Travels with Charley - Quiz Questions

Download a copy of the quiz.

Teachers, click here to email a request for the quiz answers.

1) Where did Steinbeck start his journey? 

A) California

B) New York

C) Maryland

D) Chicago

2) What was the name of Steinbeck's truck in the story?

A) Yankee

B) Charley

C) Rocinante

D) His truck did not have a name

3) What breed of dog is Charley? 

A) A Sharpe 

B) A Golden Retriever

C) A Poodle

D) A Corgi 

4) What hurricane struck Steinbeck's home before he left for his trek across America?

A) Hurricane Donna

B) Hurricane Katrina

C) El Nino

D) There was no hurricane in the story. 

5) How was Charley used in Steinbeck's dealings with people during his journey?  Steinbeck described Charley as…

A) a spy

B) good with children

C) a people person

D) an ambassador

6) Why did Steinbeck feel the need to "discover" America when he was, "an American writer, writing about America" (5)?

A) He didn't feel any need to discover America; he did it purely for pleasure.

B) He wanted to gain inspiration for more bestselling stories.

C) He felt as if he had lost touch with America.

D) He was curious to see what the food in other states tasted like.

7) What isle in Maine did Steinbeck visit during his trip? 

A) Pelican Isle

B) Ellis Island

C) Emerald Isle

D) Deer Isle

8) What color does Steinbeck say Charley is, despite others saying Charley is light brown? 

A) Pink

B) Blue

C) Red

D) White

9) When Steinbeck refers to the map of the United States, he calls it:

A) "Monster America"

B) "Blessed America"

C) "Overwhelming America"

D) He doesn't refer to the map in any particular way.

10) Considering his surroundings at the time, how is Steinbeck's statement "a sad soul can kill you quicker, far quicker than a germ" ironic (37)? 

A) Because he was in a hotel room that was completely sanitized, to a near ridiculous degree.

B) Because he was in the woods with a terrible cold.

C) He found a piece of hair in his food at a restaurant in Maine.

D) He was in a doctor's office with Charley where the doctor had an unpleasant personality.

11) What landmark do Steinbeck and Charley visit when they drive through New Mexico?

A) Yellowstone

B) The Great Divide

C) The Grand Canyon

D) The Cave of the Winds

12) When Steinbeck spoke with the young man who worked on the submarine, the young man said that his job on the submarine was nothing more than a job and that it would afford him:

A) "a good salary and early retirement"

B) "all kind of benefits"

C) "all kinds of - future"  

D) a good job until he could finish college

13) What is one of the main examples that Steinbeck uses to show how wasteful American society is becoming?

A) Gasoline and cars

B) Bottled water and canned soda

C) Disposable food wrappers, plates, and utensils 

D) Steinbeck didn't believe that America was being wasteful.

14) What person inspired Steinbeck to write: "strange how one person can saturate a room with vitality, with excitement. Then there are others, and this dame was one of them, who can drain off energy and joy, can suck pleasure dry [. . .]" (37). 

A) The bellboy in Chicago

B) The waitress in Bangor, Maine.

C) The hotel owners on the Connecticut River.

D) Miss Brace on Deer Isle, Maine.

15) Steinbeck refers to the minority workers hired by Americans to do menial tasks as:

A) "mercenaries"

B) "a nuisance"

C) "wonderful"

D) "uneducated"

16) Steinbeck saw the advent of self service at gas stations and hotels as a good thing; True or False?

A) True

B) False

17) What state did Steinbeck say that he was "in love" with (121)? 

A) New Mexico

B) Maine

C) California

D) Montana

18) What city did Steinbeck purposely leave out of the story? 

A) Salt Lake, Utah

B) Chicago, Illinois

C) Boise, Idaho

D) Hollywood, California

19) Why did Steinbeck want to go to Sauk Centre in Minnesota? 

A) His grandfather was buried there. 

B) It was the place where he got his first book published.

C) Because it was the birthplace of Sinclair Lewis.

D) Because it was the birthplace of C.S. Lewis.

20) What animal brought out the fiercer side of Charley? 

A) Bears

B) Cats

C) Mice 

D) Dogs

21) Which state did Steinbeck's truck break down in? 

A) Maine

B) California

C) Oregon

D) Washington

22) What tax could mobile home owners avoid during the time period of the story? 

A) Land Tax

B) Home Tax

C) Property Tax

D) Income Tax

23) Did Steinbeck side with the Republican or Democratic Party?

A) Neither, he was an Independent.

B) Republican

C) Democratic

D) Neither, he was an Anarchist. 

24) What new principal did Steinbeck find lonely and hard to adopt to while staying at a hotel in Washington?  

A) Checking identification

B) Lack of room service

C) Self service

D) Paying more for less

25) When describing Montana, Steinbeck writes: 

A) "I was struck by the untamed wildness of the landscape."

B) "[. . .] for the first time I heard a definite regional accent unaffected by TV-ese."

C) "It seemed to me that the frantic bustle of America was not in Montana."

D) B and C

26) In part three of the text, Steinbeck talks about Americans needing scapegoats. Who does he say is the American scapegoat at the time of the story?

A) African-Americans

B) Mexicans

C) Russians

D) Women

27) Where does Steinbeck's wife, Elaine, originally come from?

A) New York

B) California

C) Chicago

D) Texas

28) Which holiday does Steinbeck celebrate in Texas? 

A) Thanksgiving

B) His birthday

C) Easter

D) Christmas

29) What, in Steinbeck's eyes, set the Coopers apart from other African Americans he met? 

A) Their family values.

B) Their work ethic.

C) Their education level.

D) Their dignity.

30) In part four of the story, Steinbeck writes, "the South, being a limb of the nation, its pain spreads out to all America" (186).  What is the "pain" he is talking about?

A) Violent tendencies

B) Racism 

C) Accents

D) Snobbery

31) Who were the "Cheerleaders" in the story?      

A) The name Steinbeck gave his fans.

B) A group of girls in Texas who wanted to become professional cheerleaders.

C) A group of racist mothers who protested in New Orleans.

D) The children who would cheer for Charley when they met him. 

32) What is the significance of Steinbeck consistently being lost in the story?  

A) It represented his inability to read a map.

B) It represented how lost he felt in his own country.

C) It showed that even the smartest people can get lost.

D) It showed Steinbeck's increasing age.