MTHM image no text
The Mark Twain House
& Museum Newsletter
Mid-February 2014



Graveyard Shift Ghost Tours: Winter Chills Edition

Friday, February 21, and Saturday, February 22, 6:00, 7:00, 8:00 and 9:00 p.m.


Ghost Tours We reprise our popular Graveyard Shift Ghost Tours for some winter fun. The Mark Twain House has been featured on Syfy Channel's Ghost Hunters and the Biography Channel's My Ghost Story.


On these tours participants will hear all these creepy tales -- and learn about Mark Twain's own interest in the supernatural.


Filled with haunted history, dark tales and Victorian traditions surrounding seances and spiritualism, these nighttime tours are as educational as they are goosebump-inducing.


They sell out fast, so be sure to make your reservations soon!


The tours are tsponsored by Tsunami Tsolutions.


Call: (860) 280-3130 for more information & ticketing. Or, click  here for tickets.


Is Hartford a "Forgotten City?"

Tuesday, February 25, 5:30 p.m.


The Mark Twain House & Museum and the Harriet Beecher Stowe Center are pleased to present Xiangming Chen, Tom Condon, and Nick Bacon in a panel to discuss a new book on Harford, Confronting Urban Legacy: Rediscovering Hartford and New England's Forgotten Cities (Lexington Books, 2013). This free talk takes place at the Mark Twain House and Museum Visitor's Center, and a book sale and signing will follow the event.


Confronting Urban Legacy fills a critical gap in urban scholarship. Since most of the literature focuses on large cities, smaller cities--which actually hold the majority of the world's population--are either misunderstood or not examined at all. As there is little research on smaller New England cities, this book specifically explores the changing relationship between globalization and urban transition in Hartford, Connecticut.  In this insightful discussion, we hope to address the question of "what is Hartford's role as a challenged smaller city in the international fields of culture, thought, finance, and industy."


Sponsored by The Hartford.


This is free event. Reservations are suggested; please call (860) 280-3130.



Nook Farm Book Talk: The Black Russian with author Vladimir Alexandrov

Wednesday, February 26, 5:00 p.m. reception/5:30 p.m. discussion at The Mark Twain Museum Center


NOTE: This event was postponed from February 5.

The Black Russian
 is the incredible story of Frederick Bruce Thomas, born in 1872 to former slaves who became prosperous farmers in Mississippi. A rich white planter's attempt to steal their land forced them to flee to Memphis, where Frederick's father was brutally murdered. After leaving the South and working as a waiter and valet in Chicago and Brooklyn, Frederick sought greater freedom in London, then crisscrossed Europe, and-in a highly unusual choice for a black American at the time-went to Russia in 1899. Because he found no color line there, Frederick made Moscow his home. He renamed himself Fyodor Fyodorovich Tomas, married twice, acquired a mistress, and took Russian citizenship. Through his hard work, charm, and guile he became one of the city's richest and most famous owners of variety theaters and restaurants. The Bolshevik Revolution ruined him, and he barely escaped with his life and family to Constantinople in 1919. Starting from scratch, he made a second fortune by opening celebrated nightclubs that introduced jazz to Turkey. However, the long arm of American racism, the xenophobia of the new Turkish Republic, and Frederick's own extravagance landed him in debtor's prison. He died in Constantinople in 1928.


Join Yale professor and The Black Russian author Vladimir Alexandrov for a fascinating discussion about this unforgettable character.  This event will be followed by a book sale and signing.


Nook Farm Book Talks are an informal conversation presented jointly by The Mark Twain House & Museum and Harriet Beecher Stowe Center.  They are sponsored by First Niagara Foundation.


This is free event. Reservations are suggested; please call (860) 280-3130.



12 YEARS A SLAVE: Screening and Post-Film Discussion

Thursday, February 27, Reception at 5:30 p.m., film at 6:00 p.m. 


The screening will be followed by a panel discussion with luminaries in the field of film and history.


