Sensitive and impulsive and a compulsive reader, Tom, third-born son, is most like his father. "Tom was as inventive as his father but he was bolder. He would try things his father would not dare. Also, he had a large concupiscence to put the spur in his flanks, and this Samuel did not have. Perhaps it was his driving sexual need that made him remain a bachelor. It was a very moral family he was born into. It might be that his dreams and his longing, and his outlets for that matter, made him feel unworthy, drove him sometimes to whining in the hills." He committed suicide by shooting himself near the family ranch. Uncle John in The Grapes of Wrath is also modeled on Tom Hamilton.


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