Mark Twain's America, A Celebration in Words and Images. By Harry L. Katz and The Library of Congress. Little, Brown and Company. 2015. Pp. 244. Hardcover. $40.00. ISBN 978-0-316-20939-7.

The original review for this book appeared on the Mark Twain Forum 5 November 2014.


NOTE: In the following list, the abbreviation SLC is used for Samuel L. Clemens, Mark Twain's real name.


p. 3 - Describes Mark Twain as dying at his "estate outside New York City." SLC died at Stormfield which was near Redding Conn., a full-hour train ride from New York City.

From "A PERSONAL CHRONOLOGY" (pp. 6-15). Almost all of the chronology entries are copied or adapted from R. Kent Rasmussen's Mark Twain A to Z (1995), unacknowledged. Most of its errors are the result of careless rewording and misreadings.

p. 6 - (1845) States "Takes first steamboat ride to St. Louis." This attempts to copy Rasmussen's "takes first steamboat ride, to St. Louis". By dropping the comma the reader loses the connotation that it was SLC's first steamboat ride anywhere.

p. 8 - (1861) Follows Rasmussen in repeating the oft-made error that SLC joined "Confederate irregulars." SLC said he served in the Confederacy but more recent research has shown that what he joined was a Missouri state militia whose members swore loyalty to the Union; Missouri was never part of the Confederacy.

p. 8 - (1861) States "Begins journey to Nevada with his brother, Orion: to St. Joseph as a passenger on the Nebraska, then by stagecoach July 26-August 14." The Nebraska carried SLC only as far as St. Louis; they left St Louis on the 18 of July on the Sioux City, for St Joseph.

p. 9 - (1868) States "Sails to California in March to gives [sic] lectures throughout Northern California and western Nevada April-July." Falsely implies that SLC's reason for going to California was to lecture.

p. 9 - (1871) States "Patents elastic garment strap invention later known as suspenders." The invention was designed to be worn horizontally on shirts, vests, pants, and women's undergarments. Its purpose was to eliminate suspenders.

p. 10 - (1874) SLC and his friend Joe Twichell are described as starting to hike from Hartford to Boston "on a regular basis." They did this only once, unsuccessfully in a comic failure.

p. 10 - (1879) States "Leave from Liverpool September 3 for New York City." The family left Liverpool on August 23; September 3 is the date they reached New York City.

p. 10 - (1878) States "Works on A Tramp Abroad before contracting for a book on Europe." There is no evidence SLC started writing that book before signing a contract for it.

p. 10 - (1879) Says "They [SLC and family] are in Hartford with visits to Elmira for the remainder of the year." SLC visited Elmira only once in late 1879.

p. 10 - (1882) States during his travels to New Orleans, Minnesota and Hannibal that SLC "works on Huckleberry Finn." Nearly half of Huckleberry Finn was written in 1876 and in 1880. The second portion was written in 1883.

p. 11 - (1884) Says "In November, begins lectures in the eastern states and in the Midwest with George Washington Cable." SLC and Cable didn't lecture in the Midwest in November 1884.

p. 11 - (1885) States "Finishes lecture tour with George W. Cable in the Midwest, where he stops to visit Hannibal." The lecture tour ended in Washington, DC.

p. 11 - (1890) calls Jean Clemens "Jane." Although that was her given name, she went by Jean, which is what the authors call her elsewhere.

p. 12 - (1891) Says "They go to France, then boating down the Rhone in Germany." The Rhone is correct, but that river flows through Switzerland and southern France, nowhere near Germany.

p. 12 - (1893) Says "Twain traveled frequently to Chicago and Elmira on business..." SLC went to Chicago only twice and to Elmira only once in 1893, and he didn't go to Elmira on business.

p. 12 - (1895) States "Sails to Vancouver in August, anchors off Honolulu . . ." Miscopies Rasmussen, who says "Sails from Vancouver ..." Honolulu is in Hawaii, not British Columbia.

p. 12 - (1896) States SLC sailed to "Lourenzo Marques, Mozambique." Lourenzo Marques was not part of Mozambique until 1915.

p. 13 - (1897) States "Stirring Times in Austria," published in Harper's Magazine." Written in December 1897, that essay was published in March 1898.

