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Mark Twain Forum <[log in to unmask]>
Tue, 26 Oct 2010 11:46:28 -0700
Peter Salwen <[log in to unmask]>
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Peter Salwen <[log in to unmask]>
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Sorry about that.  Let me try again:  

Has anybody already mentioned the article "Mark Twain as a Motorist" from the 
May 1906 issue of Motor magazine?  
It's available at Barbara Schmidt's indispensible twainquotes website: 
 Pete Salwen

"If  you pick up a starving dog and make him prosperous, he will not bite  you; 
that is the principal difference between a dog and a man."  — Mark Twain 

From: Martin D. Zehr <[log in to unmask]>
To: [log in to unmask]
Sent: Mon, October 25, 2010 1:18:09 PM
Subject: Re: Did Twain ever mention the automobile?

Kevin knows this, as we've already discussed it, but I'll add that I recent=
ly purchased a black-and-white 8x10 glossy from the files of the Chicago Tr=
ibune (all of its older photo stock is being sold) showing Twain riding in =
a Rambler in 1908.=A0 The photo postcard of Twain riding in an Oldsmobile i=
s from 1905-06, I believe, but, as usual, you should=A0consult Kevin for pa=
Martin Zehr
Kansas City, Missouri

--- On Sun, 10/24/10, Kevin Mac Donnell <[log in to unmask]> wrot=

From: Kevin Mac Donnell <[log in to unmask]>
Subject: Re: Did Twain ever mention the automobile?
To: [log in to unmask]
Date: Sunday, October 24, 2010, 8:43 PM

He rode in an Oldsmobile driven by a race-car driver (who was killed a shor=
time later in an auto accident). That image was reproduced as a postcard=20
advertising Olds Motor Works. That image should be online. I can give you=
the details on the driver if you like.

While running errands with Henry Rogers, he was left sitting in Rogers'=20
parked electric car when it slipped into gear and slowly began coasting dow=
a street in Fairhaven. Rather than trying to guide or stop the car, Twain=
simply hopped out, and the car ran aground on a curb or sidewalk with no=20
harm done to man or machine.

I've seen two photos where he was sitting in a car (besides the one with hi=
in the Olds), and of course there are a couple of photos of him admiring a=
huge touring car parked in front of Stormfield the day of Clara's wedding.

I also seem to recall him writing an angry "letter to the editor" in=20
Harper's Magazine (or a newspaper) complaining about dangerous drivers, ca.=
1905. I think he also campaigned against cars being allowed in Bermuda.

He might have felt differently if he'd ever climbed a hill with me in my 20=
year old Miata with after-market supercharger. On the other hand, maybe tha=
would have just confirmed his worst fears.

Mac Donnell Rare Books
9307 Glenlake Drive
Austin TX 78730
Member: ABAA, ILAB
You may browse our books at

----- Original Message -----=20
From: "Ben Wise" <[log in to unmask]>
To: <[log in to unmask]>
Sent: Sunday, October 24, 2010 7:50 PM
Subject: Did Twain ever mention the automobile?

> Or ride in one?=A0 Just wondering if he saw it coming, so to speak.
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