Grapes of Wrath4

The Grapes of Wrath, written by John Steinbeck, is a story about a familyís epic

Struggles of survival during the time of the depression. Tom, the eldest son of the Joad

Family, finds himself in a unique when he must leave his home and head out to

California with his family. As Tom and his family headed West on their journey, he

found himself as the leader of the family after his grandpa had died and his father

was not thinking straight. Throughout the journey, Tom and his mother took care of the

family and did the best they could to maintain order in the family.

Tom was a good, reasonable person. Sure he had been locked in Prison for four

years, but that was only because he got in a drunken fight and killed a man with a

shovel. But Tom was only defending himself, he didnít mean to kill the man, but he did.

In prison, Tom kept to himself and didnít talk much. He probably figured that was the

only way he was going to get out of prison sooner. And his patience paid off, because he

was released in four years, instead of seven. When Tom got home, he realized that

nothing was left. All of the houses were torn down and everyone was gone. If Tom hadnít

seen his old neighbor Muley, he might have never seen his family again. After Muley had

told Tom that his family was with his Uncle John, he set out to his Uncleís house with

his old friend, Casy. As soon as Tomís mother saw him standing in the doorway, she was

so happy that ďHer head sank slowly to her sideĒ and the fork she was holding in her

hand hit the floor (Steinbeck 80). After Tom had re-acquainted himself with everyone in

his family, they all sat down and had breakfast. After breakfast, they all discussed and

planned their journey to California.
After Tom and his family decided when they were leaving, Tom had to give it

some serious thinking before he decided to leave. Since he was out on parole, he could

not leave the state, or else he would get sent back to jail for the remaining three years of

his sentence. But, Tom realized that his family needed him with them, so he decided to go

with them. Besides, Tom figured that if he just did not get into any trouble in California,

he would be fine. Tom and his family left the next morning at daylight. ďThey took

Highway 66, the main migrant roadĒ across the country (Steinbeck 127). The trip was a

long one, But Tom and his family managed to get there. Unfortunately, Tomís family

suffered many losses. Tomís grandpa died on the way to California, and Tomís grandma

died in California, but she wasnít able to see the mountains and great valleyís of

California. Noah, Tomís brother, got left behind somewhere in the Mojave Desert because

he just walked away down a river. Casy, made it to California, but he was taken into jail

for hitting a cop at one of the Hoovervilles. Once Tom and his family found work, times

were not that bad. But when they could not find any work, things got bad. So Tom and

his family had to leave the first couple of places they stayed at because they needed food

and money. Tom realized that his family needed someplace they could go to where they

would be treated good and where they could be clean. He decided to take his family to

one of the government camps that people had been talking about. So Tom took his family

to a government camp and they lived pretty good, but only for a short while.

At the government camp, life was good. There were bathrooms, showers, and places

to wash clothes. Tom and his family lived for only a month. They would have stayed

longer, but the family could not find work. So Tom and his family set off. They had

heard of some possible work not too far away. When they got to Hooper Ranch, the cops

lined them up on the road and sent them in to the ranch. The work