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Samuel Langhorne Clemens also known as “Mark Twain” was born on November 30, 1835 in Florida but was raised in Hannibal, Missouri. Son of John Marshall Clemens and Jane Lampton Clemens was the seventh child. His brother Orion, Henry, and his sister Pamela managed to survive through their childhood. The other three siblings died before they could reach the age of eleven. Margaret (1830 - 1839) died when Mark was only three and then three years later his brother Benjamin (1832 – 1842) died tragically. Mark’s other brother Pleasant (1828 – 1829) died after six months of being born. When Mark was four years old his family moved to the city Hannibal in Missouri also known as the “slave state” where he was raised. Also Mark noticed the institution of slavery, which was a topic he would use in his writing later in the future. Mark’s father John Marshall Clemens died on March 24, 1847 of pneumonia when he was 11. His father was a local judge and attorney. Soon after his father passed away he became a printers apprentice for a newspaper owned by his brother Orion. He would work on the Hannibal Journal as a typesetter.

Later at the age of eighteen he left Hannibal, Missouri to work as a printer in New York City and other states. He also joined the union and studied in public libraries when he could and learning more in the libraries than he could at school. When he was twenty two Mark returned to Hannibal, Missouri. When Mark was on a Voyage to New Orleans going down the Mississippi Mark was inspired be a steamboat pilot Horace Bixby to become a steamboat pilot himself. Two years later Mark received his steamboat license and became a steamboat pilot which gave two hundred and fifty dollars a month which would be around seventy three thousand dollars a year in the time we live in now.

Marks younger brother Henry was convinced to work with him and then later was killed on June 21, 1858 when the steamboat he was on exploded. Mark saw his death in a dream a month earlier and he blamed himself responsible for his death his whole life after that. He then worked as a river pilot until the American Civil War began on April 12, 1861 because the Mississippi was getting curtailed and full of people. Mark wrote a sketch saying that his friends and himself were Confederate volunteers for two weeks before their company ended.

Mark Twain realized that the great American West would give him excitement and cash for the future. On July of 1861 Mark moved to Nevada and California where he lived for five years.

Mark tried to prospect for silver and gold but nothing was giving him money to help his family in their struggling need. In mid 1862 he had no more money and needed to find a job that pay for all of his needs. In September he finally got a job as a reporter at the Virginian City Territorial Enterprise. After writing news, stories, etc. he got the name Mark Twain which meant twelve feet of water in steamboat lingo.

Mark started to get the reputation of being the best storyteller in the West. His writing style was friendly and funny to most readers. In 1865 his story “Jim Smiley and His Jumping Frog” got printed in magazines and newspapers around the country. This helped his success but in 1867 he went on a cruise in the Mediterranean writing about hilarious sights he saw for the American Newspapers. The novel “The Innocents Aboard” was published in 1869 and became a bestseller.

At the age of thirty four handsome westerner Mark Twain became the most popular and famous writers in America. Mark started to become worried because he was a Westerner. Back then cultural life of the country was made of Eastern establishment in the middle of New York and Boston. A few years later in February 1870 his social status became better because he married a twenty four year old woman called Olivia Langdon. Olivia was the daughter of a New York coal merchant who was very rich. Mark knew Olivia was the only sweetheart he would ever love. To him “she is the best girl, and the sweetest, and gentlest, and the daintiest and she is the most perfect gen of womankind”. Olivia took pride in the high minded approach to life like many people in our present time. Mark really hoped that Olivia would make him a better funnier man than he was.

Mark then had a son name Langdon that died of a disease called diphtheria at one year and seven months. In 1871, Mark moved to Hartford, Connecticut and starting building a house after saving it from demolition two years later. The house later became a museum based on himself. His wife Olivia then gave birth to three daughters Susy (1872 – 1896) who died of meningitis, Clara (1874 – 1962) and then Jean (1880 – 1909). Mark’s marriage lasted thirty four years and then Olivia unfortunately passed away in 1904. After that his best friend Henry Rogers suddenly died as well. Mark was in a great depression between 1896 and 1909 because he lost so many people that were close to him and that he loved.

