Departmental Bulletin Paper Notes on Current Research into Charles A. Longfellow in Meiji Japan: An Examination into the Background Circumstances and Significance of the Travels of H.W. Longfellow’s Son to Late 19th Century Japan

Nootbaar, Julie Joy

These notes on current research into Charles A. Longfellow (1844-1893) inMeiji Japan reflect primarily the survey and analysis of Longfellow’s journalswhich he kept during his travels to Japan and are now held in the archives ofthe Longfellow House in Cambridge, Massachusetts. These notes focus firston Charles’s childhood and the Boston society in which he was brought up,including his life as the son of the poet and his relationship with his fatherand mother. Next, these notes explore how other influences around Charley,including the many prominent friends and acquaintances of his father Henry,such as friends Charles Sumner and Bayard Taylor, neighbor Richard HenryDana, Jr., relative Rear Admiral George Henry Preble, and fellow HarvardProfessor Raphael Pumpelly, may have had helped lead Charley to becomeinterested in world travel and specifically travel to Japan. Finally, focusis placed on how Charley’s standing as the son of the prominent HenryLongfellow may have shaped his experiences in Japan, and what can belearned through his candid account of his travels.

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