doing well, and Sam suggested Rogers keep “all the money I can make on the platform” and take the profits Rogers could make it yield, “over and above its own personality.” They both were grateful. As to the debts, he requested Rogers to keep the money “a spell longer” until there might be enough “to sweep off our debts at one wipe.”
I want to pay everybody in full except the Mount Morris [Bank]. I shall be very glad if they can be persuaded to come to the 50 % basis. Then when I paid the rest of the creditors in full, I would pay that bank in full on the basis of an indebtedness of $9,000 less than the claim as allowed by the assignee; and stop there until they explain to my satisfaction what they did with the $9,000 of fraudulent notes.
Pond had repeated his offer of $50,000 for 125 lecture nights, but Sam thought he could pay his debts without going on the platform again. He saw from Rogers’ letter that they were “having very good times” in Fairhaven and that Mrs. Rogers was “able to be in them.” He asked when Harry was going to work on shore, and asked to e remembered to “all the vast household” [MTHHR 300-1].
September 14 Tuesday
September 15 Wednesday – In Weggis, Switzerland Sam wrote to Chatto & Windus, asking that their mail be forwarded for ten days to Salzburg, poste restante, and after that in care of Thomas Cook & Son, Vienna. Livy requested a copy of Review of Reviews which contained a recent article of William Thomas Stead’s on Twain. Sam held in “grateful remembrance” all that Chatto and Spalding had done [MTP].
September 16 Thursday – Sam wrote an aphorism (from chapter 6 of PW) in the Guest Book of the Villa Bühlegg: “Please do not forget this important truth: Habit is habit—& not to be flung out of the window by any man, but coaxed down-stair a step at a time. / Truly yours / Mark Twain / Villa Bühlegg, Sep 16, 1897” [Locher 20].
September 17 Friday – In Weggis, Switzerland Sam replied to Samuel Rutherford Crockett’s Aug.
Sam noted that Crockett sending his letter to N.Y. “wasted a good deal of time,” which explains why it took him so long to reply.
I know Cleg, & am fond of him, & am ready to welcome him again, & Napoleon, too, when he gets on his uniform. Ten days hence I shall have an address in Vienna for the winter….
How the good things travel! In my Mississippi Valley Tam & his cat have arrived, & are now “the man & the buzzard;” in New York John L. Toole’s “Dream” is “Wallack’s Dream;” & there’s another that was in my mind but has escaped. Tam has degenerated through travel westward, & is become profane. He is sleeping in the shade; & he sleeps so long that his pet buzzard concludes that he is dead & starts in to pick one of his eyes out. It is that act that the man regards as “too damned familiar.” Toole’s “Dream” is a good deal better than Wallack’s, & yet the language is just the same in both; if you know the dream you will know why. Give & take is fair: Wallack’s dream has traveled eastward & gained, Tam & his cat have traveled in the opposite direction & lost.
Sam ended by noting Crockett would not reach London “till some days hence” by which time they would be in Vienna. He invited him to come to Vienna where they would be “many a night of good-fellowship
many a drink thereto” [MTP]. Note: See Crockett’s Aug. 23 to Sam; Cleg Kelly was a character in Crockett’s Arab in the City. John L. O’Toole (1830-1909) an English actor (See 16 Sept. 1872 entry); John Lester Wallack (1820-1888) American actor and theatre manager. The “dream” has to do with productions by both men.
Sam also replied to James B. Pond, (his letter not extant) explaining he did not get to see Samuel Rutherford Crockett because he wasn’t in London yet.
SLC used mourning border for most letters from Susy’s death on, then from Livy’s death on.