Misc: Bold Entries, Italics, Strike-outs, Quotations, use of sic:
All references to dates are bold, save for those within quotes. Also bold are first mentions of persons and places (including lecture halls, etc.) within each date entry. Subjects and titles are not in bold. Indented are letter, newspaper excerpts (boxed) and longer commentaries from biographers and scholars. This aids ease of reading, finding one’s place and appearance. Italics are used when the primary source uses underlines, except for newspaper reports using underlines. They are also used for all inscriptions noted, especially those in books given as gifts. When Sam Clemens uses strikeouts to convey his real or additional meaning, those are usually retained — all other strikeouts, thought to be drafting strikeouts, are not included. Due to all the variant spellings of the day, use of vernacular, and the many misspellings by some writers, the use of sic has been limited to a few instances. Some surnames were spelled in more than one way. Choices were made to stick with one variant, trying to follow the MTP’s examples, or sometimes to put the variant in parentheses.
Corrected sources and method used; the “not in” listings:
Inevitably, sources contain errors. When an error is perceived it is sometimes, but not always, reported. This is not to point any blame or to discredit any source or author, but merely to report findings. Prejudice is given to more contemporary works, with Internet sources taking a much lower priority. Apologies to egos aside, the errors, omissions and oddities should be reported.
Also, some notable material is missing from standard works. Whenever possible these are pointed out, as in “Not in Gribben,” or “Not in MTCI ,” to save the reader/researcher effort in tracing back material. When errors were found in the MTP catalog, such as letters to Livy or Whitmore that were catalogued as to SLC, these are left out or noted. The MTP catalogue misleads when it lists a letter from a person for a company — one particular listing found was a letter from a man FOR the U.S. Senate. Upon review it was discovered the man was a clerk in Washington using Senate letterhead to write asking for Sam’s autograph — hardly a letter FOR the Senate. In every such case the language in this work has been changed to, for example, “John Doe wrote on US Senate letterhead asking for Sam’s autograph for his daughter,” etc. Also, many listings from the Charles Webster & Co., which are nothing more than monthly financial reports of several types, often without corresponding letters, have been catalogued by the MTP under the month of the report. These have been placed in the following month here, as they could not have been sent until the month closed — thus, March 1889’s monthly report is placed as being sent in April, 1889. In all such cases a strict chronology is attempted. Is this an error on the MTP’s part? No, merely a different way to catalog such entries. Likewise, when a pack of Daily Reports was sent, the MTP dates these as a range of dates and places them at the first date. We place them at the last date and note the range within that entry, since they could not have been mailed earlier. Several such changes have been made. These do not reflect on the scholarship of the MTP or of any other source.