that nineteen small yellow birds (probably goldfinches) were found dead under the light in the spring early” (Journal, 7:434-6).

Thoreau also writes to Harrison G. O. Blake:

There being no packet, I did not leave Boston till last Thursday, though I came down on Wednesday, and Channing with me. There is no public house here; but we are boarding with Mr. James Small, the keeper, in a little house attached to the Highland Lighthouse.

(The Correspondence of Henry David Thoreau, 377-8)

9 July. North Truro, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “Peterson brings word of blackfish. I went over and saw them… Uncle Same Small, half blind, sixty-six years old, remembers the building of the lighthouse and their prophecies about the bank wasting…” (Journal, 7:436-8).

10 July. North Truro, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “Walked to marsh head of East Harbor Creek…” (Journal, 7:438).

11 July. North Truro, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “A bar wholly made within three months; first exposed about the first of May; as I paced, now seventy-five rods long and six or eight rods wide at high water… Bank at lighthouse one hundred and seventy feet on the slope, perpendicular one hundred and ten…” (Journal, 7:438-9).

12 July. North Truro, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “Peterson says he dug one hundred and twenty-six dollars’ worth of small clams near his house in Truro one winter… Fog wets your beard till twelve o’clock…” (Journal, 7:439-41).

13 July. North Truro, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “Caught a box tortoise…” (Journal, 7:441).

14 July. North Truro, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “Go to Bay side… Found washed up, and saw swimming in the cove where we bathed, young mackerel two inches long… Uncle Sam [Sam Small] says there is most drift in the spring…” (Journal, 7:441-2).

Thoreau also writes to H. G. O. Blake:

You say that you hope I will excuse your frequent writing. I trust you will excuse my infrequent and curt writing until I am able to resume my old habits, which for three months I have been compelled to abandon. Methinks I am beginning to be better. I think to leave the Cape next Wednesday, and so shall not see you here; but i shall be glad to meet you in Concord, though I may not be able to go before the mast, in a boating excursion. This is an admirable place of coolness and sea-bathing and retirement. You must come prepared for cool weather and fogs.

P. S. - There is no mail up till Monday morning.

(The Correspondence of Henry David Thoreau, 378)

16 July. North Truro, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “Uncle Sam [Sam Small] tells of sea-turtles, which he regarded as natives, as big as a barrel, found on the marsh… The oak wood north of Rich’s or Dyer’s Hollow, say twenty years old, nine feet high…” (Journal, 7:442-3).

18 July. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “Leave Small’s… Came up in the Olata, Captain Freeman, a fine yacht. Little wind; were half past eight into candle-light on water…” (Journal, 7:443).

19 July. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal (Journal, 7:443).

21 July. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “A red-eyed vireo nest on a red maple on Island Neck, ten feet from ground…” (Journal, 7:443).

22 July. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “I hear that many of those balls have been found at Flint’s Pond within a few days…” (Journal, 7:444).

25 July. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “That piece of hollow kelp stem which I brought from the Cape is now shrivelled up and is covered and all white with crystals of salt a sixth of an inch long, like frost, on all sides…” (Journal, 7:444).

30 July. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “Saw the lightning on the telegraph battery and heard the shock about sundown from our window, - an intensely white light” (Journal, 7:444-6).

31 July. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “Mr. Derby, whose points of compass I go to regulate, tells me that he remembers when it rained for three weeks in haying time every day but Sundays. Rode to J. Farmer’s… Mr. Samuel Hoar tells me that about forty-eight years ago, or some two or three years after he came to Concord, where he had an office in the yellow store, there used to be a great many bullfrogs in the mill-pond…” (Journal, 7:444).

August. 1855.

Putnam’s Monthly Magazine publishes Thoreau’s travel essay on Cape Cod, unsigned

Early August. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Ralph Waldo Emerson writes in his journal: “Yet Washington, Adams, Quincy, Franklin, I would willingly adorn my hall with, & I will have daguerres of Alcott, [A. Bronson Alcott] Channing, [William Ellery Channing] Thoreau” (The Journals and Miscellaneous Notebooks of Ralph Waldo Emerson, 13:438)

1 August. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “P. M. - To Conantum by boat… Young Adams of Waltham tells me he has been moose-hunting at Chesuncook…” (Journal, 7:447).

2 August. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “Silas Hosmer tells me of his going a-spearing in Concord River up in Southboro once with some friends of his…” (Journal, 7:447-8)

3 August. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes to Dix and Edwards of Putnam’s Magazine:

Messrs Dix & Edwards

Your check for thirty-five dollars in payment for my article in the August number of Putnam’s Monthly has come duly to hand - for which accept the acknowledgments of

Yrs respectfully

Henry D. Thoreau

PS. Will you please forward the following note to the Editor

(The Correspondence of Henry David Thoreau, 379)

4 August. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “Just after bathing at the rock near the Island this afternoon, after sunset, I saw a flock of thousands of barn swallows and some white-bellied, and perhaps others, for it was too dark to distinguishe them…” (Journal, 7:448-9).

5 August. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal:

4 A. M. - On river to see swallows.

They are all gone; yet Fay saw them there last night after we passed. Probably they started very early. I asked Minott if he ever saw swallows migrating, not telling him what I had seen…

As I was paddling back at 6 A. M., saw, nearly half a mile off, a blue heron standing erect on the topmost twig of the great buttonwood on the street in front of Mr. Prichard’s house…

8 P. M. - On river to see swallows

(Journal, 7:449-50)

6 August. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “P. M. - Down river to Tarbell Hill with C. [William Ellery Channing]…” (Journal, 7:451-2).

