Ralph Waldo Emerson doll, photo courtesy of Uneek Doll Designs

The Ralph Waldo Emerson House

The stately federal-style Emerson House in Concord honors the life and memory of Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803-1882), a major author and influencer of the Transcendentalism movement of the 19th century. The property is registered as a National Historic Landmark.

The Emerson House at 28 Cambridge Turnpike has been open to visitors since 1930, except in the winter months.

About Concord

Concord has a population of approximately 18,000 residents, which may seem modest to some but bear in mind that it was only approximately 2,300 in the mid-19th century. From this small community (by today’s standards) sprung a major philosophical and educational movement that powerfully impacted many of the leading writers of the day, including Henry David Thoreau and Louisa May Alcott.

Read more about Henry David Thoreau, who was mentored by Ralph Waldo Emerson, here: Henry David Thoreau in Massachusetts. Read about Louisa May Alcott, whose father founded a school for Transcendentalism at the Alcott’s homestead, here: Louisa May Alcott in Massachusetts.

The remains of Emerson, Thoreau, and Alcott are buried at Sleepy Hollow Cemetery in central Concord.

What to Read

The complete works of the writer can be found here: https://www.rwe.org.

Popular Quotations

“Trust thyself” was Emerson’s motto, expressing belief in intuition as a guiding force. His Essays (1841) are where readers can find out more about his philosophy at https://emersoncentral.com/texts.

The following are more beloved quotations of Emerson:

“A friend is a person before whom I may think aloud.”

“Sorrow looks back, Worry looks around, Faith looks up.”

“What you do speaks so loudly that I cannot hear what you say.”

“Every artist was first an amateur.”

“You cannot do a kindness too soon, for you never know how soon it will be too late.”

On the Path

The Emerson House is the final stop on Massachusetts Author Adventures Trail Part 3.

Patricia Smart