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 6, 1853

Submitted by scott on Sun, 10/31/2021 - 17:25

May 6 Friday – An unsigned article printed in the Daily Journal: “The Editor left yesterday for St. Louis,” is attributed to Sam [Camfield, bibliog.]. “This must be our excuse if the paper is lacking in interest.” Sam made up a controversy about a love poem to “Katie of H——L,” confusing on purpose Hannibal and Hell and again signed “Rambler.” He then proceeded to write objections back and forth. Another unsigned article and headline hoax, “Terrible Accident!” was printed in the Journal and is attributed to Sam.

May 7, 1853

Submitted by scott on Sun, 10/31/2021 - 17:25

May 7 Saturday – Two items ran in the Hannibal Journal, one signed “Grumbler” and one unsigned and attributed to Sam—“Letter to ‘Mr. Editor’,” and “Married in Podunk” [Camfield, bibliog.]. Sam introduced “Grumbler” to continue a dialogue protesting, “Rambler’s” verses to “Katie in Hell.”

May 9, 1853

Submitted by scott on Sun, 10/31/2021 - 17:25

May 9 Monday – Two items ran in the Journal, one signed “Rambler” and one unsigned and attributed to Sam—“For the Daily Journal,” and “Nonsense Riddle. Making a Bid for Subscription Remittances” [Camfield, bibliog.].

May 10, 1853

Submitted by scott on Sun, 10/31/2021 - 17:25

May 10 Tuesday – A signed “Grumbler” Journal item titled, “To Rambler,” continued the back and forth faux controversy. “Sunday Amusements,” an article written for the Journal, and signed only “J” is attributed to Sam [ET&S 1: 376]. This verbal sparing anticipated the exercises with “The Unreliable,” a rival Virginia City journalist.

May 12, 1853

Submitted by scott on Sun, 10/31/2021 - 17:25

May 12 Thursday – Four items appeared in the Journal using Sam’s various pen names or unsigned and attributed to him: “Drunken Spree on the Ferry Boat,” (unsigned); “For the Daily Journal,”(signed by “Peter Pencilcase’s Son, John Snooks”); “Increase in the Population of England for 1853,” (unsigned); and a poem, “Separation,” (“Rambler”) [Camfield, bibliog.].

May 13, 1853

Submitted by scott on Sun, 10/31/2021 - 17:26

May 13 Friday –Wecter says that Sam gave “his most polished effort just as Orion returned” [260]. This Journal article was titled, “Oh, She has a Red Head,” signed by “Son of Adam,” a defense of all who had red hair, claiming that Jefferson and Adam and even Jesus Christ had red hair [ET&S 1: 102].

May 14, 1853

Submitted by scott on Sun, 10/31/2021 - 17:26

May 14 Saturday – Sam wrote “News Item About Steamboat Arrivals,” in the Journal as “Rambler,” praising the “charming” steamboat Kate Kearney, which “came walking the water like a thing of life” [Branch, “Steersman” 206n10]. Orion, upon his return he printed an editorial “commanding the peace [as]. in the manner of Judge Clemens” [Wecter 259]. “It is a great bore to us,” wrote Orion in the Journal, “and doubtless to the public generally.” Sam’s fun was somewhat dampened [Wecter 259].

May 18, 1853

Submitted by scott on Sun, 10/31/2021 - 17:26

May 18 Wednesday – Westward emigrant parties were making their way through Hannibal—Mormons headed to Salt Lake and gold seekers to California. The Hannibal Daily Journal of this date ran a typical notice:

Several California teams passed through here this morning. Messrs. T.W. Bunberry, A.J. Price, and Sam’l Fry started this morning with a good, light wagon and four yoke of fine oxen [Benson 22].

Even a few of Sam’s companions went with their families. Sam would recall:

May 20, 1853

Submitted by scott on Sun, 10/31/2021 - 17:26

May 20 Friday – An unsigned/attributed “Editorial Comment on Abner Gilstrap” appeared in the Journal [Camfield, bibliog.].

