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Mark Twain Forum <[log in to unmask]>
Thu, 2 Feb 2012 17:10:54 -0800
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My experiences with Tom Tenney began in the mid-1980s with a telephone call placed to his home in Charleston. I was living in Massachusetts at the time and made the call (cold) during my lunch-hour. I had been bitten by the Mark Twain "bug" and was anxious to "talk shop" with someone knowledgeable. I had found his name and contact info while digging around at my local library. I had no idea what was in store. It was above and beyond anything I could have hoped or imagined. The call lasted the hour, and then some. It was like talking to a dear friend although we had not yet met.

In all the years since then--in the interim, my husband and I crossed paths with him at Elmira conferences, and in further calls and mailings he provided both encouragement and insights to me in my literary-research pursuits--my initial impression of him never changed. He was every bit in person as he was on the phone that first day; and those occasional one- and two- (or even three-?) hour phone calls over the years were but continuations of that original conversation. His scholarly enthusiasm, boundless energy, and gentle demeanor never wavered, and I am grateful beyond measure for the many kindnesses he extended to me.

M. L. Christmas

--- On Thu, 2/2/12, Alan Gribben <[log in to unmask]> wrote:

> From: Alan Gribben <[log in to unmask]>
> Subject: Re: Dr. Thomas A. Tenney
> To: [log in to unmask]
> Date: Thursday, February 2, 2012, 10:55 AM
> Dr. Thomas A. Tenney (1931-2012),
> best known for editing the MARK TWAIN JOU=
> RNAL but also recognized for his assistance to younger
> scholars, died yeste=
> rday at 3:45 p.m. of heart failure after a brief stay in a
> Charleston hospi=
> tal.
> Dr. Tenney received the John S. Tuckey Award from the Center
> for Mark Twain=
>  Studies at Elmira College in 2005.  He was the author
> FERENCE GUIDE (1977) and its various supplements, along with
> numerous other=
>  publications.
> There will be a private family service at a later date,
> according to his wi=
> dow Margaret Tenney; no public funeral will be held.
> Before his death Dr. Tenney made arrangements for the
> continuation of the M=
> Sincerely,
> Alan Gribben=