p. 13 - (1900) States that SLC "lectures frequently through December." During this period of SLC's life, he did not give lectures as he had done earlier in his career.

p. 13 - (1902) Misspells the title "Double-Barreled Detective Story." Twains original spelling was "Double-Barrelled Detective Story." Ignores the book publication that same year.

p. 13 - (1902) States "Spends time at "York Harbor, Minnesota" which should be York Harbor, Maine.

p. 13 - (1904) States that SLC publishes "Extracts from Adam's Diary." This was the book version, not the story, and the title should be italicized.

p. 14 - (1909) States that Jean Clemens drowned in the bathtub during a seizure; more recent research indicates she died of a heart attack.

p. 15 - (1910) The title "The Turning Point in My Life" should be "The Turning Point of My Life."

p. 15 - (1910) States SLC's only granddaughter, Nina, was born on April 18. Nina was actually born on August 18, after SLC's death.

From the main text:

pp. 21-22 - Mentions travel writer Bayard Taylor and says he "anticipated Twain's career" but fails to mention Taylor's important connections to SLC.

p. 22 - States that SLC's mother Jane "had two older sons, Orion and Henry." Henry was actually younger than SLC. The chronology mentions the 1842 death of "older brother Benjamin" (p. 6), but Benjamin is not mentioned anywhere else in the book.

p. 22 - States that SLC's father was "named for the country's first Chief Justice of the Supreme Court . . ." This is an allusion to John Marshall, whose proper title was "Chief Justice of the United States" -- the correct title for all chief justices. Marshall was actually the fourth chief justice, not the first.

p. 26 - The full title of Orion's newspaper should be Hannibal Journal and Western Union.

p. 27 - The name Joseph Ament is misspelled as Joseph Arment.

p. 33 - States SLC's brief experience in the Missouri militia "gave him enough of a taste of battle and military discipline to convince him there was no place for him and his personal aspirations in the wartime South." There's no evidence SLC saw anything resembling a battle during the war, and such evidence that does survive suggests he saw little of military discipline, either.

p. 35 - Says SLC wrote the "opening chapters" of The Gilded Age. That is correct, but the book neglects to mention that SLC also wrote 24 later chapters.

p. 35 - States that SLC was "living in Elmira" when he only summered there.

p. 38 - Claims SLC became a steamboat "captain" when in fact SLC was a pilot--the difference is huge--a distinction SLC himself emphasized in his writings.

p. 41 - Illustrator Dan Beard is credited for the cover and title page of Life on the Mississippi when in fact it was the work of John T. Harley.

p. 41 - Calls Tom Sawyer a bestseller and then says that SLC built a house in Hartford, implying that the two events are connected. The house was actually built before Tom Sawyer was published.

p. 46 - A famous 1908 photo of SLC and Laura Hawkins Frazer at Stormfield is misdated to 1902. This misdating, the placement of the picture, and text on the next page collectively seem to imply the picture was taken in Hannibal, but it was actually taken in Connecticut. Laura Frazer's name is misspelled as "Frazier."

p. 47 - Laura Frazer's name is again misspelled as "Laura Frazier."

p. 51 - States that SLC "hit literary pay dirt in 1865 with the mining-camp tall tale "The Celebrated Jumping Frog of Calaveras County." The correct title under which the story was first published in 1865 was "Jim Smiley and His Jumping Frog."

pp. 51-2, 105 - Mentions A. D. Richardson's Beyond the Mississippi but fails to mention Richardson's critical influence on SLC.

p. 52 - Identifies SLC's brother Orion as the "assistant secretary" of the Nevada Territory in the main text, when in fact he was the secretary, and SLC functioned at times as his assistant. (In the caption on the same page he is correctly described as secretary.)

p. 52 - Repeats the "Confederate irregulars" error, while saying "his brief sojourn in a band of Confederate irregulars was enough to convince him life in uniform in wartime was not to his liking." SLC is not known to have worn a uniform during his brief militia service and probably didn't.

p. 54 - States the Pony Express "shut down in fall 1861, disrupted by the Civil War and expansion of the telegraph." The Pony Express was disrupted by the Paiute War (or Pyramid Lake War) in Nevada and Utah, but the only impact of the Civil War was to accelerate completion of the transcontinental telegraph, which is what really killed the Pony Express.

