The New York Herald, p. 3: “Mark Twain Returns after Nine Years,” announced his departure from London on Saturday, and quoted him about his lumbago and on his opinion of England [MTCI 345-6].
October 5 Friday – At Brown’s Hotel in London, England Sam inscribed a copy of The Man That Corrupted Hadleyburg and Other Stories and Sketches to Archibald Clarke: “To / Mr. Archibald Clarke / with compliments of / Mark Twain / Oct. 5/00” [MTP]. Note: Clarke was a contributor to John Y. MacAlister’s quarterly journal, The Library and so this connection may explains his contact with Sam. To wit: 1900 Vol. I p. 274: “The Reputed First Circulating Subscription Library in London.”
Sam inscribed a copy of the same book to Miss Mildred Williamson: “To Miss Mildred Williamson with the
compliments of Mark Twain, Oct. 5/00” [MTP]. Note: this may be the daughter of Mrs. F. Harcourt Williamson, writer and editor, and society columnist.
Saturday – Sam’s notebook: “Lady
Trevelyan 19 Easton Place, SW. / Mrs. Halsey 18 Stanhope Gdns /
Lady Stanley (inquire) / Mrs. Sumner, 20 Hans
Mansions / Sir Wm Des Voeux / Sailed from Tilbury 3 pm in the Minehaha [sic], 14,000 tons” [NB 43 TS 26].
Sailing day. The Clemens party boarded the Minnehaha at Tillbury docks, some 30 miles downstream from London. The ship had made her maiden voyage on July 7. Either before boarding or on board, Sam spoke to reporters. The New York World printed his remarks on Oct. 14. See entry.
The New York Times p.6 reported the event and what Sam had said the day before, Oct. 5:
Mark Twain to Go Abroad Again.
LONDON, Oct.6.—Samuel L. Clemens, (Mark Twain,) who, with his family, leaves for the United States to-day, told a representative of The Daily Mail yesterday that it was more than likely that he would revisit England next Summer.
Ralph David Blumenfeld included his old diary excerpts in the 1930 In The Days of Bicycles and Bustles. Page 79-80 puts the following under Oct. 7, but of course Sam sailed the day before. Just what time the Minnehaha sailed is unclear so Blumenfeld’s diary may have been correct if a day earlier:
Mark Twain, who has been living at Dollis Hill for some months, sails this week for New York. He was buying books at Hatchard’s yesterday, and entertained me with yarns for twenty minutes. “I always like to spend time in bookshops,” he said, “because it reminds me of my folly in having tried to be a publisher. I lost £20,000 in Webster & Co., and that was a good but costly lesson. I went completely broke.”
He said the most interesting thing he had found here was that English lumbago was no different than American lumbago. Also that English green cigars are a delusion and a snare. “I once smoked a piece of bamboo from an old umbrella rib,” he said. “Same thing as English green cigars” [Note: Blumenfeld (1864 -1948), American-born journalist who moved to England permanently in 1894 and became news editor of The Daily Mail. He was later editor of the Daily Express. He wrote under the pseudonym of
October 7 Sunday – The Clemens family was en route from London to New York on the SS Minnehaha.
Inserts: S.S. Minnehaha and its Upper Promenade deck (where Jean took walks for her health.)
October 8 Monday – The Clemens family was en route from
SLC used mourning border for most letters from Susy’s death on, then from Livy’s death on.