MARK TWAIN LEFT DAUGHTER $611,136
Fifty Shares of the Mark Twain Co., Which Owns All His Copyrights, Valued at $200,000
REAL ESTATE WORTH $70,000
His Library Set Down at $2,000 - Author Made All His Fortune After His Reverses of Fifteen Years Ago.
Special to The New York Times.
REDDING, Conn., Oct. 26. - The inventory of Mark Twain's estate, returned by the appraisers, Albert Bigelow Paine and Harry A. Lounsberry, to the Probate Court for the District of Redding, gives a total of $611,136, of which $70,000 represents the value of his home "Stormfield" and the cottage known as the "Lobster Pot," while $511,136 is personal property. The sole heir is his only surviving child, Mrs. Ossip Gabrilowitsch, the wife of the Russian pianist.
The copyright values of his writings are grouped in the inventory in the assets of the Mark Twain Company, incorporated a few years before his death, to which all the copyrights were assigned. His fifty shares in the stock of that company are listed in the inventory at $200,000. As an item of the personal estate, the appraisers also note a trunk and its contents, which he had placed with the Lincoln Trust Company of New York. In the trunk are certain of his manuscripts, but no value was placed on them, for the originals are at Stormfield.
[Paragraph containing illegible text of dollar amounts on various corporate shares has been omitted.]
The inventory tells the story of certain unfortunate investments, which the author made, notably his venture in the securities of the Plasmon Milk Product Company. The total value of his 375 shares in this company is placed at $100. His 5,000 shares in the Plasmon Syndicate Limited is set down at $1,000. His 400 shares of the Plasmon Company of America are set down as valueless, and nearly a thousand shares of various corporations are marked as worthless.
The furniture and furnishing of Stormfield are valued at $10,145, of which $1,000 represents the silverware, and $2,000 the books in the library. The estate of his daughter, Jean Clemens, who died less than a year ago, descended wholly to her father. Its total was $7,000, which will be delivered to the executors of Mark Twain's will after its settlement.
Besides the appraisers, the inventory is signed by the executors of the estate. Edward E. Loomis, Soheth S. Freeman, and Jarvis Langdon. An extension of the usual sixty days for submitting the inventory was obtained, and it was not returned until six months had passed.
At the time of Mark Twain's death in April, it was predicted that his estate would be a large one, and the fact the figures run above $600,000, peculiarly interesting, when it is remembered that he started as a printer's apprentice at the age of 12, and that as he was approaching his sixtieth year, his entire fortune was swept away with the failure of the C. L. Webster Company, the luckless venture in which he embarked with his nephew in the hope of keeping to himself the publisher's profit on his large sale.
His courage was undaunted by this reversal, and he took to the lecture platform, paying his debts as Sir Walter Scott had done, and building up another fortune before his death some fifteen years later.
His intimacy with H. H. Rogers, the financier, it has often been thought, assisted Mark Twain through the period of the reconstruction of his fortunes, and he had undoubtedly the advantage of exceptional advice in the matter of investments. He never again attempted publishing on his own account, although the recollection of his earlier success with the Webster Company must have been tempting for it was during the period some years prior to its failure that such books were produced as "Huckleberry Finn," "A Connecticut Yankee at King Arthur's Court," "The American Claimant," "Pudd'nhead Wilson," and "Tom Sawyer Abroad."
Mrs. Ossip Gabrilowitsch sailed for Europe on Saturday, leaving instructions that Stormfield and the real estate be sold.
Return to The New York Times
Quotations | Newspaper Articles | Special Features | Links | Search