Mark Twain: April Fool, 1884
Edited by Leslie Myrick and Christopher Ohge
Henry C. Bunner to Samuel L. Clemens
31 March 1884 • New York, N.Y.
(MS: CU-MARK, UCLC 41860)
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new york, Mch. 31/ 1884.
My dear Mr. Clemens:
Will you pardon the strangeness of the request if I venture to ask you for your autograph, for my little grand-daughter, now two weeks old?
The little innocent, abroad in this strange world of ours, will, I am sure, value your gift when she is old enough to appreciate it.
My son-in-law Laurence sends you his regards. Believe me
H. C. Bunner
▮ Copy-text: The Mark Twain Papers, The Bancroft Library, University of California, Berkeley (CU-MARK).
Henry Cuyler Bunner (1855–1896)
H. C. Bunner was a writer and editor who oversaw Puck, the influential humor magazine. His novels included The Midge (1882) and The Story of a New York House (1883), yet he was best known for short stories and sketches about life in New York City, in particular those collected in Short Sixes (1891). His collaborations with Brander Matthews also pushed the boundaries of the short story genre. Clemens probably met Bunner in 1883, when both were inducted into the Kinsmen Club, and they both attended a dinner for Laurence Hutton at the Tile Club in New York City in 1885. Clemens also jotted in his notebook in 1886 to read Bunner's The Midge (N&J3, pp. 105, 115, 240). Clemens was also a frequent houseguest at Bunner's New York City home near Old Battery Park (see NB 33, entry for 9 December 1893, and his 8 December 1893 letter to Olivia Clemens, MSS in CU-MARK).