Appeal for Capt. Ned Wakeman - Letter from Mark Twain
Editors Alta: Certain gentlemen here in the Fast have done me the honor to make me their mouthpiece in a matter which should command the interest and the sympathy of many Californians. They represent that the veteran Capt. Ned Wakeman is lying paralyzed and helpless at his home near your city, and they beg that his old friends on the Pacific Coast will do unto him as they would gladly do themselves if they were back now in San Francisco -- that is, take the old mariner's case in hand and assist him and his family to the pecuniary aid they stand in such sore need of. His house is mortgaged for $5,000 and he will be sold out and turned shelterless upon the world in January, unless this is done. I have made voyages with the old man when fortune was a friend to him, and am aware that he gave with a generous heart and willing hand to all the needy that came in his way; and now that twenty years of rough toil on the watery highways of the far West find him wrecked and in distress, I am sure that the splendid generosity which has made the name of California to be honored in all lands, will come to him in such a shape that he shall confess that the seeds sowed in better days did not fall upon unfruitful soil.
Will not some of the old friends of Capt. Wakeman in your city take this matter in hand, and do by him as he would surely do by them were their cases reversed?
Very truly yours,
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