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Philip Bauer <[log in to unmask]>
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Mark Twain Forum <[log in to unmask]>
Thu, 24 Jun 2021 08:30:42 -0400
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Scott,  Yes, the building is at the northwest corner of the intersection 
of Main St. and Whittlesey Ave.,  in downtown Norwalk.  Its actual 
address is 2 W. Main St.     Philip

On 6/24/2021 2:51 AM, Scott Holmes wrote:
> Thank you for confirming the identity of the railroad.  You mention 
> that the Whittlesey Hall building now has a Chinese restaurant.  Would 
> this be the "Peking House" on Whittlesey Avenue?  Along with railroads 
> I am attempting to locate Twain's venues.
> On 6/23/21 4:10 PM, Philip Bauer wrote:
>> Scott and others:
>> Mark Twain spoke in Norwalk OH  (near where I now live)  on Jan. 21, 
>> 1869 on his American Vandal speaking tour.  The previous night (20th) 
>> ) he had lectured in Toledo and the next night (22nd), he returned to 
>> his Cleveland base for another engagement.
>> At the time, the existing railroad that would have connected the 
>> three cities was the Cleveland & Toledo Railroad.  It also had a 
>> locomotive facility in Norwalk which became the town's largest employer.
>> The brick building where Twain spoke still stands as a two-story 
>> building with a Chinese restaurant on the lower level.  The third 
>> floor was a large community room where Twain spoke and it was 
>> removed  some time later after wind damage.
>> Twain, of course, was not widely known at the time so he warranted 
>> only a squib in the weekly Norwalk Reflector  five days later:
>> "Whittlesey Hall was crowded to its sitting capacity on Thursday 
>> evening, on the occasion of the lecture by "Mark Twain."  His 
>> discourse was a fine one of its kind. ---- Its humorous points 
>> convulsing the audience with frequent laughter  --- while its 
>> occasional burst of eloquence showed the author to be a prolific 
>> writer and one thoroughly conversant with the subject which he 
>> treated.  On the whole, Mr. Twain's lecture was a decided success."
>> Nowalk's local historian has told me that during the day before the 
>> lecture,  Twain had visited the home of a prominent local banker but 
>> found no one  home so he left his calling card on the porch.      
>> Another interesting coincidence is that Henry Wheeler Shaw  (later 
>> known as Josh Billings) lived with an uncle in Norwalk for a time 
>> when he was about 20 years old.
>> Philip Bauer, Sandusky OH
>> On 6/11/2021 2:18 PM, Scott Holmes wrote:
>>> For those interested in such things, I have been trying to map 
>>> Twain's travels associated with his 1868-69 American Vandals Tour.  
>>> The University of Nebraska has a collection of kmz files for 
>>> railroads up to 1870 and it is these that I have most relied on.  
>>> Many segments don't have names and many are approximations of 
>>> routes. It's not possible to accurately compare these with the USGS 
>>> maps of the regions as the government maps are more recent and 
>>> railroad companies have been unstable in regards to ownership and 
>>> locations. Many of these reported railroads do not seem to be known 
>>> to Google.
>>> I have often seen remarks on Mark Twain becoming 
>>> fatigued/disenchanted with touring.  Examining these maps may 
>>> provide some indication just why this happened.  He covered a lot of 
>>> miles.  I have divided the tour up into 6 arbitrary sections for my 
>>> Twain's Geography site, mainly to lessen confusion with the maps.