Thoreau Bicentennial Gathering: Celebrating the Life, Works, and Legacy of Henry David Thoreau

July 11, 2017 - 3:00pm - July 16, 2017 - 9:00pm
Concord, Massachusetts
Thoreau at Walden Pond, N.C. Wyeth

The Thoreau Society Annual Gathering & Bicentennial Celebration of
Thoreau’s Life, Works, and Legacy

July 11-16, 2017
Concord, Massachusetts

Be it life or death, we crave only reality.
Henry D. Thoreau

Dana S. Brigham Memorial Keynote Speaker:  Terry Tempest Williams






July 11, Tuesday

3-4:30 Registration Masonic

5 Dinner on your own

7-8 Video Masonic

  • Connie Baxter Marlow and Andrew Cameron Bailey, Civil Disobedience, Spiritual Activism and Higher Law

8:15-9:30 Performance Masonic

  • Richard Smith and Rob Velella, Dramatic Reading



July 12, Wednesday

6:30 AM Sunrise Walk, Richard Smith Walden Pond

8:00 AM Registration and Refreshments First Parish

9:00 AM Welcoming Remarks, Michael Frederick First Parish

9:15-10:15 AM Wen Stephenson, Thoreau and Climate Change First Parish

10:30-11:30 AM PEN New England, Dale Peterson First Parish

11:30 Book Signing First Parish

Noon Lunch First Parish

1 PM Kristen Case & Kevin Van Anglen, Book Release First Parish
Celebration Thoreau at 200: Essays and Reassessments 

1:30-3:30 PM Panel on Writing Practice, Dale Peterson, Chair First Parish

3:45 PM Bus Service to Thoreau Farm First Parish

4:00-5:00 PM Henry’s Birthday Celebration Thoreau Farm

5:45 PM Bus Service to Colonial Inn Colonial Inn

5:30 PM Reception Colonial Inn

6:00 PM Dinner Banquet Colonial Inn

7:30 PM Douglas Brinkley Presentation First Parish

Lisa McCarthy & Kathleen Coyne Kelly Reception First Parish


July 13, Thursday

Walks Conclude at 8:15 to allow time to get to the first panel session

6:45-8:15 AM Walk with Cherrie Corey
Walking Thoreau's Home Ground - Great Meadows

6:45-8:15 AM Walk at Walden Pond
Robert Thorson

8:00 AM Registration & Refreshments Masonic

8:45-10:15 AM Session I Masonic

Panel Main Level

  • David M. Robinson, Walking the Mythical Path: Thoreau’s Old Marlborough Road
  • Jean Cloutier, On the Path of A Yankee in Canada
  • Amanda Fulford, Thoreau: The Surveyor of Ponds, Fields and Lives
  • David R. Solheim, A Week on the Minnesota and Mississippi Rivers:  Thoreau's 1861 Minnesota Journey Revisited

Panel Lower Level

  • Jay Amaran, Impact of Thoreau in India
  • Yoshiko Ito, Readings of Thoreau in Japanese Circle
  • Te-hsing Shan, Prof., Configuring and Reconfiguring a Literary Master: The Legacy and Changing Images of Thoreau in Taiwan
  • Richard A. Michelfelder, Thoreau's Interpretation of Price

10:30-Noon Session II Masonic

Panel Main Level

  • John Goff, Thoreau's Cabin Re-examined: with new architectural insights provided by the Vose-Thoreau Letters
  • Will Elwell, Timber Framer Thoreau Cabin Pipeline Barricade
  • Brent Ranalli, Thoreau, Playing Indian
  • Ernesto Estrella, Sounding the Seasons: Thoreau’s Journal as a Listening Experience 

Panel Lower Level

  • Kathleen Coyne Kelly, Thoreau’s Journal Drawings: A Poster Session
  • Lydia Willsky-Ciollo, Nature's Apostles: Henry David Thoreau, Native Americans, and the ""Wild"" Theology of Nature
  • Joseph J. Moldenhauer, Thoreau & Edward Abbey, Eco-Anarchist
  • Richard G. Geldard, Henry's Examined Life

