Hunter S. Thompson’s Widow Returns Stolen Antlers to Hemingway's Home

ernest heminway
Ernest Hemingway circa 1950. (Courtesy of John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum, Boston.)Wikimedia Commons

In 1964, Hunter S. Thompson traveled to Ernest Hemingway's home in Ketchum, Idaho, to write an essay titled "What Lured Hemingway to Ketchum?" This was three years following Hemingway's death, and, evidently, the Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas author could not help but leave with the enormous pair of elk antlers hanging above the front door. "He got caught up in the moment," Anita, Thompson's widow, told BroBible. Earlier this month, more than 50 years since the theft, Anita returned the antlers to Papa's old Sun Valley home.

Anita told BroBible that Hemingway's family was "warm and kind of tickled" and that "There was no weirdness." She and Hunter had originally "planned to take a road trip and quietly return them, and not make a thing of it," she said, and Thompson was "actually very embarrassed by his actions."

Thompson was a great admirer of Papa, and Anita said he traveled to Ketchum to "see just what it was about this outback little Idaho village that struck such a responsive chord in America's most famous writer." Perhaps, at his departure, Thompson wasn't yet satisfied and needed to bring home a talisman of his idol. It’s not hard to imagine that Hemingway, who also had an impulsive streak, would've approved.