1) Less than two years after their marriage, his first wife Ellen died from consumption.
2) He coined the phrase 'the shot heard round the world' in the Concord Hymn, written for the 1837 dedication of a monument to the Minutemen.
3) His 1838 address to the graduating class of Harvard's Divinity School was considered so shocking that he was not asked back for many years.
4) He owned the plot of land at Walden where Thoreau built his cabin
5) He suffered from memory loss/dementia during his final years.