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Title Oral History of Locke McCorkle
Collection Oral History
Scope & Content In this rollicking oral history, Locke McCorkle recounts a colorful life full of passion, humor, and adventure. Born in San Jose in 1930 — and at the time of this interview proudly “as old as God and as young as spring”— Locke grew up in Eureka, California. After studying English and French at Humboldt State University, he moved down to the Bay Area to attend graduate school at Berkeley, but changed his course when he heard Alan Watts’ lectures on eastern spirituality. While studying with Watts in San Francisco, he befriended the poet Gary Snyder with whom he moved over to Mill Valley in the late 1950s. Through Snyder, Locke became acquainted with many of the Beats — serving as a model for one of the major characters of Jack Kerouac’s 1958 novel The Dharma Bums — and he vividly describes the parties and personalities of this period in Mill Valley’s postwar history. Throughout the interview Locke recollects his friendships, adventures, and marriages, as well as his various forms of employment, including a number of years working as a house manager for Erdhard Seminars Training founder Werner Erhard. Locke ends his oral history with a poignant evocation of community in Mill Valley and a paean to the spirituality of motorcycle riding.
Audio and Transcript Click here to hear recording.
Click here to read the transcript.
Dates of Creation 2015-05-08
Narrator's name McCorkle, Locke
Interviewer Schwartz, Debra
Extent and Medium Transcript: 32pp
Recording: 01:39:30
Search Terms Authors
Beat generation
Cassady, Neal
Erhard, Werner
Ginsberg, Alan
Hawking, Stephen
Kerouac, Jack
McCorkle, Sumire
Motorcycles
Sex
Simone, Carol
Snyder, Gary
Spiritualism
Watts, Alan
Writers
Object ID 2016.023.001
Object Name Recording
Copyrights Transcript and recording copyright Mill Valley Public Library, 2015. Materials are made available for research purposes only; all rights are reserved to the Mill Valley Public Library. Requests for permission to quote for publication or for any other usage must be obtained from the Library.