"If in Emerson's study perpetual twilight
reigns," wrote a visitor to Orchard House in 1874, "in Alcott's it is always
noon. The great sun shines in it all day, the great fireplace roars, and the warm crimson
hangings temper the sunlight and reflect the firelight. Quaint mottoes and pictures hang
on the walls." Mr. Alcott's books fill the shelves, the room is furnished with his
desks, chairs, and a handmade revolving bookcase, and the walls hold images of his friends, neighbors, and sources of inspiration -- Emerson, Thoreau, Sanborn, Hawthorne, John Brown, Thomas Carlyle, and his own mother, Anna Bronson Alcox. Here, Mr. Alcott could also sit and gaze upon his youngest daughter May, who spent her last years in Europe. The Concord School of Philosophy, an summer adult education series created by Mr. Alcott, first met in this room until a larger building adjacent
to Orchard House was constructed in 1880. A bust of Mr. Alcott in the niche of this room was carved by noted American sculptor Daniel Chester French.
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