Embrace Emily Dickinson

Tour local landmarks associated with poet Emily Dickinson.

Emily Dickinson mural outside Rao's Coffee, by Trace Meek

Emily Dickinson mural outside Rao’s Coffee

Amherst offers a unique opportunity to become better acquainted with the great 19th Century poet, Emily Dickinson, who spent her entire life here. An excellent way to learn about her life and legacy is to take a walking tour of the numerous Dickinson-related sites in the center of town.


View Emily Dickinson in Amherst in a larger map

Emily Dickinson in Amherst

Emily Dickinson in Amherst

  1. Dickinson Homestead, 280 Main St. – Emily Dickinson’s birthplace and home for most of her life, it is now headquarters of the Emily Dickinson Museum which is owned and operated by Amherst College.
  2. The Evergreens, 214 Main St. – Home of Austin Dickinson, Emily’s brother, The Evergreens was built in 1856 and has been preserved to remain as it was in the poet’s lifetime. It is part of the Emily Dickinson Museum complex.
  3. West Cemetery, Triangle St. – Emily Dickinson was buried in West Cemetery on May 19, 1886, alongside the graves of her parents, Edward and Emily Norcross Dickinson.
  4. Wildwood Cemetery, 70 Strong St. – Austin Dickinson helped to establish and design Wildwood Cemetery, and was buried there in 1895.
  5. Jones Library, 43 Amity St. – The Jones began accumulating Dickinson material in 1921. The Emily Dickinson Collection now consists of approximately 7000 items including manuscripts, scholarly articles and books, newspaper clippings, photographs and artwork.
  6. Amherst Academy, Amity St. – Emily Dickinson attended coed classes at the academy from age 9 through 16. The school closed in 1861 and was razed in 1867, and the site is now a parking lot.
  7. First Church, South Pleasant St. – As a child, Emily Dickinson attended services here with her family. The church moved to a lofty, new stone structure on Main St. in 1868. The original church is now an Amherst College building, College Hall.
  8. Helen Hunt Jackson House, 249 South Pleasant St. – A contemporary and classmate of Emily Dickinson, Helen Hunt Jackson‘s literary fame, gained from works such as the novel Ramona, eclipsed Dickinson’s during the poet’s lifetime. Jackson recognized Dickinson’s genius and urged her to submit her poetry for publication.
  9. Frost Library, Amherst College – Amherst College’s Frost Library houses a valuable special collection of Emily Dickinson matter including the original 1847 daguerreotype considered the only existing photograph of Emily Dickinson until a new candidate surfaced about 2007.
  10. The Dell, 97 Spring St. – Austin Dickinson provided a plot of land to David and Mabel Loomis Todd on which they built their home known as “The Dell”. The Todd House was eventually moved across Spring St. and a new building which now houses Five Colleges, Inc. was built on the site.

 

A more extensive map of Dickinson-related historic and commemorative places has been created by the Emily Dickinson Museum.

The Emily Dickinson Museum’s operating schedule varies according to the season.  See the Tours, Rates and Hours page to find out when they are open.

Also check out the Museums’s schedule of public events and programs.

The Amherst chapter of the Emily Dickinson International Society meets the 1st Friday and 3rd Thursday each month at the Jones Library.

 

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