Mark loved science and its inquiry. He spent much time together in a laboratory of his friend Nikolai Tesla. While working in the lab Mark claimed to right for the “Improvement in Adjustable and Detachable Straps for Garments” which was to replace suspenders. Also he made a history trivia game and a self pasting scrapbook. The scrapbook was so popular because all you needed to do was wet the ages before you used them.

In 1909, Mark was visited by Thomas Edison who filmed him at his home in Redding, Connecticut. Some of the footage taken was used in a film called “The Prince and the Pauper”. Mark later on had financial troubles because he lost money due to investments in his new inventions and technology such as the Paige typesetting machine. Mark spent about three hundred thousand dollars on it which is equivalent to seven million five hundred thousand dollars today. The typesetting machine failed before being finished because it was obsolete due to the Linotype. Due to this he lost book profits and a part of his wife’s inheritance.

Mark also lost money because of a publishing house he had owned that sold memories of Ulysses Grant, but lost money because of the biography of Pope Lee XIII. In 1893, he got help from his new friend Henry Huttleston Rogers. Henry was a financier and became friends with Mark for fifteen years which helped him through his financial troubles. Henry took care of Marks financial life and told him to transfer the copyrights of work to his wife Olivia. This would prevent the creditors from taking control of the documents and then Rogers helped Mark with his money until the creditors were paid their money back.

Around 1894, Mark then embarked on a journey around the world to go on a lecture tour so that he could pay of the rest of the money he owed to the creditors. In the middle of 1900 he became a guest of a newspaper business owner Hugh Gilzean Reid at the Dollis Hill House. Mark later then wrote about the Dollis Hill and said “I’ve never seen any place that was so satisfactorily situated, with its noble trees and stretch of country, and everything that went to make life delightful, and all within a biscuit’s throw of the metropolis of the world”. After that he returned to the United States and earned enough money to pay off his debts to the creditors. Mark was wanted by everyone to be a speaker and was featured on many men clubs. Clubs such as the Authors Club, Beefsteak Club, Vagabonds, White Friars, and Monday Evening Club of Hartford. He then became an honorary member of the Bohemian Club in the city San Francisco. Later on in the late year of 1890 he went to the Savage Club in London and became one of the three men that were honored with Prince of Wales he said “Well, it must make the Prince feel mighty fine”. In 1906 Mark began his own autobiography in the North American Review. Mark then formed a club for girls who were looked at as “surrogate granddaughters” which was named as the Angel Fish and Aquarium Club. The age limit was from ten to sixteen. He would invite the girls of the club to concerts and the theatre to play games. In 1908 he wrote that the Angel Fish and Aquarium was his “life’s chief delight”. By 1907 Oxford University had awarded Mark with an honorary doctorate in the letters “D.Litt.”. In 1909 Marked quoted this saying as follows. “I came in with Halley's Comet in 1835. It is coming again next year, and I expect to go out with it. It will be the greatest disappointment of my life if I don't go out with Halley's Comet. The Almighty has said, no doubt: “Now here are these two unaccountable freaks; they came in together, they must go out together”. Just as Mark had predicated he died of a heart attack on April 21, 1910 in Redding, Connecticut the day after the comet approached the Earth. Mark loved Henry H. Rogers because he saved him when he had financial troubles and got him back on his feet. Later throughout the years they had a very close friendship and Henry’s family became Mark’s new family since he had lost three of his four kids and has wife. He visited them at their townhouse once in a while in New York City, their forty eight room summer home in Fairhaven, Massachusetts, and on their yacht called the Kanawha. Both of them met each other’s friends and acquaintances. Mark loved Helen Keller the deaf blind girl. Mark met Helen for the first time in New York City at a party in Laurence Hutton’s house. Henry and his wife paid for Helen’s education at Radcliffe College. While on cruises Mark and Henry met Booker T. Washington a couple of times. When Mark and Henry were away from each other then would send each other letters because they traveled so much. These letters where later on published because it was to demonstrate the two men as “Twain's well-known sense of humor and, more surprisingly, Rogers' sense of fun, providing a rare insight into the private side of the robber baron”. Mark was so popular that fans of his would take boats out to the Kanawha just so that they could a look of him. After a while boats around the yacht started to become dangerous he would start getting off the yacht and onto the deck to wave to the crowds. Due to the poor weather conditions the yacht was delayed for days and they couldn’t venture into the Atlantic Ocean. Rogers and some of his friend went through train back to New York, but because Mark didn’t like traveling on trains he waited for the yacht to able to sail out.

