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.

Tuesday, September 30

Mark Twain Library Celebrates 100 Years

October 11, 1908, Mark Twain gave a library to Redding. A century later - to the day - plans are underway to celebrate this momentous gift with a town-wide 100th Birthday celebration.

On Saturday, October 11, from 10:30 am to 12:30 pm, the Library will host a birthday party for preschool and elementary school aged children.

Children are encouraged to come dressed as their favorite story book character. "I know we'll see some Harry Potters and perhaps a Jack and Annie from the Magic Tree House series," offered Heather Morgan, Library Director. 'But I also hope to see Little Red Riding Hood, Dorothy Gale, maybe Peter Rabbit or one of the Little Women, too. There is a century of colorful children's book characters to choose from!" Activities for the young guests will include face painting, party games and, of course, birthday cupcakes. There will also be a Time Capsule activity, as well as an ongoing story time.

That afternoon beginning at 2:00 pm, there will be a second event, suited for teens and adults. First, the Library will receive three extraordinary birthday gifts. The Historical Society has been hard at work on a commemorative quilt which will hang permanently in the Library. Redding Garden Club member Katherine Streit has created a one-of-a-kind celebratory presentation highlighting Mark Twain's life and favorite characters, which will go on display that day. And the Commission on Aging is putting the finishing touches on a collection of oral histories about the Library which they intend to present to the Library as well.

After the presentations of these three gifts, historian Dan Cruson will give a lecture entitled "The Impact of Mark Twain in Connecticut" Mr. Cruson, teacher and President of the Archaeology Society of Connecticut, will give an illustrated presentation on the two periods of Twain's life showing the effect that Connecticut had on him as a writer, and the impact that he had on the communities in which he lived -- Hartford and Redding -- including his unique architectural contributions. A reception will follow the talk.

Admission to both is free; parking for the morning celebration will be at the John Read Middle School with a shuttle bus running to and from the library.

Reservations are encouraged for the afternoon event, as space is limited. To register, call the library at 938-2545 or sign up at the front desk.

For more information on the 100th birthday events at the library, visit the Mark Twain Library website ( ) or call (938-2545). The celebration on October 11th is part of the Mark Twain Library's Centennial Celebration, commemorating 100 years of learning and literature in Redding. The Mark Twain Library is owned by the Mark Twain Library Association. It was founded in 1908 by Samuel Clemens - Mark Twain himself - one of Redding's most celebrated residents. For more information on Clemens' final home and his time in Redding please visit the History of Redding website (

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