Tilbury Town Walking Tour

“And so ’tis what we are that makes for us

The measure and the meaning of the world.”

You’re invited to explore the historic neighborhoods of Gardiner, Maine and discover the world of famed poet Edwin Arlington Robinson, author Laura E. Richards, and their circle of literary friends who defined Gardiner’s cultural life at the end of the 19th century.

Throughout the twenty-eight volumes of Robinson’s poetry, the inhabitants of “Tilbury Town” appear, characters widely believed to be based on people he encountered during the long-remembered years he lived and worked in Gardiner.

On this page, you can download a pdf that takes you on a walking tour of the sites, locales and history of Robinson’s Tilbury Town. Or pick up a free copy of the walking tour guide at the Gardiner Public Library.

Tilbury Town Walking Tour


Tilbury Town Podcast

You can also download a 10-part podcast to your mp3 player, put it in your pocket, and listen to a detailed history of Robinson’s world and the Gardiner he loved as you stroll through the historic streets of our town. Narrated by local historian Dorothy Washburn, this guided tour takes you on a journey through the life and work of our native Pulitzer Prize-winning poet, and provides rich insights into the works that brought Robinson international acclaim. To download, right-click on each segment (Control-click for Mac) or simply click the links to stream on your computer.

Part One (8.6MB mp3)
Introduction/Robinson Family Burial Site/The E.A. Robinson House/E.A. Robinson Monument

Part Two (8.7MB mp3)
Mrs. William Morrell’s School/The Captain Israel Jordan House/The Dr. A. T. Schumann House

Part Three (7.1MB mp3)
The Kate Vannah House

Part Four (6.8MB mp3)
The Caroline Swan House

Part Five (6.9MB mp3)
The Yellow House

Part Six (6.9MB mp3)
The Swanton House/The Barstow House

Part Seven (8.5MB mp3)
Harry DeForest Smith House/Second Dr. Schumann House

Part Eight (8.6MB mp3)
The Shepherd House/Downtown Gardiner/The Quadruped

Part Nine (5.2MB mp3)
Johnson Hall/H.D. Robinson & Co.

Part Ten (7.2MB mp3)
Gardiner Public Library

For more biographical information about E.A. Robinson, selected poems and other significant supplemental material, be sure to visit the E.A. Robinson website created by the Gardiner Public Library in 2006.