Samwise Gamgee, Frodo Baggins loyal servant, was determined to follow his master wherever he went even when he was not invited. Sam proved to be a brave and loyal companion and became Frodo’s closest friend. His Hobbit-sense and his love for Frodo saw them both through danger and hardship to the end of the quest. Sam’s unwillingness to give up hope even when things seemed darkest ensured that not only did they reach their goal, they also survived.
Unlike his three companions, Samwise Gamgee was not a gentle hobbit. His father Hamfast, known as the Gaffer, had been the gardener at Bag End for over 40 years, and Sam was his assistant. They lived at Number 3 Bagshot Row at the bottom of the Hill in Hobbiton. Hamfest and his wife Bell Goodchild had five other children. Sam’s oldest brother Hamson went to work for their uncle Andwise Roper, from whom Sam also learned a thing or two about the rope. Sam’s youngest sister Marigold married Tom Cotton, whose sister Rosie had caught Sam’s eye.
Sam had learned to read and write from Bilbo Baggins and he listened eagerly to Bilbo’s tales about his adventures, particularly the ones about Elves. The Gaffer found his son’s preoccupation with Elves and such a bit worrisome.
“Elves and Dragons! I says to him. Cabbages and potatoes are better for me and you. Don’t go getting mixed up in the business of your betters, or you’ll land in trouble too big for you, I says to him.”
By the time Frodo Baggins inherited Bag End in 3001, Sam had taken over most his old Gaffer’s duties. In the spring of 3018, Sam noticed that Frodo seemed restless with his life in the Shire. He agreed to help Merry Brandybuck and Pippin Took learn what was troubling their friend.
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When Gandalf came to Bag End in April of 3018, Sam was trimming the grass under the window (or so he claimed) and overheard the wizard telling Frodo that Bilbo’s magic ring was the One Ring lost by the Dark Lord Sauron long ago. Sam could not help but cry out in dismay when he learned that Frodo would have to leave the Shire. Gandalf discovered him and decreed that Sam should accompany Frodo when he went.
Sam set out with Frodo from Bag End on September 23 on the pretense that he was going to be the gardener at Frodo’s new home in Crickhollow. When the Hobbits left Crickhollow and journeyed into the Old Forest, Sam was the only one to keep his wits about him when the others succumbed to the spell of the Withywindle valley and fell asleep. Sam saved Frodo from drowning in the river, and Tom Bombadil came along to save Merry and Pippin from Old Man Willow.
At the Prancing Pony in Bree, Sam was suspicious of the Ranger called Strider who offered to guide the Hobbits into the Wild.
“How do we know you are the Strider that Gandalf speaks about?” he demanded. “You never mentioned Gandalf, till this letter came out. You might be a play-acting spy, for all I can see, trying to get us to go with you. You might have done in the real Strider and took his clothes. What have you to say to that?”
Sam returned home to Bag End, which now belonged to him. He and Rosie had 13 children altogether. Their oldest daughter Elanor married Fastred of Greenholm, who became the Warden of Westmarch. Their daughter Goldilocks married Peregrin Took’s son and heir Faramir. Sam was elected Mayor of Michel Delving in the year 6 of the Fourth Age.
He served seven seven-year terms and was made a Counsellor of the North-kingdom by Aragorn, King Elessar, in the year 13. In the year 15, the King visited the North-kingdom and gave Sam the Star of the Dunedain. Sam, Rosie, and Elanor traveled to Gondor in the year 21 and stayed there for a year.
When Rose died in the year 61, Sam left Bag End to his oldest son Frodo Gardner and gave The Red Book to his daughter Elanor. He went to the Grey Havens, where it is said that he passed over the Sea into the West. It is hoped that he was reunited with Frodo before he died.