Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Western Wednesday, Sort Of...!

Although this story is not typical of the western stories we normally do, I figured it was pretty close!

It has plenty of the things we often find in western themes, like beautiful scenery, colorful hard drinking men, and folks that were very creative about they made a living!

Jul 25, 1897:
Jack London sails for the Klondike

Jack London leaves for the Klondike to join the gold rush, where he will write his first successful stories.

London was born in San Francisco in 1876. His father, an astrologer named Chaney, abandoned the family, and his mother, a spiritualist and music teacher, remarried. Jack assumed his stepfather's last name, London.

From an early age, London struggled to make a living, working in a cannery and as a sailor, oyster pirate, and fish patroller. During the national economic crisis of 1893, he joined a march of unemployed workers. He was jailed for vagrancy for a month, during which time he decided to go to college. The 17-year-old London completed a high school equivalency course and enrolled at the University of California at Berkeley, where he read voraciously for a year. However, he dropped out to join the 1897 gold rush.

While in the Klondike, London began submitting stories to magazines. In 1900, his first collection of stories, The Son of the Wolf, was published. Three years later, his story The Call of the Wild made him famous around the country. London continued to write stories of adventure amid the harsh natural elements. During his 17-year career, he wrote 50 fiction and nonfiction books. He settled in northern California about 1911, having already written most of his best work. London, a heavy drinker, died in 1916.

Ya know, thanks to sites like, we can all learn some interesting things about folks from our past. Sometimes what we thought we knew turns out to be so much more! Don't you agree?

Coffee in the kitchen this morning. These daily storms are coming in very quickly and dumping a lot of rain!


Catman said...

Hi Jim,

Sonoma State, just a jump from my mom's house, has an amazing collection of London's writings online:

If you haven't read "The Iron Heel", it is here and it is free. I highly recommend it.

That's always a good thing these days.

HermitJim said...

Hey Catman...
Actually, I have the book "Iron Heel" saved on my pc!

Great story! More folks should read it, I think!

I appreciate the link and the visit today!

Catman said...

Uh, sorry Jim. I meant that it is good that it is free. :-) Even though, I highly recommend it...that's not necessarily a good thing.

There are some eerie parallels in that book when one looks at our country and the union situation.

HermitJim said...

Hey Catman...
I have to agree that free is a very good price!

I knew what you meant and I appreciate you sharing the link with us!

Anonymous said...

I love The call of the wild!
He was an interesting man, who many of us know any oyster pirates these days :-)

We can have coffee on my patio today, sunshine 71F and a light breeze here at 9 am :-)


Phyllis (N/W Jersey} said...

"White Fang" is another of my favorites. Like Hemmingway, he was a hard drinking man. Why does it seem all the great writers liked to bend the elbow a bit?
Coffee in the kitchen is fine - I'll bring chocolate chip cookies!

The Griper said...

the funny part of this tale is that if you look at the early parts of his life he would qualify as one that the liberals would say needed government entitlements.

linda m said...

I loved "Call of the Wild"; it was a great book. Thanks for the history lesson. Coffee in the kitchen is fine. We are having rain here also - finally!!!

JOJO said...

I'll have to look into these books.Running out of things to read.

We may have sun shine today for a change. Funny last year this time we prayed for ran,now its out of control.

Pass the pot please need to get move done.

HermitJim said...

Hey Christer...
Sounds a lot more comfortable on your patio than on mine!

I never even heard of an oyster pirate until I read this information!

Thanks, buddy, for dropping by today!

Hey Phyllis...
Maybe it's the drink that keeps their imagination active! Heaven knows, back when I was drinking I had an active one! Saw many things that weren't there!

Thanks for bringing the cookies and for coming over today!

Hey Griper...
Who knows what the guys of those times were thinking or what they were protesting ?

The mindset of our ancesters was probably a lot different than ours today.

Thanks for coming over today!

Hey Linda...
I'm glad you are finally getting some rain! Now lets hope that Mother Nature doesn't overdo it!

Last thing you need is a flood, right?

Thanks so much for the visit this morning!

Hey JoJo...
You can find a lot of very good books free online and download them!

Hope you get settled in soon, sweetie!

Thanks for coming by this morning!

Dizzy-Dick said...

I like any books that are about the out of doors, and most of his were.

edifice rex said...

I discovered London's writings in Jr. High and read a good number of his books; loved them all.
I had no idea he died so young though.

HermitJim said...

Hey Dizzy...
He did seem to love the outdoors if his writings were any indication!

Thanks, buddy, for coming by today!

Hey Anne...
There is so much we don't know about some of the names in our history!

Seems like a lot of the writers of those days passed on fairly young. Wonder if it was the life style?

Hey, thanks for dropping in today!

Ted Webb said...

A little trvia