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Our auction closed promptly at 7:00 pm PST on December 17, 2013. We can no longer accept bids for this auction. Please return in December to participate in our next auction.

Lot 11. Samuel Clemens. (1835-1910). Aka "Mark T wain." American humorist, lecturer, author and social critic. The sometime riverboat pilot took as his pen name the Mississippi riverboat term for ""deep water."" He’s best remembered for his novels Tom Sawyer, Huckleberry Finn, and A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur’s Court.

Autograph letter signed "S. L. Clemens," 3.5x5 on black bordered stationery with integral leaf attached, printed "Riversale on the Hudson" at top, to an unidentified correspondent. "Feb. 26. Dear Sir. P. S. I have found that stock. Very truly yours, S. L. Clemens."

Although this letter is not dated, we know that the letter was written sometime from October 1901 through July, 1903. The Clemens family had just put up their Hartford house for sale. According to one of Clemen’s early biographers, Albert Bigelow Paine, Mrs. Clemens never felt that she had the strength to be in that house again. This is because their beloved daughter, Suzy Clemens had died suddenly there in the autumn of 1896. This is also probably the reason why Clemen’s letter is written on black bordered mourning stationery. The Clemens selected the Wave Hill House in Riverdale for specific reasons. They decided that need to have easy access to the New York center, but they also wanted to have the advantage of 28 acres of space, spreading lawn, trees and large rooms with plenty of light. Wave Hill House was a gray fieldstone mansion built in 1843 by lawyer William Lewis Morris. From 1866 to 1903 it was owned by publisher William Henry Appleton, who enlarged the house around 1866 and again in 1890, and added greenhouses and gardens to the grounds. During these years, the house was visited by Thomas Henry Huxley, and Charles Darwin and many other celebrities. Theodore Roosevelt’s family rented Wave Hill during the summers of 1870 and 1871 and, as we already mentioned, Clemens leased the home from 1901 to 1903.The Clemens wanted to buy the house, but the mansion was too costly for their budget. While Clemens lived in Riverdale he received a degree of LL.D. from the University of Missouri and returned to his native State to accept it. This was his last journey to the Mississippi River. During their last summer there, Mrs. Clemens’s health broke down and illnesses of one sort or another visited other members of the family. Slight age toning. Includes a printed sketch of Clemens in bed. This letter is apparently unpublished and I was unable to find it through an internet search of the Letters of Mark Twain. The consignor of this letter is donating the proceeds to a Methodist church in Illinois, so your purchase will go to a very good cause. Sanders Price Guide to Autographs values an average ALS of Clemens at $2870.

MB. $500. Est. $2200

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