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Saturday, February 7, 2009

1401 Pine Street - Key West - Former Home of a Literary Giant

"John Dos Passos, author of the U.S.A. trilogy and many other works, first visited Key West in the 1920s and told his friend Ernest Hemingway about the place. During the winter of 1934, Dos Passos and his wife lived in this house at 1401 Pine St., then the outskirts of town." So says the Key West Literary Seminar. And author J. Willis Burke reports in 'The Streets of Key West' "No doubt, John dos Passos, who lived at 1401 Pine during the 1930s, made the fifteen minute walk (to downtown Key West)often. After one nocturnal amble, he arrived at Hemingway's house and met his future wife, Kate, for the first time. Perhaps it was kismet: "Dos" had, after all, been the one to suggest to "ole Hem" give Key West a try if he was looking for a warm place "to dry out his bones."

Last year I wrote about the home at 719 Windsor Lane that another literary giant, John Hersey owned with his wife. I have shown it to two published authors, both of whom loved the place. It is still for sale. CLICK HERE for information on 719 Windsor Lane. It is a simple little house the likes of which almost does not exist anymore.

This is how the listing Realtor describes 1401 Pine Street "Charming conch home in quiet Old Town neighborhood. French doors look out to private pool area. Original fresco murals. Wood floors and Dade County Pine walls through out. 3 bedrooms plus large attic sleeping area." CLICK HERE to read more info on this house but you really have to look at the incredible photos of the interior and pool. This is the kind of place that might inspire you to become a literary giant in your own right.

There is something about a simple Conch House that brings most people down from their lofty perches to appreciate the everyday life in Key West.

The house at 1401 Pine Street has 1868 sq ft of living space consisting of 4 bedrooms, 3 baths and is offered at $995,000 or $533 per sq ft.

Please call me, Gary Thomas, 305-766-2642 or e-mail me at if you would like to see 1401 Pine or any other house in the Old Town Key West area. Writers welcome. But you are not allowed to critique my writing. Please.

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Key West, Florida, United States
I first read about Key West in a magazine called "After Dark" sometime in the mid 1970's. But it wasn't until March 1984 that I made my first visit to the island that would become my home. I had two weeks for a vacation and reserved a room at Colours Guesthouse (now Marrero's Guest House) for one week. I thought that if I didn't like Key West, I could always go back to Miami or Ft. Lauderdale for the rest of my trip. But after a couple of days in Key West, that was no longer a consideration. But when I wanted to extend my stay for the extra week I found there was no room at the inn. The guesthouse owner did find me a room at LaTeDa, the infamous guesthouse/restaurant. That's a story I'll write another day. But those two weeks in Key West gave me the realization that I had found Paradise. Key West has been my home since 1993 and my only regret is that it took me so long to get here. I am a full time Realtor at Preferred Properties CRI. Let me help you find your new home or business in Paradise. Living in Paradise is not a slogan, it's a way of life.