Born in NewYork City to a wealthy and socially connected family, Herman Melville (Aug 1, 1819-1891) chose a life as exciting as that of his Moby-Dick narrator Ishmael. He spent years at sea on whaling ships and traveled to far-flung places, but also struggled to make it as a novelist while supporting a large extended family. To celebrate his 200th birthday on August 1, we’re diving into Melville’s adventures and fishing for some surprising facts.
1. HERMAN MELVILLE’S MOTHER CHANGED THE SPELLING OF THEIR LAST NAME.
2. HERMAN MELVILLE STRUGGLED TO FIND EMPLOYMENT.
3. HERMAN MELVILLE JUMPED SHIP IN THE MIDDLE OF A THREE-YEAR VOYAGE.
4. HERMAN MELVILLE WAS INSPIRED BY A MOUNTAIN.
5. MOBY-DICK WAS A FLOP.
Art from book cover, ‘Hell’s Heart” an illustrated celebration of Melville