Samuel Clemens, also known as the beloved author Mark Twain, composed some of his most noteworthy literary achievements in Hartford, Connecticut, at a home he and his family moved into on September 19, 1874. The 140th anniversary was announced by the Hartford Courant, which paid homage to Twain’s arrival in Connecticut’s capital city. Twain and his family lived in this house for seventeen years as he penned the Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, The Prince and the Pauper, and several other highly recognizable contributions to American literature.
Mark Twain enthusiasts should strongly consider a visit to the Mark Twain House and Museum this autumn to celebrate his life and works. Tour guides walk you through this three-story U.S. National Historic Landmark, and you’ll get the scoop on the Twain family’s day-to-day activities. The Museum also likes to spice things up with intrigue around the Gothic Twain property, hosting nighttime ghost tours and a Clue-style murder mystery game. Twain scholars and artists can take also settle in for more serious fare, including writing workshops and academic talks. Just skim through the museum’s upcoming events calendar to see how this author continues to inspire the production of literary arts. Aspiring writers can find a home of their own by attending the museum’s writing workshops and flash fiction contests.
The Hartford Courant notes that the Mark Twain House was still under construction when the family arrived in the city. However, the occupants were not deterred by the work in progress. They simply adjusted their lifestyles around the work of handymen and plumbers. One could say that the building was built up around the family. The property continues to be under construction to this day, as the Museum strives to fight the wear and tear of time and elements on Twain’s house. Restoration professionals also strive to revert the home back to its authentic look, since the Twain house once served as an apartment building before it became a historic landmark. So far, restoration workers have completed renovations in areas like the Servants’ Wing and the Billiards Room, one of the famed locations of Twain’s writing sessions. The Museum is currently working on the Mahogany Room, the guest area where writer Grace King would stay during visits to the Twain family.
American literature buffs should add Hartford to their travel itineraries. In addition to visiting the famous Twain mansion, keep an eye out for Harriet Beecher Stowe’s home nearby. Her Victorian Gothic property is in the same neighborhood, and there are tour options for those who want to cover both authors’ homes.