p. 56 - States the Mormon religion had been developed in the 1820s. Smith first published the Book of Mormon in 1830 and only afterward developed the religion.

p. 56 - States that the 1857 Mountain Meadows Massacre "slaughtered about one hundred and twenty men, women, and children." This number contradicts the figure of 135 people killed given in the chronology on page 196.

p. 56 - States SLC "devoted one paragraph to the [Mountain Meadows] tragedy in Roughing It." This assertion ignores Roughing It's 1,535-word Appendix B, "The Mountain Meadows Massacre."

p. 57 - Captions a lithograph of Joseph and Hyrum (misspelled "Hiram") Smith's martyrdom, stating "he [Joseph Smith] and his brother met their demise at the hands of a lynch mob outside an Illinois jail in 1844. Their followers would decamp more than 1,000 miles westward to the sparsely settled Utah Territory." Hyrum Smith was actually killed inside the jail. The captioned picture shows only Joseph being killed outside the building. Smith's Mormon followers started settling in Utah in 1847, when it was still under Mexican rule (a point acknowledged in the chronology on p. 189). It did not become a U.S. territory until 1850. Suggesting the Mormons chose to settle in a U.S. territory ignores the fact their aim was to escape U.S. rule.

p. 72 - States "Clemens … took to the California goldfields north and east of Sacramento during the winter of 1864-65. Passing through Sacramento ... he made acute observations ..." SLC went to Tuolumne and Calaveras counties, which are east-southeast of Sacramento; SLC didn't go "through" or "north" of Sacramento in 1864-65.

p. 76 - Misidentifies the New York Saturday Press as the New York Sunday Press.

p. 87 - Caption to an 1873 newspaper picture describes women's rights activist Susan B. Anthony as a "presidential candidate." Anthony never ran for president, but in 1872 was arrested in Rochester, New York, for attempting to vote.

p. 90 - Includes an illustration by Frederick Opper but fails to mention his connection to SLC.

p. 91 - William Henry Vanderbilt is incorrectly referred to as William K. Vanderbilt.

p. 93 - Says SLC's "second nonfiction book, Roughing It (1872) ... joined Innocents and Gilded Age on the bestseller list ..." Gilded Age had not yet been published.

p. 95 - Mentions SLC's visit to a P. T. Barnum show but says nothing about their close relationship.

p. 96 - The 1874 book Mark Twain's Sketches. Authorised Edition is described as SLC's "first published compilation of comic sketches," but it was preceded by The Celebrated Jumping Frog (1867), Eye Openers (1871), Screamers (1871), Sketches (1872), A Curious Dream (1872), and The Choice Humorous Works (1873).

p. 96 - Misattributes an illustration on the 1874 cover of Mark Twain's Sketches to True Williams. It was drawn by Reginald Sperry.

p. 97 - Implies that SLC paid his own way on the Quaker City excursion and that he recouped his outlay with the travel letters he wrote on the trip. He was paid for his letters, but the Alta California paid for his passage in advance.

p. 97 - Caption to 1867 cabinet photo says "Twain thought Istanbul beautiful." The city was then known as "Constantinople"--the only name SLC used.

p. 99 - Discussion of Quaker City passengers says SLC called one of them "the Interrogationist." The term he actually used was "the Interrogation Point," which has a completely different meaning.

p. 101 - States SLC and cohorts "stole ashore, breaking into the closed-off Parthenon..." Accordng to the account in Innocents Abroad, they bribed their way in.

p. 103 - Identifies a cartoon of SLC as an example of "ridicule" when in fact it is from a promotional magazine published by SLC's publisher with his blessing.

p. 108 - A famous photo of SLC in a sealskin coat taken during the early 1870s is misdated "1880s." That coat was purchased from Bergtold Brothers in Buffalo in September 1871. Twain moved to Hartford the next month and Isaac White, a Hartford photographer took the photograph at some point between 1871 and 1876.

p. 109 - A photo of SLC and his family is captioned "Samuel and Livy Clemens with their daughters sitting in a gazebo." The picture was taken on the porch of the family's Hartford home.

p. 109 - A picture of a house labeled as SLC's Hartford home actually shows the Hartford home of Katharine Seymour Day.

