America’s well-known literary icon Mark Twain was born as Samuel Langhorne Clemons on November 30, 1835, in Florida, Missouri. His household moved 4 years later to the close by city of Hannibal, a rising port metropolis on the Mississippi and a cease for steamboats making their manner from St. Louis and New Orleans.
Twain found a love of writing when he went to work for his brother Orion’s newspaper at age 13, after their father died of pneumonia. At 17, he took a printer’s job in St. Louis, the place he turned a river pilot’s apprentice, then acquired his river pilot’s license. From this expertise, he took the pseudonym “Mark Twain” from a river time period which means waters two fathoms (12 toes) deep, secure sufficient to navigate.
The Civil Struggle introduced river commerce to a halt, and Twain labored as a newspaper reporter throughout the US. In 1865 his quick story, “The Celebrated Leaping Frog of Calavaras County,” appeared within the New York Saturday Press and began him on the street to fame. The Innocents Overseas was printed in 1869, The Adventures of Tom Sawyer in 1876, and The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn in 1885. Twain went on to put in writing 28 books together with essays, travelogues, sketches, letters, and quick tales. He was additionally recognized for his entrepreneurial spirit, his fascination with expertise, and his public talking.
In 1909, Twain mentioned, “I got here in with Halley’s Comet in 1835. It’s coming once more subsequent yr, and I anticipate to exit with it. It will likely be the best disappointment of my life if I do not exit with Halley’s Comet. The Almighty has mentioned, little question: ‘Now listed here are these two unaccountable freaks; they got here in collectively, they have to exit collectively.’ ” On April 21, 1910, in the future after Halley’s Comet made its closest method to Earth, Twain departed the planet.
To Title This Day . . .
Twain is thought for his wit, utilizing humor to carry curiosity whereas on the similar time critiquing society. To honor him right this moment, select a societal downside that you just discover unconscionable, and write your individual line(s), honest or satirical, that get to the center of what is fallacious about it … or the way it could possibly be made proper. You need to use these quotes of his for inspiration:
“When I’m king they shall not have bread and shelter solely, but in addition teachings out of books, for a full stomach is little value the place the thoughts is starved.”
— from The Prince and the Pauper
“Reader, suppose you have been an fool. And suppose you have been a member of Congress. However I repeat myself.”
— Draft manuscript (c.1881), quoted by Albert Bigelow Paine in Mark Twain: A Biography (1912)
“Typically it does appear such a pity that Noah and his social gathering didn’t miss the boat.”
― from Christian Science
“Journey is deadly to prejudice, bigotry, and narrow-mindedness, and lots of of our folks want it sorely on these accounts. Broad, healthful, charitable views of males and issues can’t be acquired by vegetating in a single little nook of the earth all one’s lifetime.”
― from The Innocents Overseas
“Jim mentioned that bees will not sting idiots, however I did not consider that, as a result of I attempted them numerous occasions myself they usually would not sting me.”
― from The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn
“I used to be sorry to have my identify talked about as one of many nice authors, as a result of they’ve a tragic behavior of dying off. Chaucer is lifeless, Spencer is lifeless, so is Milton, so is Shakespeare, and I’m not feeling so effectively myself.”
― Speech to the Savage Membership, June 9, 1899, in Mark Twain’s Speeches (1910), ed. William Dean Howells
“Each time you end up on the aspect of the bulk, it’s time to reform (or pause and replicate),” wrote Twain in a pocket book in 1904. Even after we do not discover ourselves on the aspect of the bulk, it may be difficult to tease out what values of ours ring true to our souls and which of them we picked up and proceed to comply with due to the opinions of our friends.
Jot down or share with a pal 5-10 of your most strongly held positions. (When you do that train with a pal, they might need to share theirs with you, too.)
Decide one in every of these positions and discover — in writing or together with your pal — how a lot it’s actually your individual and the way a lot you may have been influenced by these round you. Maybe you’ll even uncover some humor within the unusual contradictions of human conduct.