The (Jersey City) Evening Journal

1872: 31 January

Twain Talk.

How ready the community are to wish to see and hear what they presume will be comical or laughter provoking, was illustrated last night. The Tabernacle was crowded with listeners to "Mark Twain's" lecture on "Roughing It." To call the discourse a lecture is a misnomer. Mark's talk is an odd compound of bits of information about Nevada, its soil, climate, natural features and the habits of its mixed, badly mixed, population, and of queer observations, sudden surprises, and old and new jokes. Mark is no orator. He don't pretend to be, but he is an amusing talker with a droll drawl, a nasal twang, and an indescrably odd fashion of "standing around" and moving his hands and his features as if he didn't know what to do with them. He is a mixture of Artemus Ward, Baron Munchausen and--Mark Twain, with Mark predominating. He made people laugh, and that was what he came for, but we would rather read his fun than have it from him by word of mouth. Before the lecture Mr. A. H. Lockwood, organist of Grace Church, gave some very fine music on the organ, which would have been much better appreciated if there had been less noise in the audience room.