Sunday, July 11, 2010

Mosaic Monday,

Fruitlands




oday is Mosaic Monday, and Mary from Little Red House, is hosting this lovely day.







DSC06752Well we had a break from the heat on Saturday, so I finally got over to Fruitlands in Harvard, Massachusetts. I love learning the history of the Alcott family.

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"Technically speaking, Fruitlands refers to an experiment led by Bronson Alcott and Charles Lane which took place here in 1843."

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DSC06752There are many buildings to visit, but I headed right over to see where the Alcott's had lived.

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The Fruitlands Farmhouse is lovely and you can almost feel the history as you enter the front door.

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"The Alcott family arrived at Fruitlands early in June of 1843 joined by about a dozen other individuals, all hoping to participate in the Alcott's utopian experiment in communal living. The experiment only lasted 7 months."


Fruitlands

DSC06752I met a wonderful tour guide, who knew everything interesting about the experiment, and gave me a tour of the rooms with so much passion. She told me:

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"The house was named "Fruitlands" because the inhabitants hoped to live off the fruits of the land, purchasing nothing from the outside world."


My creation

DSC06752We stood in the same room that Thoreau had been in. His desk sitting on an old wooden plank floor. His Antique books stacked on nearby bookshelves.

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ronson Alcott, Louisa May's father believed in a very unusual belief system for the era:





"The material world, especially nature, expressed another manifestation of the universal divinity, an idea that became a central aspect of Transcendentalism."


DSC06752I took this photo at Fruitlands last winter. I added a poem Louisa May wrote, taken from her journal.

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Although his Quaker peers tried to convince Bronson to abandon his family and come with him to teach their beliefs, Bronson Alcott would have nothing to do with it.


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DSC06752He said that his family was a unit together. I like him even more than I did before now.

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Bronson was so against slavery that he wouldn't even let his family wear anything made with cotton. Instead they used the linen that they grew on their farm.


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DSC06752We walked into the dining room, and my guide said with passion, Emerson sat here.

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DSC06752In a cupboard in the library was May's first paint set.

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DSC06752The grounds are pretty spectacular, fruit trees everywhere of course.

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DSC06752Numerous homes were built to become a compound. Something which Bronson Alcott never did come to witness while was there. He left feeling that the experiment had failed, yet Emerson did not agree.

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"Bronson Alcott's vision for a new order tried to integrate changes in science, technology and man's relationship to God. He believed that people's lives were all part of one Divine Nature that flows through all visible things."

DSC06752What I truly like about Bronson Alcott wasn't his belief system,


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DSC06752nor that he was so ahead of his time in his thinking.

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DSC06752Although it is impressive that his friends included the likes of Emerson and Thoreau,

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DSC06752what I truly like about this man was that he raised Louisa May to be an independent thinking woman who went on to have the success only known to men at the time.

My creation





lthough Bronson left with his family with only the promise in his heart, many today are able to live in such environments that were his vision. The song for this post is Promise.

My creation


If you are in the Concord area this week you might enjoy this video that talks about a special lecture series

"In Heaven's Name, Give Her A Chance!"
Defining the Sphere of Women in 19th Century America

going on at The School of Philosophy at Orchard House from July 11th through the 16th.

22 comments:

Tina Eudora said...

Karen that was just beautiful and I had no idea that Louisa May's family history was so interesting and visionary.
It is definitely a place I would love to visit someday, thanks for the lovely pictures and story...
Tina xo

Traci said...

Fabulous photos and mosaics!

A Garden of Threads said...

What an informative post, thank your. The photography in the mosaic is stunning as well as the mosaic themselves.

BailiwickStudio said...

This is a wonderful post! I need to do some reading on the Alcott family - this is so interesting! ::Jill

Blondie's Journal said...

Karen~~~~

This is such an interesting story...it really grabbed and held my attention. Your photos and music were perfect. All of this was new to me. Thanks so much for sharing a great post!

xoxo
Jane

Sharon said...

