“It is too late to reform now. I always liked them; I don’t seem to discover any change as I go along.”
I have given them your loving message, now, & that atmosphere has changed, & they send their love with mine to you. I am a most shrewd old person, & know how to do many things [MTP].
Sam also wrote to Helen Maria Winslow.
If I were there, I should rejoice, & be glad, & should skip like the lambs on a thousand hills, if lambs do that, & if it would be decorous in a person of my age to act similar—but I am not there, the distance is great, the time is winter; & in my gray wisdom I give you hearty thanks for inviting me, & stick to my hearthstone [MTP]. Note: See Dec. 3, 1900 entry for more on Winslow.
Elisabeth Marbury wrote that she’d written to Francis Wilson and would let Sam know [MTP].
December 5 Thursday – Charles E. Flandrau of the defunct St. Paul Roller Mill Co. sent a form letter to Sam asking for a proxy for a Jan. 4, 1902 meeting about the final disposition of two pieces of real property which had not yet sold [MTP]. Note: Sam wrote a note on the letter on Dec. 12 and sent it to H.H. Rogers.
Joseph Issacs wrote from N.Y.C. to Sam that he’d rec’d Sam’s check this day and would ship “segars and 2 pipes you ordered next week” [MTP].
December 6 Friday – Clara M. Harriott (Clara Morris) wrote from “The Pines” in Riverdale to Sam, mortified and disappointed that her door bell had not worked properly when he called. “I must either earn enough to buy a new one or I must hire a man to stand by and give instructions to those friends who are good enough to find me out” [MTP]. Note: the day Sam called is not given.
December 7 Saturday – Sam’s notebook: “Col. Harvey. Metropolitan Club. 1.30 / Has Tarkington a wife?” [NB 44 TS 19]. Note: Booth Tarkington (1869-1946; born Newton Booth Tarkington in Indianapolis), would marry Laurel Fletcher in 1902. He was likely now so engaged (they divorced in 1911 and he remarried). A novelist and dramatist, he was best known for Pulitzer prize-winning novels, The Magnificent Ambersons and Alice Adams. His affluent family lost much of its wealth in the panic of 1873.
In Riverdale, N.Y. Sam wrote to Franklin G. Whitmore, enclosing $100.
The madam won’t allow the house to be advertised for sale. That settles it! She would feel homeless if she sold that house before she knew that there was some other place that she preferred to live in.
And so, there’s nothing to do but wait till an offer volunteers on a 2 per. cent commission basis. Then we’ll report to her [MTP].
Sam also wrote to Jules Hart. Only the envelope survives [MTP].
Charles Tilden Sempers’ three-column biographical sketch of Mark Twain ran in the New York Times, p. BR4.
Sam spent some time in the City as revealed by William Dean Howells’ Dec. 8 to Thomas Bailey Aldrich:
Yesterday [Dec. 7]…walking with Clemens to his train under a pink New York sunset sky, that you knew the like of. He has no time table, but all the gatemen and train starters are proud to know him, and lay hold of him, and put him aboard something that leaves for Riverdale. He always has to go to the W.C., me dancing in the corridor, and holding his train for him. But they would not let it go without him, if it was the Chicago limited! What a fame and a force he is! It’s astonishing how he holds out, but I hate to have him eating so many dinners, and writing so few books [MTHL 2: 735n2].
SLC used mourning border for most letters from Susy’s death on, then from Livy’s death on.