Day by Day entries are from Mark Twain, Day By Day, four volumes of books compiled by David Fears and made available on-line by the Center for Mark Twain Studies.  The entries presented here are from conversions of the PDFs provided by the Center for Mark Twain Studies and are subject to the vagaries of that process.    The PDFs, themselves, have problems with formatting and some difficulties with indexing for searching.  These are the inevitable problems resulting from converting a printed book into PDFs.  Consequently, what is provided here are copies of copies.  

I have made attempts at providing a time-line for Twain's Geography and have been dissatisfied with the results.  Fears' work provides a comprehensive solution to that problem.  Each entry from the books is titled with the full date of the entry, solving a major problem I have with the On-line site - what year is the entry for.  The entries are certainly not perfect reproductions from Fears' books, however.  Converting PDFs to text frequently results in characters, and sometimes entire sections of text,  relocating.  In the later case I have tried to amend the problem where it occurs but more often than not the relocated characters are simply omitted.  Also, I cannot vouch for the paragraph structure.  Correcting these problems would require access to the printed copies of Fears' books.  Alas, but this is beyond my reach.

This page allows the reader to search for entries based on a range of dates.  The entries are also accessible from each of the primary sections (Epochs, Episodes and Chapters) of Twain's Geography.  

Entry Date (field_entry_date)

May 21, 1847

Submitted by scott on Sun, 10/31/2021 - 17:24

May 21 Friday – An appraisal of John Marshall Clemens’ property was filed in Marion County. The most valuable item was “6 volumes Nicholsons Encyclopedia.” Orion inherited the volumes, which went to Sam’s library after Orion and Mollie’s deaths [Gribben 507].

 

August 13, 1847

Submitted by scott on Sun, 10/31/2021 - 17:24

August 13 Friday – One of Sam’s playmates, Clint Levering, age ten, drowned after falling out of an empty flatboat while playing with “a number of his playmates.” Sam was no doubt among these boys, as he remembered the tragedy in his notebook and wrote of it in Life on the Mississippi, Chapter 54, where Sam called him “Lem Hackett.” (See May 13, 1882 entry.)

 

August 19, 1847

Submitted by scott on Sun, 10/31/2021 - 17:24

August 19 Thursday – Reported in the Hannibal Journal: While exploring on Sny Island and Bird Slough with pals John Briggs and Will Bowen, the boys went wading. Tom Blankenship’s older brother “Bence” Blankenship had discovered a runaway slave, Neriam Todd, hiding on the island weeks before, and had secreted food to him until a group of men chased the slave into the water and lost him.

September 1847

Submitted by scott on Sun, 10/31/2021 - 17:24

September – Sam’s memory wasn’t always accurate. He recalled being “taken from school at once upon my father’s death and placed in the office of the Hannibal Courier,” working for Joseph P. Ament. The Courier, however, was not established in Hannibal until 1848. Wecter says Sam no doubt delivered extras for Henry La Cossitt, owner of the Gazette, in particular after the victorious battle of Chapultepec in the Mexican War, in Sept. 1847 [Wecter 122-3].

May 3, 1848

Submitted by scott on Sun, 10/31/2021 - 17:24

May 3 Wednesday – 24-year-old Joseph Ament purchased the Hannibal Gazette and moved his Missouri Courier to Hannibal. He established his newspaper in the second-floor Gazette offices on Main Street, over Brittingham’s Drugstore [Dempsey 155]. The merged papers went under the name of the Hannibal Gazette [Benson 2].

Summer of 1848

Submitted by scott on Sun, 10/31/2021 - 17:24

Summer – Either this summer or the prior was the last year of annual visits to Quarles Farm near Florida, Mo These visits to the farm where hunting was allowed (the Clemens boys were never allowed guns), food was bountiful, and Sam thought the slaves (who were never sold or split up from families) were the most joyous people in his boyhood [Wecter 91].

June 1848

Submitted by scott on Sun, 10/31/2021 - 17:24

June – The family now in worse financial straits than ever, Sam landed his first full-time job as a printer’s devil for the Missouri Courier, owned by Joseph P. Ament. He worked only a half block from the family home. The journalism field has prepared many a great writer, and typesetting words is where Sam Clemens got his start. A printer’s devil made up pages one letter at a time. Sam was paid meals only and two suits of clothes a year, but got only one, a suit way too big for him.

