Vol 3 Section 0348

298                                                                        1899

Notes: See Sept. 15 to Forbes. The Boer War broke out on Oct. 11, 1899. between the two former republics (Free State and Transvaal) and Britain. As the war escalated England brought reinforcements from Australia, New Zealand, Canada and other colonies. The war lasted three years with extremely high casualty rate on both sides.

Sam also wrote to Franklin G. Whitmore, complaining that since his promise five years before to send monthly statements, Whitmore had kept the promise two percent of the time. Also, Sam had just received a forwarded letter from Whitmore that was six months old. Sam also complained about the taxes on his Farmington Ave. home:

I understood Mr. Dunham to say that real estate was taxed in Hartford at what it would probably bring at auction. In that case my Hartford tax is as much as 40 per cent too much, & the tax was always too much from the time the house was built. … I wish the house would burn down. See that the insurance is kept up; & don’t give the alarm if it catches fire [MTP].

October 2 Monday

October 3 TuesdayIn New York, Katharine I. Harrison wrote a short note to Sam, enclosing James Henry Wiggin’s letter (see Sept. 30) [MTHHR 411].

October 4 WednesdayIn the a.m. in London, England, the Clemens family inspected various housing possibilities, and found one they liked that would be available in about ten days. Evidently they didn’t find the accommodations at Queen Anne Residential Mansions & hotel suitable; [Oct. 4 to MacAlister]. Note: The family needed to be close to Henrick Kellgren’s facility, since Jean needed daily sessions there. They settled on 30 Wellington Court, Albert Gate.

Sam began a letter to H.H. Rogers that he finished on Oct. 5.

Yours of Sept. 22 [not extant] has arrived, and was very welcome, for I did not know but that you were ill. I am sorry your mother is not well, and glad you have her in your own house where she can have your personal care. I often think of her, and I beg to be remembered to her, with my sincerest regards and homage. You can assure her that I consider myself quite competent to defend Satan, for I have known him ever since I was a boy, and have transacted much business with him. I think I am his pet—though I know this sounds like bragging.

I am glad you settled that copyright business—I think, myself, that the Harpers had no stake in it.

        It was pretty dull for the madam at Sanna, but not for me: I was at work. It was a nice quiet place for scribbling.

We arrive from Sweden Saturday, but found the birds flown—Miss Mai and Harry. I feared it, for I had written Miss Mai from Sanna in answer to her letter…Harry was afraid to wait for me.

As I am deep in work and shan’t want to be disturbed, I am planning to keep out of society and out of the newspapers. I am the burnt child—I don’t want to get into the society-fire any more.

To-day you are out in the yacht viewing the first great cup-race. By gracious, I should like to be along!

[MTHHR 411-3].

Note: for “the copyright business” see n. 1 of source and also Bliss’ Sept. 15 to Sam. The “cup-race” was the America’s Cup competition held off Sandy Hook, N.J. As for Sam’s “burnt child” remark, some authorities conclude his reticence to speak in public during this period resulted in anger at Britain’s actions leading to the Boer War, which started Oct. 11. However, if this were true, it seems likely he would confide it to Rogers.

Sam also replied to an invitation (not extant) by John Y. MacAlister in London:

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