7 August. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “To Tarbell Hill again with the Emersons, a-berrying. Very few berries this year” (Journal, 7:452).

8 August. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal (Journal, 7:452).

Thoreau also writes to George William Curtis:

Mr. Editor

Will you allow me to trouble you once more about my Cape Cod paper. I would like to substitute the accompanying sheets for about ten pages of my MS, in the Chapter called “The Beach Again,”…

(The Correspondence of Henry David Thoreau, 379)

9 August. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “River is risen and fuller, and the weeds at bathing-place washed away somewhat…” (Journal, 7:452).

Boston, Mass. The Christian Watchman and Reflector reprints an excerpt from the “Brute Neighbors” chapter of Walden.

ca. 10 August. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Ralph Waldo Emerson writes in his journal: “H. D. T. asks fairly enough, when is it that the man is to begin to provide for himself?... H. D. T. notices that Franklin & Richardson of Arctic Expeditions outlived their robuster comrades by more intellect” (The Journals and Miscellaneous Notebooks of Ralph Waldo Emerson, 13:454, 456).

10 August. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “P. M. - To Nagog. Middle of huckleberrying” (Journal, 7:452).

The [Massachusetts state] census is taken in Concord (Thoreau Research Newsletter 1, no. 3 (July 1990):1).

13 August. New York, N.Y. 1855.

The New York Evening Post publishes an article on Cape Cod natives’ reaction to Thoreau’s travel essays in Putnam’s Monthly Magazine.

17 August. New York, N.Y. 1855.

Horace Greeley writes to Thoreau:

Friend Thoreau,

There is a very small class in England who ought to know what you have written, and for whose sake I want a few copies of “Walden” sent to certain periodicals over the water - for instance, to

(The Correspondence of Henry David Thoreau, 380)

19 August. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal (Journal, 7:452).

22 August. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “I hear of some young barn swallows in the nest still in R. Rice’s barn, Sudbury” (Journal, 7:452).

24 August. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal (Journal, 7:452).

25 August. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “In Dennis’s field this side of the river, I count about one hundred fifty cowbirds…” (Journal, 7:453).

29 August. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “Saw two green-winged teal, somewhat pigeon-like, on a flat low rock in the Assabet” (Journal, 7:453).

31 August. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “First frost in our garden.Passed in boat within fifteen feet of a great bittern…” (Journal, 7:453).

August or September. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau drafts a letter to George William Curtis:

Mr Editor

You say that you had no idea that the Cape Cod paper “was to be expanded into a book”. It has not been expanded. It is no longer than it was when I sent you the first pages. I told you its length though you had not inquired about it. You say there is enough on hand for 4 numbers of your magazine. I have sent some 208 pages in all & you have printed about 137 of them in three numbers. I write this merely in self defence & not it induce you to print it.

Will you please send me the remainder of the MSS. by express.

Yrs.

Henry D. Thoreau

(MS, Henry David Thoreau collection. Harry Ransom Center, University of Texas at Austin)

September. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau’s father pays off the mortgage on the Texas House:

Know all men by these presents, That I Augustus Tuttle within named, in consideration of the full payment of the debt secured by the within mortgage by the within named John Thoreau the receipt whereof is hereby acknowledged do hereby release & quit - claim unto the said Thoreau the lands herein described and hold said thoreau free & acquit from all & every claim that I may have upon him by virtue of the within deed of Mortgagery the note secured thereby. Executed in presence of Geo. M. Brooks Middlesex ss Sept. , 1855. Then personally appeared Augustus Tuttle and acknowledged the foregoing instrument to be his free act and deed. Before me Geo. M. Brooks, Jus. of Peace Cambridge, Feb. 11, 1856. Rec’d & Recorded by Cabel Hayden, Reg.

(Thoreau Society Bulletin, no. 191 (Spring 1990):5-6)

2 September. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “Small locusts touched by frost, probably of the 31st August; nothing else in the woodland hollows” (Journal, 7:454).

4 September. Cambridge, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau checks out Voyages de la Nouvelle France occidentale, dicte Canada and Les voyages du sieur du Champlain Xainctogeois by Samuel de Champlain and The Antigone of Sophocles in Greek and English, with introduction and notes by John William Donaldson from Harvard College Library (Companion to Thoreau’s Correspondence, 291).

5 September. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “A stream of black ants a sixth of an inch long in the steep path beyond the Springs…” (Journal, 7:454).

7 September. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes to Horace Greeley:

Friend Greeley,

I have just returned from Boston where I showed your note to Ticknor. He says he will put the books into the next package which he sends to England. I did not send a single copy of Walden across the water, though Fields did two or three, to private persons alone I think.

Thank you for the suggestion.

I am glad to hear that you are on this side again - though I should not care if you had been detained somewhat longer, if so we could have had a few more letters from Clichy.

Yrs

Henry D. Thoreau

(The Correspondence of Henry David Thoreau, 381)

10 September. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “C. [William Ellery Channing] says he saw a painted tortoise a third grown, with a freshly killed minnow in his mouth as long as himself, eating it…” (Journal, 7:454).

