Famous Man Caves in History
A man cave is a male sanctuary where a man can go to be away from the stresses of life. He can just be alone or hang out with other men. The man cave can fit into many places such as a garage, shed, attic, basement or even a spare bedroom. Whether you call it a billiard room, man cave or game room, one thing is certain. Men have been escaping away for centuries. Read on to learn where other men in history ran off to.
1). Walden Pond : Tired of the stresses and distractions of the 19th. Century, Henry David Thoreau moved to the woods to find a more simple life. On the edge of town and near a pond called Walden, he borrowed land from a friend named Ralph Waldo Emerson and built a simple shack measuring 10’ x 15’. In it he put a bed, a table, three chairs, and a desk (sorry - no pool table or home bar). This simple shack near Concord, Massachusetts was where Thoreau lived for two years and wrote Walden, or Life in the Woods which was published in 1854. The cost to build the man cave? A mere $28.12.
2). Billiards Room : Mark Twain had his Billiards Room located on the entire top floor of his three story house in Hartford, CT. An avid billiards player, he declared his game room to be off limits to his wife and children. From 1871 - 1891, Mark Twain used his man cave to shoot pool, smoke cigars and drink liquor alone or with his buds. He also used his time there to write and escape from the world. Mark Twain, who was not a man to hide what he was thinking, said this about his man cave : "There ought to be a room in this house to swear in. It’s dangerous to have to repress an emotion like that".
3). The Trophy Room : Our 26th. President, Theodore Roosevelt lived at an estate in Oyster Bay, New York from 1885 to his death in 1919. Named Sagamore Hill, this was where TR relaxed, walked in the woods and got recharged. In 1904, he added on and built his man cave. He called it The Trophy Room and that is where he kept his collection of wild game from his many adventures in Africa and the American West. The room has a high ceiling and is built out of rich, dark Philippine camagon woodwork. It housed many trophies (including elephant tusks), animal skins, books and works of art, and a variety of personal mementoes. Very manly!
4). Hemingway’s Writing Studio : In 1931, Pulitzer Prize winning author Ernest Hemingway lived at 907 Whitehead Street in Old Town Key West, Florida. His man cave was located in the property’s original carriage house. When "Papa" wasn’t hanging out at Sloppy Joe’s Bar, he could be found at his studio indulging in a drink or enjoying a great cigar. The interior of the studio reflected his lifestyle with trophies from his African safaris and trips out West. Over the course of 10 years, Hemingway wrote some of his most well known works in his man cave studio.
5). Graceland : In 1957, Elvis Presley purchased an estate that included a large white columned mansion and 13.8 acres in Memphis, Tennessee. The mansion was then refitted to suit The King’s tastes. Described by critics as gaudy, garish, tacky and tasteless, it was a reflection of man cave inspiration. The famed Jungle Room contained a waterfall and exotic furnishings while the basement had its own wet bar, pool table, and even three side-by-side televisions (and Elvis was known to watch all three at once). O.K., so there was shag carpet everywhere but it was the 60’s and 70’s, right? Who can fault a place that sports its own racquetball court?
I hope these examples of great men in their man caves will inspire you to build your own hideaway and who knows, my next story my may include your man cave.