May 23, 1853

Submitted by scott on Sun, 10/31/2021 - 17:26

May 23 Monday – Sam wrote in “Our Assistant’s Column” of the Journal that the steamboat Jennie Deans had put ashore two children stricken with cholera [Branch, “Steersman” 206n10]. More importantly, Sam poked fun at the rival town of Quincy, Illinois (“one horse town with stern wheel prospects”), and insulted the Bloomington (Missouri) Republican [Wecter 261]. Sam was an instigator, forever trying to stir up fun and controversy in an otherwise boring newspaper.

May 25, 1853

Submitted by scott on Sun, 10/31/2021 - 17:26

May 25 Wednesday – Sam wrote another “Assistant’s Column” in the Journal [MTL 1:2]. A notice first ran in the Journal: “WANTED! AN APPRENTICE OF THE PRINTING BUSINESS. APPLY SOON.” The ad ran for two weeks. Wecter concludes this date marked Sam’s departure from Hannibal [Wecter 263]. Sam had promised his mother that he would abstain from cards and liquor [Wecter 262].

May 26, 1853

Submitted by scott on Sun, 10/31/2021 - 17:26

May 26 Thursday – Sam wrote his last “Assistant’s Column” inserting a paragraph about the Crystal Palace in New York City. He wrote that the fifteen to twenty thousand persons who were “continually congregated” there engaged in “drunkenness and debauching…carried on to their fullest extent.” Sam was thinking about leaving Hannibal by this time, and New York may have already been his desired destination, but he spoke only of St. Louis to his mother [Wecter 262; MTL 1:2].

May 27, 1853

Submitted by scott on Sun, 10/31/2021 - 17:26

May 27 Friday June, early – By this time Sam was in St. Louis to find his way in the world. Paine writes he took a night boat to St. Louis [MTB 94]. Sam likely stayed with his sister Pamela and found work as a typesetter. He vowed never to let a place trap him again. Orion was so depressed that he did not publish another edition of the Journal for a month [Powers, Dangerous 217].

 

June 2, 1853

Submitted by scott on Sun, 10/31/2021 - 17:26

June 2 Thursday – Four unsigned news articles appeared in the Journal attributed to Sam days after he left town: “Friday Evening, May 27, 1853,” “Saturday Evening, May 28, 1853,” “Monday Evening, May 30, 1853. Small Pox Gone,” and “Tuesday Evening, May 31, 1853” [Camfield, bibliog.]. It is likely that Sam had left these, either complete or for Orion to finish and use as he saw fit. Sam’s only other items in the Journal were two letters home that ran in September.

June 11, 1853

Submitted by scott on Sun, 10/31/2021 - 17:26

June 11 Saturday – Orion failed to get out the Hannibal Daily Journal for a whole month, beginning on this date. In one sense, Sam never truly left Hannibal—he carried it in his heart and memory and poured it out into The Adventures of Tom Sawyer and Huckleberry Finn. Hannibal in those pages would become a universal boyhood home, an icon like the man himself. Sam would visit again in 1882 to gather material for Life on the Mississippi, and the last time in 1902.

Summer of 1853

Submitted by scott on Sun, 10/31/2021 - 17:26

Summer – St. Louis in the summer of 1853 was a burgeoning city of 100,000 souls, the largest city of the West. The city offered Western freedom together with many of the luxuries and affectations of the East. For a young man from Hannibal, such a city must have been dazzling. Sam had kept plans secret from his family, to work in St. Louis long enough to make fare to New York City. Sam had read stories about the World’s Fair there, The Crystal Palace Fair, and he’d included them in his Journal column. He probably stayed with the Moffetts and set type for the St.

