Download a free copy of the Last Will of Samuel Clemens, aka Mark Twain (1835-1910).
Samuel Clemens, better known to the world as Mark Twain, was an American-born author and humorist best known for his novels The Adventures of Tom Sawyer and Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, which has been called "the Great American Novel". His writings reflected his childhood growing up in Missouri and his experiences as a steamboat pilot on the Mississippi River.
After serving briefly in the Confederate militia, Clemens moved out west and became a reporter. It was then that he adopted the pseudonym Mark Twain, a riverboat pilot's slang phrase that means the water is at least two fathoms deep and easy to traverse. After the success of his second book The Innocents Abroad, he and his wife moved east.
Mark Twain's keen wit and biting satire earned praise from critics and peers, and his humor made him a very popular figure with royalty, presidents and common folk alike. He went bankrupt in the depression of 1893-94 and, intent on paying back his debts, he wrote a number of works to recoup his funds. When he died in 1910, he was lauded as the greatest American humorist of his age, and William Faulkner called him "the father of American literature".
Clemens was born on November 30, 1835, exactly two weeks after the perihelion of Haley's Comet, which appears every 75 years. He died on April 21, 1910, the day following the comet's next perihelion.
Last Updated: 14-April-2016