1819–1892

Introduction

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Born: June 18, 1819, Port­land, Maine.

Died: Oc­to­ber 3, 1892, Cape Eliz­a­beth, Maine.

Buried: West­ern Ce­me­te­ry, Portl­and, Maine.

portrait

Biography

Younger bro­ther of Hen­ry Long­fel­low, Sam­u­el at­tend­ed Har­vard Col­lege and Cam­bridge Div­in­i­ty School.

Ordained a Un­i­tar­i­an min­is­ter, he served church­es in Fall Ri­ver, Mas­sa­chu­setts (1848); Brook­lyn, New York (1853); and Ger­man­town, Penn­syl­van­ia (1860).

Publications

Poem

Evening Walk by the Bay

The evening hour had brought its peace,
Brought end of toil to weary day;
From wearying thought to find release,
I sought the sands that skirt the bay.
Dark rain-clouds southward hovering nigh,
Gave to the sea their leaden hue,
But in the west the open sky
Its rose-light on the waters threw.

I stood, with heart more quiet grown,
And watched the pulses of the tide,
The huge black rocks, the sea-weeds brown,
The gray beach stretched on either side,
The boat that dropped its one white sail
Where the steep yellow bank ran down,
And o’er the clump of willows pale
The white towers of the neighboring town.

A cool light brooded o’er the land;
A changing lustre lit the bay;
The tide just plashed along the sand,
And voices sounded, far away.
The Past came up to Memory’s eye,
Dark with some clouds of leaden hue,
But many a space of open sky,
Its rose-light on those waters threw.

Then came to me the dearest friend,
Whose beauteous soul, like the sea,
Too all things fair new beauty lend,
Transfiguring the earth to me.
The thoughts that lips could never tell,
Through subtler senses were made known;
I raised my eyes—the darkness fell—
I stood upon the sands, alone.

Samuel Longfellow
Thalatta, 1853

Sources

Lyrics