Jack London


Home Articles Recipes Gourmet Garden Books Product Reviews Forum Links About Me



Jack_London, one of America’s greatest novelists, a social advocate and a true renaissance man, was born on January 12, 1876. What better way to celebrate than with some of his favorite foods.

Along with pioneer vintner, Agoston_Haraszthyand botanist, Luther Burbank, author Jack London is one of my favorite California folk heroes.  This may in part be due to my family’s close connection with him.  As a boy, my father knew Jack London and often spent summers at the ranch in Glen Ellen. 

Agoston Haraszthy                                                                        Luther Burbank

Jack London at Beauty Ranch

Jack taught my father to ride and fish and much to my grandmothers mortification, also to cuss, tell risqué stories and to drink.  My dad always reminisced with great fondness of the lavish meals served in the rustic setting of the Glen Ellen camp where Jack and his second wife, Charmian spent much of their time during the construction of the ill fated Wolf House.

Socialist London’s political views were ahead of his time.  Dying in 1916, he was not to see the ratification of the 19th Amendment in 1920, giving woman the vote in the United States.  He had long been a supporter of a woman’s right to vote and contributed some of his favorite recipes to Mrs. L.O. Kleber, author of The Suffragette Cookbook,” a book published in 1915 to raise money for the suffragette movement.

Among the recipes he contributed was a dish he called Hawaiian Salad, (Lomi-Lomi Salmon), which he had become fond of while in Hawaii.  Other recipes include Savory_Rice_with_Tomatoes, Roquefort_Stuffed_Celery and several recipes for oysters including: Oyster_Savories, Anchor_Steam Steamed_Oysters and Oysters_Barbecued_with_Steam_BeerIt is likely that he developed his fondness for oysters during his early years as an Oyster Pirate in San Francisco Bay.


Unfortunately Jack fondness for life led to his early death at the age of 40.  In his own words:


"I would rather be ashes than dust. I would rather that my spark should burn out in a brilliant blaze than that it should be stifled by dry-rot. I would rather be a superb meteor, every atom of me in magnificent glow, than a sleepy and permanent planet. The proper function of man is to live, not to exist. I shall not waste my days in trying to prolong them. I shall use my time."

Charmian during Snark trip..    Wolf House front view        Jack London writing The Sea Wolf, 1904.[Credits : Jack London State Historic Park]


Charmain Lonon             Wolf House                    Jack Working at Glen Ellen

Books by

Jack London


Books by Charmian London


        Copyright © 2008 - Geraldine Duncann

advanced web statistics