American Novelist and Poet
Jack Kerouac
Jack Kerouac standing next to fence
Jolie Holland and Her Band
Jolie Holland and Her Band

The Kerouac Center at UMass Lowell welcomes Jolie Holland, Louis Menand, Gish Jen, and others (including films by Andy Warhol) to the biennial Kerouac Festival in October. Read more




Breaking News

In October: The Kerouac Festival in Lowell with Louis Menand, Jolie Holland, Andy Warhol, Gish Jen, and others. Read more
In September: Professor Todd Tietchen discusses editing The Haunted Life at UMass Lowell, 9/22, 2:30, O'Leary 222, South Campus.


Born Jean-Louis Kerouac, Kerouac is the most famous native son of Lowell, Massachusetts. His parents had immigrated as very young children from the Province of Quebec, Canada, and Kerouac spoke a local French Canadian-American dialect before he spoke English. He was a football star at Lowell High School and upon graduation in 1939 was awarded a scholarship to Columbia University. However, after an injury sidelined him on the football team, Kerouac grew unhappy with Columbia and dropped out of school. During this period in New York City, Kerouac became friends with the poet Allen Ginsberg and the novelist William S. Burroughs, as well as Herbert Huncke and others who would be associated with the “Beat Generation.” Read more »

Site Introduction

Welcome to The site is an ever-evolving interactive storehouse and exhibition space dedicated to Jack Kerouac and connected topics.  Read more »

Credits & Contacts

This site is produced and edited at the University of Massachusetts Lowell by the Jack and Stella Kerouac Center for the Public Humanities.  The Jack Kerouac Estate has provided considerable support for Mass Humanities and the UMass President’s Office have also financially assisted this project. The editors of the site welcome comments, suggestions, and contributions. For more information about support and contacts »