Henry David Thoreau's Role In Resistance To Civil Disobedience

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Henry David Thoreau was born on July 12, 1817 (here is a modern day picture of his birthplace). He was born and grew up in Concord, Massachusetts, a quaint town about twenty miles outside of Boston. He lived there with his three siblings, John Jr., Helen, and Sophia. His mother, Cynthia Dunbar, rented out rooms of their home to help earn more money for the family of 6. His father, John Thoreau, owned and worked in his own pencil factory. His father’s pencils were recognized as America’s best pencils during the 1800’s, due to his study of German pencil making techniques and his great engineering skills. His eldest brother, John Jr., began to teach at Harvard so Henry would later be able to attend the university. There he studied the classics,…show more content…
After writing Walden, Henry David Thoreau spent a night in jail after refusing to pay a poll tax. This influential night in jail caused him to write one of his most famous essays “Resistance to Civil Government”, or better known as “Civil Disobedience”. This famous essay is about acting on one’s conscience and not following laws that were deemed morally unjust. He encourages readers to determine what they think is right and wrong and to not base their opinions off of those created by society. In 1854 Henry David Thoreau wrote two more influential essays, “Slavery in Massachusetts” and “A Plea for Captain John Brown”, in them he lectured against slavery, the Fugitive Slave Law, and defended the radical abolitionist, John Brown. Henry served as an abolitionist himself, and was a conductor of the underground railroad, helping slaves escape to Canada. Other great works by Henry David Thoreau are The Maine Woods, a novel about three trips to Maine and his attempt to climb Maine’s tallest Mountain, Cape Cod, Thoreau’s funniest novel about four trips to Cape Cod, and A Yankee in Canada, a novel based on the scenery and his disappointments with
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