Vol 3 Section 0763
Sam’s allegorical, short tale “The Five Boons of Life” also ran in Harper’s Weekly for July 5, 1902. It was collected in The $30,000 Bequest and Other Stories (1906) [Budd, Collected 2: 1007].
Henry C. Griffin, Tarrytown attorney, wrote to Sam that Judge William D. Dickey (1845-1907) granted Griffin’s motion about considering a lower of the taxes on the Tarrytown house. A referee would now be appointed [MTP]. Note: Dickey would serve on the NY Supreme Court (1897-1907).
Muriel M. Pears of London began a letter to Sam that she finished on July 7. The “truly Eastern gorgeousness of your [Juggernaut] Club idea, and the dazzling magnificence of my position in it, took me a little aback for a minute or two….? But when my brother Lenard had poured Mother’s lavender Talcs over me , and held some ice
to my head, and let my cousin hold my hand, I came to again and said ‘boys, don’t ever speak of Rhodes, or Mulberry Sellers, or Alexander the Great or Chauncey Depew…” The melodramatics continued for several pages [MTP]. Note: Sam wrote on the env. “The Member for Scotland / Received July 25/02.”
July 6 Sunday
July 7 Monday – In York Harbor, Maine Sam wrote to H.H. Rogers.
It was a shame that I did not speak to you & ask your consent, & you must have been properly & righteously offended; but I thought Miss Harrison had, & naturally she thought I had, & so it never once occurred to me to inquire. Mrs. Clemens was pretty hard on me, & I couldn’t think of any defensive thing to say, because heedlessness & carelessness seem poor excuses to people who are not used to dealing in them, & besides they left me just as much to blame, with them or without them. But I will ask you, next time, sure; I shan’t forget again. It is awful good of you to hold still & not blow me up; wait till I see you—that’s the Christian way; & I need a restful interval in between, anyway.
Jean is all right, now—for another three weeks, no doubt. But if we had been in a train instead of on board the yacht & private & secluded, it would have been equivalent to being in hell. The scare & the anxiety would have been unendurable: Mrs. Clemens was alert, & up the most of the time two nights—& I helped, after a man’s fashion—& so the convulsion was staved off; a close fit, but it produced a valuable interval, which lasted clear till yesterday. Then I saw it; I have seen it only three times before, in all these five fiendish years. It comes near to killing Mrs. Clemens every time, & there is not much left of her for a day or two afterward. Every three weeks it comes. It will break her down yet. Some people pray at such times. Yesterday—I didn’t.
We are going to squeeze ourselves into the little Tarrytown house next October. It seems to be settled.
And we mean to stay squeezed till the Hartford house is sold, whether the squeezing is comfortable or not.
I am at work, & preparing first-rate.
With just no end of thanks— and apologies— [MTHHR 489-90]. Note: the “consent” referred to here may refer to the tribute he wrote about Rogers. See MTB 1658-9.
Sam’s notebook: “Write a preface: I have never written a book for boys; I write for grown-ups who have been boys. If the boys read it & like it, perhaps that is testimony that my boys are real, not artificial. If they are real to the grown-ups, that is proof” [NB 45 TS20].
Muriel M. Pears finished her July 5 to Sam, with more of the same, including ideas for the Juggernaut Club, though she did not call it such [MTP].
July 8 Tuesday – In York Harbor, Maine, Sam’s notebook again contains ideas for the 50 years after story: “Shooting the bird in the tree—no more murders. The boys discuss it. / Partridges in fall on houses / [line separating:] Make this brief: Tom’s selling Huck as a nigger. See the discarded Conspiracy [Line separating:] Reading 3 Spaniards at 2 a.m.—Cat” [NB 45 TS 20-21].
SLC used mourning border for most letters from Susy’s death on, then from Livy’s death on.