I truly thank you for the history lesson.So much I did not know. All your beautiful photo's made me feel like I was there with you. Such different history from the East coast verses the west.Thanks Karen

Pat @ Mille Fiori Favoriti said...

Beautiful post Karen! I would love to see Fruitlands one day. Your mosaics are beautiful and this was full of so much wonderful information...a joy to read! Happy Mosaic Monday!

Alison said...

Karen what an informative post. Thanks for sharing the history of Louisa May and her family with us.
Beautiful photos
Alison

Castles Crowns and Cottages said...

Karen, this was an educational, inspirational and moving tour of a unique individual and his family that remain to be a source of good old fashioned values, creativity and icons for the OLD NEW ENGLAND that I love so....your photos are lovely images of your memories that will last a lifetime for us as well....oh dearest, I hope you got my message about my CHOICE...I so LOVE WHAT YOU HAVE CREATED!!!! Anita

Joyce said...

Thank you for allowing me to tour Fruitlands with you today. I enjoyed the history as well as the mosaics and other photos. It all looks so pristine.
Joyce

Kathleen Grace said...

This place is so beautiful, it takes my breath away. the bench in the shade of the big tree, the tunnel of grapes climbing the pergola, I want to be there. I hope some day I can see this in person. Thank you for sharing it Karen!

Snap said...

What a beautiful place and what a wonderful, informative post. What is it about the color red that makes each building or barn look so special??? !!!!!! Gorgeous (as usual)!!!

Barbara said...

This is so beautiful. I really enjoyed reading about this history. LMA was my favorite author when I was young. I have always wanted to explore her part of the world. Your photographs are beautiful.

Susan said...

Karen, thank you so much for sharing this. I love your blog. I also love Louisa May Alcott and I have long wanted to visit the area. I am hoping to this fall. My fingers are crossed and I'm holding my breath. (well, maybe not for the entire time) ;-)

You took such wonderful photos. Gorgeous.

Thank you so much for sharing,
Susan

The Quintessential Magpie said...

Very interesting post, Karen, and another window into the life of Louisa!

That farm is just beautiful, and your pictures are always wonderful and do it justice. How far is this from Orchard House? I'm unclear about distances in MA. One day I plan to make it to see Orchard House, and I think this would be an interesting trip, too. How neat that they had some of Thoreau's books.

XO,

Sheila :-)

Vee said...

I had no idea that that experiment only lasted for seven months. Makes me want to read more about it and, of course, I'd love to visit this beautiful spot.

Carol said...

Wonderful, Karen! Happy Monday!

Mary said...

Oh how beautiful!!! And what an interesting history to go along with it. Thanks so much for taking us along on the tour, Karen! :)

laurie @ bargain hunting said...

What an interesting and beautiful post Karen. Your mosaics are so pretty. I love the Fruitlands Farm House, and I enjoyed learning more about the Alocott family-what an amazing journey their lives were. No wonder Louisa May had such a wonderful way with words. laurie

Draffin Bears said...

Hi Karen,

What an interesting and beautiful post you have shared today.
Thank you for the tour of Fruitlands and the history of Louisa May's family.
Such a beautiful place, love the red painted houses and the gardens.

Happy week
Hugs
Carolyn

Justina said...

Hey!
You may remember me from participating in Vanessa's Mad Tea Party last month.... I am writing to you because I have a very special treat for you! I have decided to team up with blogger Anna (Frosted Petunias) on a very special project. We are hosting a blog party together to pay tribute to our favorite movie PRACTICAL MAGIC ! We have gauged a lot of interest when we both coincidentally did posts within 1 day of each other, dedicated to that movie. So we figured a blog party was in order! So if you are interested... put on your witchy hat, grab your broom stick, start stirring your cauldron of ideas , and COME JOIN US !

Please follow this link for complete information on how to get involved:

http://pmblogparty.blogspot.com/

-Justina
La Boheme Magique
http://labohememagique.blogspot.com

eileeninmd said...

Wow, what a gorgeous place! Thanks for the lovely tour and photos. Your mosaics are wonderful!