Vol 3 Section 0325

1899                                                                            275

         Rogers wrote to Sam, letter not extant but referred to in Sam’s Aug. 3 reply .

July 7 FridayIn London, England on letterhead with “Chelsea Embankment,” Sam wrote to Douglas B. Sladen that he wouldn’t see London before “autumn or the edge of winter,” and thanked the Authors Club for “the honor” which they offered him, and which he regretted he could not take advantage of. “In haste—for I am leaving for the continent” [MTP]. Note: Chelsea Embankment is a segment of the Thames Embankment, a road and walkway along the north bank of the Thames River in mid-London, where the Clemens family likely boarded a ship bound for Sweden. Sam often wrote last minute notes and letters when traveling.

The Clemens family left London by ship and traveled to Götenburg, Sweden, likely an overnight trip. The family’s accommodations in Gotenburg are not known. They were on their way to Sanna, Sweden, where Dr. Kellgren ran a summer sanitarium for his osteopathic treatment. Jean Clemens would undergo osteopathy for what would later be diagnosed as epilepsy. Clara Clemens remained in London and would rejoin the family in Sanna later in the month.

The New York Times, July 8, p.7 noted a London, July 7 dateline of the Clemens family’s departure from London for Sweden, reporting it was Sam who would “take the Swedish cure.”

July 8 SaturdayThe family traveled on some four and a half hours by rail from Götenburg to

Jönkoping; then three miles by two-horse landau to Sanna, Sweden. Sam later described Sanna:

Sanna consists of a half a dozen villas belonging to Kellgren—in these the patients live. It is on a vast blue lake, & at its back are the open fields. In the matter of brilliant skies, pure & bracing air, & intense quiet & reposefulness, of course the place is perfection.

The rooms in the villas are small. Take no cat; you cannot swing her. However, one is out doors from breakfast till the daylight dies at midnight, the first half of the season, therefore one has no need of the rooms except for sleeping. The furniture is cheap, but good enough, & there is no real oversurplus of it. I always felt so fresh & fine & young there, that I grew insanely fond of the place, & had to be bribed to leave it. And yet there are flies there—a bird I never could endure.

The food is wholesome but exceedingly simple & free from variety—it is country food & country style, & rationally prepared, nothing citified about it, & my family often mourned over it, but I got along plenty well enough with it [Apr. 23, 1900 to William James].

July 9 Sunday

July 9 after – Sometime during their stay in Sweden, Sam wrote “How to Make History Dates Stay.” From the Bancroft website: “This essay with illustrations, describing Clemens’s method of teaching historical dates to his children, was written in the summer of 1899 in Sweden, where the Clemenses had gone in search of treatment for their daughter Jean’s epilepsy. It was published posthumously, as ‘How to Make History Dates Stick,’ in Harper’s Monthly in December 1914” (“with original drawings by the author” see insert).

Also written during the summer of 1899 is the plotless sketch “Indiantown.” It was unpublished during Twain’s lifetime and later collected in John Tuckey’s 1967 Mark Twain’s “Which Was the Dream?” and Other Symbolic Writings of the Later Years [Camfield’s Bibliog.]. See also John H. Davis’ article “Indiantown” in the MT Encyc. P. 394-5.

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