“Some day this will change; but until then I must continue my hermit life…” [MTP].
I am ashamed to seem so nervous and scared, but by gracious it’s just the way I feel. Part of it is this long unbroken strain of work, but the other is the main part, I am sure.
Sam also sent Rogers a reporting of a billiards game between the 1893 English billiards champion, John Roberts, and W.J. Peall, thinking the game was a “fake” [MTHHR 265-6].
February 27 Saturday
February 28 Sunday – Orion Clemens began a letter to Sam that he finished on Mar. 5 and 6. “$50 was gratefully received from you and Livy on the 25th. I paid Ed Brownell $5 making $100 I have paid him, and leaving $350, as I have a written agreement to pay him $5 a month….” Mollie was abed suffering from “La Grippe” and a boil in her nose [MTP].
March – McClure’s Magazine ran a full page frontispiece portrait of Sam by Charles Noel Flagg (1848-1916) This was the painting commissioned by Livy in 1891 which hung in the Hartford House
March 1 Monday
March 2 Tuesday – At 23 Tedworth Square in London, Sam wrote to John Y. MacAlister at 20 Hanover Square, London, declining his “kind invitation” to an unnamed gathering due to his “bereavement [MTP]. Note: MacAlister obviously replied, his letter not extant but implied by Sam’s Mar 2 to 24 response.
MacAlister was editor of Library magazine and member of the Savage Club.
Between March 2 and March 24 – At 23 Tedworth Square in London, Sam wrote to John Y.
MacAlister, responding to another inquiry not extant:
You speak a language which I understand. I would like to see you. Could you come and smoke some manilas; I would, of course, say dine, but my family are hermits and cannot see any one, but I would have a fire in my study, and if you come at any time after your dinner that might be most convenient to you; you would find me and welcome [MTP: Cyril Clemens, Mark Twain the Letter Writer, 1932, p.124]. Note: See also Apr. 6 to MacAlister.
Paine writes of Sam’s (relatively) limited social interactions during this time:
He saw little company. Now and then a good friend, J.Y.W. MacAlister, came in for a smoke with him….Clemens occasionally went out to dinner, but very privately. He dined with Bram Stoker, who
invited Anthony Hope (Hawkins) and one or two others, and with the Chattos and Mr. Percy Spalding; also with Andrew Lang , who wrote, “Your old friend, Lord Lorne, wants to see you again”; with the Henry M. Stanleys and Poultney Bigelow, and with Francis H. Skrine, a government official he had met in India. But in all such affairs he was protected from strangers and his address was kept a secret from the public [MTB 1038- 9]. (Editorial emphasis for names.) See Feb. 1897 entry for Bigelow’s persuasion to tea. Lord Lorne was John D.S. Campbell.
March 3 Wednesday – At 23 Tedworth Square in London, Sam wrote to Gilbert Burgess (local), declining his “suggestion” of honorary membership in an unspecified club. He declined due to his bereavement.
March 4 Thursday – H.H. Rogers sent Sam a cable c/o “Bookseller” that the contracts had been signed. This cable was returned on Mar. 5, so a second one was sent c/o Chatto & Windus, which was delivered
[Mar. 23 to Chatto & Windus]. Note: neither cable is extant.
SLC used mourning border for most letters from Susy’s death on, then from Livy’s death on.