In January 2008 Penny visited Austin and we spent the whole day rummaging
through my library gathering things for her work on Twain's
illustrators --original art work from quite a few books, contracts for
illustrators, correspondence, etc. Her husband had died only months before
and I think she was traveling to clear her head and redirect her energy.
Kent is absolutely right: She looked so young, and so healthy, which makes
it hard to accept that she is gone.
Her work on Twain's illustrators is key to understanding Twain's works. She
could explain the meaning behind the drawings and make you appreciate why
they were just as much a part of the art of the story as Twain's own texts.
Nobody would ever want to read a Twain text without the original
illustrations after reading her work or hearing her speak.
She was an original researcher who blazed an exciting new trail in Twain
studies. May more of us have the guts to follow her lead, and may long live
her memory, her charm, and her example!
Mac Donnell Rare Books
9307 Glenlake Drive
Austin TX 78730
Member: ABAA, ILAB
You may browse our books at
----- Original Message -----
From: "Kent Rasmussen" <[log in to unmask]>
To: <[log in to unmask]>
Sent: Tuesday, January 21, 2014 7:06 PM
Subject: Re: Notice on Penny David
> Penny's death is indeed sad news. Less than a week ago I was telling a
> friend outside the field about her wonderful work on Mark Twain's
> illustrators. I also mentioned how great she had looked at the 2009 Elmir=
> convention, when she had shocked me by revealing she she was 82 years old=
> . I
> would have believed she was 20 years younger. Well, she reached the age o=
> 86, and that ain't bad, but I'm sure I'm not alone in wishing she had mad=
> it to 100. I'll miss her.
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