BOSTON – June 24, 2014 – Literature lovers take note: Massachusetts has served as the home and inspiration for some of the country’s most beloved writers, from Jack Kerouac to Herman Melville. Today, the lives and work of those writers are commemorated in sites across the state. From Henry David Thoreau’s Walden Pond in Concord to the Emily Dickinson Museum in Amherst, literature comes alive in Massachusetts for bookworms of all ages.

Greater Boston

JFK Library – Ernest Hemingway Collection (Boston)

A lesser-known attraction of the John F. Kennedy Library, the Ernest Hemingway collection housed here includes ninety percent of existing Hemingway materials, many handwritten, such as the first draft of The Sun Also Rises. It highlights over a thousand manuscript items and more than 10,000 photographs. While Hemingway and the President never met, Kennedy was a great fan of the writer, once saying, “Few Americans have had a greater impact on the emotions and attitudes of the American people than Ernest Hemingway.”

The Mary Baker Eddy Library (Boston)

The Mary Baker Eddy Library honors the founder of Christian Science, a religious movement in the late 19th century. In 1908, Eddy created the Christian Science Monitor, a news organization that remains in operation today. In addition to housing the archived letters and manuscripts of Eddy, the library also boasts the Mapparium, a three-story stained-glass globe visitors can stand inside to view the world of 1935 – while experimenting with the surprising acoustics.

Make Way for Ducklings Statue (Boston)

No visit to Boston is complete without a stroll through the Public Garden, and a key attraction is the Make Way for Ducklings statues, depicting a mother and her eight ducklings. The official children’s book of Massachusetts, Make Way for Ducklings, by Robert McCloskey, tells the story of a family of ducks living on an island in the Garden’s pond. Often dressed up for holidays or major Boston sports events, the ducklings are a classic site and perfect photo prop for any family visiting Boston. Spring visitors may even catch the annual Duckling Day Parade, a Mother’s Day tradition.

North of Boston

Walden Pond (Concord)

Henry David Thoreau made Walden Pond famous when he penned Walden about his period, 1845-47, living a simple life on the banks of the pond. In addition to his writing, Thoreau is known as an early environmentalist. Visitors may take advantage of a guided tour or educational program, or simply enjoy the beauty of the birthplace of the conservation movement and National Historic Landmark.

Kerouac Park (Lowell)

Located in downtown Lowell, Kerouac Park boasts a sculpture garden, inscribed with quotations from the “father of the beatnik movement” and Lowell resident, Jack Kerouac. Best known as the author of On the Road, Kerouac inspired a generation. The annual Lowell Celebrates Kerouac festival in October includes readings, musical performances, tours, and special exhibits.

Orchard House (Concord)

Louisa May Alcott wrote and set her beloved novel Little Women in Orchard House, her home from 1858-77. A visit to the nearly unchanged house gives visitors a peek inside the family home, as well as an introduction to the Alcott family, upon whom the fictional March family was based. The Orchard House is open year-round for guided tours, with special events happening monthly.

Cape Cod and the Islands

Edward Gorey House (Yarmouth Port)

Author, illustrator, playwright, and costume designer Edward Gorey published over 100 of his own works and illustrated numerous others. The Edward Gorey House – his home from 1979 through his death in 2000 – preserves the legacy of Gorey’s creativity and highlights his commitment to animal welfare. The museum is open April through December with new exhibits annually.

South of Boston

New Bedford Whaling Museum, Herman Melville exhibits (New Bedford)

Herman Melville, born in 1819, is most remembered for his novel Moby Dick. New Bedford, once the most prolific and wealthiest whaling port, serves as a setting in the novel. The New Bedford Whaling Museum contains exhibits examining both Moby Dick and Melville himself. Additionally, the Museum’s research library, the Kendall Institute, houses the Melville Society Archive.

Central Massachusetts

Bancroft Tower (Worcester)

The Bancroft Tower was erected in 1900 in memory of George Bancroft, author of the 10-volume History of the United States, from the Discovery of the American Continent. Listed in the National Register of Historic Places, the tower is located in Worcester’s Salisbury Park, which boasts some of the best views of the city. The castle-like tower includes spiral staircases, fireplace chambers, stone benches, and parapets, the perfect spot for a picnic or outdoor gathering.

Western Massachusetts

The Mount, Edith Wharton’s Home (Lenox)

Edith Wharton wrote 40 books in 40 years, including such classics as The Age of Innocence and Ethan Frome. Wharton designed and built The Mount, her first real home, in 1902. Visitors can tour the house and gardens, have lunch at the Terrace Cafe, shop in the bookstore, or enjoy live music on weekend nights throughout the summer. This summer, The Mount partnered with SculptureNow to bring an exhibition of contemporary large-scale outdoor sculptures featuring 25 nationally acclaimed artists to the grounds.

The Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art (Amherst)

Best known for The Very Hungry Caterpillar, Eric Carle has captured the imaginations of generations of young readers with his bright illustrations. At the Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art, visitors can explore works by Carle and other illustrators through galleries, an interactive art studio, a reading library, live events and more.

Emily Dickinson Museum, The Homestead & The Evergreens (Amherst)

One of the most prolific American poets, Emily Dickinson was born in Amherst and lived there most of her life. The Emily Dickinson Museum includes the house in which she was born and is dedicated to celebrating her life and work. Guided tours of the museum are available March through December.

About MOTT:

The Massachusetts Office of Travel & Tourism (MOTT) is the state agency dedicated to promoting Massachusetts as a leisure-travel destination. An integral part of the state’s economy, tourism generates close to $1 billion in state and local taxes and $16.9 billion in travel related expenditures, supporting 124,700 in-state jobs.


 For more information, contact:

Annie Moloney, Director of Communications

Massachusetts Office of Travel & Tourism

617 – 973-8531

[email protected]


Molly Kravitz, Public Relations Manager

Connelly Partners

Mobile # 317-919-5252 ~ Office # 617-521-5431

[email protected]