Read it the day it came out! Excellent piece by Twain. Ironically,
events after his own death proved the thesis of his essay only partly
true.  He writes that while the living cannot truly practice free speech
while alive, lest he run afoul of public opinion, the dead are not so
constrained. However, for decades after Twain's death many of his most
controversial writings remained suppressed by his daughter Clara and
other "protectors" of the Mark Twain popular legacy.  Ironic indeed.
And pleasing to know, eventually Twain has had his way (or at least what
one presumes would be his way, as a deceased author!)

Steve Hoffman
Takoma Park MD