Emily Elizabeth Dickinson was born at the family’s homestead in Amherst, Massachusetts, into a prominent, but not wealthy, family. Two hundred years earlier, her patrilineal ancestors had arrived in the New World—in the Puritan Great Migration—where they prospered.
Emily Dickinson’s paternal grandfather, Samuel Dickinson, had almost single-handedly founded Amherst College. In 1813, he built the homestead, a large mansion on the town’s Main Street, that became the focus of Dickinson family life for the better part of a century.
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