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Mark Twain an American Icon. “ Mark Twain was a lifelong creator and keeper of scrapbooks. He took them with him everywhere and filled them with souvenirs,

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Presentation on theme: "Mark Twain an American Icon. “ Mark Twain was a lifelong creator and keeper of scrapbooks. He took them with him everywhere and filled them with souvenirs,"— Presentation transcript:

1 Mark Twain an American Icon

2 “ Mark Twain was a lifelong creator and keeper of scrapbooks. He took them with him everywhere and filled them with souvenirs, pictures, and articles about his books and performances. But in time, he grew tired of the lost glue, rock-hard paste, and the swearing that resulted from the standard scrapbook process. So, he came up with the idea of printing thin strips of glue on the pages to make updates neat and easy to do. In 1872, he patented his “self-pasting” scrapbook, and by 1901, at least 57 different types of his albums were available. It would be his only invention that ever made money.”

3 Inspired by his invention of the scrapbook, this electronic scrapbook records information about probably the most famous and beloved humorist, satirist, and entertainer in American history and illustrates some of Mark Twain’s quotations about every aspect of our lives.

4 As a young man Twain worked as a riverboat pilot on the Mississippi River. When he started his writing career, Samuel Clemens adopted the name “Mark Twain,” which meant two fathoms, a safe depth for a riverboat. Pictures from

5 In 1861, Samuel Clemens avoided the brewing Civil War by going west. He took his first writing job as reporter at the Virginia City Territorial Enterprise. Serious news was often mixed with “reports” that had to be taken with a grain of salt. Soon, he began using the name Mark Twain and affixing it to sketches, reportage, and an occasional hoax. It was a time when he first discovered his talent, his calling, and his voice. Pictures from

6 At 34 years of age he married Olivia Langdon Clemens. She was the daughter of a New York coal magnate, a member of the country’s wealthy elite. She would be partner, editor, and fellow traveler in success and failure for the next thirty-five years. She would also furnish him her family’s home in Elmira, New York, a place where he visited often and wrote many of his best-loved books. Pictures from

7 “I vividly remember seeing a dozen black men and women chained to one another, once, and lying in a group on the pavement, awaiting shipment to the Southern slave market. Those were the saddest faces I have ever seen.”– Mark Twain Though his most famous novel is criticized for being racist, Mark Twain never expected nor intended the controversy that arose with the publication of Huckleberry Finn. Mark Twain was not racist, but depicted life in his times. Pictures from

8 "I have no color prejudices nor caste prejudices nor creed prejudices. All I care to know is that a man is a human being, and that is enough for me; he can't be any worse." Pictures from

9 By 1900 Twain had become America’s foremost celebrity. He was invited to attend ship launchings, anniversary gatherings, political conventions, and countless dinners. Reporters met him at every port of call, anxious to print a new quip from the famous humorist. To enhance his image, he took to wearing white suits and loved to stroll down the street and see people staring at him. Pictures from

10 In time, the Clemens home became a revolving door for the leading names of the day: Howells, Sherman, Cable, Harte, and others. But it also saw Clemens involve himself in fanciful investment schemes that led to his bankruptcy— and eventual departure. Pictures from

11 Because of financial problems, Clemens lived in Europe from , but this was neither his first nor last trip abroad. In fact, he was an inveterate traveler. From the age of 17 to the last few weeks of his life he was always discovering new places and revisiting old. He crisscrossed the Atlantic more than a dozen times and also saw Turkey, Palestine, Hawaii, Australia, India, and South Africa. Pictures from

12 He developed as a speaker and traveled on lecture circuits, much in demand. His early performances combined humor, information and eloquence in measures that delighted most people. Pictures from

13 When he died on April 21, 1910, newspapers around the country declared, “The whole world is mourning.” By then, Sam Clemens had long since ceased to be a private citizen. He had become Mark Twain, a proud possession of the American nation. “I was sorry to have my name mentioned as one of the great authors, because they have a sad habit of dying off. Chaucer is dead, Spencer is dead, so is Milton, so is Shakespeare, and I’m not feeling so well myself.”—Mark Twain Pictures from

14 “I came in with Halley's Comet in It is coming again next year (1910), 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." Mark Twain died in 1910, the year Halley’s Comet appeared. Pictures from

15 Mark Twain was one of the great artists of all time. He was and is one authentic giant of our national literature. Twain's quotes and humor are as popular today as at any time in American history.

16 “Wisdom teaches us that none but birds should go out early, and that not even birds should do it unless they are out of worms.”

17 “Fleas can be taught nearly anything that a Congressman can.” "It could probably be shown by facts and figures that there is no distinctly native American criminal class except Congress." Picture from

18 “Get a bicycle. You will not regret it. If you live.” Picture from Dave Thomson collection:

19 “Everyone is a moon, and has a dark side which he never shows to anybody.” Picture from Dave Thomson collection:

20 “Nothing is made in vain, but the fly came near it.” “I'd rather have ten snakes in the house than one fly.”

21 “Of all God's creatures there is only one that cannot be made the slave of the lash. That one is the cat. If man could be crossed with the cat it would improve man, but it would deteriorate the cat.” Picture from Dave Thomson collection:

22 “The dog is a gentleman; I hope to go to his heaven, not man's.” Picture from Dave Thomson collection:

23 “The best way to cheer yourself up is to try to cheer somebody else up.” “Against the assault of laughter, nothing can stand.” “Humor is mankind's greatest blessing.”

24 “In the first place God made idiots. This was for practice. Then he made School Boards.” Picture from Dave Thomson collection:

25 “By trying we can easily learn to endure adversity--another man's I mean.” Picture from Dave Thomson collection:

26 “Be respectful to your superiors, if you have any.”

27 “Classic--a book which people praise and don't read.” “The man who does not read good books has no advantage over the man who can't read them.”

28 “The holy passion of Friendship is of so sweet and steady and loyal and enduring a nature that it will last through a whole lifetime, if not asked to lend money." Picture from Dave Thomson collection:

29 “It is better to keep your mouth shut and appear stupid than to open it and remove all doubt.”

30 "Good breeding consists in concealing how much we think of ourselves and how little we think of the other person."

31 The End “Humor is mankind's greatest blessing.” Picture from Dave Thomson collection:

32 Bibliography Page "Mark Twain." Public Broadcasting Service. 12 Aug Schmidt, Barbara. "Mark Twain's Quotations, Newspaper Collections, and Related Resources." 4 Sep Aug Pictures from the Dave Thomson collection are found at: "easylit. com." Mark Twain. 12 Aug Railton, Stephen. "Mark Twain and His Times." University of Virginia. 12 Aug 2004.


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