By R. Kent Rasmussen
R. Kent Rasmussen’s large learn offers attention-grabbing profiles of the correspondents, whose own tales are usually as attention-grabbing as their letters. starting from gushing fan appreciations and requests for support and recommendation to feedback for writing initiatives and stinging criticisms, the letters are choked with perceptive insights, pathos, and accidental yet frequently riotous humor. Many are deeply relocating, quite a lot of are hilarious, a few could be surprising, yet none are dull.
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Additional info for Dear Mark Twain: Letters from His Readers (Jumping Frogs: Undiscovered, Rediscovered, and Celebrated Writings of Mark Twain)
My expensive Mr. ——: it's been agreed between a few pals of Mr. S. L. Clemens that every one his associates, so far as they're going to, write to him on receipt of this round mailing on such dates as to permit all of the letters to arrive him concurrently at the fi rst day of April soliciting for his autograph. The consent to co-operate has been already been acquired from a host adequate to make it convinced that the problem will take the nature meant for it, and this round is now mailed to a hundred and fifty folks of the literary and journalistic guild, in Boston, Hartford, Springfield, ny, Brooklyn, Washington and different towns, each one of whom—with yourself—is asked to ask others, women or gents, to participate. it is recommended that no stamps or card or envelope be inclosed with the request; that no stranger to Mr. Clemens and no minor participate. Yours really, G. W. Cable The sender of the current letter, Rossiter Worthington Raymond (1840–1918), was once a German-trained mining engineer who additionally had remarkable achievements in literature, legislations, and theology. His various books comprise The Mines of the West (1869), Camp and Cabin: Sketches of existence and shuttle within the West (1880), and courageous Hearts (1873), a Western novel released less than the pseudonym Robertson grey. it's not transparent even if Raymond knew Clemens in my opinion. He could have gotten Cable’s letter from Henry Ward Beecher (1813–1887), pastor of Brooklyn’s Plymouth Congregational Church, of which he was once a lifelong member. Beecher’s personal letter to Clemens acknowledged, “Although i'm myself a truly curmudgeon approximately answering autographe letters . . . i need others— and your recognition for kindness during this admire emboldens me to invite for a double one, viz your genuine identify & pseudonym” (Beecher to Clemens, 31 Mar. 1884, MTP). sixty two a hundred and forty Pearl St March thirty first 1884 pricey Clemens i'm conversant in a stunning younger girl approximately 18 years outdated, who's worried to head upon the degree. i'm too previous to determine if she has different wants, yet you're concerning the right age. 104 1881–1890 If via go back mail you'll ship me your picture and autograph, i'm going to hand them to her, and ask for the excitement of introducing you if you stopover at town. i'm Very essentially Chas Watrous. Clemens’s remark: Watrous Th is April Fools’ Day author was once Charles Watrous (1827–1891), a well known big apple urban lumber service provider and vice chairman of the Staten Island quick Transit Co. (obituary, ny occasions, 17 Aug. 1891). As Clemens would possibly not have identified him, he most likely bought his reproduction of Cable’s round letter from anyone who bought it without delay from Cable. sixty three Burlington, Iowa expensive Mr Twain i'm a bit woman, eight years outdated and i'm creating a cover with the names of the entire nice humans on the planet. Won’t you please ship me a bit of your outfits along with your Autograph on it. i've got despatched for a bit of Queen Victoria and John Brown. Mamma says should you will please to put in writing “Innocence overseas. ” on it. i'll be sure to despatched it. Lovingly yours Gracie Stearnes No. 715 North sixth St Burlington Iowa P. S. for those who comprehend any longer nice individuals won’t you please inform me the place they stay so i will be able to get peices of them.