September 9 Friday – At the Hotel Wolcott In N.Y.C. Sam wrote to Susan Crane.
Susy dear, the first time I ever heard “In the Sweet By and Bye,” a street-organ played it near the St. Nicholas in December 1867; & that was the first time I ever saw Livy Langdon, a sweet young slender girl & beautiful. In our engagement-year some of us often sang it, evenings, along with other songs. Present:
Mr. Slee, †
Livy Langdon †
How many are gone!
An organ is playing The Sweet Bye & Bye in the street now, & breaking my heart.
I saw Clara off, day before yesterday, to a rest-cure in Connecticut. She is to be shut up 4 or 5 weeks, in bed, without books, without companionship, writing no letters, reading no letters, seeing no one but physician & nurse—a horrid solitude, with grief and memory for company.
What an unforgivable crime the creation of the human race was!
That inscription for the gravestone is in Lee. I will send it by & by when I can. I do not remember the wording. / Lovingly [MTP]. Note: Sam designated the departed with crosses; he later wrote the inscription for Livy’s headstone:
Insert photo taken by David H Fears, Sept. 9, 2009.
The beloved & lamented wife of Samuel Langhorne Clemens, who reverently raises this stone to her memory. Elmira, November 27, 1845,
Florence, Italy, June 5, 1904.
“Gott sei dir gnädig, oh, meine Wonne!”
Sam also wrote to Frank Bliss.
As I understand it, my second & final $12,500. indebtedness will begin to run in your direction November first, on the installment plan. Can you make it profitable to me to anticipate? What reduction will you make on that $12,500.—lump-cash,
payable Sept 15 or Sept 30; 13 or 13½ months before the final instalment of it would fall due? [MTP].
September 10 Saturday – In N.Y.C. Sam wrote to Franklin G. Whitmore: “Where is the carved oak mantelpiece that stood in our library? Is it stored in Hartford?”[MTP].
September 11 Sunday – In N.Y.C. Sam replied on a banquet invitation sent by Melville Elijah Stone for the Associated Press. “Dear Mr. Stone: It is so long since I was at a banquet, that I probably shan’t know how to behave—still, I shall be there.” Sam added a request after his signature to please keep his “hotel address secret” [MTP]. Note: strangely the enclosed card was for a Sept. 22 banquet at the Claypool Hotel in Indianapolis, Ind. Sam did not travel to Indiana on that date, so the card was likely used for another event.
N.M. Rosenberg wrote from London to Sam. He was a fan who had lost his fiancé and “a not inconsiderable fortune within a month. I have not the stoicism of many & so broke down—your book “Extracts from Adam’s Diary[”]—brought forth my first laugh—for which I most truly thank you” [MTP].
SLC used mourning border for most letters from Susy’s death on, then from Livy’s death on.