11 September. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal (Journal, 7:454).

12 September. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal (Journal, 7:454).

14 September. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “P. M. - To Hubbard’s Close…” (Journal, 7:455).

15 September. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “P. M. - Up Assabet…” (Journal, 7:455).

Franklin B. Sanborn writes in his journal: “From that time [early in July] until the 25th August I was absent from Concord. Since I returned I have often met Mr E - [Ralph Waldo Emerson] either at his house or in the street and the other night at Mr Thoreau’s where there was a party” (Transcendental Climate, 1:228; MS, Pierpont Morgan Library).

16 September. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “As I go up the Walden road, at Breed’s, Hubbard, driving his cows through the weed-field, scares a woodchuck, which comes running through the wall and down the road, quite gray, and does not see me in the road a rod off. He stops a rod off when I move in front of him…” (Journal, 7:455-6).

17 September. Cambridge, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau checks out A memoir of Sebastian Cabot by Richard Biddle and Transactions of the American philosophical society, held at Philadelphia, for promoting useful knowledge from Harvard College Library (Companion to Thoreau’s Correspondence, 291).

Concord, Mass. Thoreau also copies two 16th century maps, entitled “Americae sive novi orbis, nova descriptio” and “Norumbega et Virginia 1597” (Henry David Thoreau papers. Special Collections, Concord (Mass.) Free Public Library)

19 September. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “Up Assabet…” (Journal, 7:456).

20 September. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “P. M. - Up main stream…” (Journal, 7:456).

21 September. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “Stopped at the old Hunt house with Ricketson [Daniel Ricketson] and C.[William Ellery Channing]…” (Journal, 7:456-7).

22 September. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “Many tortoise-scales about the river now…” (Journal, 7:457).

23 September. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “8 P. M. - I hear from my chamber a screech owl about Monroe’s house this bright moonlight night… A little wren-like (or female goldfinch) bird on a willow at Hubbard’s Causeway, eating a miller…” (Journal, 7:457-8).

New Bedford, Mass. Daniel Ricketson writes to Thoreau:

Dear Thoreau, -

Here am I at home again seated in my Shanty. My mind is constantly reverting to the pleasant little visit I made you, and so I thought I would sit down and write you.

(The Correspondence of Henry David Thoreau, 382-3)

Thoreau replies 27 September.

24 September. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “P. M. - Up river to Conantum with C. [William Ellery Channing]… Above Hubbard Bridge we see coming from the south in loose array some twenty apparently black ducks… Brought home quite a boat-load of fuel, - one oak rail, on which fishers had stood in wet ground at Bittern Cliff, a white pine rider (?) with a square hole in [it] made by a woodpecker anciently, so wasted the sap as to leave the knots projecting, several chestnut rails; and I obtained behind Cardinal Shore a large oak stump which I know to have been bleaching there for more than thirty years, with three great gray prongs sprinkled with lichens…” (Journal, 7:458-60).

25 September. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “Carry Aunt and Sophia a-berrying to Conantum… In evening went to Welch’s circus with C. [William Ellery Channing] Approaching, I perceived the peculiar scent which belongs to such places, a certain sourness in the air, suggesting trodden grass and cigar smoke…” (Journal, 7:460-1).

26 September. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “Went up Assabet for fuel…” (Journal, 7:462).

Thoreau also writes to Harrison G. O. Blake:

Mr. Blake, -

The other day I thought that my health must be better, - that I gave at last a sign of vitality, - because I experienced a slight chagrin. But I do not see how strength is to be got into my legs again. These months of feebleness have yielded few, if any, thoughts, though they have not passed without serenity, such as our sluggish Musketaquid suggests.

(The Correspondence of Henry David Thoreau, 383-5)

27 September. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “Collecting fuel again this afternoon up the Assabet…” (Journal, 7:462).

Thoreau also writes to Daniel Ricketson in reply to his letter of 23 September:

Friend Ricketson,

I am sorry that you were obliged to leave Concord without seeing more of it - its river and woods, and various pleasant walks, and its worthies. I assure you that I am none the worse for my walk with you, but on all accounts the better. Methinks I am regaining my health, but I would like to know first what it was that ailed me.

(The Correspondence of Henry David Thoreau, 385-6)

29 September. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal:

Go to Daniel Ricketson’s, New Bedford.

At Natural History Library saw Dr. Cabot, who says that he has heard either the hermit, or else the olivaceous, thrush sing, - very like a wood thrush, but softer…

Get out at Tarkiln Hill, or Head of the River Station, three miles this side of New Bedford. Recognized an old Dutch barn. R’s sons Arthur and Walton were just returning from tautog-fishing in Buzzard’s Bay, and I tasted one at supper. Singularly curved from snout to tail.

(Journal, 7:463-5)

New Bedford, Mass. Daniel Ricketson writes in his journal: “Clear fine day, growing gradually cooler. Henry D. Thoreau of Concord arrived about 1 1/2 o’clock” (Daniel Ricketson and His Friends, 281).

Boston, Mass. Ticknor & Fields writes to Thoreau:

H. D. Thoreau

In acc with W. D. Ticknor & Co.

Walden -

On hand last settlement 600 cops.

Sold since last acc 344

Remaining on hand 256

Sales 344 Cops @ 15 cents is $51.60

Dear Sir,

We regret for you sake as well as ours that a larger number of Walden has not been sold.

We enclose our check for Fifty-one 60/100 Dollars for sales to date.

