Sam also replied to James B. Pond, who had received a letter from the Secretary of War that he would be presented with the Congressional Medal of Honor for “most distinguished gallantry in action” some 37 years before. Pond’s announcement to Sam is not extant.
Dear Pond: My, it’s a long jump from the time you played solitaire with your cannon! Yes, I should think you would want to go soldiering again. Old as I am, I want to go to the war myself. And I should do it, too, if it were not for the danger.
To-day we ought to get great news from Cuba. I am watching for the Vienna evening papers. This is a good war with a dignified cause to fight for. A thing not to be said of the average war [Pond’s Eccentricities of Genius 228].
Sam also replied to Joe Twichell’ June 1 letter.
Dear Joe,—You are living your war-days over again in Dave, & it must be a strong pleasure, mixed with a sauce of apprehension—enough to make it just schmeck, as the Germans say. Dave will come out with two or three stars on his shoulder-straps if the war holds, & then we shall all be glad it happened.
We started with Bull Run, before. Dewey & Hobson have introduced an improvement on the game this time.
I have never enjoyed a war—even in written history—as I am enjoying this one. For this is the worthiest one that was ever fought, so far as my knowledge goes. It is a worthy thing to fight for one’s freedom; it is another sight finer to fight for another man’s. And I think this is the first time it has been done.
Oh, never mind Charley Warner, he would interrupt the raising of Lazarus. He would say, the will has been probated, the property distributed, it will be a world of trouble to settle the rows—better leave well enough alone; don’t ever disturb anything, where it’s going to break the soft smooth flow of things & wobble our tranquility.
Company! (Sh! it happens every day—& we came out here to be quiet.)
Love to you all. / Mark [Paine’s 1917 Mark Twain’s Letters, p. 663]. (&’s restored.) Note: Twichell’s son David Twichell had enlisted [MTB 1064].
June 18 Saturday – In Kaltenleutgeben near Vienna, Austria, Sam wrote to Frank Bliss, advising him to put “In Memoriam—Olivia Susan Clemens” into the Uniform Edition, and noted it ran in Harper’s Monthly for Nov. 1897 [MTP].
Sam’s article, “The Spanish American War” ran in the Critic [Camfield bibliog.].
June 19 Sunday – In Kaltenleutgeben near Vienna, Austria, Sam wrote to the Vienna correspondent for the London Daily News, Bettina Wirth.
I sent the play to my business friend in New York & said I would translate it if it was likely to make a success there. The response was not sufficiently encouraging—war-plays are all the go there, these days.
I see that the mutilation of our soldiers killed on picket is denied in Madrid. I wish the denial might be true; but as an American Admiral made the charge, that ends the matter. The mutilations were probably done by guerillas—it’s part of their trade; but as Spain recognizes the guerillas, their acts are Spanish acts, and official [MTP].
June 20 Monday – In Kaltenleutgeben near Vienna, Austria, Sam wrote to Robert Collier, Lord Monkswell (1845-1909). Sam wanted to confirm statistics he’d read in a magazine article on copyright, that there were about 4,000 books published in each country including America, England, France, and Germany. Did those books indeed represent 1,000 “professional authors” in each? He didn’t need to be exact but there were no books in the village and he was depending on what he’d read in Berlin eight years before [MTP]. Note: in his June 28 to Chatto, Sam reveals he needs such statistics for an article.
SLC used mourning border for most letters from Susy’s death on, then from Livy’s death on.