John Steinbeck Jr

John Ernst Steinbeck Jr (1902 - 1968)

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John Ernst Steinbeck Jr
Born in Salinas, Monterey, California, USAmap
Ancestors ancestors
Husband of — married (to ) in Glendale, Los Angeles, Californiamap
Husband of — married (to ) in New Orleans, Louisianamap
Husband of — married in New York, New Yorkmap
Father of and [private son (1940s - unknown)]
Died in New York, New York, New York, USAmap
Profile last modified | Created 27 Mar 2011 | Last significant change: 28 May 2018
16:14: William Foster Jr removed a match of Bewick-188 and Steinbeck-7. [Thank William for this | 2 thank-yous received]
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Categories: Authors | This Day In History February 27 | This Day In History December 20 | This Day In History May 06 | California Project.

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Contents

Biography

John Steinbeck is an American author, best known for his novels, The Grapes of Wrath and Of Mice and Men, typical of his focus on the plight of the downtrodden.[1][2][3]

Family

Born 27 February 1902 in Salinas, California, John Ernst Steinbeck Jr was the son of John Ernst Steinbeck, Sr., and Olive Hamilton.[4][5][6][7][2][3] Of German, Irish and English descent, John’s paternal grandfather, Johann Adolf Großsteinbeck, shortened his surname to Steinbeck when he emigrated to America.[citation needed] John’s father worked in a flour mill when he was born, and was a county treasurer, while his mother was a school teacher with a passion for literature and culture.[2][3] The family lived in a big home in the then small town of Salinas, California, and John spent his summers working on nearby ranches and sugar beet farms.[3] The beet farms are where John became aware of the harsh aspects of migrant life.[3] The family attended an Episcopal Church though John would later become an agnostic.[citation needed]

John studied at Stanford University on and off for six years, but never graduated.[2][3] He did foster the beginning of a lifelong friendship with Ed Ricketts while there, which led to his collaboration on "The Sea of Cortez", documenting the duo's voyage to collect marine invertebrates.[3]

John married his first wife, Carol Henning, January 14th, 1930 in Los Angeles, California.[6] He met her when she walked into the fish hatchery he was working at, while working on his first novel, "Cup of Gold."[3] They lived in Pacific Grove, California, where much of the material for his novels "Tortilla Flat" and "Cannery Row" was gathered.[8][9][10]

John's second marriage was to Gwyndolyn Conger, March 29th, 1943. Together they had John's only children, two sons, John Steinbeck IV, who also grew to be a writer, and Thomas.[11][3]

John married third Elaine Anderson, the 28th of December 1950, in New York, New York.[12]

The Writer

John showed an interest in writing and literature from a young age.[3] He would write shorts and send them to local newspapers under pseudonyms, hoping both that they wouldn't be published, but then again that they might be.[3] He started writing for his school newspaper, and by age 14 had decided he would be a writer as an adult.[3]

John's first novel, "Cup of Gold" was published in 1929, but was both critically and popularly unsuccessful.[3] His two subsequent books, "The Pastures of Heaven", a collection of short stories, and "To a God Unknown", had little success, despite being critically appreciated.[3]

Tortilla Flat, a novella published in 1935, marked the turning point in Steinbeck's literary career.[3] It was adapted into a film in 1942 starring Hedy Lamar, and received the California Commonwealth Club's Gold Medal for best novel by a California author.[3] John continued writing, relying upon extensive research and his personal observation of the human condition for his stories.[3]

In 1937, John published "Of Mice and Men", followed by "The Grapes of Wrath" in 1939, and East of Eden, based on life in Salinas, in 1942.[3] In 1940, he received the National Book Award and Pulitzer Prize for The Grapes of Wrath.[2][3]

During World War II, John used his skills as writer in the role of a war correspondent for the New York Tribune.[2][3] That correspondence was collected and published as "Once There Was a War".[3]

"Cannery Row" was published in 1944.[3] The novel was so successful Monterey renamed Ocean View Avenue "Cannery Row".[3]

John lost his close friend Ed Ricketts in 1948, and soon after his wife, Gwyn, asked for a divorce.[3] The events threw him into depression, and he retreated to a California cabin to dive in to his writing.[3]