pp. 109-110 - States SLC's "the Elmira home became a haunted resident to Twain, and he spent his days working at Quarry Farm ... outside the city ... [new para] In the fall of 1871, the couple sold the Elmira home at a loss and relocated to Nook Farm, outside Hartford ..." There are several errors here: SLC never owned a home in Elmira. The home he sold in 1871 was in Buffalo, N.Y. -- more than 100 miles north of Elmira and nearby Quarry Farm.

p. 110 - Caption for a picture of SLC working in his Quarry Farm study says that his wife, Livy, had the study built for him. It was Susan Crane, Livy's sister and the owner of Quarry Farm, who had the study built.

p. 110 - States Isabella Beecher Hooker "had been his [SLC's] shipmate and friend on the Quaker City." She had nothing to do with the Quaker City excursion and met SLC through Livy's parents afterward.

p. 112 - Illustration of A Curious Dream is misdated 1871. The pamphlet was issued in 1872.

p. 113 - Picture caption calls "Colonel Mulberry Sellers, the main character in The Gilded Age." "Mulberry" is Sellers's name only in that book's sequel, The American Claimant (1892). On the following page, the authors render the name correctly, as "Beriah."

p. 114 - States "Col. Beriah Sellers, was based on a Clemens cousin, James Lampton." Sellers was based on James Lampton, a cousin of SLC's mother.

p. 117 - States "Inspired by his love of the stage, Twain wrote a theatrical version of The Gilded Age titled Col. Sellers, A Play in Five Acts . . ." SLC was inspired by the fact that Gilbert Dinsmore was making money off a play he had written from the novel without authorization. SLC bought out Densmore, revised his play, gave it a new title, "Colonel Sellers: A Play in Five Acts," and kept the proceeds for himself.

p. 118 - States Twain wrote a humorous sketch about Siamese twins Eng and Chang Bunker in 1875. The sketch was written in 1869.

p. 118 - Incorrectly implies that SLC's Hartford house was built after 1880.

p. 119 - Again refers to a humorous sketch about Eng and Chang Bunker in 1875. The sketch was written in 1869.

p. 121 - Describes SLC's 1877 Whittier birthday speech as "tweaking Whittier and his Boston Brahmin colleagues as 'imposters.'" The speech tweaked Longfellow, Emerson, and Holmes but doesn't even mention Whittier.

p. 122 - Says of Connecticut Yankee: "Chivalry, feudalism, and ignorance, foundations of British rule and the Church of England, wilt before the ingenuity of Hank ..." Technically, "British" rule didn't exist until the union of England and Scotland in 1707. A more serious error is the reference to the "Church of England," the Protestant church King Henry VIII created one thousand years after the period of the novel. The Roman Catholic Church is Hank's enemy in the novel.

pp. 124-25 - Shows several illustrations from Connecticut Yankee by Dan Beard but fails to note Beard used famous people as his models. Also seems to imply that Beard drew all the illustrations for Following the Equator, when he actually drew only about a quarter of them.

p. 126 - Calls Mark Twain's Library of Humor SLC's "own comic almanac ... an anthology filled with essays by contributors ..." The volume is not an almanac, it contains few pieces that can be considered essays, and all the material is reprinted, not "contributed."

p. 127 - Describes the Paige Compositor an "ultimately unworkable typesetting device." The machine was a financial failure because it entered the market after the Mergenthalor linotype machine was established, but it actually outperformed that machine.

p. 127 - States "Though the Webster Publishing Company's first book, Huckleberry Finn, was a success, with one exception, subsequent books did not sell well..." The correct name of the company was Charles L. Webster & Company. The firm eventually did fail, but many other books such as Connecticut Yankee, Merry Tales, Million Pound Bank Note, and Filippini's Table did sell well.

p. 127 - "Charles T. Webster" should be "Charles L. Webster." The name is rendered correctly elsewhere

p. 128 - Refers to Mark Twain's Library of Humor as "an important source for some of Twain's funniest writing." The 700+ page volume reprinted 20 short pieces and extracts from SLC's writings -- none of which are difficult to find elsewhere.

p. 129-130 - Refers to the Mark Twain and George Washington Cable tour as the "Twins of Genius" tour. Recent scholarship by Benjamin Griffin revealed the duo were never originally advertised as "Twins of Genius."

