Literary Landmark: Jones Library - Robert Frost

Amherst, Mass.

Dedicated: Oct. 23, 2009
Partners: Friends of the Jones Library System, Trustees of the Jones Library

from left: patricia holland, president of the jones library board of trustees; lesley francis, robert frost's granddaughter, and stan rosenberg, massachusetts state senate president pro tem. On Oct. 24, 2009, in celebration of the Jones Library’s special association with Robert Frost, the library was placed on ALTAFF’s Literary Landmark Register. Recognizing Robert Frost’s role in Amherst’s literary heritage and his importance to the nation, the Friends of  the Jones Library System and the Trustees of the Jones Library joined together to support this nomination.  

On Oct. 21, the Jones Library hosted the first of a series of events in the Robert Frost Literary Landmark Celebration. This event was held 50 years to the day after the original dedication of the Frost Room at the Jones Library in 1959 with Robert Frost and Charles Green, founding director of the Jones Library, in attendance. Early recognizing Frost’s importance, Green started what is now one of the richest Frost collections in the world. 

This Oct. 21 event featured Frost biographer and frequent New York Times Book Review contributor William H. Pritchard, the Henry Clay Folger Professor of English at Amherst College, speaking on “Frost’s Mischievous Grip.” Chamber music by Amherst Regional High School instrumentalists, under the direction of Tobias Thomas, opened the evening. 

The evening of Oct. 23, Robert Frost scholars from around the country, members of Charles Green’s family, and members of the Jones Library Board of Trustees joined to listen to Dr. Jack Hagstrom’s conversation with Don Sheehy about Charles Green, Robert Frost, and the Jones Library. Dr. Hagstrom shared many wonderful memories of the early days of the Frost Collection at the Jones Library.

On Oct. 24, the library’s bronze Literary Landmark plaque was unveiled in honor of Frost’s personal connection with the Jones Library. Ceremony participants included Frost’s granddaughter, Lesley Francis; Amherst Select Board Chair Stephanie O’Keefe; Senator Stan Rosenberg; Jones’ Trustee President Patricia Holland; Jones Library Director Bonnie Isman, and Amherst Area Chamber of Commerce Executive Director Tony Maroulis.

The celebration concluded on Oct. 24 with Amherst young people, directed by children’s librarian Sondra Radosh, delivering well-loved poems by Frost, with harp accompaniment by Sarah McKee.