Noon Lunch

1-2 PM Session III Masonic

Presentation Main Level

  • Scot Miller, Thoreauvian Light: Observations and Lessons Learned Illustrating Henry David Thoreau’s Walden, Cape Cod and The Maine Woods
  • Tom Potter, Thoreau’s Birds as Autobiography

Presentation Lower Level

  • Joel Andrews, Thoreau as Seen Through the Eyes of his Concord Contemporaries 
  • Robert Thorson, The Boatman: Henry David Thoreau's River Years


  • Corinne H. Smith, Mr. Thoreau Goes to Philadelphia Top Floor

2:15-3:45 PM Session IV Masonic

Panel Main Level

  • Richard Primack, Climate Change Panel

Panel Lower Level

  • Ann E. Densmore, Children Connect Language Through Nature and Thoreau
  • Donna Marie Przybojewski, Sauntering the Year with Henry David Thoreau
  • Colleen A. Ruggieri, Will This Be on the Test? Pondering Thoreau’s Paradoxical Views on Education to Reform Our Schools
  • Kathy Fedorko, Surrounded by love: The Influence of Sarah, Elisabeth, Maria, Jane, Cynthia, Helen, and Sophia Thoreau on Henry David

Walk with Jayne Gordon Front Steps Masonic

  • "Visiting Thoreau's Viewpoints" Walk

4:00-5:30 PM Session V Masonic

Panel Main Level

  • Patrick Thomas Morgan, Biological Aesthetics: Thoreau, Gender, and Botany
  • Anastasia Cardone, Henry David Thoreau’s Echoes in Mary Oliver’s Ecopoetry 
  • Brendan Mahoney, The Coarsest or Noblest of Humanity: A Virtue Ethics Analysis of Thoreau's Ambivalence towards Hunting
  • Tom O'Malley,  My Friend Henry

Panel Lower Level

  • Geoff Wisner,  Animals of Concord v. Henry David Thoreau
  • Audrey Raden, Transcendental Friendship in Practice: Thoreau and Whitman in 1856
  • Robert Klevay, “True and severe Traveling is no pastime”: W. G. Sebald’s The Rings of Saturn and Henry David Thoreau’s A Week on the Concord and Merrimack Rivers
  • Shinji Iwamasa, A Lineage of the Secret Language in the Writings of Thoreau and Williams 

6:00 PM Dinner on your own

7:30 Emerson Society Masonic


July 14, Friday

Walks Conclude at 8:15 to allow time to get to the first panel session
6:45-8:15 AM Walk with Cherrie Corey
Walking Thoreau’s Home Ground – Gowing’s Swamp 

6:45-8:15 AM Walk with Peter Alden

8:00 AM Registration Masonic

8:45 AM Session VI Masonic

Panel Main Level

  • Albena Bakratcheva, Henry D. Thoreau: the Beginning of Thoreau’s Great Narrative of Self 
  • Yeojin Kim, Thoreau and the Spontaneous Generation Controversy
  • Mark Howenstein, Thoreau's Legacy Regarding the Way of Self-Discovery
  • Catherine Staples, XXX

Panel Lower Level 

  • J. Wiliam T. Youngs, Kindred Spirits: Comparing and Contrasting Henry David Thoreau and John Muir
  • Lucas Nossaman, “A Newer Testament”: Humboldtian Science and Thoreau’s Book of Nature
  • Matt DeNuzzo, Thoreau and Gonzo-Transcendentalism  

10:30-Noon AM Session VII Masonic

Panel Main Level

  • Megan Marshall, Thoreau and Other Poets in Transcendental Conversation
  • Leslie Eckel, Thoreau and Other Poets in Transcendental Conversation
  • Joyce Peseroff, Thoreau and Other Poets in Transcendental Conversation
  • Michael Schrimper, Thoreau and Other Poets in Transcendental Conversation

