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Francis Parkman

Uploaded by teederdo on Jun 27, 2001

Many people regarded nature and the world with their eyes only. However, some perceived the world through all their senses. They stopped and listened to what appeared before them, and then they experienced their surroundings. One person who looked beyond his first impression was Francis Parkman. Parkman’s love for history and nature drove him to overcome his physical weaknesses. He pursued his passion with the diligence of a soldier and brought a different perspective to nineteenth century history.

Francis Parkman traveled across North America and obtained firsthand experiences about nature, hardships, and the unknown. He developed his quest for knowledge as a child on the Hall Farm in Quincy, Massachusetts. Parkman battled the degenerating loss of his health, the loss of only son, and the loss of his wife. He compiled his wisdom in letters, journals, articles, and books; and Parkman left a legacy unmatched by historians of his time.

On September 16, 1823, the union of Reverend Francis Parkman and Caroline Hall Parkman produced a son, Francis Parkman, Jr. The Reverend and Mrs. Parkman, his second wife, resided in Somerset Place, Boston, and the family tree consisted of ministers, merchants, philanthropists, and brave Indian fighters. The Parkman family spent winters in Boston and summers at the Hall farm in Quincy, Massachusetts. The farm in Quincy provided Parkman with a vast area of rocks and forestry to explore, since it happened to be located adjacent to the Five Mile Woods, later renamed the Middlesex Fells. He encountered many illnesses in Boston, and his parents decided to leave him in his grandparents’ care on the farm. On the farm he collected rocks, trapped animals, shot arrows at birds, and conducted experiments. He wrote about himself and his experiments in the third person just as his peer, Henry Adams, regularly did. Parkman returned home to his parents at age thirteen to begin private schooling.

Parkman attended Gideon Thayer’s famous private school, Chauncey Hall, in order to prepare for college at Harvard. He entered Harvard in August 1940, and he excelled academically, physically, and socially. In addition to his regular studies, Parkman joined several school clubs and helped found another one. In July 19, 1841, during summer break from Harvard, he and Daniel Denison Slade took a trip to explore the White Mountains located in New Hampshire and Maine. Parkman, aware of an avalanche that killed nine in 1826, eagerly climbed the unstable flume close...

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Uploaded by:   teederdo

Date:   06/27/2001

Category:   Biographies

Length:   7 pages (1,570 words)

Views:   1488

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