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Twain Tahoe Mystery Sparks Controversy and Event
He Wouldn’t Have It Any Other Way
“The very ink with which all history is written is merely fluid prejudice.”
- Mark Twain in Pudd’nhead Wilson
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
February 9, 2012
Contact: Marguerite Sprague, North Lake Tahoe Historical Society Executive Director
Phone: (530) 583-1762
Email: [log in to unmask]
Tahoe City, CA – Mark Twain just can’t stop causing controversy, not even 101 years after his death! From the ruckus about Huckleberry Finn (published 128 years ago), to being tried in the 21st century for his 19th century attitudes, Mr. Twain continues to stir things up. And now the question of where he camped on Lake Tahoe has inspired the Gatekeeper’s Museum to host an event featuring two authors with competing theories! The event, which kicks off a summer-long public opinion pollabout the two possible sites, will be held at 6:30pm on Thursday, June 21, 2012 at the Gatekeeper’s Museum in Tahoe City. It is rumored that the white suited gentleman himself will be in attendance.
In the 1860s, Twain—then Sam Clemens from Hannibal, Missouri— lived in the Carson City, NV area. Detailed in Roughing It and letters home, Twain’s adventures here left an indelible impression on him. When Twain and a partner came to Lake Tahoe to stake a timber claim and get rich, he fell in love with the lake forever. His campfire also got away from him, starting a forest fire. It is claimed the U.S. Forest Service may still hold a grudge. The exact location of Twain’s camp has never been officially determined.
Two authors recently offered competing theories of Twain’s Lake Tahoe campsite location. Robert Stewart, in his book Finding Sam Clemen’s Cove at Lake Tahoe, Nevada, pegs a site near Sand Harbor, NV. David Antonucci, in his book Fairest Picture, pinpoints a site near Speedboat Beach, CA. Both offer their reasoning and background information used to support their conclusions. The mystery persists.
The Gatekeeper’s Museum invites the public to play detective. We have maps and both books: consult the facts, then make a foray to each site and report back what you find and your reasoning! We will track the input of people who register with us, and report findings at www.northtahoemuseums.org.
Join us for this lively debate! The event is free for NLTHS members; $10 suggested donation for non- members. Participation in the poll is free.
Gatekeeper’s Museum is in the log cabin next to Fanny Bridge in Tahoe City. The museum is open year ‘round. For seasonal hours, go to www.northtahoemuseums.org or call 530.583.1762. The North Lake Tahoe Historical Society preserves and presents Lake Tahoe history through programs and exhibits at the Gatekeeper’s Museum and the Watson Cabin Museum. The NLTHS vision is to operate a community center where exhibits and innovative educational programs promote ongoing interest in the preservation and interpretation of Lake Tahoe History and its context within the American West. Memberships start at $30, with Student Memberships available at just $5. For more information please call 530.583.1762 or email [log in to unmask]
Cindy Lovell, Ph.D.
Mark Twain Boyhood Home & Museum
120 N. Main St., Hannibal MO 63401
Phone: 573-221-9010 ext. 402 | Cell: 386-748-1256 | Fax: 573-221-7975
Email: [log in to unmask] | Web site: http://marktwainmuseum.org/
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"Let us endeavor so to live that when we come to die even the undertaker will be sorry." ~Mark Twain