John Thomas Codman’s Brook Farm; Historic and Personal Memoirs was disappointing in that is seems to contain somewhat broad information regarding the Brook Farm, rather than a detailed experience. Admittedly, I haven’t read the entire book but from the chapters I chose, that most pertained to the culture of Brook Farm, I didn’t seem to glean very much new information. Codman restates much of what I have already read in other texts. However, this is not to say that this is necessarily a weak source, but one that is more secondary.
I did notice, however, that most every aspect of Brook Farm, reflected the communal ideals and the “back to nature” ideology. Throughout my research, I’ve noticed how deeply engrained community is in the Brook Farm culture, but I think I’ve started to grasp the extent after reading Codman’s memoir chapter. He discussed the “busy energy” of mealtimes where each and every person gathered. It seemed a time that everyone could connect and see the greater goal beyond themselves; community. Codman didn’t describe the communal mealtime as a requirement, but implied that it was certainly an expectation. Codman also described the simplistic lifestyle of Brook farm in which people labored, ate, and dwelled together without modern amenities, such as running water, or luxuries, such as ornate decoration. The walls were decorated with pictures of nature, or framed, dried leaves and flowers that reflected the simplicity of life at Brook Farm.
Codman, John Thomas. Brook Farm; historic and personal memoirs. Boston: Arena Pub. Co., 1894. Print.
Note: Image is simply the cover over Brook Farm; historic and personal memoirs