July 10 Thursday – Sam called Brussels “a dirty, beautiful (architecturally), interesting town” [MTNJ 2: 328].
July 10 to 12 Saturday – The Clemens family spent two days in Brussels, then left in the afternoon of July 12 [MTNJ 2: 328]. Sam’s notebook:
“In Brussels Cathedral heard the most majestic organ music & men’s voices, ever listened to. Never have heard anything that rose to the sublimity of those sounds”.
July 12 Saturday – In the afternoon, the Clemens family went to Antwerp.
July 13 Sunday – In the morning, Sam and the ladies attended high mass at the Cathedral of Antwerp. “There is nothing solemn or impressive about this exasperating mummery. Rubens masterpiece, the Ascent of the Cross—Christ seems to be an acrobat”.
In the evening Sam dined on the flagship Trenton with U.S. consul John H. Stewart and some officers of the Trenton and the Alliance, under the command of Vice-Admiral Stephen Clegg Rowan (1808-1890) hero of the Mexican and Civil Wars.
July 14 Monday – Sam took the family aboard the Trenton and breakfasted.
“Admiral Rowan arrived during the meal. I smoked on the Admiral’s side of the deck, not knowing it was sacred by naval etiquette.
The Clemens family traveled on to Rotterdam.