p. 129 - The caption to a series of illustrations from Mark Twain's Library of Humor states "Twain parodies the generic images ..." The illustrations are from a story by John Phoenix and were originally published in 1872; they have nothing to do with SLC.

p. 129 - Claims U.S. Grant's memoirs were rejected by other publishers--the opposite of what actually happened. Publishers competed for the memoirs. SLC wrested them away from Century magazine, which had started serializing them.

p. 129-131 - States "Twain had offered him [Grant] an advance of $200,000 for the book ..." Picture caption on page 131 states that "As the terminally ill Grant raced to complete his memoirs, Twain offered immense advances from his own publishing company." According to his autobiographical dictation, SLC paid $1,000 when the contract with Grant was signed, making it appear to be a formality. Fred Grant was later given verbal permission to draw $10,000 in advance from Webster and Company if needed. Grant, himself, declined to receive anything viewed as charity.

p. 133 - A photo of SLC taken at Henry H. Rogers's 1909 funeral service is misdated "ca. 1908," and the caption fails to identify the occasion, which was an emotional low point for SLC.

p. 136 - The caption to an otherwise irrelevant photo of women working in a cigar factory says "American children spent their hard-earned pennies on dime novels featuring Mark Twain's tales." None of SLC's stories was ever sold as a dime novel.

p. 139 - States "Twain would ... attack American imperialism in Following the Equator (1897) ..." That book attacks British imperialism but says nothing about "American imperialism," which wasn't an issue until after the 1898 Spanish-American War.

p. 143 - Claims SLC's meeting with industrialist Henry Huttleston Rogers was "fortuitous" when in fact SLC contrived to meet him.

p. 146 - An undated caricature of SLC as Huck Finn is described as "created for the Mark Twain Project at the University of California, Berkeley." The Mark Twain Project didn't begin forming until the 1960s and does not commission original illustrations. Part of the publicity resulting from "To the Person Sitting in Darkness," the illustration was actually drawn by Fred Lewis in 1901.

p. 146 - In a comparison of Huckleberry Finn and Pudd'nhead Wilson, the authors state "While Huck and Jim paddle upriver toward dreams of Northern liberty ..." Huck and Jim never go up the river. This mistake contrasts the discussion of Huck and Jim's going "upriver" with Pudd'nhead Wilson's Roxy's going "down the river."

p. 149 - Describes SLC singing with a "black congregation" when the reference should be to singing black spirituals.

p. 150 - Caption for a picture from William Still's 1872 book The Underground Railroad comments on the book's "enormous impact on the consciousness of white Americans" but fails to mention its direct influence on SLC or its connection to his Langdon in-laws, who were involved in the Underground Railroad's Elmira stop.

p. 153 - A poster for the book edition of Joan of Arc is misdated 1894. The caption to the poster accurately quotes an SLC interview in which he said "my Joan of Arc, published in 1892, was the first of the historical novels" but fails to note that Joan of Arc was actually published in 1896 and was the third, not the first, of SLC's historical novels.

p. 154 - States SLC was not identified as the author of Joan of Arc in the novel's first book edition. His name was, however, stamped in gilt on the book's spine, and his authorship was well known after the novel's anonymous magazine appearance.

p. 155 - Claims that Harper and the American Publishing Co. sold Pudd'nhead Wilson at the same time in 1894. Harper didn't start selling any Mark Twain books until 1896.

p. 156 - Mistakenly refers to Quarry Farm as "Quarry House."

p. 157 - Refers to Olivia Clemens, SLC's wife, as "Olivia Twain."

p. 161 - An illustration from A Connecticut Yankee (1889) is misdated 1891.

p. 161- Jean Clemens's presence at her sister Susy's deathbed has not been confirmed. Housekeeper Katy Leary was there.

p. 163 - States the cremation illustration in the first edition of Life on the Mississippi was removed from later editions. This is only partially true. Because Webster and Company took over the publisher Osgood's unsold sheets, many copies issued in 1888 and 1891 have the cremation illustration.

p. 164 - States that SLC believed he contributed to his son Langdon's death because of "a frigid carriage ride they shared on night." Accordng to his autobiographical dictation for 22 March 1906, the ride was on a "a raw, cold morning" (not at night).

