Pencil-maker, surveyor, naturalist—Henry David Thoreau (1817–1862) wrote articles and essays that established him as America’s first great conservationist. As a preeminent social critic, Thoreau’s sense of social justice influenced Mahatma Gandhi and Martin Luther King, Jr. As a 19th century man, Thoreau witnessed the Industrial revolution, Westward expansion and its harbinger, the railroad, slavery, and Civil War. He stayed alert to the dynamics of human behavior, but Nature was his foremost wild laboratory for the soul. May this portable sampler of Thoreau’s help you discover your own light in the woods. Author: Highland, Chris.