PLEASE NOTE: This screening, discussion, and reception takes place at the Wadsworth Atheneum, 600 Main Street, Hartford.


Solomon Northup, a free Black man from upstate New York, is abducted and sold into slavery. 2013. USA. 134 min. Rated R. Directed by Steve McQueen. Starring Chiwetel Ejiofor, Michael Fassbender. Golden Globe Award for Best Motion Picture. Nine Academy Award Nominations including Best Picture.


Panelists: Lois Brown, Professor of English and African American Studies at Wesleyan University; Erik Clemons, CEO & President of CT Center for Arts & Technology; Barbara Krauthamer, Associate Professor of History at UMASS Amherst; Mia Mask, Associate Professor of Film at Vassar College; Katherine Kane, Moderator, Executive Director of the Harriet Beecher Stowe Center.


Presented in collaboration with The Amistad Center for Art & Culture, Harriet Beecher Stowe and The Mark Twain House & Museum, and The Wadsworth Atheneum Museum of Art.


Please click here for tickets.



The MOuTH with Chion Wolf "Sex & Lust"

Friday, February 28, 7:30 p.m.


The Mark Twain House & Museum continues The MOuTH, a storytelling series with WNPR personality Chion Wolf -- with stories about sex & lust.


The event is in no way a competition, just storytelling in front of friends in a museum dedicated to Mark Twain, one of our country's best storytellers. There will be a "Wild Card": Those wanting to tell a short story can put their names in a hat when they arrive, and at some point, a name will be picked. Audio of the event will be recorded.


Chion Wolf, a noted photographer and voice perfomer, joined Colin McEnroe and producer Patrick Skahill to complete the trifecta that has become The Colin McEnroe Show on WNPR as the show's announcer and sometimes-sidekick. She can be heard during station breaks many days of the week.


$5.00; to reserve, call 860-280-3130. (Storytellers chosen for the lineup get in free.) Or, click here for tickets.

MTH&M logo

JOIN The Mark Twain House & Museum! 
Enjoy the special insider benefits of membership in The Mark Twain House & Museum. And there's the sheer joy of being part of the legacy of Mark Twain, whose wit and insight remain alive today in 2013 -- exactly 150 years after Sam Clemens took on his famous pen name and entered history. 

Make a DONATION Today!

Your donation to The Mark Twain House & Museum has a major impact on our ability to preserve this beautiful home, provide crucial educational programs for thousands of schoolchildren, offer mind-stimulating and spine-tingling events for adults, and welcome thousands of visitors each year.  
 ...and make your donation count double: Find out if your employer has a Matching Gift program.
Donate online, call 860-280-3112, or send your donation to: The Mark Twain House & Museum, Development Department, 351 Farmington Ave, Hartford, Connecticut 06105.
Join the FRIENDS
The Friends of The Mark Twain House & Museum offer wonderful speaking events, social gatherings, and fun volunteer opportunities. Pony up $30 and you'll get it all, too! 


It's the volunteer organization that has supported the museum for more than 50 years. To join, call Membership Co-Chairs Chuck Paydos, 860-242-4825, or Dee Peters, 860-233-4066. 


The Mark Twain House & Museum has restored the author's Hartford, Connecticut, home, where the author and his family lived from 1874 to 1891. Twain wrote his most important works there, including
Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, The Adventures of Tom Sawyer, and A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court. In addition to providing tours of Twain's restored home, a National Historic Landmark, the institution offers activities and educational programs that illuminate Twain's literary legacy and provide information about his life and times. The house and museum at 351 Farmington Ave. are open Monday through Saturday, 9:30 a.m.-5:30 p.m., and Sunday, noon-5:30 p.m. For more information, call 860-247-0998 or visit us online. Programs at The Mark Twain House & Museum are supported by the Connecticut Department of Economic and Community Development, Office of the Arts, and the Greater Hartford Arts Council's United Arts Campaign.
David Cash
Mark Twain House & Museum