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"Brent M. Colley" <[log in to unmask]>
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Mark Twain Forum <[log in to unmask]>
Wed, 28 Oct 2009 18:18:43 -0400
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Good news tonight, just got word from Senator Boucher's office that
April 21, 2010 is Mark Twain Day in Connecticut.

As for the project, I'm finding about two connections a day. Way
better than I ever imagined. There will be several articles released
over the weekend which should cover all of Fairfield County and I'm
hopeful we'll connect even more towns as a result. I've started a
Google map of the locations and will forward that when it is complete.

Current Twain Connections are:

Easton, Connecticut- Helen Keller; Ida M. Tarbell. "I have visited
Stormfield [Twain's home in Redding] since Mark Twain's death
[April,1910]. The flowers still bloom; the breezes still whisper and
sough in the cedars, which have grown statelier year by year; the
birds still sing, they tell me. But for me the place is bereft of its
lover." -Helen Keller

Bethel & Bridgeport, Connecticut- P.T. Barnum; Barnum urged the
Clemens on March 23, 1875 to pay a visit to his summer home,
Waldemere, in Bridgeport, Connecticut: ?You must not creep and crawl
and sweat out of giving us at least a week?s visit with your wife when
the weather is warmer.?

Danbury, Connecticut- Twain had a cat named Danbury and William Webb
Sunderland & his son Philip Nichols Sunderland, the builders of
Twain's Redding home- Stormfield, were from Danbury. Also, Judge
William Scoville Case and State's Attorney Stiles Judson visited Twain
on November 19, 1908. They tried the Stormfield burglars. February 21,
1872 - Twain lectured on "Roughing It".

Ridgefield, Connecticut- Architect, Cass Gilbert, who is best known
for the Woolworth Building in NYC, also owned the Keeler Tavern and
was a close friend of Twain's. Also, Edward Windsor Kemble and Henry
Knox of Ridgefield are connected to Twain.

Westport, Connecticut- Ned Wakeman, who was the prototype for Twain's
ship captain in Roughing It. Twain wrote: "I'd rather travel with that
old portly, hearty, jolly, boisterous, good-natured sailor...than with
any other man I've ever come across,"

Norwalk, Connecticut- E.K. Lockwood (Lockwood Museum) traveled with
Twain while he was researching/writing Innocents Abroad.

CosCob/Greenwich, Connecticut- Jean Webster, talented daughter of
Twain business partner Charles Webster.

Windsor, Connecticut- Elisha Bliss, Jr. of American Publishing
Company. Clemens stayed with the Blisses while in Hartford in August
and October 1868 to work on his book Innocents Abroad.

Manchester, Connecticut- The Monday evening club in which Mark Twain
participated met at the Charles Cheney mansion in Manchester, about
0.2 mile from Cheney Hall. The Monday Evening Club was an organization
which included the best minds of Hartford. Dr. Horace Bushnell, Prof.
Calvin E. Stowe, and J. Hammond Trumbull founded it back in the
sixties, and it included such men as Rev. Dr. Parker, Rev. Dr. Burton,
Charles H. Clark, of the Courant, Warner, and Twichell, with others of
their kind. Clemens had been elected after his first sojourn in
England (February, 1873), and had then read a paper on the "License of
the Press." The club met alternate Mondays, from October to May. There
was one paper for each evening, and, after the usual fashion of such
clubs, the reading was followed by discussion. Members of that time
agree that Mark Twain`s association with the club had a tendency to
give it a life, or at least an exhilaration, which it had not
previously known.

Chatham, Connecticut- has a guest book signature by Twain at an inn he
stayed at there.

New Haven, Connecticut- Twain visited New Haven in 1885 and befriended
Warren McGuinn, an African-American student who was struggling to
remain in school. Twain paid the young man's expenses at Yale and
McGuinn went on to become a respected lawyer who would later mentor
Supreme Court Justice Thurgood Marshall.

Saybrook , Connecticut- Fenwick (Hall) Hotel where Twain and family
stayed and where some believe he began writing Tom Sawyer.

Hartford, Connecticut- Obviously the Hartford area has many friends
and the Mark Twain House Museum. January 31, 1873 Twain lectured in
Hartford - Benefit for Father Hawley, Allyn Hall, Hartford,
Connecticut. Topic "Sandwich Islands". All services having been
donated, the benefit netted $1,500 for Father Hawley.

Vernon, East Hartford, Buckland, Vernon, Tolland, Westford, Ashford,
North Ashford, West Woodstock, and New Boston, Connecticut- All these
towns connected an amazing trek via Joe Twichell and Twain made from
Hartford to Boston in 1874.

