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Chicago Daily Tribune, June 6, 1902

Declares His Appearance at Columbia, Mo., Is His Last on Public Platform--
In Interview He Says He Feels No Particular Honor Because Russia Has Excluded His Books--
He Finds That Many Others Have Met Same Treatment.

Columbia, Mo., June 5.--[Special.]--Mark Twain has retired from the public platform for ever. His appearance at Missouri University, where he received his degree of LL.D., was his last as a public speaker. On this occasion he talked for nearly an hour. He was in a brilliant mood. There was a flash in every word he uttered, and he proved the truth of the assertion of Julian Hawthorne, that no man in the world can handle a joke for all that it is worth and bring it out so forcibly and clearly as Mark Twain.

The audience laughed and laughed again, but some of them cried when the speaker said in tones that shook with suppressed emotion that he was bidding Missouri and old friends farewell forever.

Will Make No More Speeches.

"Please announce in the papers," said Twain today, "that I have retired forever from the public platform." When interviewed concerning the recent dispatches to the effect that the German translations of his works have been excluded by the Russian authorities, Mark Twain was not a bit worried. "I am not in the least surprised," said the humorist. "The books of hundreds of other authors are excluded every year from Russia, and the fact that my works are barred gives me little concern. I am but one of a vast number whose books have been excluded and are being shut out every day by the Russian authorities and I take it as no special compliment that I am among so many.

Russia Fears for Monarchy.

"Russia has a great many Germans in its population and is gradually Russianizing them and naturally it does not wish any literature circulated that would influence any of the people in favor of a monarchy.

"In some of my works I may have said something that could have been colored into a pronounced expression of views against the Russian government, and it is probable that this accounts for the fact that my books have been barred, and I think that the political cast of some of my stories is alone responsible."

Mr. Clemens left at noon today for St. Louis, where he will be entertained by the officials of the fair. From St. Louis he will go directly to New York.

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