Robert Frost Farm

Robert Frost Farm

American poet Robert Frost is originally came from the urban settings of San Francisco. Although known for his nature-themed poem, he found farm life hard. Later in life, he reflected on his experiences in a letter to his granddaughter: “There are many discouragements in the farmer’s life." Despite these hardships, the farm remained a central source of inspiration for his poetic mythos.

Frost spent much of his adult life in various parts of rural New England. For forty years, he lived in Vermont and for twenty, in Massachusetts. He only spent nine years (1900-1909) on the Derry, NH farm that was given to him by his grandfather, primarily raising chickens and selling their eggs.

In 1906, Frost fell ill with pneumonia from which his doctor assumed he would not recover. After this fight for life, Frost discovered his passion to pursue poetry. He sold his neglected farm in 1911 for two-thirds the initial purchase price and moved his family to England in 1912. He took with him, his collections of poems written while living on the Derry farm, and published his first book of lyrics.

In the following thirty years, the farm passed through several owners. In the 1940s, it was converted into a graveyard for junk automobiles. Frost later returned and found the farmland and its surrounding natural beauty decimated. Although Frost had ambitions to restore the land to its former natural haven he ultimately failed.

In 1964 the farmland was saved through a purchase made by the State of New Hampshire. A restoration team that consisted of trustees and state officials which were aided by Lesley Frost Ballantine, Frost’s eldest daughter. Now, after over ten years of research and restoration, the farmhouse and surrounding land is preserved as part of the New Hampshire Historic Sites and named a historical landmark of national significance on the National Registry.

Cite this Page:

Katie Looney, “Robert Frost Farm,” Digital NH, accessed June 21, 2018, http://digitalnh.org/items/show/7.

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