The Northwestern (Evanston, Illinois)

1884: December 19

[The Northwestern student newspaper prints a report of the December 12 performance in Ann Arbor.]

  The Academy says that Mr. George W. Cable shares with Nathaniel Hawthorne, Mrs. Harriet Beecher Stowe, and Mr. Bret Harte, the distinction of striking out a vein of indigenous American fiction, which is no mere provincial copying of English literature, as the major part of American fiction, which has not already copied these three, has hitherto shown itself to be. Mr. Cable and Mark Twain seem to be making a marked success of their new joint-combination venture, the author of Creole Days providing the sober, and pathetic, and acting as a safety-valve for the exuberant humor of his companion. All selections are taken from the works of the lecturers. A week ago to-night they succeeded in entertaining an audience of three thousand at University Hall, Ann Arbor. It is reported that the audience not only greeted the lecturers, but slapped them on the back, as it were, so enthusiastic was its cordiality. The students generally, of whom the audience was largely composed, abandoned themselves to the most thunderous laughter every time Twain appeared on the stage; staid members of the University Faculty, who always maintained a twenty degrees below zero countenance in the classroom, laughed till they were out of breath; law professors, wrapped up in ponderous legal volumes, and who have not been known to smile in twenty-one years, fairly rolled off their seats from laughter at every point Twain made. Even a couple of Japanese students, who, although having a fair command of English, could not readily see the incongruities of Twain's remarks, felt in duty bound to join in the general feeling, and undoubtedly did their best, although several times they broke forth in the wrong place to the astonishment of those about them. Mr. Cable gave several selections from Dr. Sevier, and sung in a fine tenor voice two Creole songs. He was well received, but Mark's famous whistling story, and his weird unearthly “Who-o-o-o's got my go-o-o-o-old-en arm?” with its unexpected denouement brought down the house.

  The Senior class has this popular combination billed for the evening of January 19 next. Be sure and get your tickets. A limited number of reserved seats is on sale at $1.00 per ticket. Unreserved tickets are to be obtained for 75 cents. A. F. Mathews, Cornell University, '83, is acting manager for Messrs. Twain and Cable.


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