Mark filled in for the former President of the United States Grove Cleveland and introduced Rear Admiral Purnell Harrington. Mark had to do a five minute standing ovation, and many people in audience cheered and waved their hats in the air. Mark then said "When you appeal to my head, I don't feel it; but when you appeal to my heart, I do feel it”. In the year 1909 in April, Mark and Henry returned to Norfolk, Virginia to get a dinner hosted in the honor of Rogers because he just finished his new Virginian Railway. Mark was the speaker in the one of his last public appearances, and it was quoted in the newspapers all across the country.

After his appearance at Rogers banquet, Mark was on his way to Connecticut to visit his friend that lived in New York City when Rogers suddenly died on May 20, 1909. When Mark arrived at the Grand Central Station Marks daughter was waiting there to tell him the news of Rogers death. Mark avoided news reporters who were gathering around to ask questions and he said “This is terrible…I cannot talk about it”. Then two days later he was became the honorary pallbearer at the Rogers funeral at New York City.

Later on after the funeral he was asked to join the funeral party on a train ride to Fairhaven for the interment. He said “I cannot bear to travel with my friends and not converse”. On October 15, 1900 in the New York Herald he said his transformation and waking up to the politics because of the Philippine American War was from being a “red hot imperialist”. This is what he said in the herald:
“I wanted the American eagle to go screaming into the Pacific ...Why not spread its wings over the Philippines, I asked myself? ... I said to myself, here are a people who have suffered for three centuries. We can make them as free as ourselves, give them a government and country of their own, put a miniature of the American Constitution afloat in the Pacific, and start a brand new republic to take its place among the free nations of the world. It seemed to me a great task to which we had addressed ourselves. But I have thought some more, since then, and I have read carefully the Treaty of Paris [which ended the Spanish-American War], and I have seen that we do not intend to free, but to subjugate the people of the Philippines. We have gone there to conquer, not to redeem. It should, it seems to me, be our pleasure and duty to make those people free, and let them deal with their own domestic questions in their own way. And so I am an anti-imperialist. I am opposed to having the eagle put its talons on any other land”.

