Celebrating Authors Assignment--Ernest Hemingway
Best of all he loved the fall.
The leaves yellow on the cottonwoods.
Leaves floating on the trout streams above the hills.
The high blue windless skies.
Now he will be part of them forever.
Ernest Hemingway wrote poetically about the Idaho landscape in the words above to eulogize a friend. These same words later appeared on a statue placed in Ketchum, Idaho in his honor. The full eulogy is below.
Born July 21, 1899, in Cicero, Illinois to a physician father and musician mother, Ernest Miller Hemingway enjoyed many childhood summers in Walloon Lake, Michigan where his father taught him to hunt and fish, instilling in him a love for the outdoors.
In 1917, Hemingway graduated high school and went to Kansas City, where he worked as a reporter for the Star. He tried to enlist in the military but was rejected for having a defective eye. In 1918, he became an ambulance driver for the American Red Cross in World War I. After only a few months, he became injured, was decorated for bravery, and after a short stay in Milan to recover, he was sent home where he began to write of his experiences.
The Sun Also Rises, A Farewell to Arms, and Death in the Afternoon are among the many works he turned out in the postwar years. Ernest wrote about war, bullfighting, big game hunting, fishing, and the outdoor activities he enjoyed. He was awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1954.
Ernest was married four times and traveled the world. He lived in France, Spain, Cuba, Florida and later, Idaho. Hemingway suffered from paranoia in his last years, convinced the FBI kept tabs on him. He received multiple electroshock treatments at the Mayo Clinic. Two days after his last treatment--on July 2, 1961--he shot himself in his Ketchum, Idaho home with his favorite shotgun.
Hemingway wrote 10 novels, 9 nonfiction books, and 19 short story collections. His extremely masculine writing style influenced contemporary style. In 2012, Ernest was inducted into the Chicago Literary Hall of Fame. Three of the houses Hemingway lived in have been listed on the U.S. National Register of Historic Places--one of them is now a museum honoring the author's life.
He loved the warm sun of summer and the high mountain meadows, the trails through the timber and the sudden clear blue of the lakes. He loved the hills in the winter when the snow comes. Best of all he loved the fall ... the fall with the tawny and grey, the leaves yellow on the cottonwoods, leaves floating on the trout streams and above the hills the high blue windless skies. He loved to shoot, he loved to ride and he loved to fish. Now those are all finished. But the hills remain.”
Author's Note ▼