The Letters that Changed My Life

COURSE #:  WK300
TITLE:  The Letters that Changed My Life
DATE:  Tuesday, March 31, 2020
TIME:  1:15-2:15 pm

DESCRIPTION:  Henry Wadsworth Longfellow’s portrait hung upon classroom walls in schools across America, his poems were memorized by generations of students, and the United States Postal Service produced stamps in his honor. Sydelle Pearl, author of the biography, Dear Mr. Longfellow: Letters to and from the Children’s Poet, (Prometheus Books), will discuss how an armchair given to Longfellow by the children of Cambridge, Massachusetts for his seventy-second birthday in 1879 inspired her to research the story behind this special gift. Along her journey, she discovered letters that children wrote to Longfellow and she incorporated some of them into her narrative to help tell the story of his life. Sydelle shares letters Longfellow received from children throughout the United States, explains how the special chair connects to Longfellow’s poetry, describes her writing/research journey, and shows photographs that pertain to Longfellow’s life, including stamps that were produced in his honor.

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