The purpose of this project is to celebrate Samuel L. Clemens' life in Redding, Connecticut by documenting and showcasing his time here in multiple formats both online and offline. Your donations & site sponsorships will help me dedicate more time to these projects and allow me to get them online sooner.

Monday, June 23

Mark Twain's 100th a Success!

The Mark Twain Library's 100th anniversary party was quite a success. There was standing room only in the Jean L. Clemens Memorial Building for the 100th annual meeting. After a short but eventful meeting, the 2008 Wit and Wisdom Award was a awarded for "Mark Twain as a Young Playwright" (which was amazing) and then the floor was turned over to me to present (gulp) 100 years of Redding history.

Just as a side story, as I'm sitting in the entry way (that was the only place left to sit) and awaiting my turn at the podium my mind began to wander a bit as I thought about how Mr. Clemens must have felt as he made his way to the new house. I thought of Louise Paine and her excitment, imagine being a young girl and experiencing such a grand occasion first hand. I also thought of Isabelle Lyon, his private secretary, and the anxiety she much have been feeling- hoping and praying (perhaps) that the decisions she had made would meet Sam's approval. Just then a thunder clap sounded outside and I thought "how fitting... a storm for Stormfield's 100th I just hope its not too big of a storm and we keep power!"

We kept power and I kept my composure weaving through a short history of Twain's time in Redding, the founding of the library and onto 100 years of Redding history. 100 years is extensive and a lot happened so I didn't get to cover everything but I highlighted the important areas and focused quite a bit on what makes Redding space. Redding's rural character is a huge asset and we all need to continue to work to keep it. In the coming weeks I'll be adding photos and information to the that highlights Redding's history from 1908 to 2008, I'll also be adding more photos of Twain, his house and the library.

So stay tuned...oh, almost forgot...the 100th anniversary vodka has arrived. Jay Harmon of Nantucket's Cisco Brewers shipped it out last week, it's his cranberry vodka which I'm told is mighty tasty. I only ordered a case (6 bottles) so at the moment I'm trying to decide if they will go up for auction or be used to thank volunteers.

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