December 1848

Submitted by scott on Sun, 10/31/2021 - 17:24

December – The California gold rush was on. Hannibal felt the impact. Emigrants rushed to Hannibal and St. Joseph, eager to travel west. Some 300 Hannibal residents would head west. Sam later ran into a few of his townspeople in California. By the last week in December, Hannibal newspapers reported that the “gold dust of California” is “carrying away crowds of our citizens” [Wecter 216].

Fall of 1849

Submitted by scott on Sun, 10/31/2021 - 17:24

Fall –Sam remembered in his Autobiography the scene of practicing for his part as a bear in his sister’s autumn party. He’d chosen a vacant house to try out moves for his part, and went there with a “little black boy, Sandy….” Not noticing a screen in the corner and costumes on a hook, Sam pranced about in his birthday suit until “a smothered burst of feminine snickers” came from the other side of the screen, which had enough holes to make it interesting for the voyeurs. After a clamorous escape, Sam avoided girls for several weeks.

October 26, 1849

Submitted by scott on Sun, 10/31/2021 - 17:24

October 26 Friday – The U.S. Senator from Missouri, Thomas Hart Benton (1782-1858) was an “occasional visitor to town,” and on this day gave a “large rally of Hannibalians in fiery vein.” Wecter notes that “Sam Clemens shared Tom Sawyer’s emotions when the ‘greatest man in the world…Mr. Benton, an actual United States Senator, proved an overwhelming disappointment—for he was not twenty-five feet high’ ” [Wecter 195].

October 30, 1849

Submitted by scott on Sun, 10/31/2021 - 17:24

October 30 Tuesday – The date of the horrendous attack by a slave named Ben, owned by Thomas Glasscock (Glascock), a Marion County farmer, upon twelve-year-old Susan Bright, and her ten-year-old brother Thomas Bright, who were looking for walnuts in the woods. See Dempsey, chapter 13 for a full account [Dempsey 126].

November 8, 1849

Submitted by scott on Sun, 10/31/2021 - 17:24

November 8 Thursday – “Glasscock’s Ben” was accused of killing Thomas Bright with a rock, then raping his twelve-year-old sister, Susan Bright, and mutilating her. He was hanged early the next year.

December 6, 1849

Submitted by scott on Sun, 10/31/2021 - 17:24

December 6 Thursday – Joseph P. Ament’s newspaper printed a long account of the Glasscock’s Ben trial. The Negro was found guilty and sentenced to death. Sam was a printer devil at Ament’s Missouri Courier. Two comic verses (“Amalgamation here we view,…” and “Abigail Brown, with a span new gown….”) ran with marriage announcements and a note that the printer was “duly remembered.” Branch attributes these to Sam [“Chronological” 113].

January 11, 1850

Submitted by scott on Sun, 10/31/2021 - 17:24

January 11 Friday – Glasscock’s Ben Negro was hanged before a huge crowd—the first legal execution in the history of Marion County. In Villagers of 1840-3 Sam wrote in 1897: “The Hanged Nigger. He raped and murdered a girl of 13 in the woods. He confessed to forcing three young women in Virginia, and was brought away in a feather bed to save his life —which was a valuable property” [Wecter 215].

January 29, 1850

Submitted by scott on Sun, 10/31/2021 - 17:24

January 29 Tuesday – Yellow fever still raged in Hannibal. Sam’s sister Pamela wrote Orion in St. Louis: “I suppose you have not been attacked with the yellow fever, that by the way is raging so her that it is feared it will carry off nearly half the inhabitants, if it does [not] indeed depopulate the town. In consequence of it many of our best citizens intend starting for California so soon as they can make preparations” [Wecter 214].

January 30, 1850

Submitted by scott on Sun, 10/31/2021 - 17:24

January 30 Wednesday – Jane Clemens wrote Orion about the availability of the Hannibal Journal, a paper her late husband had always wanted to buy [Wecter 224].

 

April 1850

Submitted by scott on Sun, 10/31/2021 - 17:24

April – Sam joined the “Cadets of Temperance” in order to wear the regalia and march in parades. The organization began about May 1847, with a cadet branch opening three years after. During the late 1840s, temperance crusades were common in the country. A requirement of cadets was to abstain from drinking, swearing, and smoking. Sam joined to wear the uniforms and march in the May Day and Fourth of July parades.