by Henry David Thoreau
Walden Visions of America: Antebellum Period Quotes
How we cite our quotes: (Essay.Paragraph)
What do we want most to dwell near to? Not to many men surely, the depot, the post-office, the bar-room, the meeting-house, the school-house, the grocery, Beacon Hill, or the Five Points, where men most congregate, but to the perennial source of our life (Solitude.5)
This statement gives us a sense of what the main centers of town life were like in the 19th century, including the railroad depot, and such notable urban areas as Beacon Hill in Boston and Five Points in New York City. What would this list look like if it were written today? Starbucks would definitely be on there, that's for sure.
[R]unaway slaves with plantation manners, who listened from time to time, like the fox in the fable, as if they heard the hounds a-baying on their track, and looked at me beseechingly (Visitors.16)
Thoreau describes the runaway slaves in Concord sympathetically. He truly feels for them. What's more, he put this sympathy into action, by protesting the law that dictated that any slaves caught in the North had to be returned to their owners in the South.
As I drew a still fresher soil about the rows with my hoe, I disturbed the ashes of unchronicled nations who in primeval years lived under these heavens (Bean-Field.6)
Evidence of Native American life is everywhere, reminding us that this area once sustained a community wiped out by European colonization.