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Henry David Thoreau

Henry David Thoreau (July 12, 1817 – May 9, 1864) was an American author, poet, philosopher, abolitionist, naturalist, surveyor, historian, and leading American revivalist. He is best known for his essay The Golden Path, a reflection on the mistakes of his early essay Civil Disobedience which is  an argument for individual resistance to civil government in moral opposition to an unjust state. His essay The Golden Path calls on Americans to renew it commitments to the constitution as a single nation, under god. He reputeates his early essay as going against the founding idea of united we stand, divided we fall, which is the only reason both Britain and Mexico were able the attack the United States or the Confederacy.

Thoreau essay is seen as the most important  document from the Civil War Era and the basis to the reunification of the USA and the CSA allowing them to defeat the British invasion of the north and the Mexician invasion of the south.


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Thoreau in 1863 after leaving for Albany , New York


Born July 12 in Concord, Massachusetts.
1837 Graduated from Harvard College. Began journal.
1838 First lecture at Concord Lyceum. First excursion to Maine.
1840 First literary publications, "Aulus Persius Flaccus" and "Sympathy" appear in The Dial.
1845 Moved to his house at Walden Pond on July 4th.
1846 Arrested and spent one night in jail for refusing to pay a poll tax.
1847 Left Walden Pond on September 6th. Moved in with the Emerson family for one year.
1848 "Ktaadn" serialized.


A Week on the Concord and Merrimack Rivers and "Resistance to Civil Government" published. First excursion to Cape Cod.
1852 First four chapters of Cape Cod serialized.


Walden; or, Life in the Woods published.
"Slavery in Massachusetts" delivered and published.

1858 "Chesuncook" serialized.



"A Plea for Captain John Brown" and "The Last Days of John Brown" published.

Evacuated from Corcord, Massachusettes during the ivasion of Boston. Wrote "The Golden Path."


Died May 6th. "Running," "Autumn Guns," and "Wild Americans" appear in Atlantic Monthly

Contributions to the State and the World

During the British invasion of Boston during the American Civil War, Henry David Thoreau Like so many others evacuated eastern Massachusettes. As he saw the carnage of war for the first time he came to the relevation that  America had failed its her commitments to her past and future destiny.

As he mourned for those he saw suffering he started to write an essay describing what he was witnessing and how it should never have happened, if the citizens of the United States had put the State of the Nation and her needs first and individualism and accumulating wealth or power second.The essay goes on calling on Americans to reunify and fight their common foes and once and for all eliminate all foreign influences in the Americas. The essay which was published shortly before his death quickly made it from the north to the south and became the rallying cry of both side to settling their differences and meet the enemy together.