Mark Twain: His Life in Virginia City, Nevada
2nd Revised Edition

George J. Williams III

This well researched account of Clemens' twenty-one months as reporter for the Territorial Enterprise in Virginia City, Nevada was nominated for the Pulitzer Prize when it was first published in 1985. Samuel Clemens adopted his pen name, Mark Twain, when he began working as a reporter here.

The text is based on recently discovered Twain letters, some published here for the first time, Twain's first newspaper writings and the recollections of men who worked with Twain in Nevada. While prospecting at Aurora, Clemens wrote a series of humorous letters and mailed them to the Enterprise, then a leading Western paper. Impressed, editor Joe Goodman offered twenty-six year old Clemens his first full time writing job as a reporter.

The job permanently changed Clemens' life, establishing him in his lifelong career as a serious writer and humorist. In Virginia City, Twain won notoriety as a humorist and character. Williams shows us that young Mark Twain was a fun loving troublemaker who drank too much, invented horrible murder stories and fled town after threatening a rival editor to a duel.


2009, 208 pages, 5 1/2” x 8 1/2”, 3-color cover, 60+ black & white photographs, maps, bibliography, index. Published by Trees By The River Publishing Trust.
ISBN 978-0-935174-15-1 trade paper

$11.95

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