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From being an Unsuccessful Businessman to a Successful Writer – 5 Unknown Things about ‘Mark Twain’


From writing exceptional stories and being the best American authors and humorists of the late 19th and early 20th century, the name Mark Twain is extremely famous amongst the writer’s club. While many individuals like you know him from his remarkable stories, you may not know much about his personal life. The details of his childhood and life demonstrate a person with various achievements.

Born as ‘Samuel Langhorne Clemens’

Not many know that Mark Twain was originally born as Samuel Langhorne Clemens on
November 30, 1835, in the town of Florida, Missouri. His father, John Marshall Clemens worked as a Tennessee country merchant and mother, Jane Lampton Clemens was a home lady. Sadly, amongst the seven children, Twin and the other three, his brother Orion, his brother Henry, and his sister Pamela were the only ones who survived. After he turned 4, his father moved the family to Hannibal, Missouri, a town by the Mississippi River.

The author adopted the name “Mark Twain,” a tribute to his days crossings the Mississippi River. The term ‘Mark Twain’ signifies the second stamp when measuring water’s depth or what might as well be called 12 feet- a level at which steamboats are safe to sailing. “Mark Twain”, means ‘good to go’.

Limited Education

In the year 1848, after the death of his father, Mark quit schooling and went to work as an
apprentice printer at a newspaper in Hannibal. In 1851, he moved over to a typesetting work at a neighborhood paper claimed by his elder sibling, Orion, and in the long run, penned a modest bunch of short, satirical things for the publication. In 1853, 17-year- old Clemens left Hannibal and spent the next several years living in places such as New York City, Philadelphia, and Keokuk, Iowa, and working as a printer.

First Break as a Writer

After facing many challenges and ups and downs in career front, in 1864, Twain escaped San Francisco for some time after posting a bail for a friend for some time and traveled out to the mining cabin of a friend at Jackass Hill in Tuolumne County California. While at a bar in the close-by town of Angels Camp in Calaveras County, California, Twain heard a man enlighten a story regarding a bouncing frog challenge. When Twain came back to San Francisco in February 1865, he got a letter from a writer friend in New York requesting about contributing a story to a book he was assembling.

Twain chose to send a story based on the bouncing frog story he’d heard, but when he got around to finishing it the book had just been published. As it happened, however, the book’s publisher sent Twain’s piece, “Jim Smiley and His Jumping Frog”, to the Saturday Press in New York, which ran it on November 18, 1865.

The story ended up being a major hit with readers and was republished the nation over, inevitably retitled, “The Celebrated Jumping Frog of Calaveras County.”

Known as a bad businessman

In the wake of turning into a successful writer, twain sunk cash into various bad investments and in the end went bankrupt. One investing disaster, including an automatic typesetting machine, cost him about $200,000 by a few gauges, a total sum considering that in 1890 the larger part of American families earned under $1,200 every year.
In 1891, twain quit his 25-room Hartford home, where he had lived since 1874, and moved with his family to Europe keeping in mind the end goal to live more cheaply. In 1894, after the failure of the publishing organization he had founded 10 years earlier, Twain declared bankruptcy.

The following year, he left on an around the world speaking tour keeping in mind the end goal to gain cash to pay off his obligations, which he did after some years.

Predicted his own death

He was born after Halley’s Comet showed up and the comet was scheduled o return in 1910. He told others in 1909, “I came in with Halley’s Comet in 1835. It is coming again next year, and I expect to go out with it. It will be the greatest disappointment of my life if I don’t go out with Halley’s Comet.” And as he predicted he died at the age of 74 due to a heart attack on April 21, 1910, the day Hailey’s Comet made its nearest pass.

Visit Maple Press to get the stories written by Mark Twain

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