The Road (London book)

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The Road
AuthorJack London
CountryUnited States
GenreAutobiographical memoir

The Road is an autobiographical memoir by Jack London, first published in 1907. It is London's account of his experiences as a hobo in the 1890s, during the worst economic depression the United States had experienced up to that time.[1] He describes his experiences hopping freight trains, "holding down" a train when the crew is trying to throw him off, begging for food and money, and making up extraordinary stories to fool the police. He also tells of the thirty days that he spent in the Erie County Penitentiary, which he described as a place of "unprintable horrors," after being "pinched" (arrested) for vagrancy. In addition, he recounts his time with Kelley's Army, which he joined up with in Wyoming and remained with until its dissolution at the Mississippi River.[2]

Film adaptation[edit]

The 1973 film Emperor of the North Pole, starring Lee Marvin, is loosely based upon The Road by Jack London.[3]


  1. ^ Timberlake, Jr., Richard H. (1997). "Panic of 1893". In Glasner, David; Cooley, Thomas F. (eds.). Business Cycles and Depressions: an Encyclopedia. New York: Garland Publishing. pp. 516–18. ISBN 0-8240-0944-4.{{cite book}}: CS1 maint: multiple names: authors list (link)
  2. ^ London, Jack. The Road. New York: Macmillan, 1907. Archived 2015-01-06 at the Wayback Machine. accessed 31 May 2014
  3. ^ Williams, Tony. "Emperor of the North: The Last Hurrah of Lee Marvin." Senses of Cinema, Nov. 2007. Web. 31 May 2014. <>

External links[edit]