Ever Respy

W. D. Ticknor & Co.

(The Correspondence of Henry David Thoreau, 387)

30 September. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal:

Rode with R. [Daniel Ricketson] to Sassacowens Pond, in the north part of New Bedford on the Taunton road, called also Toby’s Pond, from Jonathan Toby, who lives close by, who has a famous lawsuit about a road he built to Taunton years ago, which he has not got paid for…

Thence we proceeded to Long Pond, stopping at the south end, which is in Freetown, about eight miles from R’s. The main part is in Middleborough…

Went to a place easterly from the south end of the pond, called Joe’s Rock, just over the Rochester line… Went into an old deserted house, the Brady house, where two girls who had lived in the family of R. and his mother had been born and bred, their father Irish, and mother Yankee…

Arthur Ricketson showed me in his collection what was apparently (?) an Indian mortar, which had come from Sampson’s in Middleborough…

(Journal, 7:465-8)

New Bedford, Mass. Daniel Ricketson writes in his journal: “Rather unsettled, but quite a fine day. Visited with Thoreau Sassaquin and Long Ponds, also ‘Joe’s Rocks.’ Left about ten A. M. and returned about six P. M. in buggy wagon with old Charley, who performed his work with great spirit” (Daniel Ricketson and His Friends, 281).

1 October. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal:

P. M. - Rode to New Bedford and called on Mr. Green, a botanist, but had no interview with him. Walked through Mrs. Arnold’s arboretum. Rode to the beach at Clark’s Cove where General Gray landed his four thousand troops in the Revolution…

Returned by the new Point road, four miles long, and R. [Daniel Ricketson] said eighty feet wide (I should think from recollection more), and cost $50,000…

(Journal, 7:469-71)

2 October. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal:

Rode to “Sampson’s” in Middleborough, thirteen miles… Passed over a narrow neck between the two Quitticus ponds, after first visiting Great Quitticus on right of road and gathering clamshells there…

We soon left the main road and turned into a path on the right, leading to Assawampsett Pond, a mile distant…

Returning along the shore, we saw a man and woman putting off in a small boat, the first we had seen…

We left our horse and buggy at John Kingman’s and walked by Sampson’s to a hill called King Phillip’s Lookout, from which we got a good view of Assawampsett and Long Ponds…

(Journal, 7:471-80)

New Bedford, Mass. Daniel Ricketson writes in his journal:

Cloudy and windy. Left home at 8 A. M. with H. D. Thoreau and visited several of the Middleboro Ponds, spending most part of the day among them. Home at 6 1/2, dark cloudy evening. Spent an hour on the shore by Betty’s Neck, so called; found the rock with the footmark on it, though not as distinct as when I visited it in 1847.

(Daniel Ricketson and His Friends, 281)

3 October. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal:

Walked along shore of Acushnet looking for shells…

P. M. - Rode to see some old houses in Fairhaven…

Visited the studio in Fairhaven of a young marine painter, built over the water, the dashing and gurgling of it coming up through a grating in the floor. He was out, but we found there painting Van Best, a well-known Dutch painter of marine pieces whom he has attracted to him. He talked and looked particularly Dutchman-like. Then visited For Nobscot on the rocky point.

(Journal, 7:480-2)

England. Thomas Cholmondeley writes to Thoreau:

My dear Thoreau,

I have been busily collecting a next of Indian Books for you, which, accompanied by this not Mr [John] Chapman will send you - & you will find them at Boston carriage-paid (mind that, & don’t let them cheat you) at Crosby & Nichols.

(The Correspondence of Henry David Thoreau, 387-8; MS, Henry David Thoreau papers. Henry W. and Albert A. Berg Collection of English and American Literature, New York Public Library)

See entry 26 October.

East Bridgewater, Mass. William Allen writes to Thoreau (Studies in the American Renaissance 1982, 365; MS, private owner).

4 October. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “Rode to Westport, where R. [Daniel Ricketson] wished to consult the Proprietors’ Records of Dartmouth to find the names, etc., of his ancestors… Returning, lunched by Westport Pond in Dartmouth, said to contain sixty acres but to [be] about two feet deep…” (Journal, 7:482).

Daniel Ricketson writes in his journal:

Clear and fine most of the day; shower latter part afternoon. Rode to Westport with Thoreau and examined the old Proprietor’s Records of the old township of Dartmouth for the names of my ancestors.

Returning stopped upon the shore of Westport Pond in a grove of young oaks, where ourselves and old Charley ate our dinner, arriving home about 4 1/2 P. M. Showery evening.

(Daniel Ricketson and His Friends, 282)

5 October. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “Rode to Plymouth with R. [Daniel Ricketson], in his buggy. In the north part of Rochester, went into an old uninhabited house which once belonged to John Shearman… Lodged at Olney’s (the old Hedge) House in Plymouth” (Journal, 7:483-4).

Daniel Ricketson writes in his journal:

Clear and fine, warm for the season. Left home this morning at 8 o’clock with Henry D. Thoreau, who has been on a visit with us at Brooklawn during the past week, for Plymouth; went by way of Middleborough, crossing Long Pond into Carver; took our dinner on the way, under some pines by the wayside, where we also baited our horse, “Billy,” upon oats. Took tea at house of B. M. Watson, a friend of Thoreau, who has a nursery near Plymouth, a very pleasant place, and nice people, - Mr. and Mrs. W. and the mother of Mr. W. and three young children. Rode into Plymouth after tea, and stopped for the night at Olyn’s on Leyden Street.

