Produced in Massachusetts in 1807, John Greenleaf Whittier’s career breaks up into four intervals: poet/journalist, abolitionist, writer/humanitarian and Quaker poet. The two banded together in the abolitionist cause. By 1843 Whittier determined that to use the political arena towards abolition. The second of four children born into a Quaker couple, Whittier grew up on a farm. He’d little education, however he found a passion for poetry at a young age.
In 1826, Whittier had his first poem published. Abolitionist William Lloyd Garrison edited the newspaper and supported Whittier in his writing. Before long, Whittier was pursuing a profession in journalism. Whittier also published his first novel, Legends of New England in Prose and Poetry, in 1831.
Together with the pamphlet Justice and Expediency (1833), Whittier concentrated his writing abilities on improving the abolitionist cause. In the 1830s, he gave numerous lectures against captivity and composed poems championing its abolition. These works afterwards appeared in the 1837 collection Poems Written Throughout the Improvement of the Abolition Question in America. From 1838 to 1840, Whittier edited the abolitionist paper the Pennsylvania Freeman. While he was editor, an angry mob destroyed the newspaper’s offices. By 1843, Whittier had picked to distance himself from extreme abolitionist strategies, instead preferring to make use of political solutions to recommend for the ending of captivity.
Whittier never ceased composing poetry, though his focus changed in the political to the pastoral in his later works. With 1866’s Snow-Bound: A Winter Idyl, he became among the nation’s most famous poets. The work sold well enough to set him up comfortably; readers adopted his later groups also. In 1890, Whittier printed his last collection of poetry, At Sundown. Whittier was 84 when he died on September 7, 1892, in a buddy ‘s house in Hampton Falls, New Hampshire.