Rolling Ridge Retreat Center is nestled quietly in the Valley of the Poets.   What does the name mean? 

Over the past 400 years, the Merrimack Valley has been home to very important American poets.  We currently have many talented living poets you may enjoy meeting to hear their words of peace and wisdom.

The first English - language poet published from the New World was Anne Dudley Bradstreet (1612 - 1672), who helped found North Andover in 1646 (known then as Andover Parish) while raising eight children and supporting her husband Simon, a colonial magistrate, businessman, diplomat and last governor of the Massachusetts Bay Colony. 

In Haverhill, John Greenleaf Whittier (1807 - 1892) was a revered American poet / abolitionist / journalist who had a national holiday each year on December 17th to honor his birthday.  Whittier, CA is one of many cities named for him.

In Andover, Harriet Beecher Stowe (1811 - 1896) wrote poems as well as "Uncle Tom's Cabin" at her Phillips Andover residence.  Did you know that she is buried in the small but lovely school cemetery?

Finally, but far from last, is possibly the favourite poet of America, Robert Lee Frost (1874 - 1963) who was raised in Lawrence and graduated, with his future wife, Elinor White, from Lawrence High School.  They were married in Lawrence City Hall in 1895.

Now, have you a better understanding of the term Valley of the Poets to describe our area of America?  

Be proud as we honor our legacy and harvest our heritage, the poetic word of the famous and not so famous.  Join us online for a new monthly event, "Spot On" as we highlight local poets and celebrate the legacy of poets from the Merrimack Valley.  To REGISTER for the next "Spot On" event, click here

NOTE: Registration for this event is FREE of CHARGE, however Donations are greatly appreciated in these difficult times.  Space is limited to 16, so register early.



Karen Kline

Karen M. Kline, mother, volunteer and poet, considers herself a disruptor as executive director of American Community Think Tank, which she founded in 2000 to encourage the creative imagination of children. ACTT programs have been presented in six ...