August 19, 1853

Submitted by scott on Sun, 10/31/2021 - 17:26

August 19 Friday – At 8 AM Sam boarded a boat and started a journey by train and boat to New York. He did not tell his mother about the trip, which took about five days. From St. Louis to Alton, Ill by the sidewheeler steamer Cornelia, 11:00 AM, from Alton to Springfield on the partly completed Chicago and Mississippi Railroad; by Frink’s stage to Bloomington, Ind. [MTL 1: 5n2]. Dempsey notes that the train station was “just a few blocks” from the law office of Abraham Lincoln [232].

August 20, 1853

Submitted by scott on Sun, 10/31/2021 - 17:26

August 20 Saturday – Sam took the Illinois Central line to LaSalle, then the Chicago and Rock Island into Chicago, arriving at 7 PM [MTL 1: 5n2; Dempsey 232]. He “laid over all day Sunday” [MTL 1: 3].

August 21, 1853

Submitted by scott on Sun, 10/31/2021 - 17:26

August 21 Sunday – Sam took the 9 PM Michigan Central to Toledo, Ohio, then to Monroe, Michigan on the Northern Indiana and Michigan Southern railroads [Dempsey 232]. In his letter he wrote he traveled from Chicago to Monroe, Michigan “by railroad, another day” [MTL 1: 3].

August 22, 1853

Submitted by scott on Sun, 10/31/2021 - 17:26

August 22 Monday – 8 AM “from Monroe, across Lake Erie, in the fine Lake palace, ‘Southern Michigan,’ to Buffalo, another day. Sam would revisit Buffalo and Niagara Falls in 1869 [MTL 1: 3; Reigstad 59]. Dempsey: “He traveled to Buffalo, New York, aboard the steamer Southern Michigan” [Dempsey 232].

August 23, 1853

Submitted by scott on Sun, 10/31/2021 - 17:26

August 23 Tuesday – 7 AM “from Buffalo to Albany, on the “Lightning Express” railroad, another day” [MTL 1: 3; Powers, MT A Life 64]. Dempsey gives this train trip as beginning at 8 A.M. [232].

August 24, 1853

Submitted by scott on Sun, 10/31/2021 - 17:26

August 24 Wednesday – “…and from Albany to New York, by Hudson river steamboat [Isaac Newton], another day—an awful trip, taking five days, where it should have been only three” [MTL 1: 3]. Sam arrived in New York City at 5 AM with “two or three dollars in his pocket and a ten-dollar bill concealed in the lining of his coat” [MTB 95; MTL 1: 5n2; Powers, MT A Life 64]. (See letter of this date for a more exacting suggested itinerary.)

August 29, 1853

Submitted by scott on Sun, 10/31/2021 - 17:26

August 29 Monday – Sam got “a permanent situation…in a book and job office and went to work.” He was paid 23 cents per 1000 ems, the lowest rate. He worked in the fifth floor office of John A. Gray, 95-97 Cliff Street [MTL 1: 9; Powers, MT A Life 65]. His earnings were four dollars a week; he managed to save as much as fifty cents a week [MTB 96].

 

August 31, 1853

Submitted by scott on Sun, 10/31/2021 - 17:26

August 31 Wednesday – In New York, Sam wrote to his mother, Jane Clemens, of his new position, his rooming house, a derogatory description of “brats” in the city, and food. My dear Mother: New York is at present overstocked with printers; and I suppose they are from the South, driven North by the yellow fever. I got a permanent situation on Monday morning, in a book and job office, and went to work. The printers here are badly organized, and therefore have to work for various prices. These prices are 23, 25, 28, 30, 32, and 35 cents per 1,000 ems.

September 3, 1853

Submitted by scott on Sun, 10/31/2021 - 17:26

September 3? Saturday – In New York, Sam wrote at 2 AM to his sister, Pamela Moffett in St. Louis. After describing Crystal Palace of the World’s Fair, he wrote that the daily visitors average 6,000, double Hannibal’s population, and that the city’s water was supplied by the Croton Aqueduct from a reservoir in Westchester County, some thirty eight miles away.Such figures impressed Sam. After descriptions he wrote of family: