At 1410 W. 10th in N.Y.C., Sam wrote to Charles Erskine Scott Wood, who had seen the “Sitting in Darkness” article and written on Feb. 17: “I am glad you like it. By and by I mean to do it again. You must not fail to come and see me when you reach town” [MTP]. Note: Wood was an old friend from days at West Point; he was now an attorney in Portland, Ore.
Clayton Ewing of Peoria, Ill. and a Twain fan since boyhood wrote compliments of the “Sitting in Darkness” article, which he wrote “has all the marks of genius and, aside from its humor, is a scathing arraignment of sham and hypocrisy” [MTP].
Barton Stone Gardner of Evergreen, Calif. wrote a long letter of scripture and compliments of Twain’s “Sitting in Darkness” article [MTP].
Edmund Norton, “fighting death” in Paso Robles, Calif. wrote compliments of Twain’s “Sitting in Darkness” article [MTP].
The Academy ran an anonymous column, “The Literary Week,” p. 155. Tenney: “Briefly notes, quotes, and
praises William Dean Howells’s ‘Mark Twain: An Inquiry’ in the North American Review” [Tenney: “A Reference Guide
Third Annual Supplement,” American Literary Realism, Autumn 1979 p. 187]. Note: see also Mar. 30 for the magazine.
February 24 Sunday – Sam’s notebook: “Hapgood dinner 49 W. 57” [NB 44 TS 6].
Nathan Kite family and the William L. Price family wrote to Sam that his picture was on their wall and they’d “adopted” him as a saint: “A long and useful like to thee in the cause of brother man” [MTP].
William Dean Howells wrote his sister, Miss Aurelia Howells, and included a paragraph about Mark Twain which is rather instructive of their activities during this time:
I see a great deal of Mark Twain nowadays, and we have high good times denouncing everything. We agree perfectly about the Boer war and the Filipino war, and war generally. Then, we are old fellows, and it is pleasant to find the world so much worse than it was when we were young. Clemens is, as I have always known him, a most right-minded man, and of course he has an intellect that I enjoy. He is getting some hard knocks now from the blackguards and hypocrites for his righteous fun with McKinley’s attempt to colonize the Philippines, but he is making hosts of friends, too [Life in letters of William Dean Howells,” Mildred Howells, ed. p.142].
Alice May, Sec’y for the Boston Teacher’s Club wrote to Sam: “I have been reading the Review of Reviews and am filled with shame and remorse that I should have dreamed of asking you to come to Boston and talk to teachers! / But I do thank you for not saying, ‘You should have known better!’” [MTP].
Lucy Potts wrote to Sam [MTP]. UCCL 43592 letter is currently unavailable.
Mulberry Sellers of Massachusetts wrote to challenge Sam’s use of the name for the Gilded Age. Lucius Lampton writes:
Ironically, a “Mulberry Sellers arose to challenge Twain’s final selection of a name. A Massachusetts-born “Mulberry Sellers” reprimanded the author in a letter of 24 February 1901. “Horrible Sir,’ he addressed Twain, “you are the evil genius of my family.” This Sellers then began to explain how sharing a name with Twain’s popular character afflicted relatives William Sellers and George Escol Sellers. This Mulberry closed his letter fiercely: “Must I bore you full of holes? Blood! Blood! Blood! I shall challenge you to mortal combat. I give you notice so you can fix up your soul (if any) for flight. Prepare to die”….
SLC used mourning border for most letters from Susy’s death on, then from Livy’s death on.