Panel Lower Level

  • Lauren Hehmeyer & Phyllis Gardner, Alcohol and Drug Abuse Counselors Meet Henry David Thoreau
  • Nassir Ghaemi, MD, Thoreau's manic-depression
  • James Mathew, MD, Henry David Thoreau and Mohandas K. Gandhi
  • Richard H. Davis, Henry David Thoreau, Yogi

Outdoor Presentation

  • Richard Leu, Thoreau with Compass and Chain

12:00 PM Lunch

1-2 PM Session VIII Masonic

Presentations Main Level

  • Peter Alden, What would Henry think of today's environmental challenges
  • John M. (Jack) Nevison, The Pond Primeval: Phosporous and Oxygen at Walden Pond 

Presentations Lower Level

  • Charles Philips, The Great Turning - And Why It Matters
  • Ken Lizotte, Business Lessons from Henry David Thoreau


  • David Leff, Deep Travel: How to Journey like Henry David Thoreau (45-min slide show)Top Level

2:15-3:45 PM Session IX Masonic

Panel Main Level

  • Daniel R. Vollaro, Thoreau and the “Diversity of Tactics"": Reassessing “Civil Disobedience” in the Era of Occupy and Black Lives Matter
  • Katrina Byrd, Honey, What Are You Saying?
  • Nancy Austin, Thoreau, Civil Disobedience, Huckleberries & Rhode Island's Dorr Rebellion of 1841-43
  • Shoko Itoh, “Civil Disobedience” in the Nuclear Age:  Thoreau and Solnit’s “Journey into the Hidden Wars of the American West”

Panel Lower Level

  • Joseph M. Johnson, Thoreau and the Liberal Arts 
  • Ron Hoag, “Odd Man In:  Thoreau, the Lyceum Movement, and the Lecture Circuit”
  • Michael Stoneham, Thoreau and the King: Sufficiency Economy and the Renewal of Spiritual Connections in Thailand during the Reign of King Bhumibol Adulyadej
  • Meg North, Concord Writer, American Muse: One Woman Models Thoreau's Tenets of Simplicity

Presentation           Concord Free Public Library

  • Ernesto Estrella, Writing and Thinking in Present Tense: Creative Writing workshop inspired on Thoreau’s Journal

4-5:30 PM Session X Masonic

Panel Main Level

  • Rochelle Johnson, From the Sudbury to the Susquehanna to the Smithsonian: Amateur Natural History and the Rise of Science
  • Fumiko Takeno, Thoreau and the Boston Society of Natural History in "Natural History of Massachusetts"
  • Ted David, The Happiness Generators- Henry's Legacy for Finding Joy
  • Charmion Gustke, How We Spend Our Lives: Thoreau and Social Advocacy 

Panel Lower Level

  • Dennis Noson, Thoreau's Walden Map:  Literal Depiction or Literary Device?
  • Izumi Ogura, Language of Paradox in Thoreau and Emerson
  • Evan Edwards, The Concept of "Natural History" in Thoreau's Late Work
  • Yoko Kurahashi, MD, The Circular Images in “Ethan Brand” and A Week on the Concord and Merrimack Rivers

5:30 Dinner on your own

7 PM Reception for the Presenter                       Concord Free Public Library
Thoreau Family Music

Laura Dassow Walls, Our True Paradise: Thoreau’s Concord and the Ecstasy of the Commons             


July 15, Saturday

6:45 AM Peter Alden, Morning Walk

8:00 AM Refreshments

9:00 AM Business Meeting

10:45 AM Dana S. Brigham Memorial Keynote Speaker:  Terry Tempest Williams

12:00 PM Registration Opens at Masonic

12:00 PM Lunch

1:00-2 PM Session XI


  • Jym St. Pierre & Michael Kellett, Thoreau: Stepfather of the National Parks


  • Natasha Shabat, Walden Pond People
  • Richard Higgins, Thoreau and the Language of Trees