"Livy darling, we started from the end of east river bridge, East
Hartford, 2 hours & a half ago. Vernon is 11 miles from Hartford. The
day is simply gorgeous?perfectly [matchless]"

Norfolk, Connecticut- Both Twain?s daughters Jean and Clara stayed at
the sanitarium in Norfolk. September 22, 1906: Clara Clemens Concert,
Eldridge Gymnasium, Norfolk, Connecticut.

Simsbury, Connecticut- Twain lectured Simsbury?s McLean Seminary in
1891. Also, Clemens and Joe Twitchell often visited the Daniel
Wadsworth Tower.

Sharon, Connecticut- Frank and Harriet Sprague. Frank J. Sprague is an
amazing individual. He was an American naval officer and inventor who
contributed to the development of the electric motor, electric
railways, and electric elevators. He became known as the ?Father of
Electric Traction?. Frank and Harriet attended Clara's wedding in
October 1909.

Fairfield, Connecticut- A "Mr. Forbes" of Fairfield, CT visited
Stormfield on November 14, 1908. We're looking into who he was.

New Britian, Connecticut- After his December 13, 1869 lecture in New
Britain, Connecticut, Clemens wrote James Redpath directing a change
in the advertisement of his lecture.

?About twice a week I have to make an annoying apology to the audience.?

Pursuant to Clemens?s letter of 10 May 1869, Redpath had distributed a
circular to lyceums announcing that ?Mark Twain?s? only lecture for
the season of 1869?70 will be entitled ?The Curiosities of
California?. Clemens had remained committed to such a lecture at least
into early summer, then abandoned it by 27 September, five weeks
before the beginning of his tour. Redpath must have adjusted his
publicity promptly, perhaps with an amended circular, for newspaper
advertisements in host cities generally reported the new topic??Our
Fellow Savages of the Sandwich Islands.? Nevertheless, Clemens
sometimes had to explain the substitution at the last moment.

Norwich, Connecticut- November 13 & 14, 1869 Twain lectured in
Norwich, Connecticut. Topic: "Our Fellow Savages of the Sandwich

West Meriden, Connecticut- Twain lectured in West Meriden sometime
around December 11-13th, 1869.

East Haddam, Connecticut- William "Will" Gillette. The Sellers play
was given in Hartford, in January (1875), to as many people as could
crowd into the Opera House. Raymond had reached the perfection of his
art by that time, and the townsmen of Mark Twain saw the play and the
actor at their best. Kate Field played the part of Laura Hawkins, and
there was a Hartford girl in the company; also a Hartford young man,
who would one day be about as well known to playgoers as any
playwright or actor that America has produced. His name was William
Gillette, and it was largely due to Mark Twain that the author of
Secret Service and of the dramatic "Sherlock Holmes" got a fair public
start. Clemens and his wife loaned Gillette the three thousand dollars
which tided him through his period of dramatic education. Their faith
in his ability was justified.

Waterbury, Connecticut- On May 21, 1901, the Waterbury Clock Co.
received a letter from Mark Twain stating, "Please send me a watch. $1
enclosed." This refers to the highly successful and inexpensive "Watch
That Made The Dollar Famous" made by the company. In Following the
Equator, he wrote: "In a minor tournament I won the prize, which was a
Waterbury watch. I put it in my trunk."

Stonington, Connecticut- James Hammond Trumbull. Trumbull was born in
Stonington, Connecticut. The Hartford Monday Evening Club (which
Trumbull had helped found in January 1869) gathered fortnightly to
hear and discuss an original essay presented by one of its members.
Clemens attended the meeting of 17 February 1873 and heard
Congregational clergyman Nathaniel J. Burton read an essay entitled

To James Hammond Trumbull
15 February 1873
J H Trumbull Esq

Dr. Sir:

I shall be very glad indeed to meet with the Club as a member on next
Monday Evening, & am thankful, too.

And I willingly ?excuse the informal character? of the notice?am even
grateful for it; for if you had started in to make it formal you might
have got it in [Sanscritt ], & that would just simply have made
trouble with

Ys Truly
Sam. L. Clemens

Southington, Connecticut- Joseph Hopkins Twichell (1838-1918) was
pastor of the Asylum Hill Congregational Church at 814 Asylum Street
in Hartford. He was born in Southington, Connecticut. Twitchell played
a significant role in many of the most important events occuring in
the Clemens family. He was the presiding clergyman at Sam's marriage
with Livy, and at their daughter Clara's wedding with Ossip
Gabrilowitsch. Twitchell also provided support during the darkest
periods for the family; he was present at the death of Susy, and
officiated over the funerals of both Livy and Jean, and well as over
Sam's funeral in New York City.