24 September 2002
MARK TWAIN [I.E. SAMUEL LANGHORNE CLEMENS] (1835-1910)
Cabinet photograph signed, showing Twain full-length in a white suit, cigar in mouth, leaning against a pillar on a verandah, signed and inscribed on verso 'With kindest regards to Mrs Tennant from Mark Twain Hartford [Connecticut,] Jan. 29 91', 194 x 115mm, mounted on card (some staining and bleaching to left and upper margins).
Twain, in a dapper suit, glares rather fiercely at the camera. The card is a memento of Stanley's lecture tour of the United States in 1891 (only six months after his wedding), on which he was accompanied by his mother-in-law, Gertrude Tennant, somewhat to the amusement of the American press. Twain was an old friend of Stanley, after he had written to him congratulating him on finding Livingstone, calling him 'a fellow Missourian'. Although he later learned he had been deluded on Stanley's origins, the two became friends. Stanley invited Twain over especially to a banquet in London in 1877, and Twain in turn was involved in Stanley's lecture tour in America late in 1886 and met up with Stanley on this final tour 1890-1891.
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