p. 165 - A famous 1903 photo of SLC & John T. Lewis is dated "ca 1900." The picture was taken during SLC's last visit to Elmira in 1903.

p. 166 - States of SLC, "In Elmira, he became wealthy," confusing Elmira with Hartford

p. 166 - States of SLC's "marriage into the Langdon family introduced him into a circle of leading Congregationalist ministers, including Joseph Twichell, whom he met in Hartford, and the Reverends Thomas K. Beecher and his brother Henry Ward." SLC's first meetings with Twichell and Henry Ward Beecher had nothing to do with the Langdons.

p. 167 - States "Clergymen like Joseph Twichell and the Reverend Henry Ward Beecher were close and frequent companions of Twain's ..." That is true for Twichell but not for Beecher, with whom SLC was never close.

p. 168 - A photo caption refers to the "Twain family" rather than the Clemens family.

p. 169 - States Clara Clemens "dismissed" surrogate grandchildren known as "Angelfish" from SLC's home. None of the girls resided at the home and several were daughters of his close friends. Others visited only when accompanied by parents or a governess. Clara discouraged the publication of affectionate photos of her father with the girls.

p. 171 - States SLC "arguably hounded" Charles Webster to an early grave. Webster suffered from a painful nerve condition having nothing to do with SLC's treatment of him which led to his death.

p. 172 - Treats the posthumously published book The Mysterious Stranger (1916) as an authentic SLC work, although it was long ago shown to be an editorial fraud perpetrated by Albert Bigelow Paine and Frederick Duneka. The authors ignore the later publication of SLC's authentic manuscripts.

p. 174 - Mistakenly credits Dan Beard with an illustration by Lucius Hitchcock.

p. 175 - Refers to The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn (as opposed to Adventures of Huckleberry Finn).

p. 180 - A famous 1908 Hyde photo of SLC at Stormfield is misdated 1910. SLC did not pose for any photos in 1910.

p. 181 - Refers to SLC as "the man Howells called our 'Lincoln of Literature.'" Howells's correct phrase is "the Lincoln of our literature."

From "MARK TWAIN'S AMERICA" chronology (pp. 182-232)

p. 182 - (1835) States "the Texas Declaration of Independence is written in Goliad, Texas." The Texas Declaration of Independence was formally adopted and issued in 1836 at Washington-on-the-Brazos.

p. 185 - (1840) States "Charles Darwin began developing his theory of evolution." This work started before 1840.

p. 186 - (1841) States "James Braid, a Scottish surgeon, discovers hypnosis, a practice that will figure into Twain's "The Arrival of the Mesmerist" and "How to Tell a Story." Hypnosis does not figure into "How to Tell a Story."

p. 189 - (1847) Entry on Liberia's independence doesn't mention the African colony's ties to the United States.

p. 190 - (1847) States "Karl Marx publishes The Communist Manifesto." The manifesto was published by both Marx and Friedrich Engels in 1848, not 1847.

pp. 190, 224, 225, 226 - An entry for 1848 says "Hawaii annexed by the United States as a territory." An entry for 1897 states "The Hawaiian Islands are annexed to the United States." An entry for 1898 states "Annexation of the Hawaiian Islands is proposed in ... Congress ..." An entry for 1900 says "Hawaii becomes a U.S. territory June 14." Hawaii was both annexed and made a territory in 1898.

p. 192 - (1851) Says "Congress votes to establish a mint in San Francisco." The correct date is 1852.

p. 192 - (1851) States Kate Chopin was born in 1851. Kate Chopin was born in 1850.

p. 194 - (1853) Entry on Crimean War says that SLC would "write about it in 'The War Prayer' and 'Luck.'" The story "Luck" deals with that war, but "The War Prayer" has nothing to do with it and is more closely related to the Russo-Japanese War.

p. 195 - (1855) Entry on founding of Elmira College fails to mention Olivia Langdon Clemens.

p. 196 - (1858) States "Charles Darwin published On the Origin of Species. The correct year is 1859.

pp. 203, 221-224, 226, 227, 231 - Entries for 1865, 1891, 1894, 1897, 1899, 1901, 1902, and 1907 mention Rudyard Kipling but fail to note his connections with SLC--their 1894 meeting, their correspondence, or their receiving Oxford degrees at the same time in 1907.