(Daniel Ricketson and His Friends, 282-3)

6 October. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “Return to Concord via Natural History Library…” (Journal, 7:484-5).

Daniel Ricketson writes in his journal: “Unsettled, rain in the evening. Left Plymouth at 11½ A. M., and arrived home much fatigued about 5 P. M. My friend, H. D. Thoreau, left for Boston and home” (Daniel Ricketson and His Friends, 283).

8 October. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “On river…” (Journal, 7:485).

10 October. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “A young man has just shown me a small duck which he shot in the river from my boat… Mr. William Allen, now here, tells me that when, some years ago, a stream near his house, emptying into the Taunton River, was drained, he found a plant on the bottom very similar to a sponge - of the same form and color - and say six inches wide” (Journal, 7:485).

12 October. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal:

P. M. - Up Assabet…

Carried home a couple of rails which I fished out of the bottom of the river and left on the bank to dry about three weeks ago. One was a chestnut which I have noticed for some years on the bottom of the Assabet, just above the spring on the east side, in a deep hole. It looked as if it had been there a hundred years. It was so heavy that C. [William Ellery Channing] and I had as much as we could do to lift it, covered with mud, on to the high bank…

(Journal, 7:485-7)

Thoreau also writes to Daniel Ricketson:

Mr Ricketson,

I fear that you had a lonely and disagreeable ride back to New Bedford, through the Carver woods & so on, - perhaps in the rain too, and I am in part answerable for it.

(The Correspondence of Henry David Thoreau, 388-90)

Ricketson replies 13 October.

13 October. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “P. M. - To Conantum…” (Journal, 7:487).

New Bedford, Mass. Daniel Ricketson writes two letters to Thoreau:

Dear Thoreau, -

Your long lost letter came to hand last Monday, and I concluded that you had safely arrived in Concord and had forwarded it yourself.

Dear Thoreau, -

I wrote a few line to you this morning before breakfast, which I took to the post-office, but since, I have received yours of yesterday, which rather changes my mind as to going to Concord. I thank you for your kindness in procuring for me information concerning Gilpin’s work, which I shall endeavor to procure.

(The Correspondence of Henry David Thoreau, 391-2)

Thoreau replies 16 October.

14 October. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “P. M. - Up Assabet…” (Journal, 7:488).

15 October. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “P. M. - Go to look for white pine cones, but see none…” (Journal, 7:488-9).

16 October. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “P. M. - To white pine grove beyond Beck Stow’s… I look at a grass-bird on a wall in the dry Great Fields…” (Journal, 7:489-90).

Thoreau also writes to Ricketson in reply to his letters of 13 October:

Friend Ricketson,

I have got both of your letters at once. You must not think Concord so barren a place when Channing is away. There are the river & fields left yet, and I, though ordinarily a man of business, should have some afternoons and evenings to spend with you, I trust; that is: if you could stand so much of me.

(The Correspondence of Henry David Thoreau, 393; MS, Abernethy collection of American Literature. Middlebury College Special Collections, Middlebury, Vt.)

Ricketson replies 18 October.

17 October. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “P. M. - Up river…” (Journal, 7:490-1).

Thoreau also writes to Charles Sumner (MS, Whitewall collection [ ? ], Massachusetts Historical Society, Boston, Massachusetts).

18 October. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “P.M. - To Great Meadows to observe the hummocks left by the ice. They are digging the pond at the new cemetery. I go by Peter’s path…” (Journal, 7:492-7).

Thoreau writes in his journal on 20 October: “On the 18th I found the Great Meadows wet, yet Beck Stow’s was remarkably dry. Last summer the case was reversed” (Journal, 7:501).

New Bedford, Mass. Daniel Ricketson writes to Thoreau in reply to his letter of 16 October:

Dear Thoreau, -

I received yours of the 16th inst. yesterday. I am very sorry that you did not conclude at once to come to Brooklawn and finish the visit which you so unceremoniously curtailed. But I cannot release you on so light grounds. I thought that you were a man of leisure.

(The Correspondence of Henry David Thoreau, 394)

19 October. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal:

P. M. - To Pine Hill for chestnuts…

I see Mrs. Riordan and her little boy coming out of the woods with their bundles of fagots on their backs…

Therien tells me, when I ask if he has seen or heard any large birds lately, that he heard a cock crow this morning, a wild one, in the woods…

Walking in E.’s [Ralph Waldo Emerson] path west of the pond…

Talking with [Frank H. T.] Bellew this evening about Fourierism and communities, I said that I suspected any enterprise in which two were engaged together…

(Journal, 7:497-501)

20 October. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “P. M. - To Nawshawtuct…” (Journal, 7:501-3).

21 October. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “I have been thinking over with Father the old houses in this street… P. M. - Up Assabet…” (Journal, 7:503-8).

22 October. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “P. M. - To Fair Haven via Hubbard’s Grove… In Potter’s pasture, as you go to to Fair Haven Hill, where he had grain in the summer, the great mullein leaves are strewn as thick as turnips that have been sown…” (Journal, 7:508-12).

24 October. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “Looked at the old picture of Concord at Mrs. Brook’s, - she says by a Minott, and uncle (or grand-uncle?) of hers…” (Journal, 7:515-7).

25 October. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “P. M. - I row up the river, which has risen eight or nine inches…” (Journal, 7:517).

