Last week I co-hosted IWSG. What a wild and fun ride. I want to thank everyone for stopping by and extra thanks to all of you who signed up for my mailing list. In case you missed last week’s post, you can find it here.
Mark Twain’s House
One of my favorite activities and a great source of inspiration is visiting author’s homes. Several years ago I had the privilege of touring Mark Twain’s home in Hartford, Connecticut. I had been by it before, but wasn’t able to go inside since I had my dog. Miles and I think he should be allowed everywhere, however not everyone agrees. Seriously, who can say no to this face?
Anyway, I arranged to visit Twain’s house sans Miles. Was it worth it? Absolutely, but please don’t tell Miles.
I have always been a huge fan of Twain so I was quite curious to see the place where Samuel Clemens (Twain’s real name) worked on some of his most impressive works including The Adventures of Tom Sawyer, Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, The Prince and The Pauper and A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur’s Court.
The outside of the house looks impressive. Construction on the house began in August of 1873 and the family settled there in September of 1874. The architect was Edward Tuckerman Potter and the structure is an example of Victorian Gothic Revival architecture. The brickwork, the eaves and the gables makes the exterior look quite busy and at times it feels overwhelming to take in all the detail.
From the outside the house looks massive but it isn’t until I toured the house did I realize just how large. It has 25 rooms, including seven bedrooms, seven bathrooms, an impressive grand hall, a large library, a glass conservatory, and a billiard room. Sam worked in the billiard room and according to our tour guide he kept stuff on the pool table so he wouldn’t stop writing and play pool. Apparently he was easily distracted and if the pool table was well kept and ready to play he would put down his pen. In an effort to focus he kept odds and ends on the table so it would be an effort to clean the table to play pool. Unfortunately no photographs are permitted inside the house. However, if you are in the area I would suggest this tour!
The family resided in the house until 1891 when financial woes forced the family to live in Europe. After they returned to America the family did not return to Hartford due to the death of their beloved daughter Susy in 1896. Mrs. Clemens could not bear to live in the house with so many memories of her late daughter. They sold the house in 1903.
Favorite Mark Twain Quotes:
“If you tell the truth, you don’t have to remember anything.”
“Classic’ – a book which people praise and don’t read.”
“Never put off till tomorrow what may be done day after tomorrow just as well.”
“Books are for people who wish they were somewhere else.”
“Sanity and happiness are an impossible combination.”
“Name the greatest of all inventors. Accident.”
TBM’s Monthly E-Book Giveaway
Don’t forget to enter this month’s e-book giveaway. One winner will receive copies of five wonderful books by super cool authors.
Do you have a favorite Mark Twain quote? I’d love to hear it.