Fifteen Eighty Four

Academic perspectives from Cambridge University Press


On the Road for The Letters of Ernest Hemingway, Part Three: Back to Where It All Began

Melissanne S.

Dateline: Oak Park, Nov 3


Back to where it all began, for Ernest. The Ernest Hemingway Museum in Oak Park, hosted by the Ernest Hemingway Friends of Oak Park, was a great way to end Sandy’s tour. The space was standing-room only as fans of Hemingway listened to Sandy talk about The Letters and her extensive Hemingway knowledge.

One of the important aspects of The Letters, Sandy explained, was how they dispelled some of the myths connected to Hemingway. For example, it’s been long-thought that Hemingway did not get along with his mother—yet Volume One shows a very loving relationship between the two. Another point Sandy made, which was echoed by many in the audience, is that there is zero documentation of Hemingway ever having said, “Oak Park was a city of broad lawns and narrow minds.”

Someone asked why Hemingway went to Paris after the war, rather than to Italy which he knew well. According to Sandy, Sherwood Anderson said to go to Paris because that’s were literature was happening. And so Hemingway went.

The questions and conversations at this event showed a real love of Hemingway. Some folks even had personal ties to him, since at least two different guests revealed they went to the same high school after Hemingway and even had the same English teacher that he had. Sweet.

As fond as they are of the legend of Hemingway, the people of Oak Park were also very fond of Sandy and were very impressed by her talk. Lots of people wanted to know when Volume 2 (stay tuned!) would be ready and let us know that they’d be giving out lots of The Letters of Ernest Hemingway as holiday gifts this year.

Thanks, Oak Park, for being so welcoming!

Wrapping Up

Author tours can be tough with grueling travel schedules and long airport lines, but they are also a sure-fire way for authors to connect directly with their readers, their fans. And in turn, readers are left with a richer picture of Ernest Hemingway. There will be more events, both with Sandy Spanier and with her co-editor Robert Trogdon. We will keep you posted here, and we hope you’ll be able to join us!

Read Part One: The Pacific Northwest

Read Part Two: California

About The Author

Melissanne S.

Melissanne is the associate director of sales and marketing in Cambridge's New York office....

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