[EDITOR'S NOTE: These items have not been previously republished elsewhere. They are included in this collection because of their potential to be the work of Clemens and are deserving of further research and consideration. In the first item the "Lucky Outcropper" referred to is poet James Linen.]
The Country Paper says that a Californian poet by the name of Linen, some of whose "beautiful poems" made their first appearance in the "stately march of numbers" corner of that journal, has been the recipient of a testimonial "square meal" at the Astor House, New York. The little Call also ventilates intelligence to the same effect and further states that Linen is one of the forlorn brood of Outcroppers; and on referring to the volume we find that his "pow is unco bauld" on the last page. From both of the papers certifying thereto, it is not entirely improbable but Linen may really have been made the recipient of so extraordinary an honor as is the one that is indicated; nevertheless, it is barely possible that the Call and Flag have concerted to rid the country of the remaining "Outcroppers" neck and crop, by concocting this nice little story about one of their number having been tendered the high and much to be desired boon of a square meal, in New York. As we hear that they are all intending to leave by the next steamer, we'll drop a timely word of caution: don't all go at once -- let only one or two venture on the strength of what the Call and Flag have said; if they find that the story is true, and succeed in striking gratuitous grub -- then 'fore Heaven, let the hegira take place; for, verily, it so seemeth, that with poets as with prophets, they must go abroad if they would be honored, and enjoy the felicity of grubbing at a nabobian hotel.
We are gratified to observe that real estate is decidedly looking up in San Francisco. Notwithstanding the sinister prophecies of Sacramento, Stockton and other provincial papers, it is evident that the general confidence in the stability and prosperity of San Francisco has not been materially shaken by the big earthquake. People still go on buying homesteads, putting up improvements, and erecting costly edifices just as if they were fully persuaded that this metropolis was going to last for several years longer. Auction sales of real estate are well attended; the bidding is lively, and lots bring high prices. This is undoubtedly a very discouraging condition of things to the Sacramentans, Stocktonians, Oaklanders, and others who have been cherishing the pleasing and pious hope that San Francisco was bound to "go under," and that such a consummation would forthwith raise their several and respective one-horse villages to the rank of "great commercial emporiums." It is discouraging and melancholy -- but then it is the frozen fact, and we can't help it.
[transcribed from microfilm]
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