Following his marriage to Elaine, he and John traveled and he continued to write.[3] His 1961 novel, "The Winter of Our Discontent" earned him the Nobel Prize for Literature, for his “realistic and imaginative writing, combining as it does sympathetic humor and keen social perception.”[3][13] The decision was heavily criticized as one of the Academy’s biggest mistakes.[13] Steinbeck himself, when asked if he deserved the award, replied, “Frankly, no.”[13]

In 1964, President Johnson awarded John the Presidential Medal of Freedom.[3]

Both of the Steinbeck boys served in Vietnam.[3] John traveled there himself in 1967 to do war correspondence for Newsday, a series titled "Letters to Alicia".[3] Seeing a war much different from World War II, John became disillusioned. He was proud of his sons, though, and wrote President Lyndon Johnson a typed letter thanking him for time they had spent together. Curiously, it wasn't a perfect draft. It was sent to the president in all caps, riddled with mark-up. In the letter, Steinbeck talks about his son in uniform, and touches on the finicky nature of those who were protesting the war, as well as protestors throughout history.[14]

Death and Legacy

Throughout his life, John Steinbeck remained a private person who shunned publicity.[citation needed] He was a lifelong smoker, and died 20 December 1968 in Manhattan, New York, at the age of 66, from heart disease and congestive heart failure.[2][15] Per his wishes, his body was cremated and interred at the Hamilton family plot along with his parents and maternal grandparents, following a memorial service at St. James Episcopal Church.[2] Steinbeck knew his end was near, as just before he died, he had written his doctor, telling him that he felt “in his flesh” that the biological end of his life was the final end to it, with nothing beyond.[citation needed]

In 1979, the United States Postal Service issued a Steinbeck commemorative stamp in John's honor.[2] The National Steinbeck Center was opened in Salinas, California, in 1998.[2][3]

