The Catcher in the Rye: Biography: J.D. Salinger

Jerome David Salinger was born in 1919 on New Year’s Day. Growing up in New York City, he soon learned all about the bustle of the city. His parents were Sol Salinger, a wealthy ham importer, and Miriam Salinger. Salinger attended New York public high school and was considered an average student in most subjects. Most of his teachers found him to be a shy, polite, introverted boy. Much like his character Holden who daydreams about returning to Maine’s wilderness, Salinger spent much of his time during the summer in Maine. Also much like Holden, he flunked out of the first private school he attended— McBurney. Later, he enrolled in Valley Forge Military Academy and graduated in 1936. Soon he began to write, despite his father’s efforts to teach him the business of importing. Salinger was drafted by the United States Army in 1942 where he specialized in counter-intelligence. In 1944 he stormed Normandy with the other allies during D-Day. Soon after returning from the war, Salinger began to isolate himself more and more from society. He married in 1955 and has two children. Salinger’s continued withdrawal from society has continued and today he is virtually unknown outside of the world of literature.