Who Was Robert Frost?

Robert Frost was an American poet and winner of four Pulitzer Prizes. Famous works include “Fire and Ice,” “Mending Wall,” “Birches,” “Out Out,” “Nothing Gold Can Stay” and “Home Burial.” His 1916 poem, “The Road Not Taken,” is often read at graduation ceremonies across the United States. As a special guest at President John F. kennedy’s inauguration, Frost became a poetic force and the unofficial “poet laureate” of the United States.

Frost spent his first 40 years as an unknown. He exploded on the scene after returning from England at the beginning of World War II. He died of complications from prostate surgery on January 29, 1963.

Early Years

Frost was born on March 26, 1874, in San Francisco, California. He spent the first 11 years of his life there, until his journalist father, William Prescott Frost Jr., died of tuberculosis.

Following his father’s passing, Frost moved with his mother and sister, Jeanie, to the town of Lawrence, Massachusetts. They moved in with his grandparents, and Frost attended Lawrence High School.

After high school, Frost attended Dartmouth college for several months, returning home to work a slew of unfulfilling jobs.

Beginning in 1897, Frost Harvard University  but had to drop out after two years due to health concerns. He returned to Lawrence to join his wife.

In 1900, Frost moved with his wife and children to a farm in New Hampshire — property that Frost’s grandfather had purchased for them—and they attempted to make a life on it for the next 12 years. Though it was a fruitful time for Frost’s writing, it was a difficult period in his personal life, as two of his young children died.

During that time, Frost and Elinor attempted several endeavors, including poultry farming, all of which were fairly unsuccessful.

Despite such challenges, it was during this time that Frost acclimated himself to rural life. In fact, he grew to depict it quite well, and began setting many of his poems in the countryside.

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