Sources

  1. Wikipedia contributors, "John Steinbeck," Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia, Wikipedia: John_Steinbeck (accessed April 26, 2018).
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 2.4 2.5 2.6 2.7 2.8 2.9 Find A Grave, database and images (https://www.findagrave.com : accessed 26 April 2018), memorial page for John Steinbeck (27 Feb 1902–20 Dec 1968), Find A Grave: Memorial #1257, citing Garden of Memories, Salinas, Monterey County, California, USA ; Maintained by Find A Grave .
  3. 3.00 3.01 3.02 3.03 3.04 3.05 3.06 3.07 3.08 3.09 3.10 3.11 3.12 3.13 3.14 3.15 3.16 3.17 3.18 3.19 3.20 3.21 3.22 3.23 3.24 3.25 3.26 3.27 3.28 3.29 3.30 "About John", Steinbeck.org, accessed 26 Apr 2018
  4. "United States Census, 1920," database with images, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:MH7G-FBQ : accessed 26 April 2018), John E Steinbeck in household of John E Steinbeck, Salinas, Monterey, California, United States; citing ED 4, sheet 1B, line 53, family 14, NARA microfilm publication T625 (Washington D.C.: National Archives and Records Administration, 1992), roll 122; FHL microfilm 1,820,122.
  5. Critical Companion to John Steinbeck: A Literary Reference to His Life and Work Jeffrey D. Schultz, Luchen Li.Infobase Publishing, 2005.
  6. 6.0 6.1 "California, County Marriages, 1850-1952," database with images, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:K8NY-DR8 : 8 December 2017), John Ernest Steinbeck and Carol J Henning, 14 Jan 1930; citing Los Angeles, California, United States, county courthouses, California; FHL microfilm 2,074,771.
  7. "United States Census, 1910," database with images, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:MVLX-THJ : accessed 26 April 2018), John E Steinback, Salinas Ward 2, Monterey, California, United States; citing enumeration district (ED) ED 3, sheet 26B, family 300, NARA microfilm publication T624 (Washington D.C.: National Archives and Records Administration, 1982), roll 89; FHL microfilm 1,374,102.
  8. "United States Census, 1930," database with images, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:XC87-1L2 : accessed 26 April 2018), John E Steinbeck, Los Angeles (Districts 0501-0750), Los Angeles, California, United States; citing enumeration district (ED) ED 654, sheet 14A, line 33, family 287, NARA microfilm publication T626 (Washington D.C.: National Archives and Records Administration, 2002), roll 161; FHL microfilm 2,339,896.
  9. "United States Census, 1940," database with images, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:K9DY-H4B : accessed 26 April 2018), John Steinbeck, Redwood Judicial Township, Santa Clara, California, United States; citing enumeration district (ED) 43-51, sheet 9B, line 46, family 288, Sixteenth Census of the United States, 1940, NARA digital publication T627. Records of the Bureau of the Census, 1790 - 2007, RG 29. Washington, D.C.: National Archives and Records Administration, 2012, roll 336.
  10. "United States, GenealogyBank Obituaries, 1980-2014," database with images, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:QV5H-WGGJ : accessed 26 April 2018), John Steinbeck in entry for Carol Henning Brown, Pennsylvania, United States, 10 Feb 1983; from "Recent Newspaper Obituaries (1977 - Today)," database, GenealogyBank.com (http://www.genealogybank.com : 2014); citing "Carol Henning Brown, 76", The Philadelphia Inquirer, born-digital text.
  11. "United States, GenealogyBank Obituaries, 1980-2014," database with images, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:QVP2-XPRJ : accessed 26 April 2018), John Steinbeck in entry for Mr John Steinbeck IV, Florida, United States, 11 Feb 1991; from "Recent Newspaper Obituaries (1977 - Today)," database, GenealogyBank.com (http://www.genealogybank.com : 2014); citing "Mr John Steinbeck IV, 44", Miami Herald, The, born-digital text.
  12. Find A Grave, database and images (https://www.findagrave.com : accessed 26 April 2018), memorial page for Elaine Anderson Steinbeck (14 Aug 1914–27 Apr 2003), Find A Grave: Memorial #7394972, citing Garden of Memories, Salinas, Monterey County, California, USA ; Maintained by Find A Grave .
  13. 13.0 13.1 13.2 guardian.co.uk
  14. National Archives Collection LBJ-WHCF. Identifier: 6207609
  15. "BillionGraves Index," database, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:2VZ9-FLM : 24 June 2015), John Steinbeck, died 1968; citing BillionGraves (http://www.billiongraves.com : 2012), Burial at Garden of Memories, Salinas, Monterey, California, United States.
  • "New York, New York Passenger and Crew Lists, 1909, 1925-1957," database with images, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:2HM7-M4Q : 15 March 2018), John E Steinbeck, 1952; citing Immigration, New York City, New York, United States, NARA microfilm publication T715 (Washington, D.C.: National Archives and Records Administration, n.d.).
  • "New York, New York Passenger and Crew Lists, 1909, 1925-1957," database with images, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:2452-J7P : 16 March 2018), John E Steinbeck, 1947; citing Immigration, New York City, New York, United States, NARA microfilm publication T715 (Washington, D.C.: National Archives and Records Administration, n.d.).
  • "New York, New York Passenger and Crew Lists, 1909, 1925-1957," database with images, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:24GB-X41 : 15 March 2018), John Steinbeck, 1946; citing Immigration, New York City, New York, United States, NARA microfilm publication T715 (Washington, D.C.: National Archives and Records Administration, n.d.).


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Images: 5
John Ernst Steinbeck Image 1
John Ernst Steinbeck Image 1

Letter from John Steinbeck to Pres. Lyndon Johnson
Letter from John Steinbeck to Pres. Lyndon Johnson

The Grapes of Wrath
The Grapes of Wrath

John Steinbeck Image 4
John Steinbeck Image 4

John Steinbeck
John Steinbeck

Collaboration

On 4 May 2018 at 02:44 GMT John Walker wrote:

I remember i was doing some unit in English class year 11 in 2003, part of our reading was the book "Of Mice and Men". It was a good read.

On 2 May 2018 at 19:30 GMT Uwe Groß wrote:

Great author, always loved to read his books

On 6 May 2014 at 23:31 GMT Maggie N. wrote:

Oh Eowyn ! This is marvellous and you picked a great author (-:



John is 21 degrees from Chet Atkins, 19 degrees from Edie Kohutek and 20 degrees from Victoria of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland on our single family tree. Login to find your connection.

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