Clara is calling for me—we have to go into town and pay calls. / Mark [MTP: Paine’s 1917 Mark Twain’s
January 11 Monday – In New York, Katharine I. Harrison wrote to Sam with payment amounts from Harpers for his financial account, which totaled $10,346.43 [MTHHR 550-1].
January 12 Tuesday – In New York, H.H. Rogers wrote to Sam
I have your favor of 30th ult. Miss Harrison is sending you statements of accounts showing receipts from Harper, which I trust will be satisfactory. The explanations will go forward with her letter, so I need not refer to them here. …
I wish I could follow out your suggestion in regard to going to Italy. I am about fagged out again, having been at work since October. My Boston suit is not yet settled, and I go on the rack again on Saturday next.
Rogers also reported he would take care of the Brooklyn Union Gas subscription. The Coe baby was well again, and he observed it was “pretty hard to write you anything new,” since Sam was getting the NY Sun. He did note that William Mackay Laffan was moving to oppose the re-nomination of Theodore Roosevelt; there was pressure on John Hay to take the nomination for the presidency, but his health was in question. He closed with:
Rice is still a bachelor. He had his boy down for the holidays, and seemed to enjoy his visit. We went with him to the Minstrels Saturday night, and had a good time. I wish you could see the “County Chairman.” There is the best bit of negro acting in it that I have seen for years. I have been twice and laughed all the evening. / With kindest regards…[MTHHR 551-3].
January 13 Wednesday
January 14 Thursday – At the Villa Reale di Quarto near Florence Sam dictated a note in Italian to daughter Clara for Rev. Raffaello Stiattesi asking his aid in getting the Countess Massiglia to keep her dog quiet, as it was disturbing Livy’s sleep. He offered 100 lire to the church for their good offices [MTP: Superior Auction Galleries catalog, Nov. 6, 1993, Item 144].
Isabel Lyon’s diary: “About January 14, Mr. Clemens began to dictate to me. His idea of writing an autobiography had never proved successful, for to his mind autobiography is like narrative & should be spoken. At Mrs. Clemens’s suggestion we tried, and Mr. Clemens found that he could do it to a charm. In fact he loves the work. But we had to stop for he has been ill, Mrs. Clemens has been very ill, & I too have taken a weary turn in bed” [AMT 1:20; Trombley, MTOW 33]. Note: the first source dates this as Feb. 28, and points out that dictating began prior to Feb. 14, at least as early as Jan. 8, 1904. Most of the Florence dictations have been lost. See also MT to Howells Jan. 16.
Sam stayed up late reading Thomas Bailey Aldrich’s “new book”: Ponkapog Papers (1903) [Jan. 16 to Howells].
Sam’s notebook: “Mailed ‘St. Joan of Arc’ to the Harpers. Words 5,015—$1,504.50 / (Mailed it Jan. 19, but
wrote Jan 20 to recall it.) / [Horiz. Line separator] / To be mailed soon: / ‘Italian with Grammar’ —5,116 words, $1,534 / [Horiz. Line separator] / Died, at Keokuk, Mrs. O. Clemens” [NB 47 TS 3]. Note: the mailing and recalling (Jan. 19 and Jan. 20), Mollie Clemens’ death (Jan. 15) all show this entry was made after Jan. 14.
Larkin G. Mead, sculptor and Elinor Howells’ brother, and now in Florence, wrote to Sam. He had been prevented from a visit by his wife’s bronchitis; she wanted to accompany him when he called. He hoped to come when she improved [MTP].
SLC used mourning border for most letters from Susy’s death on, then from Livy’s death on.