In 1953, Ernest Hemingway won his only Pulitzer Prize for fiction for The Old Man and the Sea, which was published in its entirety in LIFE magazine in September of 1952. The magazine sent photographer Alfred Eisenstaedt to Cuba to take pictures of Hemingway for the issue.
“He was,” Eisenstaedt once said of Hemingway, “the most difficult person I ever photographed.” Coming from a man who was a professional photographer across seven decades — someone who photographed presidents, emperors, socially awkward scientists, testy athletes, egomaniac actors, insecure actresses and once, famously, a scowling and goblin-like Nazi minister of propaganda, Joseph Goebbels — coming from Eisenstaedt, that bald assertion about Hemingway is striking, and sadly revealing. And it’s especially sad in light of the effort that Eisenstaedt evidently put into trying to like Hemingway.
Sixty years later, LIFE has posted a gallery of the photographs Eisenstaedt took on that mission, many which have never been published before. Link
(Image credit: Alfred Eisenstaedt)