About Gilbert Byron
Gilbert Byron, born in Chestertown, MD in 1903, shared the same birthday (July 12) with Henry David Thoreau. It is likely that this coincidence influenced Byron’s writing and his lifestyle.
Thoreau spent two years, two months and two days in his house by Walden Pond. Bryon lived alone for nearly 45 years in the cabin he build on Old House Cove in St. Michaels, Maryland.
From the introduction to Gilbert Byron, A Life Worth Examining
Gilbert arrived in Chestertown, Maryland, three years into the 20th Century and lived to within nine years of its ending. He came into a poor family with a strong-willed mother and a father whose livelihood depended primarily upon the beneficence of nature. Gilbert’s life was shaped, as is everyone’s, by family circumstances, education, work, and world events. Except for the one school year Gilbert taught in western Pennsylvania, he never lived more than 60 miles from the house where he was born on Maryland’s Eastern Shore.
Early in his student life at Chestertown’s Washington College, inspired by a young unconventional professor and the poetry of John Masefield, Gilbert decided that he would one day chronicle that unique region found between Maryland’s Eastern Shore and lower Delaware. While he was unable to begin working toward this goal until he was nearly forty, the case can be made that he had indeed attained it by life’s end, nearly half a century after his first published work.