surrounding McQuiston’s death led his wife to inquire to spiritualists. In his Mar. 28 followup letter to Laura, he gave Mrs. Koller’s name as Mrs. E.B. Koller.
Sam also wrote to nephew Samuel E. Moffett, passing along Dr. George Helmer’s idea that “a good word for Osteopathy” be said in the NY Journal “now and then, and sort of keep the matter stirring”
[MTP]. Note: Sam had been involved in the passage of a bill to license Osteopathy.
A.S. Buchanan of Darlington, Ind. criticizing his article “Sitting in Darkness.” “Truly I had always thought you to be a Christian!…Were you ever judged insane? Be honest, truly how much money does the Devil give you for arraigning Christianity and missionary causes?” [MTP].
March 27 Wednesday – At 1410 W. 10th in N.Y.C., Sam wrote to Frank Bliss.
I have been down town all the forenoon since early breakfast arranging with the Harpers for a relaxation of a clause in my contract with them concerning dramatisations of my books. After arranging it satisfactorily Mr. Duneka (head of the corporation in Col. Harvey’s absence [he had sailed for Europe]) asked if you had concluded your deal with Newbegin. I said I thought not, as I had not heard from you. He said you could not publish the Popular Edition because the Harpers contract was a ban to it, that they had taken legal advice, knew their ground, and could and would enjoin. Expressed doubt about Newbegin’s ability to sell great editions. I said, “No matter; Newbegin takes a big edition every 3 months, and pays for it—the money is well secured.” Duneka said, “I don’t care what the quarterly number is we will double it and pay. We want those books and can outbid anybody.” Now you are buttressed. If you can’t guarantee Newbegin’s editions against injunction he may want to throw up the trade, in which case you can fall back upon the Harpers—on the terms above stated [MTP].
Note: R.G. Newbegin Co. was a distributor for Mark Twain’s Uniform Editions. Frederick A. Duneka (d.1919), Before 1900 city editor for Pulitzer’s NY World; in 1900 became general manager and secretary board of directors of Harper & Brothers when George B. Harvey became president of the company. Duneka was the main editor for Sam’s “Chapters of My Autobiography” that ran serially in the North American Review in 1906-7.
Sam also wrote to Augustus T. Gurlitz.
Don’t send me these things—they are your affair, not mine.
Private. I am tired, & have a notion to run over to England & back in the same ship. Will this suit interfere with the project? [MTP].
Note: Sam had turned down invites by George B. Harvey and H.H. Rogers to accompany each on an Atlantic crossing. He may have reconsidered the latter invitation, as Harvey was already gone.
The New York Times, p.6 reported Mark Twain’s latest legal battle over copyright:
MARK TWAIN, PLAINTIFF.
Brings Suit Against Publishers for Alleged Infringement of Copyright and Trade Mark.
Samuel L. Clemens has instituted an action in the United States Circuit Court against Butler Brothers, publishers of this city and Chicago. The action is brought through Augustus T. Gurlitz, who is also counsel for Rudyard Kipling, in a suit against R. F. Fenno & Co., publishers of this city, on alleged infringement of trade mark and copyright. Mr. Clemens recently appeared as a witness for the plaintiff in this case and expressed the view that trade marks ought to be respected, and that there is no difference between counterfeiting a label on a book, a box of blacking, or a bottle of whisky.
SLC used mourning border for most letters from Susy’s death on, then from Livy’s death on.