Before in 1899, Mark use to be an ardent imperialist. Mark use to be a vice president for the American Anti-Imperialist League. The league did not agree to the annexation of the Philippines from the United States which had “tens of thousands of members”. He also wrote a lot of political pamphlets for the league. In 1924 one of them was published because it referred to the Moro Carter Massacre where six hundred Moro’s were killed. A lot of his writing from the anti-imperialism which was ignored and neglected was then published into a book in 1992. Mark used to sympathize with the Girondins from the French Revolution and then moved his sympathy towards the sans-culotte’s. He also supported the revolutions in Russia from the reformists because the Tsar had to leave because peaceful people would not work. He said this statement on his views about the revolution: “I am said to be a revolutionist in my sympathies, by birth, by breeding and by principle. I am always on the side of the revolutionists, because there never was a revolution unless there were some oppressive and intolerable conditions against which to revolt”. Mark was against “vivisection” or dissecting a living organism. He said the pain an animal has to go through while going through vivisection is why he is against it. He stated “I am not interested to know whether vivisection produces results that are profitable to the human race or doesn't. The pain which it inflicts upon unconsenting animals is the basis of my enmity toward it, and it is to me sufficient justification of the enmity without looking further”. Mark’s religion was a Presbyterian, but he was critical of some of the elements of Christianity and organized religion. He later wrote: "Faith is believing what you know ain't so", and "If Christ were here now there is one thing he would not be a Christian". He was involved in many religious discussions and services, and theology developed because of the death of his family and friends. He became critical to “faith healing” due to his the suffering of his family’s death and his own experiences. His other works on religion was only understood from his theological arguments and his criticism. Mark tried to avoid publishing his writings on religion because of his opinions on the subject. Although, they were then later on published as essays and stories. In one essay Three Statements of the Eighties Mark stated the believed in the almighty God, but was also very optimistic of how good the almighty God was. Mark Twain’s views on religion later appeared one hundred years after his death in November 2010 and it said: “There is one notable thing about our Christianity: bad, bloody, merciless, money-grabbing, and predatory. The invention of hell measured by our Christianity of today, bad as it is, hypocritical as it is, empty and hollow as it is, neither the deity nor his son is a Christian, nor qualified for that moderately high place. Ours is a terrible religion. The fleets of the world could swim in spacious comfort in the innocent blood it has spilled”. Mark Twain legacy still loves until this very day. He has various schools named after him such as Mark Twain Elementary School in Houston, Texas where there is a statue of him sitting on a bench. There are also several schools in many different states named Mark Twain Middle School, and a Samuel Clemens High School in Schertz by San Antonio, Texas. There are also historical structures such as the Mark Twain Memorial Bridge and the Mark Twain Village is in Sudstadt district in Heidelberg Germany which is an army installation. The base is one of the two American bases and the other one is base that houses American soldiers and their families which is called Patrick Henry Village. Hal Holbrook also created a show called Mark Twain Tonight which he performed personally for fifty six years. It was broadcasted on CBS in 1967 which won him an Emmy Award. Also Mark had an asteroid named after him called 2362 Mark Twain. In pop culture Mark was recognized as wearing a white suit because after his wife’s death in 1904 Mark started wearing white suits. Although McMasters “Mark Twain Encyclopedia” says the Mark did not wear white suits in the last three years that he was alive, except one time when he attended a banquet speech. Also, in 2011 the US Postal Service plans to release another stamp in his honor. In 1998, the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts created the Mark Twain Prize for American Humor. The award was given only each year to a book for children in fourth through eighth grade. In Deland, Florida the Stetson University sponsors the Mark Twain Young Authors’ Workshop each summer to collaborate with the Mark Twain Boyhood Home and Museum in Hannibal. The program was kids from grades fifth through eighth. The museum also sponsored the Mark Twain Creative Teaching Award. Most of the building Mark was associated with such as homes are now museums like his birthplace is preserved in Florida and Missouri. In Hannibal, Missouri the museum the Mark Twain Boyhood Home and Museum preserves the setting for Marks best known work. Mark had many different pen names before he decided on Mark Twain. One of them was Thomas Jefferson Snodgrass for a whole bunch of humorous letters. The name Mark Twain came from the years that he worked on Mississippi riverboats, where two fathoms was the depth that said where the water was safe for a boat to pass. Twain is archaic term for “two”. “According to the mark the depth is two fathoms”, which means “The water is twelve feet deep and it is safe to pass”. Before Mark died he had a lot of pain and sorrow, but after the seasons and years went by he became more gentle, generous, and considerate. His started dying a few months after his daughter had died. There were signs that his heart was affected severely and after the death of Jean he wanted to be in the warm climate of Bermuda. In April he returned to Storm field; after just a week of arriving there he died a week later on April, 21 1910. “Any attempt to designate Mark Twain's place in the world's literary history would be presumptuous now. Yet I cannot help thinking that he will maintain his supremacy in the century that produced him. I think so because, of all the writers of that hundred years, his work was the most human his utterances went most surely to the mark. In the long analysis of the ages it is the truth that counts, and he never approximated, never compromised, but pronounced those absolute verities to which every human being of whatever rank must instantly respond.” “His understanding of subjective human nature, the vast, unwritten life within; was simply amazing. Such knowledge he acquired at the fountainhead; that is, from himself. He recognized in himself an extreme example of the human being with all the attributes of power and of weakness, and he made his exposition complete.”

“The world will long miss Mark Twain; his example and his teaching will be neither ignored nor forgotten. Genius defies the laws of perspective and looms larger as it recedes. The memory of Mark Twain remains to us a living and intimate presence that today, even more than in life, constitutes a stately moral bulwark reared against hypocrisy and superstition; a mighty national menace to sham.”…...

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