Samuel Langhorne Clemens also known as “Mark Twain” was born on November 30, 1835 in Florida but was raised in Hannibal, Missouri. Son of John Marshall Clemens and Jane Lampton Clemens was the seventh child. His brother Orion, Henry, and his sister Pamela managed to survive through their childhood. The other three siblings died before they could reach the age of eleven. Margaret (1830 - 1839) died when Mark was only three and then three years later his brother Benjamin (1832 – 1842) died tragically. Mark’s other brother Pleasant (1828 – 1829) died after six months of being born.
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Marks younger brother Henry was convinced to work with him and then later was killed on June 21, 1858 when the steamboat he was on exploded. Mark saw his death in a dream a month earlier and he blamed himself responsible for his death his whole life after that. He then worked as a river pilot until the American Civil War began on April 12, 1861 because the Mississippi was getting curtailed and full of people. Mark wrote a sketch saying that his friends and himself were Confederate volunteers for two weeks before their company ended.
Mark Twain realized that the great American West would give him excitement and cash for the future. On July of 1861 Mark moved to Nevada and California where he lived for five years.
Mark tried to prospect for silver and gold but nothing was giving him money to help his family in their struggling need. In mid 1862 he had no more money and needed to find a job that pay for all of his needs. In September he finally got a job as a reporter at the Virginian City Territorial Enterprise. After writing news, stories, etc. he got the name Mark Twain which meant twelve feet of water in steamboat lingo.
Mark started to get the reputation of being the best storyteller in the West. His writing style was friendly and funny to most readers. In 1865 his story “Jim Smiley and His Jumping Frog” got printed in magazines and newspapers around the country. This helped his success but in 1867 he went on a cruise in the Mediterranean writing about hilarious sights he saw for the American Newspapers. The novel “The Innocents Aboard” was published in 1869 and became a bestseller.
At the age of thirty four handsome westerner Mark Twain became the most popular and famous writers in America. Mark started to become worried because he was a Westerner. Back then cultural life of the country was made of Eastern establishment in the middle of New York and Boston. A few years later in February 1870 his social status became better because he married a twenty four year old woman called Olivia Langdon. Olivia was the daughter of a New York coal merchant who was very rich. Mark knew Olivia was the only sweetheart he would ever love. To him “she is the best girl, and the sweetest, and gentlest, and the daintiest and she is the most perfect gen of womankind”. Olivia took pride in the high minded approach to life like many people in our present time. Mark really hoped that Olivia would make him a better funnier man than he was.
Mark then had a son name Langdon that died of a disease called diphtheria at one year and seven months. In 1871, Mark moved to Hartford, Connecticut and starting building a house after saving it from demolition two years later. The house later became a museum based on himself. His wife Olivia then gave birth to three daughters Susy (1872 – 1896) who died of meningitis, Clara (1874 – 1962) and then Jean (1880 – 1909). Mark’s marriage lasted thirty...