1890, November 12

Mabel Loomis Todd publishes the first edition of Poems by Emily Dickinson (Boston: Roberts Brothers). The popular reception of this first edition of Poems initiates the publication of the Second Series  (1891) and the Third Series  (1896) of Poems. Mabel Loomis Todd, as editor, publishes Letters of Emily Dickinson in two volumes in 1894. 

 

1856, July 1

Austin Dickinson marries Susan Gilbert in Geneva, New York. A new home for the newlyweds, named the Evergreens, is built by Edward Dickinson to the west of the Homestead. 

1874, June 16

Edward Dickinson dies in a Boston boarding house following his collapse while giving a speech in the Massachusetts state legislature. Edward’s death away from Amherst strikes Emily Dickinson and the rest of the Dickinson family as particularly tragic; the family has been robbed of a proper goodbye, all together, left only with the “Silence” of death. 

 

There marauds a sorer Robber – 

Silence -” (Dickinson, Fr1315)

Martha Dickinson Bianchi in garden

1914

Emily’s niece Martha Dickinson Bianchi publishes poems sent by her aunt to her mother, Susan Gilbert Dickinson in A Single Hound: Poems of a Lifetime. Martha Dickinson Bianchi would go on to publish many subsequent editions of her aunt’s poetry and letters, renewing the 20th century public’s interest in the life and work of Emily Dickinson.

Handwritten pages

About 1858

Emily Dickinson begins collecting her poems into small packets, today called “fascicles.” This practice continues until 1864. 

 

1875, 15 June

Emily Norcross Dickinson suffers a stroke that produces “a partial, lateral paralysis.” The next summer she falls and breaks her hip, becoming permanently bedridden, and requiring further care. For the next seven years, until her death in 1874, Emily and Lavinia cared for their mother in her convalescence. 

 

“…have never seen a daughter so devoted.” (Harriet Jameson, Lavinia’s neighbor, 11-10-[1882], Container 5, Jameson Papers)

White house captured from North Pleasant Street with a fence in front

1840, April

The Dickinsons purchase and move to a house (no longer standing) on North Pleasant Street in Amherst.

The Evergreens house behind a huge tree in autumn

1965

The Homestead is purchased by Amherst College and is open to the public for tours. In 1991, The Evergreens is passed to a private testamentary trust, the Martha Dickinson Bianchi Trust, which began developing the house as a museum.