Journalist Hunter S. Thompson sits on his Penton Motor Cycle with his rifle over his shoulder on his ranch circa 1976 near Aspen Colorado. A collection of letters written by Thompson will go up for auction this week. (Photo by Michael Ochs Archives/GettyImages)

< Go to Homepage

Hunter S. Thompson Letters Will Be Sold at Auction

180 letters will go up for sale September 27 in Los Angeles.

A collection of letters Hunter S. Thompson wrote to his childhood friend Paul Semonin between 1955 and 1974 will go up for auction this week. The incredible bundle of 180 letters covers periods in which Thompson wrote The Rum Diaries as well as his travails following the Hell’s Angels.

The letters are written in the style that made Thompson one of the late 20th Century’s fiercest writers. In one letter he refers to The Rum Diary as “a beastly thing, full of hell and humping and slander.” Another haunting excerpt during his time with the Hell’s Angels reads simply, “Pills, 24 hr-writing, no sleep, packing, fear, etc… Am badly beaten here — the Angels turned on me.”

When he wasn’t working on one of his most famous works, Thompson remained animated. He wrote about a stint as a caretaker in Big Sur, “This is the 13th consecutive day of jabbering, whiskeythink… I sense another orgy of destruction, the second in 10 days.”

In addition to the letters to Semonin, the auction will also include a telegram Thompson sent to Tom Wolfe. The auction in Los Angeles will open bidding at $110,000.

Read the full story at The Guardian