2:15-3:45 PM Session XII

Panel: Nineteenth-Century Prose Thoreau Bicentennial Essays 

  • Richard Schneider, Panel Chair
  • Albena Bakratcheva, Wild Apples” and Thoreau’s Commitment to Wildness in the Last Decade of His Life
  • Laura Dassow Walls, The Samarae of Thought: Thoreau's Gathered Timescapes
  • Elizabeth Lerud, Living Poems in Thoreau's Prose



  • Brian Bartlett, "Let Me Suggest a Few Comparisons": Getting Thoreauvian Aphorisms Back Into Their Paragraphs
  • Henrik Otterberg, Of Shanties and Chanticleers: Some Contextual & Paratextual Notes to Walden’s 1854 Title-Page
  • Maura D'Amore, Writer as Wrecker: Beachcombing with Thoreau 
  • Tom Montgomery Fate, No Streams to Go A-Fishing In: Natural Time in a Digiphrenic Culture


Concord Museum Tour     Concord Museum

  • David Wood

 4-5 PM Session XIII


  • James Finley


  • Diana Lorence, Stranger in a Strange Land
  • Michael Lorence, A Hound, a Bay Horse, and a Turtle Dove: On the Trail of a Mystery 

5:15 PM Bus to Thoreau Institute

5:30 PM Reception
Walden Brass Quintet

6-7:30 PM Thoreau Institute Dinner Banquet

7:30 Bus to Masonic

7:30 PM Book signing

Music Circle


July 16, Sunday

6:45 AM Peter Alden, Morning Walk

7-8:30 AMCorinne Smith, Memorial Walk  Walden Pond

8:00 AM Registration Opens

10-Noon Walk with Corinne Smith Thoreau Farm
Inspirational Morning Saunter at Thoreau Birthplace 

9:30-10:45 Session IV


  • Eric Joseph Ritter, Possible Sites of a House? Thoreau's Philosophical Senses 
  • Daniel D. Clausen, Thoreau's Agrarianism
  • John F. Barthell, Before STEM:  Henry David Thoreau and his Unlikely Synthesis of Disciplines
  • Rebecca Kneale Gould, Thoreau, Race and Environmental Justice: Deepening the Conversation 


  • Tuangtip Klinbubpa-Neff, Thoreau and the King: Sufficiency Economy and the Renewal of Spiritual Connections in Thailand during the Reign of King Bhumibol Adulyadej
  • Sheila Post, (Re-)Living Walden: Deliberate Writing from Skarvaredet to Walden North 
  • Chrystena Hahn, HDT and Louisa May Alcott

11-12:30 AM Session V Masonic

Panel Main Level

  • Jonathan Butler, Thoreau as Shaman: Mediator Between the Human and Non-Human Worlds
  • John A. Bullard, Cosmic Henry
  • Ed Gillin, Two more from "an old book"
  • Scott Hess, Walden as a Landscape of Genius


  • Jake McGinnis, “A Smack of Wildness”: Affective Enchantment in Thoreau’s First Taste of the Maine Woods
  • Stan Tag, The Tide of Fashionable Travel: Thoreau and Early Travelers to Katahdin
  • Roger W. Hutt, A Runner's Thoughts on "Walking"
  • Brandon Hernsberger, "Eastward I go only by force; but (Kayne West)ward I go free: Henry Thoreau and his Rhetoric of Transcendentalism in Hip-Hop"

12:30 Lunch on your own

1:00-2 Picnic at Thoreau Farm
Bring your own lunch

2:30-5 Thoreau Society and the Louisa May Alcott Orchard House Present

Thoreau and the Alcott Women in Relation to 19th Century Reform

Trinity Episcopal Church, 81 Elm St, Concord confirm venue

  • Sandra Petrulionis
  • Laura Dassow Walls
  • Megan Marshall

Sunday Evening

7-9 Film Showing

  • Huey Henry David Thoreau, Surveyor of the Soul