Blog — 26 April 2011

Ken in front of Mark Twain House

Samuel Clemens, aka Mark Twain, has always fascinated me. A man with a way with words, a world traveler, a man of interest, an amazing pioneer, it’s hard to deny the allure of Mark Twain.

Growing up, I knew that the Mark Twain house was just next door in Hartford, but I never made it to visit. So, when we were back in Connecticut visiting my family for the holidays, Kenny & I decided to check it out.

Twain moved his wife and family into this elaborate, 25-room home in 1874 and stayed there for 17 years. He wrote a number of his classics that we know today such as Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, Adventures of Tom Sawyer, Prince & the Pauper, A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur’s Court and more.

Mark Twain chilling

It was awesome to walk around the grounds where this amazing man lived and roam through the museum in his name. Unfortunately, we didn’t make it inside the home, but there’s always next time.

It was also pretty crazy to discover that right across the courtyard from his home was the home of Harriet Beecher Stowe, famed author of Uncle Tom’s Cabin. The two were great friends as neighbors, and the whole neighborhood, Nook Farm, was filled with community leaders and social activists. To know that these two American greats spent their lives in the very spot we were visiting made me feel all warm inside.

Mark Twain was a great American, always on the move, a traveler at heart. When he went bankrupt from bad investments in new inventions, he packed up his family and left for Europe for several years. Hells yes, like a true traveler!

Portrait of Mark Twain

Twain is known for a myriad of amazing quotes, but here are just a few that I really like…

“Supposing is good, finding out is better.”
“Travel is fatal to prejudice.”

Also, in his older years he always wore the same white suit. He liked to call it, my “don’t-care-a-damn-suit”! What a man he must have been.

We had a great day walking around the grounds and absorbing the life of Mark Twain. Check it out next time you’re in the Hartford area.

Who’s one of your great American icons? Would you like to visit their home? Let us know in the comments below.


Mark Twain House

Portrait of a young Mark Twain.

Bust of Mark Twain

Edison expressing his love for Mark Twain

Another bust of Mark Twain

Portrait of Mark Twain in his “don’t-give-a-damn” suit

Who has banned The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn?

A proud Huckleberry Finn


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About Author

Juls is an avid Internet marketer and is the marketing, seo, and web brains behind the American Odyssey. She is always up for a challenge and loves to travel. Her favorite part is getting lost in new cities. Got puzzles?! She graduated from Boston University and is still a New England girl at heart.

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