Autobiography of Mark Twain, Volume 3: The Complete and Authoritative Edition (Mark Twain Papers)

Autobiography of Mark Twain, Volume 3: The Complete and Authoritative Edition (Mark Twain Papers)

Language: English

Pages: 792

ISBN: 0520279948

Format: PDF / Kindle (mobi) / ePub

The surprising final chapter of a great American life.

When the first volume of Mark Twain’s uncensored Autobiography was published in 2010, it was hailed as an essential addition to the shelf of his works and a crucial document for our understanding of the great humorist’s life and times. This third and final volume crowns and completes his life’s work. Like its companion volumes, it chronicles Twain's inner and outer life through a series of daily dictations that go wherever his fancy leads.

Created from March 1907 to December 1909, these dictations present Mark Twain at the end of his life: receiving an honorary degree from Oxford University; railing against Theodore Roosevelt; founding numerous clubs; incredulous at an exhibition of the Holy Grail; credulous about the authorship of Shakespeare’s plays; relaxing in Bermuda; observing (and investing in) new technologies. The Autobiography’s “Closing Words” movingly commemorate his daughter Jean, who died on Christmas Eve 1909. Also included in this volume is the previously unpublished “Ashcroft-Lyon Manuscript,” Mark Twain’s caustic indictment of his “putrescent pair” of secretaries and the havoc that erupted in his house during their residency.

Fitfully published in fragments at intervals throughout the twentieth century, Autobiography of Mark Twain has now been critically reconstructed and made available as it was intended to be read. Fully annotated by the editors of the Mark Twain Project, the complete Autobiography emerges as a landmark publication in American literature.

Editors: Benjamin Griffin and Harriet Elinor Smith
Associate Editors: Victor Fischer, Michael B. Frank, Amanda Gagel, Sharon K. Goetz, Leslie Diane Myrick, Christopher M. Ohge

Leaving Before the Rains Come

Long Walk to Freedom: The Autobiography of Nelson Mandela

The Bucolic Plague: How Two Manhattanites Became Gentlemen Farmers: An Unconventional Memoir

Louise: Amended

The Death of Santini: The Story of a Father and His Son
















recognized me, and it seemed to me that there was something in her face that was familiar to me. I had the instinct that she would turn and follow me and speak to me, and the instinct was right. She was a fat little woman, with a gentle and kindly but aged and homely face, and she had white hair, and was neatly but poorly dressed. She said, “Aren’t you Mr. Clemens?” “Yes,” I said, “I am.” She said, “Where is your brother Orion?” “Dead,” I said. “Where is his wife?” “Dead,” I said; and added, “I

seem to know you, but I cannot place you.” She said “Do you remember Etta Booth?” I had known only one Etta Booth in my lifetime, and that one rose before me in an instant, and vividly. It was almost as if she stood alongside of this fat little antiquated dame in the bloom and diffidence and sweetness of her thirteen years, her hair in plaited braids down her back and her fire-red frock stopping short at her knees. Indeed I remembered Etta very well. And immediately another vision rose before me,

His style of humor is but seldom exploited to any shocking extent. The recent appointment of a Postmaster for Washington offers a contrary argument, but it is only one of those exceptions which prove the rule. When in future your letters seem to have been hit by a cyclone, passed through a train wreck, and run through a sausage machine you will know that they have come out of the Washington Post Office. But don’t go to the Post Office to complain unless in need of exercise. Ladies should observe

Its heaven exists solely upon hearsay evidence—​evidence furnished by unknown persons; persons who did not prove that they had ever been there. If Christ had really been God, He could have proved it, since nothing is impossible with God. He could have proved it to every individual of His own time and of our time, [ 140 • au tob io gr aphy of m ark t wain ] and of all future time. When God wants to prove that the sun and the moon may be depended upon to do their appointed work every day and

defend itself, since Colonel Harvey, the head of it, was in Europe. Edward Lauterbach, my legal counsel, being of the like opinion, no noise was made. Mr. Lauterbach telephoned Duneka to come and talk about the matter. Duneka was deposited in one of Mr. Lauterbach’s offices, and Lauterbach wanted me to go in there and talk with him. I said he had already advised me not to make any trouble—​still I was willing to take the new advice, but thought it would be best if I should first rehearse before

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