VIP Jack London

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Jack London (b. January 12, 1876 - November 22, 1916)

Shown at left: Group photo from the "Hasheesh Party" in the Solomon Islands, during the voyage of the Snark. (1908) (from the Jack London Online Collection of Sonoma State University. )

Jack London fought his way up out of the factories and waterfront dives of West Oakland, California to become the highest paid, most popular novelist and short story writer of his day. Between 1900 and 1916 he completed over fifty books, hundreds of short stories, and numerous articles on a wide range of topics. His most famous book, Call of the Wild (1903) is based on his experiences in Alaska.

London wrote of a hashish-filled evening during a voyage on his ship The Snark, "last night was like a thousand years. I was obsessed with indescribable sensations, alternative visions of excessive happiness and oppressive moods of extreme sorrow. I wandered for aeons through countless worlds, mingling with all types of humanity, from the most saintly persons down to the lowest type of abysmal brute." In his library preserved at the Huntington Library in Southern California, London had a copy of Victor Robinson's An Essay on Hasheesh: Including Observations and Experiments (New York, 1912).

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