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The Riverside Press, Cambridge, Mass., U. S. A.
MOSSES FROM AN OLD MANSE. AFTER his marriage, in 1842, Hawthorne estab lished himself at the Manse, the ancient residence of the parish minister at Concord, Massachusetts. It is still owned, as it was then, by descendants of Dr. Ripley, one of the early pastors of the place, and an ancestor of Ralph Waldo Emerson ; having been built in 1765, for the Rev. William Emerson, whose widow Dr. Ezra Ripley married. There, in a small back room on the second floor, commanding a view of the river, the old North Bridge, and the battle-field of 1775, Emerson had written his “ Nature,” six years before; and in the same apartment Hawthorne prepared for the press his “ Mosses From an Old Manse.” “ The study,” as he says in his account of the house, “ had three windows set with little, old-fashioned panes of glass, each with a crack across it;” and it does not require much imagination, nor perhaps any violation of history, to suppose that these are the self-same panes through which the sun shone at the time of Concord Fight. The cracks in them may have been caused by the concussions of musketry on that memorable April morning. On the glass of one of the two western windows, which, in Hawthorne's phrase, "looked, or rather peeped, between the willow branches,