Vol 3 Section 1129
June to September, 1888 – Sam prepared a speech he did not deliver due to Theodore Crane’s stroke. This was published in 2009: “The American Press” [Who Is Mark Twain? xxvi; p.199-206]. Note: In Sam’s Sept. 16 to Orion he mentions plans to speak in Chicago on Sept.20.
June 5, 1888 addition – The letter which Sam wrote to President Cleveland’s wife, Frances F. Cleveland, about the time Sam had been in Washington for the President’s birthday on Mar. 18, referred to “this book” in the first paragraph. The book was an autograph book prepared for Mrs. Cleveland by Edward Eggleston, and contained the June 5 letter of dialect by “the colored waiter.” In 1984 some 200 miniature copies of the book (2 5/16” by 1 13/16”) were reprinted as Mark Twain Compliments the President’s Wife by Anne & David Bromer of Boston. The Critic referred to the Washington trip, and “the colored waiter in the Arlington Hotel” in the Mar. 31, 1888 issue. (See entry in addenda.)
September 11, 1888 addition – Sam’s Browning reading was given at the home of Clara Spaulding Stanchfield (Mrs. John B. Stanchfield). Sharlow found a review of the reading in a society column for Saturday Tidings (Elmira) of Sept. 15, 1888:
One of the most delightful entertainments that possibly could be given is marked to the credit of Mr. and Mrs. J.B. Stanchfield by the many people who were invited to their home on Main street last Tuesday evening [Sept. 11]. Readings by Mr. Samuel L. Clemens was the announcement which assured the guests of an evening of still greater enjoyment than the conversations with friends and conventional forms of entertainment which a clever and charming hostess can make so attractive. Probably no one who knows Mr. Clemens by sight ever passes him on the street without nudging his companion, if he has one, or whispering to himself, if he is alone, “There is Mark Twain.”
Great is the fascination that noted men possess for common humanity, which is individualized only once in ten years by the census takers, and if Mark Twain is fascinating on the street words fail to describe the delight of hearing him read in a parlor. His interpretation of Tuesday evening would have thoroughly discouraged the poet, for Mr. Clemens demonstrated the fact that Browning could be understood without Prof. Corson’s aid. In selections from “Uncle Remus” Mr. Clemens’ negro dialect is so perfect that the darkness may be felt, and his display of dramatic ability leads “Pierre” to wonder why he does not “create the title role” in the play which he is said to be writing…. The informal reception before and after the readings
was an opportunity for animated conversation, and the partaking of ices and cakes. The entire entertainment was one which cannot soon be forgotten by Mrs. Stanchfield’s guests. Mr. Clemens’ daughters, Misses Susan and Clara, were both present at Mrs. Stanchfield’s, and as a matter of passing interest it might be pardonable to state that Miss Clara is named for Mrs. Stanchfield who has been, since girlhood, the intimate friend of Mrs. Clemens. / Pierre. [Sharlow, “Mark Twain Reads Browning Again: A Discovery in the Langdon-Crane Family Library at Quarry Farm” Mark Twain Journal 28:2 (Fall 1990) p.24-29].
November 4, 1888 addition – In Hartford, Sam wrote on a monographed card to Marcel Schwob.
My Dear Sir: / You seem to think me the author of the original of this singularly unpleasant production. But I assure you [that] you have been deceived. I do commit crimes but they are not of this grade. / Very Truly Yours SL Clemens [Sotheby’s auction; June 19, 2003; sale 7915, Lot 64].
December 24, 1888 to January 5, 1890 addition – Lionel Barrymore, age 11, in tow with his father,
Maurice Barrymore (born Blythe) met Mark Twain at the Hoffman House in N.Y. From his biography,
On one of my trips to New York I met Mark Twain.
This came about when Maurice Barrymore was playing in Captain Swift at the Madison Theater. During one of my holidays I accompanied him to the Hoffman House, one of his favorite places to hold forth. A bushy gentleman entered and ordered a hot apple toddy….It is an aromatic, wonderful drink, very solacing, they say. Mark Twain had one of these.