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Typed letter signed, with envelope
1944. Signed. HEMINGWAY, Ernest. Typed letter signed, with envelope. Paris: no date [July 21 stamped on envelope]. One sheet of typing paper, 8-1/2 by 11 inches, and original air mail envelope, matted and framed together; entire piece measures 14-1/2 by 23 inches. $18,500.Fascinating typed letter signed by Ernest Hemingway written while covering the Second World War in France as a war correspondent, to his friend and boxing trainer George Brown, discussing his severe head injury, subsequent effects of the concussion, and the D-Day landing. Other than for members of his own family, Brown was likely the only friend for whom Hemingway ever signed letters or books as ""Ernie."" Framed with the original air mail envelope addressed to Brown at his New York City gym, which Hemingway has inscribed in ink, ""Ernest Hemingway, war correspondent.""Undated letter listing Hemingway's address as ""Ernest Hemingway, War Correspondent, PRO HQ ETOUSA, APO 887, c/o Postmaster New York, NY"" reads in full: ""Dear George: Have been very bad about not writing you pal but it is because am so damned busy all the time. First got conked on the head with that car going into the static water tank. That is a metal tank set in the road to hold reserve water in case of fires. It wasn't lighted and the driver hit it square and I went through the shatter-proof glass. Kept my head down and didn't even break my glasses but bunged up my good knee and one hand where I braced against it and and [sic] cut the head from above the left ear in a horse shoe shaped cut through that old scar and way back into the scalp straight back from that old scar. Doctor did a swell job; [f]ifty two stitches and there is no welt and it really does not look bad now the hair is grown out. But I lost about two quarts of blood and for a while thought might bleed out. I got out of the hospital four days after it happened by lying about no headache and feeling fine etc. but was awfully weak and wobbly. Had the last stitches out on the attack transport and the life there; no drinking; lots of good chow, salt air and finally lots of salt water on the head the day we went in with the assault boats cured it well. But if you would have seen me, with two bad legs going up and down those landing nets in the dark (we had to go over to another ship after lowering our own boats), you would have had a laugh. I couldn't do that landing net stuff in a heavy sea before I hurt my knees.""After the landing, (have a piece on it in Colliers) came back here and wrote the story and since then have been attached to the R.A.F. and have had a chance to do quite a lot of flying. I like flying in the fast planes very much and often wonder why we used to pay out good money to hunt those animals in Africa when you can have this for nothing. Lately, though, my head doesn't feel good all of the time but I suppose that is natural after getting conked like that and not haveing a chance to rest and then workout and get in shape. But am surely grateful to you for putting me in shape so had a reserve to work on.""Marty [Martha Gellhorn, Hemingway's third wife, who was also a writer and war correspondent] has gone to another front because on this front it it very hard for a woman correspondent to work.""This is a wonderful town, rich and beautiful and I would like to be here some time in peace-time with lots of money. We will have to come over sometime.""Take care of yourself kid and I can never thank you enough for how good you were to me. xxxxxx Bumby is okay. Heard from him a couple of weeks ago. The kids are at Cataloochee Ranch, Waynesville, North Carolina. You might write them you heard from me in case they do not get my letters. I wrote them to Key West and again to the ranch but I gave the letter to Marty to mail and more than likely she forgot the hell about it.""If you read the piece in Colliers you will have pretty good idea about how it was going in to the beaches. Have some good stories to tell you when we get together again.""Could you call Colliers and ask them to send one of those good pictures of me to Grantland Rice? Ask for Henry LaCossitt. He is the editor. Tell him you had a letter from me and I was ok but tired because hadn't any chance to rest yet after the accident. May have to take some time off later on because of these damn headaches. If lie perfectly flat on my back it is ok. But if turn either side it acts up. If you spend your time in bed perfectly flat on your back you don't have so much fun probably though doubtless something can be worked out. You probably went through all this with your head or didn't you notice it? You're probably tough. Actually I don't feel any worse than when we were bangeing after came home from China. Don't tell any of this to Shipwreck Kelly or he will probably try to get me the first day I come home. And we will fool him. Haven't had any letters from anybody. Write, will you, to the address at top of this. I weigh 205. Get plenty of cinders for when Ernie comes home.""Your pal[signed in pencil] Ernie [and additionally] Ernest HemingwayThe envelope is additionally inscribed and signed by Hemingway in ink in the lower left corner: ""Censered [?] by Ernest Hemingway, war correspondent."" The envelope is additionally stamped and resealed by the U.S. Army Examiner (censor).Hemingway was still in London preparing to accompany the D-Day invasion force as a war correspondent when he was involved in the car crash he mentions in this letter. ""Around three in the morning, the Gorers offered to drive Hemingway back to the Dorchester. Because of the blackout, the streets were dark, while the Gorers were somewhat the worse for alcoholic wear. When their car collided with a steel water tank, Hemingway's head went forward into the windshield and his knees banged hard against the dashboard. At St. George's Hospital at Hyde Park Corner, it took the doctors two and a half hours and fifty-seven stitches to close the wound in his scalp. The swelling in his knees made walking painful and the throbbing headaches caused by his concussion were almost incessant, he found… Dr. Herrera later told him in Havana that in the aftermath of the concussion in London the doctors should have opened up his head and drained the hemorrhage, and Herrera deplored the fact that Hemingway had concealed from the doctors the gravity of his headaches in order to get out of the hospital in time for D-Day"" (Lynn, Hemingway, 508, 512). ""George Brown, the erstwhile trainer of Harry Greb and the proprietor for many years of a gymnasium in New York, knew Hemingway very well for a quarter of a century. While he considered him 'one of the finest men I've ever known,' Brown's opinion both of his ability and his ethics as a boxer was low… the gym manager had a completely straightforward view of the novelist's psychology in these set-to's—he was out to win, any way he could"" (Lynn, Hemingway, 422-23). During the filming of The Old Man and the Sea, Hemingway brought Brown to Cuba to be his trainer: ""As his trainer for this strenuous venture, he imported his old friend and boxing coach, George W. Brown. Brown gave him postoperative rubdowns and delighted him with his unfailing solicitude… Ernest reveled in such treatment, and called on George to be one of the witnesses to his will"" (Baker, Ernest Hemingway, 531). Brown drove Mary and Ernest home to Idaho from Rochester when he was discharged from the Mayo Clinic, and was still present as a guest in Idaho when Hemingway killed himself not long after. He was also one of the pallbearers at Hemingway's funeral.Very handsomely framed.
      [Bookseller: Bauman Rare Books]
Last Found On: 2017-04-03           Check availability:      Biblio    


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