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Eugene ONeill and Wife Carlotta

Eugene O'Neill and Wife Carlotta

Starting June 6 through August 29, 2009, the Eugene O’Neill National Historic Site will be offering NO RESERVATION SATURDAYS to the site.

A park van will be waiting at the Museum of the San Ramon Valley (205 Railroad Ave., Danville, CA) at 10 a.m., 11 a.m., 1 p.m. and 2 p.m. to bring visitors up and down from the O’Neill home. No reservations are needed on these Saturdays this summer. However, If you are planning to bring a large group, please contact the park at (925) 838-0249.

A Bit About this National Historic Site:

O’Neill in California: America’s only Nobel Prize winning playwright, Eugene O’Neill, chose to live in the Tri-Valley, specifically in Danville, CA at the climax of his writing career. Isolated from the world and within the walls of his home, O’Neill wrote his final and most memorable plays; The Iceman Cometh, Long Day’s Journey Into Night, and A Moon for the Misbegotten.

Visitors arrive by park shuttle from the Town of Danville, receive a guided tour through O’Neill’s Tao House, and have time to explore the grounds before returning to Danville on the shuttle. Plays are presented in the old barn twice a year by The Eugene O’Neill Foundation in the spring and fall.

About Eugene O’Neill’s time in Danville:

In 1937 the playwright Eugene O’Neill and his wife Carlotta discovered 158 acres in the Las Trampas Hills above Danville, California and decided to build there. They loved the site not only because of the beauty of the countryside Eugene described as “corduroy hills,” but also because of its isolation. For the O’Neills it was an advantage to be away from the world, escaping from the publicity and notoriety the successful playwright had attracted after receiving the Nobel Prize for literature in the previous year. They lived in the home they named Tao House (from the Taoist philosophy meaning “the right way of life”) from 1937 to 1944. The house Eugene called his “final harbor” was at once a home, a working place and a fortress, built high on the hill, where few visitors were welcomed. Carlotta protected Eugene from the outside world, and he was able to write his most famous plays isolated behind three doors that closed off his study from the rest of the house.

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