View Full Version : Hemingway's Cats

Edwina's Secretary
04-27-2004, 08:41 AM
I spent the last few days in South Florida, including a visit to Earnest Hemingway's home in Key West. Hemingway was a cat lover and was given a polydactyl cat by a sea captain. About 50 of the sons and daughters live there to this day. What a life!!! Beautiful, tropical grounds -- with lots of geekos -- to wander, a vet attends to them every Wednesday, the staff loves them and they are fawned over by hundreds of tourists. Many are polydactyl and yes -- reproduction is controled. Here's a few photos I took.

Our guide showing us Charlie Chaplin (the resemblance was amazing!)
We were invited to give Temptations to certain lucky kitties. We will call this one Yeti, as I don't remember her name.

04-27-2004, 09:15 AM

You may be able to find out her name by looking at the cats in the website ;)

Everyone who is worried about Hemingway's cats can read there how they are fed etc. etc.

This is a place I really would like to visit one time:D

04-27-2004, 09:25 AM
I had heard about Hemingway's estate down in Florida and some day I will get there to see all those magnificant babies.

04-27-2004, 09:56 AM
The Tribe thinks that's what we should do with our house...turn it into a museum and enclosed grounds dedicated to them!
I said as soon as I sell my first novel, we'll get to work on it!

But really, we have heard of this place too. It's cool that Hemingway's cats are almost as famous as he is. Can't fault a guy who loved his cats!

Thanks for the thread and link.;)

04-27-2004, 10:00 AM
How cool! :)

Thanks for the photos Sara. :D

04-27-2004, 10:01 AM
One day , I will go there , and bring some Canadian Cat Nip Mice! That should shake things UP!

04-27-2004, 10:14 AM
So you went to heaven! It certainly looks like it. :D I've seen programmes on TV about the place, I'd love to go and visit, and who knows, one day I might. :)

I'm glad to hear that a vet visits once a week. I bet these kitties are spoiled - as they sholud be. :D

Tubby & Peanut's Mom
04-27-2004, 11:01 AM
Yes, we've been there, and it is heaven! The house is beautiful, the grounds are beautiful, you've got this wonderful sub-tropic atmosphere and tons and tons of kitties running around! We didn't run across any that were too friendly, but a few at least let us pet them as they lounged. And it's really neat just walking around the grounds because some of them hide. You'll be looking at some pretty flowers or something, then all of a sudden you spy a cat napping amongst the greens that you didn't see at first. It's fun and I would definitely recommend it to everyone. :D

04-27-2004, 12:49 PM
Edwina's Secretary,

Boy does THAT ever bring back memories. I was in Key West with my best friend on vacation and we visited the Hemingway House. I was so homesick for my cats, I didn't want to leave!! The cats were amazing. I took TONS of pictures of the cats. According to the guy in the ticket booth, all the cats are named for movies stars. There were cats EVERYWHERE!!!

There was one cat in particular, Archibald MacLeish, a HUGE fluffy long haired orange boy. We were touring the house and he was laying on Heminway's bed sound asleep with a fan blowing on him! Those cats have such a wonderful life!!

I've always wanted to return to Key West (I love the town) but unfortunately never had the opportunity or finances to do so. So, I have my pictures and memories.

P.S. Thanks Barbara for the link to the website. It actually HAS a picture of Archibald MacLeish on the bed sleeping!!!

04-27-2004, 01:29 PM
I wanna go!!!!

What a FUN place! It reminds me of the aviary at the NC Zoo...except with cats instead of birds! What could be better than that?

Hmmm...that big old tuxie boy really *does* look like Charlie Chaplin, doesn't he? I have to go check out that web site now...


04-27-2004, 03:18 PM
I visited the Hemingway House just last summer. It was so hot and humid that once the tour moved upstairs I ditched so I could stand outside. I felt dizzy from the heat. Key West is insanely hot in the middle of summer. Anyway, I wanted to add some of the better pictures I took there onto this thread.

This one is probably my favorite. This Siamese mix was resting on the cool pavement under a recently watered planter. I love the colors in this picture. Also notice the little kitty pawprints?
S/he could be a "Marilyn Manroe" relative.

The majority of the cats I saw out and about were big orangies like this one.

Here is a different orangie having a little grooming session.

Here is a tuxie taking a nap (which is what most of the kitties were doing - it was midday and Oh, So Hot!) This kitty is probably "Charlie Chaplin." The angle doesn't allow me to determine whether he has the "tiny black mustache" or not.

This kitty cracked me up - she was sleeping on top of this Penny Pincher machine. She might be "Ragamuffin."

Here is a picture of one of the lizards that Sara refers to. I think Kayann has posted pictures of these lizards before - they are all over Florida. This picture was taken in Hemingway's garden.

Here are some of the famous Key West Chickens. This mommy was teaching her babies how to scratch around in the dirt for food. It was sooo cute! This group was just passing through the Hemingway grounds. These chickens are all over Key West.

Edwina's Secretary
04-27-2004, 04:09 PM
More wonderful photos of these wonderful cats! I could hear the chickens but didn't see any....

04-27-2004, 04:34 PM
I love the picture of the kitty under the planter: the colours and the forms.

04-27-2004, 10:57 PM
What a great trip! I'm so glad you shared it, as I had no idea about the cats, although I knew that his home was in Key West. Thanks to all of you for the great information! :)

04-27-2004, 11:47 PM
I want to visit that place someday. I have never heard of the Hemingway House.

Barbara, thanks for posting the site. I really enjoyed reading about the cats of Heminghouse House. Its a very interesting to read about these beautiful cats.

They all look heathy and well cared for.

Thanks for sharing the pictures.:)


04-28-2004, 12:16 AM
Gorgeous kitties!! :)

04-28-2004, 04:17 AM
Wonderful pictures!

I wanna go there!

Ally Cat's Mommy
04-28-2004, 12:49 PM
I was on a cruise a few years ago which stopped in Key West. We did go on a shore excursion, but I must have chosen the wrong one, as I didn't see Hemingway's house or the cats:( :(

I have been nagging hubby ever since to go back to Florida again - I LOVE it!! Now I will have to nag TWICE as much!!

Thanks for sharing.

PS did you have any KEY LIME pie whilst you were there - that is just heaven on a plate!!!!