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John Hardy Wright was the assistant curator of the former Essex Institute's Museum for 16 years. He was a Historical Society consultant for 12 years and was the Interim Director for the Historical Society of Old Newbury for one year. Wright has been an antiques dealer for 25 years. He earned a BFA from the Massachusetts College of Art in 1963 and a Master of Arts in History Museum Training with the Cooperstown Graduate Programs in 1968. Wright has published eight books with Arcadia Publishing in the past.

Loose the latchstring and peer into the places where Nathaniel Hawthorne passed back and forth from nineteenth century New England to the fertile country of his imagination. The historic images in this pictorial biography—many by famed Salem photographer Frank Cousins—might not inspire readers to the same literary genius as the celebrated author, but the "dim and dusky grandeur" lingering in his favorite haunts will no doubt enlighten as to the provocation of his pen. From Salem to Bowdoin College, and through Lenox and Concord, Salemite John Hardy Wright trails the famous author to his "old accustomed chambers" and reveals the inspiration behind an American literary legend.