26 October. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “P. M. - To Conantum… I return by the way of the mocker-nut trees…” (Journal, 7:517-20).

London, England. John Chapman writes to Thoreau:

Dear Sir,

Enclosed is the list of book[s] referred to in Mr Thos Cholmondeley’s note. The parcel I have forwarded to Messrs Crosby Nichols & Co of Boston, and have requested them to deliver it to you free of all expense. As Mr Cholmondeley has gone to the East I should be glad of a note from you acknowledging the receipt of the parcel.

(The Correspondence of Henry David Thoreau, 395-6; MS, Henry David Thoreau papers (Series IV). Henry W. and Albert A. Berg Collection of English and American Literature, New York Public Library)

See entry 2 November. Thoreau receives the parcel 30 November.

27 October. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “P. M. - A-chestnutting down the Turnpike…” (Journal, 7:520-1).

28 October. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal:

P. M. - By boat to Leaning Hemlocks…

As I paddle under the Hemlock bank this cloudy afternoon, about 3 o’clock, I see a screech owl sitting on the edge of a hollow hemlock stump about three feet high, at the base of a large hemlock. It sits with its head drawn in, eyeing me, with eyes partly open, about twenty feet off… After watching it ten minutes from the boat, I landed two rods above, and, stealing quietly up behind the hemlock, though from the windward, I looked carefully around it, and, to my surprise, saw the owl still sitting there. So I sprang round quickly, with my arm outstretched, and caught it in my hand. It was so surprised that it offered no resistance at first, only glared at me in mute astonishment with eyes as big as saucers. But ere long it began to snap its bill, making quite a noise, and, as I rolled it up in my handkerchief and put it in my pocket, it bit my finger slightly. I soon took it out of my pocket and, tying my handkerchief, left it on the bottom of the boat. So I carried it home and made a small cage in which to keep it, for a night.

(Journal, 7:521-4)

29 October. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “P. M. - Up Assabet. Carried my owl to the hill again. Had to shake him out of the box, for he did not go of his own accord…” (Journal, 7:524-7).

30 October. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “Going to the new cemetery, I see that the scarlet oak leaves have still some brightness; perhaps the latest of the oaks” (Journal, 7:527).

New York, N.Y. Kennedy Furlong writes to Thoreau (Studies in the American Renaissance 1982, 366; MS, private owner).

31 October. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau surveys land for the Mill Dam Company (A Catalog of Thoreau’s Surveys in the Concord Free Public Library, 9-10; Henry David Thoreau papers. Special Collections, Concord (Mass.) Free Public Library).

November. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau continues surveying for the Mill Dam Company (A Catalog of Thoreau’s Surveys in the Concord Free Public Library, 9-10; Henry David Thoreau papers. Special Collections, Concord (Mass.) Free Public Library).

1 November. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “P. M. - Up Assabet, a-wooding… Returning in the twilight, I see a bat over the river” (Journal, 8:3-5).

2 November. London, England. 1855.

John Chapman writes to Thoreau:

H. D. Thoreau Esqr,

Dear Sir

The parcel of books advised by me on the 26th of October, as having been sent by the “Asia” Steamer, from Liverpool, has been shut out of that vessell on account of her cargo being complete several days previous to her sailing. Under these circumstances I have therefore ordered the parcel to be shipped by the “Canada” of the 10th proximo, and trust that you will not experience any inconvenience from this unavoidable delay -

I am, dear Sir,

Yours very truly

John Chapman

A D Ferguson

I have written to Messrs Crosby Nichols & Co, Boston, respecting your package -

(The Correspondence of Henry David Thoreau, 396-7; MS, Henry David Thoreau papers (Series IV). Henry W. and Albert A. Berg Collection of English and American Literature, New York Public Library)

4 November. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “P. M. - To Hill by Assabet… Gathered a bag of wild apples… Returned, and went up the main stream…” (Thoreau, 8:5-7).

5 November. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “P. M. - To foot of Fair Haven Hill via Hubbard’s Grove… Walked through Potter’s Swamp…” (Journal, 8:7-12)

6 November. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “A mizzling rain from the east drives me home from my walk… I can hardly resist the inclination to collect driftwood, to collect a great load of various kinds, which will sink my boat low in the water, and paddle or sail slowly home with it” (Journal, 8:12).

7 November. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “P. M. - Up Assabet…” (Journal, 8:13-15).

8 November. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “A quite warm and foggy morning. I can sit with my window open and no fire…” (Journal, 8:15-16).

Thoreau begins writing a letter to Thomas Cholmondeley, which he sends 1 December (The Correspondence of Henry David Thoreau, 397-9).

9 November. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “7 A. M. - Grass white and stiff with frost. 9 A. M. - With Blake [H. G. O. Blake] up Assabet…” (Journal, 8:16-19).

After 9 November. 1855.

Crosby & Nichols [?] writes to Thoreau:

De Sir,

The parcel of books referred to in your letter of the 9th has not yet reached us.

We suppose that our case whi contained it was left behind at Liverpool and shall expect it by next Steamer

(The Correspondence of Henry David Thoreau, 400; MS, Houghton Library, Harvard University, Cambridge, Mass.)

10 November. Nantucket, Mass. 1855.

Edward W. Gardiner writes to Thoreau (Studies in the American Renaissance 1989, 366; MS, private owner).

