letter, which he said he was sure the writer would wish to recall. Their friendship began there. For some reason, however, the collaborated volume did not materialize. In the end, publication was delayed a number of years, by which time Clemens’s active interest was a good deal modified, though the practice itself never failed to invite his attention [MTB 1187-8].
Sam also wrote a letter and a postcard to Frederick William Peabody. Peabody (Boston lawyer and outspoken opponent of the doctrines of Mary Baker Eddy) had written on Dec. 2, taking exception to some ideas in Sam’s Dec. 1902 article, “Christian Science” in the North American Review. Sam’s letter reply in full:
Yes, I think they [Christian Scientists] make a great many cures—of curable diseases—there is no reason why they shouldn’t. Cures by their methods have been made for 10,000 years.
A sale of 250,000 copies of that book means that many families—& the children are a more important factor than their parents (To estimate the future by.) Nothing can stay the Xn Science epidemic. For a hundred years it will supplant all the other religions & boss all the governments.
Have I given you the impression that I was combating Xn Science? or that I am caring how the Xn Scientists ‘hail’ my articles? Relieve yourself of those errors. I wrote the articles to please myself; & it had not occurred to me to cure what the Scientists might think of them. I am not combating Xn Science—I haven’t a thing in the world against it. Making fun of that shameless old swindler, Mother Eddy, is the only thing about it I take any interest on. At bottom I suppose I take a private delight in seeing the human race making an ass of itself again—which it has always done whenever it had a chance. That’s its affair—it has the right—& it will sweat blood for it—century hence, & for many centuries thereafter.
It distresses me a little to hear you talk about ‘sanity in the affairs of men.’ So far as I know, men have never shown any noticeable degree of sanity in their affairs, & to me it seems rather larger flattery to intimate that they are capable of it. See them get down & worship that old creature! A century hence they’ll all be at it. Sanity—in the human race! This is really fulsome.
You ask my opinion of your address. I read it with extreme interest—but I [illegible] its large defect all along” You show temper, acrimony, detestation. It is bad art—exceedingly bad art. You should have aroused those feelings in the reader only; & you should have made him storm at you for not showing them yourself. You threw away half of your case.
Can’t you get hold of a page or two of that Stoughton Ms & a page of Mrs. Eddy’s undisputed handwriting of about that time & facsimile them, & support their genuineness by trustworthy testimony? It would be a troublesome snag for the new Member of the Holy Family to get around
[www.historyforsale.com document 31404 with Oct. 18, 1983 notes by Robert H. Hirst of the MTP]. Note:
Sam’s additional articles on Christian Science ran in the Jan., Feb., and Apr. 1903 issues of the magazine.
Sam’s postcard to Peabody, probably an afterthought to the above letter:
Have you a copy of those Rules, which you synopsize on your page 36? If you are done with it I should like to have it [www.historyforsale.com document 31409 with Oct. 28, 1983 notes by Robert H. Hirst of the MTP].
Sam also wrote to Wilbur H. Siebert.
I think it was Davis that did it, but I don’t know, because I was standing at the end of the hall by the couple & the clergyman, umpiring the marriage at the time, & so I didn’t see him do it. He was under contract to do it, & he collected the money, so I suppose it is mainly right. Mainly only; for he didn’t kick it 35 yards— the hall is only 15 long—& he didn’t kick it to Wentworth, for Wentworth was purposely not invited, & wasn’t there.
Yes, you must have a kicker at weddings now—it is custom—& Davis wears the belt [MTP].
SLC used mourning border for most letters from Susy’s death on, then from Livy’s death on.