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MARK TWAIN

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MARK TWAIN

Mark Twain also known as Samuel Clemens. He was born in Florida, Missouri on Nov 30,1835, the sixth child of John and Jane Clemens. Several years later, in 1839, the family moved to nearby Hannibal, where Clemens spent his boyhood years. Clemens boyhood dream was to become a steamboatman on the river. Clemens' newspaper career began while still a boy in Hannibal. In 1848, a year after his father death, he was apprentice to printer Joseph Ament, who published the Missouri Courier. Did tragedy make Samuel Clemens (Cox Clinton).

Missouri Courier only last for a few weeks before he started working for his brother at Orion's Western Union, for which he wrote his first published sketches and worked as a printer. Over the next two years he continued at the Western Union, occasionally taking stints as editor in Orion's absence. In 1852, Sam published several sketches in Philadelphia's Saturday Evening Post. Clemens left Hannibal in 1853, at age 18, and worked as a printer in New York City and Philadelphia over the next year. During his trip east he published letters in the Hannibal Journal. Upon returning to the Midwest in 1854, Clemens lived in several cities on the Mississippi: the most prominent of these was Keokuk, Iowa where his brother Orion founded the Keokuk Journal.

In April 1861 came the start of civil war river traffic on the Mississippi was suspended, and Clemens steamboat career came to an end. He joined a volunteer militia group called the Marion Rangers, which drilled for two weeks before disbanding. Sam accompanied Orion to the Nevada Territory by stagecoach: President Lincoln had appointed Orion as secretary of the new Territory, and Sam was to be his secretary. (Cox Clinton).

During the 1880s and early 90s, Clemens became heavily involved with investing in the Paige Compositor, an automatic typesetting machine. He poured great amounts of money in the machine, and even founded a company in 1886 to manufacture and distribute it. The advent of the linotype machine, however, sent the Paige Compositor to its doom. After the second model of the machine failed a test run at the Chicago Herald in 1894 where 32 linotypes were running smoothly, the machine was scrapped. Clemens contributed to the bankruptcy of his publishing company when he shifted funds from that firm into the compositor.
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