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Mark Twain Forum <[log in to unmask]>
Wed, 29 Dec 2021 22:39:40 -0600
Mark Twain Forum <[log in to unmask]>
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Barbara Schmidt <[log in to unmask]>
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The snippet datelined FLORENCE, June 7 is from a newspaper press release
that was printed in newspapers across the U. S. in June 1904.  Many are
available on

President Theodore Roosevelt sent a note of condolence and told US customs
to let the body enter the U.S. without delay. (I have not seen those
primary Roosevelt documents.)

Martin Naparsteck in his book MRS. MARK TWAIN: THE LIFE OF OLIVIA LANGDON
CLEMENS has a good summation of the activities surrounding her death, p.
160. The text is available on google books.


On Wednesday, December 29, 2021, Scott Holmes <[log in to unmask]>

> I recall some mention of possible difficulties in returning Livy's body to
> the United States from Italy.  I have been unable to find a reference to
> the American ambassador, or someone of near his rank, clearing the way to
> ship her body as proper documentation had not been obtained.  The remark
> that recurs in my mind is that such clearance was given because of Mark
> Twain's celebrity and that an ordinary person would have been stymied  and
> unable to send a body home again.
> The only reference to bureaucratic interference in Livy's death that I
> have been able to find is a mention in Day by Day "FLORENCE, June 7.—A
> funeral service of the simplest character took place over the body of Mrs.
> Samuel L. Clemens in the Villa Quarto to-day after a vexatious visit from
> sanitary officers and compliance with annoying regulations. Only members of
> the family were present."  There was no reference to this comment other
> than MTP.
> I'm working on an essay touching on Twain's relationship with
> bureaucracies and this instance seems an important encounter.  There are
> many others but this one is what prompted me to consider this question.