He and his wife had been frequent guests at the Homestead.A widower when he began courting Emily Dickinson, Lord lived in Salem, Massachusetts.
Speculation about whom she may have loved has filled and continues to fill volumes.
Manuscripts dated to this period appear less finished than those of her intense writing period (1858-1865), though scholars are increasingly intrigued by what these later manuscripts—some of which are written on scraps of paper—suggest about her writing process.
Dickinson's work reached the eyes of several writers and publishers who did express interest in publishing her work.
Others have posited that the letters are simply literary exercises or that the author is attempting to resolve an internal crisis.
So much about Dickinson’s life remains unknown that an entirely different or as-yet unknown candidate may yet be revealed.
Her girlhood relationships, her “Master Letters,” and her relationship with Judge Otis Lord form the backbone of these discussions.