December 13 Saturday – Harper’s Weekly, p. 1943 -4 ran William Dean Howells, et al article, “In Honor of Mark Twain: Verses to be read at a Dinner Celebrating his Sixty -seventh Birthday. Included Howells’ “A Double- Barrelled Sonnet to Mark Twain (written to be heard, not read)”; John Kendrick Bangs, “Mark Twain (A Post-prandial Obituary)”; Henry Van Dyke, “A Toast to Mark Twain!” [MTJ Bibliographic Issue Number Four 42:1 (Spring 2004) p.8].
Henry W. Lucy wrote from Berks, England to Sam. “thanks for your letter and the cutting [of] the reading of which I much enjoyed.” Lucy told of a party at Edwin Austin Abbey’s “Manorial residence”
Henry Lutz, publisher, wrote from Stuttgart, Germany to Sam. “The German court declines to get a new testimonial from you, but demands that a copy of the St. Nicholas 1893 and 1894 is laid before the court as proof that your story, Tom Saywer Detective was not published there. I have tried in vain to get a copy in London” [MTP].
Edward J. Murray wrote from Nampa, Idaho to Sam offering an “obituary” for his contest [MTP].
Frederick W. Peabody wrote from Boston to Sam. “I’m very sorry you object to the publication of your letter, as I think it would do more than any thing else put together to inject a little sanity into the situation” [MTP].
December 14 Sunday – In N.Y.C. William Dean Howells wrote a short note to Sam.
Stoddard’s story was rubbish of the sort that would appeal to a love-sick chambermaid; and I had to send it back to him. But I am ready to join you in another move on Harriot[t]. / Sorry to have been in Ohio when you came, the other day [MTHL 2: 754].
Note: the source gives this note as written on the back of a Dec. 9 letter by Charles Warren Stoddard, asking Howells to find a buyer for the story, “Absent beyond Seas,” and adding that Frederick Harriott had paid $250 of the $400 owed. See Dec. 4 and prior entries on this running attempt by Howells and Twain to collect from Stoddard’s literary agent.
Sam wrote to William Dean Howells, letter not extant but referred to in Sam’s Dec. 15 to Stoddard.
Charles W. Stoddard wrote to Sam that he has “had no further communication with Fred Harriott.” He then quoted a previous letter from Harriott [MTP]. Note: Sam wrote on the env “Harriott writes him a scurrilous letter.”
December 15 Monday – In Riverdale, N.Y. Sam wrote to William D. McCrackan: “I thank you ever so
much for your N. A. Review articles. I read them last night, with admiration & with profit” [MTP].
Sam also wrote to Frederick W. Peabody, Boston attorney and outspoken critic of Christian Science.
I shall take good care of the Church Manual, & return it to you. I never knew, until now, who sent it to me. I do not remember asking for it, neither does my secretary. But I find it useful. I thought it was my own, so I have marginal-noted it, & am very sorry.
I am glad to have the use of the enclosure, (please give me the date of it), & I shall be greatly obliged if you will lend me the collection of Extracts from Mrs. Eddy’s various writings. (Date them, if you can.) I will return them undamaged. I shall particularly like to have a few paragraphs of her very own, that have not passed under the polisher’s rasp.
P.S. By a piece of stupidity I forgot to warn the readers of my Review article that I wrote it 5 years ago. What the lady told me could have been true then but not true now. I can’t believe she was mistaken. What was the date of your visit to the Holy of Holies? If she was mistaken, of course I must make the correction—but
SLC used mourning border for most letters from Susy’s death on, then from Livy’s death on.