Vol 3 Section 0098

58                                                                           1897

Most incoming letters during the stay in London have not survived. The family did not leave on July 10 as Sam hoped, but on July 13.

Sam also wrote to Percy Spalding. “We got to Hans Crescent hotel…” [MTP].

Sam gives this the day that Pond’s lecture offer was “definitely shelved” by Livy [July 20 to MacAlister].

Squibs of identical text appeared in the NY Times, p.7, and the Hartford Courant, p.1, and likely in other U.S. papers.


LONDON, July 7.—Mark Twain has finished his new book, “The Surviving Innocent Abroad,” and will start for the Continent to-morrow for a vacation.

July 9 Friday

July 10 SaturdaySam’s notebook:

London, July 10. Livy, Clara , & Julie Langdon in a hansom. The horse fell, the whole front of the hansome wrecked, Clara thrown over & disappeared from Livy’s view—fell on the struggling horse’s rump, slipped down on to his hind legs in front of the wheels, scrambled out & had no severe hurts. Livy was flung on to the floor of the hansom & got two bruises on her face. Julie was not unseated, & not hurt.

The horse scrambled on to his feet leaving Clara under the cab in front of the wheels. She was on his hind legs and gripping one of his ancles with her hand when he scrambled up and spilt her off to the rear [NB 41 TS 44]. Note: Clara Clemens published an account of this in Awake to a Perfect Day (1956) p.82-4. A hansom is a low-slung, two-wheeled carriage, usually driven by one horse for two passengers with driver mounted on an elevated seat behind and reins strung over the top; named after J.A. Hansom (1803-1882), English architect who designed it.

Right after the above entry, Sam wrote: “Inform Sir Douglas Straight or J.M. Barrie that I am the Omar Khayam Club of America” [NB 41 TS 44]. Note: Douglas Straight (1844-1914), English lawyer, member of Parliament, Judge, and journalist. Sir James Matthew Barrie (1860-1937), Scottish author and dramatist, best known for creating Peter Pan.

The New York Times, July 10, 1897, p RBA1:

Mark Twain’s New Book

Frank E. Bliss, President of the American Publishing Company of Hartford, returned to Hartford a week ago bringing with him from London the manuscript of two-thirds of Mark Twain’s new book. Mr. Clemens is at comfortable quarters in Chelsea, a suburb of London. On his arrival there Mr. Bliss wrote home to his brother: “I am here with Mark Twain. He looks well, feels well, and is well. His traveling and lecturing has built him up, both in spirit and in body, for he was much broken down when he went away. Now he is strong and cheerful.” Mr. Bliss spent ten days with him. The new book has occupied the humorist’s time all the Winter and Spring, and he is now revising the concluding chapters. The author, in reference to the work, says: “It’s a splendid book. I wouldn’t swap any book I ever wrote for it.” The work will be sold by subscription only, and will be ready for delivery during the holidays. It contains about 600 pages, and deals with travel in Australia, India, New Zealand, and South Africa.

July 11 Sunday – At the Hans Crescent Hotel in London, Sam wrote to H.H. Rogers.

SLC used mourning border for most letters from Susy’s death on, then from Livy’s death on.