Steamboats of The Mississippi - Mark Twain

Mark Twain

Many of the works of Mark Twain deal with or take place near the Mississippi River. One of his first major works, Life on the Mississippi, is in part a history of the river, in part a memoir of Twain's experiences on the river, and a collection of tales that either take place on or are associated with the river. Twain's most famous work, Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, is largely a journey down the river. The novel works as an episodic meditation on American culture with the river having multiple different meanings including independence, escape, freedom, and adventure.

Twain himself worked as a riverboat pilot on the Mississippi for a few years. A steamboat pilot needed a vast knowledge of the ever-changing river to be able to stop at any of the hundreds of ports and wood-lots along the river banks. Twain meticulously studied 2,000 miles (3,200 km) of the Mississippi for more than two years before he received his steamboat pilot license in 1859. While training, he convinced his younger brother Henry to work with him. Henry died on June 21, 1858, when the steamboat he was working on, the Pennsylvania, exploded.

Read more about this topic:  Steamboats Of The Mississippi

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Famous quotes by mark twain:

    In the weltering hell of the Moorooroo plain
    The Yatala Wangary withers and dies,
    And the Worrow Wanilla, demented with pain,
    To the Woolgoolga woodlands
    Despairingly flies.
    Mark Twain [Samuel Langhorne Clemens] (1835–1910)

    There is no God, no universe, no human race, no earthly life, no heaven, no hell. It is all a dream, a grotesque and foolish dream. Nothing exists but you. And you are but a thought—a vagrant thought, a useless thought, a homeless thought, wandering forlorn among the empty eternities!
    Mark Twain [Samuel Langhorne Clemens] (1835–1910)

    All gentle cant and philosophizing to the contrary notwithstanding, no people in this world ever did achieve their freedom by goody-goody talk and moral suasion: it being immutable law that all revolutions that will succeed, must begin in blood.
    Mark Twain [Samuel Langhorne Clemens] (1835–1910)

    One of the most striking differences between a cat and a lie is that a cat has only nine lives.
    Mark Twain [Samuel Langhorne Clemens] (1835–1910)

    No one has ever seen a Republican mass meeting that was devoid of the perception of the ludicrous.
    Mark Twain [Samuel Langhorne Clemens] (1835–1910)