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Coffin, Robert Peter Tristramlocked

(18 March 1892–20 January 1955)
  • Christopher J. Neumann

Extract

Coffin, Robert Peter Tristram (18 March 1892–20 January 1955), poet and teacher, was born in Brunswick, Maine, the son of James William Coffin, a farmer, and Alice Mary Coombs. Robert spent his early years living on various islands off the coast of Maine, where often the nearest neighbor was two or more miles away. While his father created working farms out of this wilderness, the ten Coffin children learned far more than a formal education under the tutelage of their mother; they were taught to adapt the rugged surroundings to their needs, whether in collecting berries and fish for preserves or steaming oak strips over a boiling kettle to bend boat ribs. These early lessons instilled in Coffin a love of Maine and its wilderness that would later reemerge, meshed with a strong New England Puritanism, as the foundation of much of his literary work....

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