Mr. Rogers's carriage was waiting for us in Jersey City and deposited me at the Players. There--that's all. This letter is to make up for the three letterless days. I love you, dear heart, I love you all. SAML.
LETTERS 1894. A WINTER IN NEW YORK. BUSINESS FAILURE. END OF THE MACHINE
The beginning of the new year found Mark Twain sailing buoyantly on a tide of optimism. He believed that with H. H. Rogers as his financial pilot he could weather safely any storm or stress. He could divert himself, or rest, or work, and consider his business affairs with interest and amusement, instead of with haggard anxiety. He ran over to Hartford to see an amateur play; to Boston to give a charity reading; to Fair Haven to open the library which Mr. Rogers had established there; he attended gay dinners, receptions, and late studio parties, acquiring the name of the "Belle of New York." In the letters that follow we get the echo of some of these things. The Mrs. Rice mentioned in the next brief letter was the wife of Dr. Clarence C. Rice, who had introduced H. H. Rogers to Mark Twain.
Jan. 12, '94 Livy darling, I came down from Hartford yesterday with Kipling, and he and Hutton and I had the small smoking compartment to ourselves and found him at last at his ease, and not shy. He was very pleasant company indeed. He is to be in the city a week, and I wish I could invite him to dinner, but it won't do. I should be interrupted by business, of course. The construction of a contract that will suit Paige's lawyer (not Paige) turns out to be very difficult. He is embarrassed by earlier advice to Paige, and hates to retire from it and stultify himself. The negotiations are being conducted, by means of tedious long telegrams and by talks over the long-distance telephone. We keep the wires loaded.
Dear me, dinner is ready. So Mrs. Rice says.
With worlds of love, SAML.
Clemens and Oliver Wendell Holmes had met and become friends soon after the publication of Innocents Abroad, in 1869. Now, twenty-five years later, we find a record of what without doubt was their last meeting. It occurred at the home of Mrs. James T. Field.
BOSTON, Jan. 25, '94. Livy darling, I am caught out worse this time than ever before, in the matter of letters. Tuesday morning I was smart enough to finish and mail my long letter to you before breakfast--for I was suspecting that I would not have another spare moment during the day. It turned out just so.