25 Photos of Famous Authors in Uniform


What is it about a uniform? They can be practical, decorative, honorific, or just something you found lying around — but they always make the wearer look a little bit better. Especially if that wearer is a famous writer, someone whom you think of only in a T-shirt and sweatpants, banging away at the typewriter in the near-dark. Or is that just me? Either way, here you’ll find 25 snaps of some of your favorite writers all dressed up in uniform — whether military, sports, school, or otherwise — and if you’re soon to be putting on a back-to-school uniform of your own, well, take heart. It’ll look good.

A 21-year-old Norman Mailer looking all attitude in his US Army uniform [via]

Tolstoy in 1854, in a Russian artillery officer’s uniform [via]

Proust looking fancy in military dress [via]

Ernest Hemingway Photograph Collection, John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum, Boston

Ernest Hemingway, Milan, 1918

Agatha Christie as a new nursing recruit in WWI [via]

Alex Haley in two different Coast Guard portraits (featuring two different Coast Guard hats) [via]

J.R.R. Tolkien, age 24, in army uniform, 1916 [via]

A young Roald Dahl in his St. Peter’s school uniform, 1925 [via]

And an older version of both Dahl and uniform (with Papa as a bonus!), London, 1944 [via]

J.D. Salinger in uniform during WWII [via]

Jack Kerouac in his Columbia University football uniform, c. 1940 [via]

Sir Arthur Conan Doyle in uniform with his two sons, dressed up to match [via]

Zane Grey in his U Penn baseball uniform, 1895 [via]

Kurt Vonnegut in US Army uniform between 1943 and 1945

Robert Graves in uniform, 1915 [via]

Jack London, sailor [via]

Yukio Mishima in the private army uniform in which he died [via]

Allen Ginsberg in his Merchant Marine uniform, with Lafcadio and Peter Orlovsky, 1956 [via]

F. Scott Fitzgerald’s military portrait, 1917 [via]

A young Stanislaw Lem in his school uniform, 1934 [via]

James Salter in pilot’s uniform, with plane, during the Korean War, 1952 [via]

Ian Fleming in Naval uniform [via]

17-year-old cadet Stephen Crane in uniform, 1888 [via]

William Faulkner in the RAF lieutenant’s uniform he liked to wear (despite never having attained the rank) [via]

Saved the best for last: Ursula K. Le Guin, ca. 1933, in her brother’s baseball uniform. Awwwww. [via]