ELMIRA, N.Y. April 24 -- Under a
tent on the grassy slopeof the Langdon plot in Woodlawn
cemetery, with rain beating fiercely against the canvas
cover, a little group of mourners silently watched today as
the body of Samuel L. Clemens was lowered into an
evergreen-lined grave beside the bodies of his wife and
The Rev. Samuel E. Eastman, pastor of Park Church, and a close friend of the late humorist, conducted a brief and simple service, and Mark Twain's final pilgrimage was at an end. Tonight he lies sleeping under a grave piled high with flowers, the tribute of friends from far and near.
There were present at the grave only members of the family party who came from New York today with the body, a former governess of the Clemens family, two of her friends, a sexton, and half a dozen newspaper men.
Services had previously been held at the residence of Gen. Charles J. Langdon, where forty years ago Mark Twain married the general's sister.
In keeping with Mr. Clemens' wish, the ceremony was simple. There was no music, no honorary pallbearers -- just the brief address and prayer of Dr. Eastman.
The body lay in state in the very parlor where forty years ago the marriage took place, and some of those who attended the wedding were there today to look for the last time upon the face of their friend.
Neither the Rev. Thomas K. Beecher, nor the Rev. Joseph Twitchell, who performed the wedding ceremony, was present, however. Mr. Beecher died several years ago, and Mr. Twitchell was called to Hartford by the serious illness of his wife, who died this morning.
Among the floral gifts was a beautiful wreath bearing this inscription:
"From five hundred boys of the Louisville Male High School, in remembrance of Mr. Clemens, who has brightened their lives with innocent laughter and taught them squareness and grit and compassion to the weak."
The services at the house were public, but the attendance was not large. Besides the funeral party that accompanied the body from Redding, the little gathering included only a few relatives and old friends.
Dr. Eastman said in part:
"We are not here at this time to speak of the great man whose going hence the whole world mourns, nor to claim for him that place in the halls of fame which time only can give. We are here to weep with those that weep, to give thanks whose own he was in sacred bond of kinship and family affection."
After the little group had looked for the last time upon the features of the dead, the coffin was closed and was borne to a waiting hearse. Outside a few curious onlookers stood in the rain as the procession started on its way to the cemetery, a mile or more away.
Citizens of Elmira cherish fond memories of Mark Twain. With Mrs. Clemens and the children he had spent many happy summers at Quarry Farm, on East Hill, overlooking the city, at the home of Mrs. Susan L. Crane, Mrs. Clemens' sister. A path from the Crane house winds through the wooded grounds to the summer lodge which was Mark Twain's workshop. He he wrote "Roughing It," "A Tramp Abroad," and other works.
Below this lodge, a short way down in the woods, is another rustic structure with barked roof, which the author built for his children. Here may still be seen many of the undisturbed playthings of the little ones.
It was during the Quaker City expedition in 1867, which Mark Twain has immortalized in "The Innocents Abroad," the humorist met Gen. Langdon, then a young man, the son of Jervis Langdon, a distinguished and wealthy Elmiran. Langdon took kindly to young Clemens and the intimacy which grew out of the meeting led to the marriage of the author with Olivia Langdon.
"I saw her first," wrote Twain of his wife in his autobiography, "in the form of an ivory miniature in her brother Charles' stateroom, in the steamer Quaker City, in the bay of Smyrna, in the summer of 1867, when she was in her twenty-second year.
"I saw her in the flesh for the first time in New York in the following December. She was slender and beautiful and girlish and she was both girl and woman. She remained both girl and woman to the last of her life."
Over Mrs. Clemens' grave, alongside the fresh one made today, stands a stone engraved with this epitaph:
"Warm summer sun, shine kindly here;