p. 206 - (1867) Entry on Charles Dickens's final American lecture tour doesn't mention that SLC attended one of his lectures in New York.

p. 207 - (1869) Entry on the "Cardiff Giant" hoax fails to mention that SLC wrote a story about it.

p. 210 - (1875) Entry on Mary Baker Eddy's publication of Science and Health fails to mention that SLC later wrote extensively about Eddy and Christian Science.

p. 216 - (1882) Entry about the numbers of lynchings being officially recorded doesn't mention SLC's intense interest in the subject that culminated in his writing "The United States of Lyncherdom" in 1901.

p. 217 - Identical entries for 1882 and 1883 state "Robert Louis Stevenson publishes Treasure Island." The novel was actually serialized in 1881-1882 and first published as a book in 1883.

p. 217 - (1883) Entry on the founding of the humor magazine Life states it is "not to be confused with the photojournalism magazine of the same name ..." Although a very different kind of magazine, the latter was actually the direct heir of the former. Henry Luce bought the magazine in 1936 so he could use its name for the news magazine into which he transformed it.

p. 218 - (1884) Entry on the Berlin conference on African affairs mentions the conference's agreement to work to suppress slavery but says nothing about the conference's far greater significance--its agreement on the European partition of Africa.

p. 218 - (1885) Entry on Francis Galton's development of fingerprint identification doesn't mention how SLC used Galton's work in Pudd'nhead Wilson.

pp. 219, 222 - Entries for 1887 and 1892 mention the publication of Sherlock Holmes stories by "Sir Arthur Conan Doyle." Doyle didn't use the title "Sir" until he was knighted in 1902. The book also fails to mention that SLC himself used Sherlock Holmes as a character in A Double-Barrelled Detective Story (1902).

p. 220 - (1888) Entry on Nikola Tesla's work on electricity fails to mention SLC's interest in his work and his relationship with Tesla.

p. 220 - (1889) Entry on the "first real skyscraper" says nothing about SLC's great interest in the subject.

p. 225 - (1898) Entries on Philippine insurrection and founding of the Anti-Imperialist League fail to mention SLC's membership in the League or his writings on the Philippines.

p. 229 - (1904) Mentions Paine's biography of Thomas Nast but not the critical role it played in bringing Paine into SLC's life.

p. 231 - (1908) Says "The Federal Bureau of Investigation is established ..." That agency was established as the "Bureau of Investigation" in 1908 and its name wasn't changed to "Federal Bureau of Investigation" until 1935.


p. 234 - The following sources were omitted from the original list:

Bloom, Harold, ed., Mark Twain. Philadelphia: Chelsea House, 2003.

Fisher, Shelley Fishkin, ed., A Historical Guide to Mark Twain. New York: Oxford University Press, 2002.

Hornburger, Theodore, ed., Mark Twain's Letters to Will Bowen. Austin, TX: University of Texas Press, 1941.

Lawton, Mary. A Lifetime of Mark Twain: The Memories of Katy Leary. New York: Harcourt, Brace and Company, 1925.

Rasmussen, R. Kent, ed., Dear Mark Twain: Letters from His Readers, annotated ed. Berkeley, CA: University of California Press, 2013.

_____.Mark Twain A to Z: The Essential Reference to His Life and Writings (New York: Facts on File, 1995).

Smith, Henry Nash, ed., Mark Twain of the Enterprise. Berkeley, CA: University of California Press, 1957.

Trager, James, ed. The People's Chronology: A Year-by-Year Record of Human Events from Prehistory to the Present (New York: Holt, Rinehart and Winston) (various editions).

Twain, Mark, How to Tell a Story and Other Essays online at Project Gutenberg,

____ Mark Twain in Eruption: Hitherto Unpublished Pages about Men and Events, Bernard DeVoto, ed. New York: Harper, 1940.

____ The Mysterious Stranger: A Romance. New York: Harper & Bros., 1916.


Mark Twain: A Look at the Life and Works of Samuel Clemens:

Mark Twain in His Times:

Mark Twain Quotations, Newspaper Collections, & Related Resources:

"Slavery and the Making of America," PBS timeline: