Mark Twain Bio
Mark Twain bio
Mark twain, (real name Samuel L. Clemens), was born on November 30 1835 in Florida, Missouri. He was the sixth son of John and Jane Clemens.
His father worked as a storekeeper, lawyer, judge and land speculator, and always dreamt of wealth but never succeeded, sometimes finding it hard to feed his family. His mother was a fun-loving homemaker who whiled away many a winter’s night for her family by telling stories. After John unexpectedly died in 1847, Jane became the head of the household. Twain lived in Hannibal from 4 to 17 and always thought it was splendid living down there due to the steamboats always cruising down the lake and tooting their whistles, circuses always visited and a library that twain commonly visited.
Although, violence was also very common and twain witnessed a lot of death such as a slave being murdered by his owner. Twain went to school until he was 12 due to struggling family issues like his father being dead and his family needing a source of income. He then found himself working as an apprentice printer at the Hannibal Courier which gave him a decent ration of food. In 1851, when he was 15, he got a job as a printer, writer, and editor at the Hannibal Western Union. Then in 1857, twain began to learn the art of piloting a steamboat and eventually was licensed in 1859. Twain loved his job as it was exciting and gave him a fair amount of pay age. However, his fun came to a stop in 1861 when the Civil War broke out and stopped people from using the boat thus putting out of a job. As the war processed, Missouri was split between supporters of the Union and supporters of the Confederacy.
Twain eventually joined the Confederate Army in June but only served for a couple weeks. After this, he decided to go west to fulfill his dreams and make enough money. In July 1861, he traveled to California and Nevada and lived there for about five years. During his time, he panned for silver and gold and believed that he would be the savior of his family and become the wealthiest and sharpest man in San Francisco and Virginia City. Unfortunately, nothing was found and in 1862 he went broke and needed to find a better job. In September, he became a reporter for the Virginia City Territorial Enterprise.
This gave him the idea to change his name to Mark Twain which was a steamboat slang for 12 feet of water. Twain became one of the best-known storytellers in the West. He got a big break in 1865, when his tale about his life in the mining camp called Jim Smiley and His Jumping Frog was published in various newspapers and magazines around the US. In 1867, he took a five month cruise in the Mediterranean and wrote about the sights for newspapers with the idea of getting a book published during the trip. Then in 1869, The Innocents Abroad was published and it became a bestseller. In February 1870, twain married 24 year old Olivia Langdon, the daughter of a wealthy New York coal merchant. His marriage to her changed him and believed that she can reform him. Twains new book called the Adventures of Huckleberry Finn took years to write and he never paid much attention to it. He then focused on another book called The Prince and the Pauper which gained a lot of popularity.
Then in 1884 The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn was finally published. Twain then became a book publisher by selling the memoirs of Ulysses S Grant who recently died. His publishing company eventually went bankrupt after not making the enough money he needed. Due to his financial failings, twain started to become pessimistic and starts to see things negatively like his childhood life in Missouri. In 1889, Twain published A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur’s Court, a historic novel about ancient England. In 1894, his next major book was The Tragedy of Pudd’nhead Wilson which many people saw to be bitter.
Because of his popularity, he was named the best author of the 19th century and was photographed wherever he went. But in those years, there was much anguish and depression as he and Olivia lost their toddler died from diphtheria and in 1896 his daughter, Susy, died at the age of 24 of spinal meningitis. He was heartbroken and worst of all; he was out of the country when it happened. And then, his other daughter, Jean, died of a heart attack in 1909. Earlier, in 1904, Olivia died from an illness. After this, twain then started becoming insensitive to his friends and family and spent a lot of his time alone and smoking cigars. Twain then died on April 21, 1910 at 74 yrs old in Redding, Connecticut and was buried in Elmira, New York.
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