Samuel Kettell, ed. Specimens of American Poetry. 1829.
Critical and Biographical Notice
Robert S. Coffin (17971827)
ROBERT S. COFFIN was born in the state of Maine, and spent the early portion of his life in Newburyport, where he served an apprenticeship as a printer, an occupation which he afterwards pursued in Boston, New York, and Philadelphia. He dreamed that the gods had made him poetical, and put forth quantities of metre at an early age. In the latter part of his life, his rhymes, under the name of The Boston Bard, obtained him some notice as an inditer for the poets corner of the newspapers, and his various pieces were collected and published in a volume, in 1826. It contains but a small amount of tolerable matter. We remember while a schoolboy, to have read some local satires of his in manuscript, which showed respectable powers of sarcasm and ridicule. He died at Rowley, near Newburyport, in May, 1827, at the age of about thirty. His life was chequered by considerable variety, he having been at one time a sailor; the public sympathy was much excited for him toward the close of his career, and Mr Bryan wrote a poem, the profits of which were given to relieve his necessities.