11 November. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “P. M. - Up Assabet…” (Journal, 8:19-22).

13 November. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “In mid-forenoon (10.45), seventy or eighty geese, in three harrows successively smaller, flying southwest - pretty well west - over the house… P. M. - To Cardinal Shore. Going over Swamp Bridge Brook at 3 P. M., I saw in the pond by the roadside, a few rods before me, the sun shining bright, a mink swimming, the whole length of his back out…” (Journal, 8:22-3).

14 November. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal:

Minott hears geese to-day.

Heard to-day in my chamber, about 11 A. M., a singular sharp crackling sound by the window, which made me think of the snapping of an insect (with its wings, or striking something). It was produced by one of three small pitch pine cones which I gathered on the 7th, and which lay in the sun on the window-sill…

I was remarking to-day to Mr. Rice on the pleasantness of this November thus far, when he remarked that he remembered a similar season fifty-four years ago…

P. M. - Up Assabet with Sophia…

(Journal, 8:23-4)

15 November. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “The river is rising. I see a spearer’s light to-night” (Journal, 8:24).

16 November. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “Minott speaks of the last fortnight as good weather to complete the harvesting… A part of to-day and yesterday I have been making shelves for my Oriental books, which I hear to-day are now on the Atlantic in Canada. Mr. Rice asked me to-night if I knew how hard a head a goat had…” (Journal, 8:25).

17 November. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “Just after dark the first snow is falling… It is interesting to me to talk with Rice, he lives so thoroughly and satisfactorily to himself… Saw Goodwin this morning returning from the river with minks, one trapped, the other shot, and half a dozen muskrats” (Journal, 8:26-8).

18 November. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “It [the snow] clears up at noon, and at 2 P. M. I go to Fair Haven Hill via Hubbard’s Grove. As I sat in the house, I was struck with the brightness and heat of the sun reflected from this our first snow…” (Journal, 8:28-31).

19 November. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “Minott had two cats on his knee…” (Journal, 8:31-3)

20 November. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal (Journal, 8:33).

24 November. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal (Journal, 8:33-4).

26 November. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “Bottom of boat covered with ice. The ice next the shore bore me and my boat” (Journal, 8:34).

27 November. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “P. M. - By river to [Jacob] Farmer’s. He gave me the head of a gray rabbit which his boy had snared…” (Journal, 8:34-6).

30 November. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal:

River skimmed over behind Dodd’s and elsewhere. Got in my boat. River remained iced over all day.

This evening I received [Thomas] Cholmondeley’s gift of Indian books, forty-four volumes in all, which came by Canada, reaching Boston on the morning of the 24th. Left Liverpool the 10th.

Goodwin and Farmer think that a dog will not ouch the dead body of a mink, it smells so strongly…

I asked Aunt L. [Louisa Dunbar] to-night why Scheeter Potter was so called. She said, because his neighbors regarded him so small a man that they said in jest that it was his business to make mosquitoes’ bills. He was accused of catching his neighbor’s hens in a trap and eating them. But he was crazy.

William Wheeler says that he went a-spearing on the 28th (night before Thanksgiving) and, besides pouts and pickerel, caught two great suckers…

(Journal, 8:36-7)

1 December. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau sends a letter to Thomas Cholmondeley that he began writing 8 November:

Dear Cholmondeley,

I must endeavor to thank you for your magnificent, your princely gift to me. My father, with his hand in his pocket, and an air of mystery and importance about him suggests that I have another letter from Mr. Cholmondeley, and hands me a ship letter. I open eagerly upon a list of books (made up in one parcel) for Henry D. &c &c”; and my eyes glances down a column half as long as my arm, where I already detect some eminences which I had seen or heard of, standing out like the peaks of the Himalayas.

(The Correspondence of Henry David Thoreau, 397-9; MS, Henry David Thoreau papers (Series III). Henry W. and Albert A. Berg Collections of English and American Literature, New York Public Library)

3 December. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “Hear and see, of birds, only a tree sparrow in the willows on the Turnpike. Met Mr. Goodwin going out with his gun…” (Journal, 8:38).

4 December. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “Melvin says that he shot a sheldrake once in the act of swallowing a perch seven or eight inches long. He had got nothing to-day, for he forgot his caps. A pleasant day and yet no snow nor ice. The younger osiers on Shattuck’s row do shine” (Journal, 8:38-9).

New Bedford, Mass. Daniel Ricketson writes to Thoreau (Studies in the American Renaissance 1982, 399; MS, private owner)

6 December. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “10 P. M. - Hear geese going over” (Journal, 8:39).

8 December. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal:

This afternoon I go to the woods down the railroad, seeking the society of some flock of small birds, or some squirrel, but in vain…

Met Therien coming from Lincoln on the railroad. He says that he carried a cat from Jacob Baker’s to Riordan’s shanty in a bag at night, but she ran home again…

Jacob Farmer brought me the head of a mink to-night and took tea here.

(Journal, 8:39-41)

9 December. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “At 8.30 a fine snow begins to fall… And now it is falling thus all the land over…” (Journal, 8:41).

Thoreau also writes to Harrison G. O. Blake:

Mr. Blake, -

Thank you! thank you for going a-wooding with me, - and enjoying it, - for being warmed by my wood fire. I have indeed enjoyed it much alone. I see how I might enjoy it yet more with company, - how we might help each other to live. And to be admitted to nature’s hearth costs nothing. None is excluded, but excludes himself. You have only to push aside the curtain.

