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1857. NARRATIVE. This was a very full year in many ways. In February, Charles Dickens obtained possession of Gad's Hill, and was able to turn workmen into it. In April he stayed, with his wife and sister-in-law, for a week or two at Wate's Hotel, Gravesend, to be at hand to superintend the beginning of his alterations of the house, and from thence we give a letter to Lord Carlisle. He removed his family, for a summer residence in the house, in... more...

PREFACE. We intend this Collection of Letters to be a Supplement to the "Life of Charles Dickens," by John Forster. That work, perfect and exhaustive as a biography, is only incomplete as regards correspondence; the scheme of the book having made it impossible to include in its space any letters, or hardly any, besides those addressed to Mr. Forster. As no man ever expressed himself more in his letters than Charles Dickens, we believe that in... more...

To Mr. J. Howard Moore: Feb. 2, '07. DEAR MR. MOORE, The book has furnished me several days of deep pleasure and satisfaction; it has compelled my gratitude at the same time, since it saves me the labor of stating my own long-cherished opinions and reflections and resentments by doing it lucidly and fervently and irascibly for me. There is one thing that always puzzles me: as inheritors of the mentality of our reptile ancestors we have... more...

An editorial in the Louisville Courier-Journal, early in 1901, said:"A remarkable transformation, or rather a development, has takenplace in Mark Twain. The genial humorist of the earlier day is nowa reformer of the vigorous kind, a sort of knight errant who doesnot hesitate to break a lance with either Church or State if hethinks them interposing on that broad highway over which he believesnot a part but the whole of mankind has the privilege of... more...

To W. D. Howells; in Boston: Jan. 3, '86. MY DEAR HOWELLS,—The date set for the Prince and Pauper play is ten days hence—Jan. 13. I hope you and Pilla can take a train that arrives here during the day; the one that leaves Boston toward the end of the afternoon would be a trifle late; the performance would have already begun when you reached the house. I'm out of the woods. On the last day of the year I had paid out $182,000 on the... more...


The Monday Evening Club of Hartford was an association of most ofthe literary talent of that city, and it included a number of verydistinguished members. The writers, the editors, the lawyers, andthe ministers of the gospel who composed it were more often than notmen of national or international distinction. There was but onepaper at each meeting, and it was likely to be a paper that wouldlater find its way into some magazine.Naturally Mark Twain... more...

To Bret Harte, in San Francisco: WESTMINSTER HOTEL, May 1, 1867. DEAR BRET,—I take my pen in hand to inform you that I am well and hope these few lines will find you enjoying the same God's blessing. The book is out, and is handsome. It is full of damnable errors of grammar and deadly inconsistencies of spelling in the Frog sketch because I was away and did not read the proofs; but be a friend and say nothing about these things. When my... more...

MARK TWAIN—A BIOGRAPHICAL SUMMARY SAMUEL LANGHORNE CLEMENS, for nearly half a century known and celebrated as "Mark Twain," was born in Florida, Missouri, on November 30, 1835. He was one of the foremost American philosophers of his day; he was the world's most famous humorist of any day. During the later years of his life he ranked not only as America's chief man of letters, but likewise as her best known and best loved citizen. The... more...

FOREWORD Washington's Masonic correspondence as found among the Washington papers in the Manuscript department of the Library of Congress, affords an insight of the great esteem in which Washington held the Masonic Fraternity, of which since his early days he had been an honored member. This is further shown by his great courtesy to the Brethren, in his replies to their addresses, no matter whether they were from a Grand or Subordinate Lodge.... more...

Returning from Sydney at the end of October 1890, Stevenson and his wife at once took up their abode in the wooden four-roomed cottage, or “rough barrack,” as he calls it, which had been built for them in the clearing at Vailima during the months of their absence at Sydney and on their cruise in the Equator. Mr. Lloyd Osbourne in the meantime had started for England to wind up the family affairs at Bournemouth. During the first few... more...