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Samuel Langhorne Clemens

The two most important days in your life are the day you are born and the day you find out why.

Mark Twain

Samuel Langhorne Clemens, known by his pen name Mark Twain, was an American writer, humorist, entrepreneur, publisher, and lecturer. He was praised as the “greatest humorist the United States has produced” and also called the “father of American literature”. His novels include The Adventures of Tom Sawyer (1876) and its sequel, Adventures of Huckleberry Finn (1884), the latter of which has often been called the “Great American Novel”. Twain also wrote A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur’s Court and Pudd’nhead Wilson

In 1873, Sam and Olivia Clemens engaged New York architect Edward Tuckerman Potter to design their Hartford, Connecticut dream home. Construction began in August of that year, while Sam and Olivia were abroad. Although there was still much finish work to be completed on the 11,500 square foot, 25 room grand structure, the family moved into their home on September 19, 1874. Mark Twain would later say that the two decades of living in Hartford were the happiest and most productive of his life.  Note: I live within walking distance of this beautiful historic home which is now a museum and open to the public.

Mark Twain was born two weeks after Halley’s Comet’s closest approach to earth in 1835; he said in 1909: “I came in with Halley’s Comet in 1835. It is coming again next year, and I expect to go out with it. It will be the greatest disappointment of my life if I don’t go out with Halley’s Comet. The Almighty has said, no doubt: “Now here are these two unaccountable freaks; they came in together, they must go out together.” Twain’s prediction was eerily accurate; he died of a heart attack on April 21, 1910, one day after the comet’s closest approach to earth. 

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