navigation bar Houghton Mifflin Social Studies Communities
Biographies Unit Biographies

Rachel Carson 1907-1964
Worked to Protect the Environment

As a girl in Pennsylvania, Rachel Carson loved to write. Her first story was published at the age of ten. She was also very interested in science and studying the ocean. Combining her love of writing with her interest in science, she wrote books about the ocean, animals, and forests. Her work helped Americans understand how the environments of humans, animals, and plants are connected.

She is best known for her book Silent Spring. It told how DDT, a chemical used to kill insects, was also killing birds. DDT harmed other animals, plants, and even people. Carson worked hard to warn people of the dangers. She wrote: “I could never again listen happily to a thrush song if I had not done all I could.”

Comprehension Check

What did Rachel Carson's book Silent Spring warn about?

Critical Thinking

What do you think Rachel Carson meant when she wrote “I could never again listen happily to a thrush song if I had not done all I could”?