(The Correspondence of Henry David Thoreau, 400-2)

10 December. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “To Cambridge” (Journal, 8:41).

Thoreau also checks out The history of the American Indian by James Adair, History of the mission of the United Brethren among the Indians in North America by George Henry Loskiel, and The journal of Christian Frederick Post, in his journey from Philadelphia to the Ohio from Harvard College Library (Companion to Thoreau’s Correspondence, 291).

11 December. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “P. M. - To Holden Swamp, Conantum. For the first time I wear gloves, but I have not walked early this season…” (Journal, 8:41-5).

13 December. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “Sanborn [Franklin B. Sanborn] tells me that he was waked up a few nights ago in Boston, about midnight, by the sound of a flock of geese passing over the city, probably about the same night I heard them here…” (Journal, 8:45-6)

14 December. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “P. M. - To Pink Azalea Woods…” (Journal, 8:46-50).

15 December. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “Sometimes when I am going through the Deep Cut, I look up and see half a dozen black crows flitting silently across in front and ominously eying down… The snow turned to rain, and this afternoon I walk in it down the railroad and through the woods” (Journal, 8:50-1).

16 December. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “Steady, gentle, warm rain all forenoon, and mist and mizzling in the afternoon, when I go round by Abel Hosmer’s and back by the railroad… As we go over the bridge, admire the reflection of the trees and houses from the smooth open water over the channel, where the ice has been dissolved by the rain” (Journal, 8:51-2).

17 December. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “9.30 A. M. - To Hill…” (Journal, 8:52).

18 December. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “Saw to-day a dark-colored spider of the very largest kind on ice, - the mill-pond at E. Wood’s in Acton. J. Farmer says that he once tried to kill a cat by taking her by the legs and striking her head against a stone, but she made off, and in a week was about again, apparently as well as ever, and he did not meddle with her again” (Journal, 8:52-3).

20 December. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “P. M. - To Hubbard’s skating meadow…” (Journal, 8:53-4).

21 December. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “Going to the post-office at 9 A.M . this very pleasant morning, I hear and see tree sparrows on Wheildon’s pines… P. M. - Via Hubbard’s Grove and river to Fair Haven Pond. Return by Andromeda Ponds…” (Journal, 8:54-6).

22 December. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “P. M. - Warm rain and frost coming out and muddy walking…” (Journal, 8:56-7).

New Bedford, Mass. Daniel Ricketson writes to Thoreau (Concord Saunterer 19, no. 1 (July 1987):25-6; MS, private owner). Thoreau replies 25 December.

23 December. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “P. M. - To Conantum-End…” (Journal, 8:57-60).

25 December. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “9 A. M. - Snow driving almost horizontally from the northeast and fast whitening the ground, and with it the first tree sparrows I have noticed in the yard. It turns partly to rain and hail at midday” (Journal, 8:60).

Thoreau also writes to Daniel Ricketson in reply to his letter of 23 December:

Friend Ricketson,

Though you have not shown your face here, I trust that you did not interpret my last note to my disadvantage. I remember that, among other things, I wished to break it to you that, owing to engagements, I should not be able to show you so much attention as I could wish, or as you had shown to me. - How we did scour over the country!

(The Correspondence of Henry David Thoreau, 402-3)

26 December. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal:

The sun comes out at 9 A. M. and lights up the ice-incrusted trees, but it is pretty warm and the ice rapidly melts.

I go to Walden via the almshouse and up the railroad…

Now, at 10 A. M., there blows a very strong wind from the northwest, and it grows cold apace…

4 P. M. - Up railroad…

(Journal, 8:60-4)

Boston, Mass. Ralph Waldo Emerson writes to Thoreau:

Dear Henry, -

It is so easy, at a distance, or when going to a distance, to ask a great favor which one would haggle at near by. I have been ridiculously hindered, and my book is not out, and I must go westward. There is one chapter yet to go to the printer; perhaps two, if I decide to send the second. I must ask you to correct the proofs of this or these chapters.

(The Correspondence of Henry David Thoreau, 403-4)

27 December. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “Recalled this evening, with the help of Mother, the various houses (and towns) in which I have lived and some various events of my life…” (Journal, 8:64-7).

28 December. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “P. M. - Hollowell place and back near Hubbard’s Bridge. To-day and yesterday the boys have been skating on the crust in the streets, - it is so hard, the show being very shallow…” (Journal, 8:67).

29 December. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal:

Down railroad to Andromeda Ponds… Am surprised to find eight or ten acres of Walden still open… Jonas Potter tells me that [he] has known the crust on snow two feet deep to be as strong as this, so that he could drive his sled anywhere over the walls…

(Journal, 8:67-9)

30 December. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal:

About 9 A. M. it [the snow] ceases, and the sun comes out, and shines dazzlingly over the white surface…

P. M. - Across the river and over Hill…

Looking up over the top of the hill now, southwest, at 3.30 P. M., I see a few mother-o’-pearl tints…

Recrossing the river behind Dodd’s, now at 4 P. M., the sun quite low, the open reach just below is quite green…

(Journal, 8:70-4)

31 December. Concord, Mass. 1855.

Thoreau writes in his journal: “Now, at 8.30 A. M., I see, collected over the low grounds behind Mr. Cheney’s, a dense fog (over a foot of snow), which looks dusty like smoke by contrast with the snow… 9 A. M. - To Partridge Glade…At ten the frost leaves are nearly all melted…” (Journal, 8:74-5).




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