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Jack London correspondence
mssHM 82651-82695  
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Collection Details
Table of contents What's This?
  • Descriptive Summary
  • Administration Information
  • Biography
  • Scope and Content
  • Indexing Terms

  • Descriptive Summary

    Title: Jack London correspondence
    Dates: 1902-1984
    Collection Number: mssHM 82651-82695
    Creator: London, Jack, 1876-1916
    Extent: 60 items in 2 boxes and 1 folder
    Repository: The Huntington Library, Art Collections, and Botanical Gardens Manuscripts Department
    The Huntington Library
    1151 Oxford Road
    San Marino, California 91108
    Phone: (626) 405-2203
    Fax: (626) 449-5720
    Email: reference@huntington.org
    URL: http://www.huntington.org
    Abstract: This collection consists of 45 letters, primarily from Jack London and his wife, Charmian London, and 15 pieces of ephemera.
    Language of Material: The records are in English.

    Administration Information


    Collection is open to qualified researchers by prior application through the Reader Services Department. For more information, please go to following web site .

    Publication Rights

    The Huntington Library does not require that researchers request permission to quote from or publish images of this material, nor does it charge fees for such activities. The responsibility for identifying the copyright holder, if there is one, and obtaining necessary permissions rests with the researcher.

    Preferred Citation

    HM 82651-82695, The Huntington Library, San Marino, California.

    Acquisition Information

    Gift from Murray Smith in 2000 and 2010.


    Jack London (1876-1916) was an American author best known for his fiction about California, Alaska, and the Pacific. His novel The call of the wild is among the most internationally popular works by an American. An autodidact, he directed his thirst for knowledge toward several passions, including sailing, ranching, and photography. He traveled widely, to Hawaii and throughout the South Pacific, through California, Oregon, Nevada, to Korea during the Russo-Japanese war, Mexico during the Mexican Civil War, and London, England, experiences which are reflected in his writing and his photographs.

    Scope and Content

    This collection consists of 45 letters, primarily from Jack London and his wife, Charmian London, and 15 pieces of ephemera. There are five letters from Jack London to a literary agent named, Daniel Murphy. These letters were written in 1902. There are six letters to James M. Chandler written in 1905 and 1906. Chandler was to act as quarter-master and steward during a proposed round-the-world cruise that was scheduled to last seven years with Jack London, Charmian London, an uncle, and a Japanese servant. There is also a related newspaper clipping entitled: Jamaica Plain Man To Go On 7-Year Tour With Jack London at the end of the collection. There are 16 letters to Benjamin De Cassares, an American journalist, critic, essayist, and poet. In one letter dated November 3, 1912, Charmian tells of her "great disappointment-our second disappointment, and mainly due to a poor physician in the first place" [her miscarriage]. She discusses Nietzsche's Zarathustra and what it has done for her "...at a time of mental and physical collapse. Quite pulled me together-quite played the Bible, in fact." There are three letters to Paul Eldridge, who seems to be a young fan of Jack London's. In answer to Eldridge's letters, Charmian has given a wide range of comment pertaining to Jack's health and some of his writings. There is one letter to Perriton Maxwell, where Jack states "I believe intensely in the pro-ally side of the war...As regards a few million terrible deaths, there is not so much of the terrible about such a quantity of deaths as there is about the quantity of deaths that occur in peace times in all countries in the world, and that has occurred in war times down the past" (August 28, 1916). There are 9 letters to Hunter Kimbrough, Uptrain Sinclair's brother-in-law. Charmian's writing is somewhat flirtatious, as evident in a letter dated March 15, 1928 "There—dearest Hunter!" By the time this is in your hands, I'll be in my own queer little house. I hope to embrace you there thi summer, some time. DO come. I send you a kiss---falling downstairs meanwhile if you prefer!" There are also letters to a "Mr. Hage", Vida Goldstein, S.T. Hughes, Bunster Creely and one telegram from Anna Walling Strunsky to Jack London.


    Arranged chronologically.

    Indexing Terms

    Personal Names

    Chandler, James M.
    De Casseres, Benjamin, 1873-1945
    Kimbrough, Hunter
    London, Charmian
    London, Jack, 1876-1916
    Murphy, Daniel


    Letters (correspondence)