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.

Wednesday, May 27

Mark Twain Collection from Lobster Pot Studio

I realize some of you will not be able to attend our Centennial Kick-Off in Redding so I thought I'd share some of Susan Durkee's Artwork online.

Mark Twain at Stormfield in Oxford Gown. Picture of Mark Twain Library in upper left corner.

Mark Twain and Jerry

Mark Twain at Stormfield (Centennial Collection)

Mark Twain with Captain Stormfield

Lobster Pot Studio

Sunday, May 17

Centennial Kick-Off at the Lobster Pot

June 6th, 2009 from 4:00pm to 6:30pm come to 23 Mark Twain Lane in Redding, Connecticut to kick off the Mark Twain Centennial. Reservations are required, as space is limited to 50 people and there is a $15 event fee. [rain date: June 7th]

The Lobster Pot in Redding is part of the original property Mark Twain purchased in 1906. This is where Isabel Lyon lived as she tended to the construction and interior decoration of Stormfield prior to Twain's arrival in 1908. We felt it would be fitting to kick off the local Mark Twain Centennial Celebrations here at the Lobster Pot seeing so much of Twain's life in Redding was influenced by the decisions made on this property.

The original Saltbox was lost to fire in 1953 but the foundation, patios, gardens and stonework still remain. The gardens, which Susan Durkee faithfully tend to, will be the colorful focal point of this event.

In addition to the garden tour, the Lobster Pot Studio will be open for viewing, there will be previews of Dangerous Intimacy, a new documentary on Isabel Lyon's relationship with Twain, Brent Colley will present a slideshow on Twain's days in Redding and Susan Durkee will speak on Isabel Lyon.

Reservations are required, as space is limited and there is a $15 event fee. For reservations and further details call Susan Durkee at

Wednesday, May 13

Mark Twain Centennial Collection Available

Mark Twain and a Friend
from the Mark Twain Centennial Collection
A Large, Matted, 20x24 Mahogany Framed Print is $295.00. Without a frame the Print is $95.00. 8x10 Matted Prints are $45.00. All come with Certificates of Authenticity.

As you can see, Portrait Artist Susan Durkee, has been hard at work this winter at her studio on Mark Twain Lane in Redding, Connecticut. Susan is a huge fan of Twain's life and over the years we have become good friends. This past Monday I was in Redding exploring options for Centennial Celebrations in 1910 and I stopped up to see Susan for her input.

I was greeted with a pleasant surprise, to say the least! The print above is one example of her work to-date, there will be others showcased online in the near future. I think all Twainiacs will love what she has done for a Centennial Calendar which includes the print above surrounded by vignettes of his life in Redding. I hope to post that soon.

If you are interested in acquiring one of these prints...

Lobster Pot Studio
23 Mark Twain Lane
Redding, Connecticut 06896

The Centennial Calendar
Signed by the Artist
13 x 19
$24.95 plus shipping & handling

Lobster Pot Studio
23 Mark Twain Lane
Redding, Connecticut 06896

Limited 500 Edition 16x12 Print,
Each Signed and Numbered by the Artist, and accompanied with Historical Pictorial reference guide
Available matted and ready to frame for.... $75.00
Available matted with 20x16 Mahogany Frame....$250.00

Shipping, Handling and Tax extra

Susan does amazing work, the print above is of Jean Clemens and belongs to the Mark Twain Library in Redding.

Monday, May 4

How I'm Going to Celebrate Twain's Life

Death is not a pleasant thing...for the living anyway. Next April when the 100th anniversary of Samuel L. Clemens' death rolls around I am going to celebrate with a multi-location tribute to his life and friends here in Fairfield County.

There are plenty of interesting individuals and towns to explore and it should be a grand way to showcase them all.

Over in Ridgefield there is Cass Gilbert's Keeler's Tavern Museum and the location of Col. Edward M. Knox's "Downesbury Manor", whose 300 acres included a 45-room mansion Mark Twain often visited. Learn more here:

In Easton is Helen Keller.

"I am charmed with your book--enchanted. You are a wonderful creature, the most wonderful in the world--you and your other half together--Miss Sullivan, I mean, for it took the pair of you to make complete and perfect whole..." Letter to Helen from Twain at Riverdale - on - the - Hudson
St. Patrick's Day, 1903

In Bethel is P.T. Barnum...that connection is made via the "Stolen White Elephant" and "Christmas Elephant"

Should be great fun putting this together, if you have information on surrounding towns please share them.