Ferguson's Guide to Navigating This Site
picture courtesy of "Mark
Twain in His Times"
making this website, I sought to study how Samuel Clemens's homes
influenced how and what Mark Twain
wanted first to illustrate the homes themselves from Clemens's
perspective, and second to give concrete examples of the
effects of the homes on Twain's work. To me, the best (and most
interesting) way to do this meant quoting only
thoughts, and only those thoughts of Clemens's written for his personal letters,
autobiography rather than
for contemporary publication or performance reasons. All text in quotes is
Clemens's. Bracketed insertions of mine, which
occur in a few
of the quotes, are bolded, as are my descriptions of the sources of the
showing how Clemens's homes influenced each book of Twain's, I cited
Clemens's quotes alone, rather than
quotes plus specific instances from Twain's work. This is because some of
Clemens's thoughts are reflected in Twain's
work too broadly to fully cite and
all of Clemens's quotes here
illustrate characters, situations, events, and ideas which
are immediately obvious as characters, situations, events, and ideas in
I organized this site into two parallel paths--one for Clemens's homes,
and his descriptions of them, and the other for
Twain's works, and descriptions of life in specific homes by Clemens
which illustrate influences on that particular work.
Clemens's homes and his descriptions of them are organized
geographically and chronologically.
Clicking on the map of the U. S. and Europe on the main page will take
you to a page
consisting of that map, with each
location pinpointed, and photographs of the homes arranged in
chronological order under the map.
By clicking on a photo, you are taken to the page for that home,
consisting of its picture, its description by Clemens,
links to Twain's work which it influenced (if any), and links to the
previous and next homes in chronological order. All
the homes have pictures you can click on to go "inside" and see photos
of and descriptions by Clemens of its interior.
the homes have more detailed descriptions than others.
The second "path" goes straight through Twain's works. I
have included here The Jumping Frog
of Calaveras County, Innocents
Roughing It, The Adventures of Tom Sawyer, Life on the Mississippi, The
Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, A Connecticut
Yankee in King Arthur's Court, and Pudd'nhead Wilson. All of these are
from ENAM 481C, with the exception of Jumping Frog,
which I included because it
was Twain's first published "book". I didn't want to include things not
published in Twain/
Clemens's lifetime, like his stories from The Devil's Race-Track, because it
is unclear if and how Twain may have revised
them, and even if he wanted them published.
By clicking on a
book (whose jackets are all on the main page) you can see how specific
homes influenced specific works,
and can click on
each influential home's "window" to see the descriptive page for that
home. On each book's main page
links to the previous and next book, in chronological order.
At the bottom of every "home" page is a link back to the main page,
at the bottom of every "book" page are links back to the main page and
the map page.