A Ravenna landmark got a visit from a 19th century author and humorist whose name is still well known.
Samuel Clemens, better known as Mark Twain, visited the second floor of the East Main Street landmark. The structure is under renovation in Ravenna by Coleman Professional Services, which plans apartments and retail on the site.
Kathy Myers of Coleman said a local historian provided Coleman with a research packet outlining Twain’s visit in 1869.
The Ravenna Lecture Association sponsored Twain and six other lecturers that winter. A single ticket was 50 cents, or $4 for the entire series. That equates to $8.53 for one lecture and $69 for the entire series in modern dollars.
Day’s Hall, located on the second floor of the building, was used as a lecture hall between 1846 and 1872. It is not the same facility as the Odd Fellows Hall, located on the third floor of the same building.
“The audience was the largest of the season, and without being a witness of the fact it would have been impossible to believe that so much fun could have been compressed into an hour,” reported the Portage County Democrat after the event. “No one need ever attempt to be funny before a Ravenna audience, unless perfectly sure that he is a funnier man than ‘Mark Twain.’ ”