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John Greenleaf Whittier

WHITTIER, John Greenleaf. b. Haverhill, Massachusetts, 17 December 1807; d. Hampton Falls, New Hampshire, 7 September 1892. He was the son of a poor farming family, and initially he had little education. But he read widely, especially his father’s (very few) Quaker books; and he was influenced by the poetry of Robert Burns*, introduced to him by his teacher Joshua Coffin. In 1825 he wrote a poem, ‘The Exile’s Departure’, which was published by William Lloyd Garrison, editor of the Newburyport Free Press, in 1826 (in Whittier's Poetical Works it is printed at the end, among ‘Early and Uncollected Verses’). Garrison encouraged him to get an education, and he attended Haverhill Academy for a...

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