Henry David Thoreau

1817–1862
Henry David Thoreau
Henry David Thoreau, who wrote his famous “Civil Disobedience” essay after spending a night in jail for refusing to pay a poll tax, was an outspoken abolitionist and served as a conductor on the Underground Railroad in his hometown of Concord, Massachusetts. For two years, he lived simply and deliberately in a small, hand-built cabin near Walden Pond. The transcendentalist philosopher Ralph Waldo Emerson, a close friend, owned the land. Thoreau died at 44 of a flare-up of tuberculosis, which he had contracted as a student at Harvard University.

What People are Saying

"With a $20,000 prize, I never imagined POL being this much fun. The competitions were more about meeting and talking with the other competitors, having a great time and enjoying the poetry. I also never knew I could find so much in myself just from reciting poems."
Elliot Davidson
2015 PA POL Champion