Hartford, Ct, for many years, has been known as ‘The Insurance capital of the world’. Aside from Insurance Companies, there are many other things to see and do in the Hartford, Ct area. Without a doubt, the top tourist attraction in Hartford, Ct, is the Mark Twain House and Museum. The world famous author Mark Twain(real name Samuel Clemens) lived in a nineteen room, Tiffany decorated mansion in Hartford from 1874- 1891. While he lived there with his wife Livy and their daughters Clara, Jean and Susy, Mark Twain created such classics as The Advenures of Tom Sawyer, The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn and a Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur’s Court.
The instantly recognizable image of the white haired man in the white suit, is known everywhere. In the Hartford, Ct area, Mark Twain’s name and likeness are associated with apartment buildings, schools, a bowling alley, a theater group, a youth hostel and more. Even though Mark Twain lived in other parts of the United States during his lifetime, the years he spent in Hartford, Ct were among his most productive. The books that he produced while living in Hartford, Ct, especially The Adventures of Tom Sawyer and The Adventures of Hukleberry Finn, are some of the most well- known books ever written in America.
The Mark Twain House and Museum, itself, is situated on a lovely expanse of sloping, well- manicured lawn, surrounded by stately trees. Architecturally, the house is one of a kind. The exterior is painted brick, in shades of orange and red. No two elevations are alike. This Victorian mansion boasts of various chimneys, gables and towers, closely resembling a castle. The interior of The Mark Twain House and Museum is a remarkably accurate and intact representation of how and when the Clemens family inhabited it. One of the very first telephones installed in a private home in the United States, was at the Clemens family house, now known as The Mark Twain House and Museum. That very telephone is one of the many interesting time- period pieces on display at the house and museum. Other pionts of interest are the Clemen’s family library, with thousands of antique books for visitors to peruse. Magnificent family portraits grace hallways and rooms throughout the house. An extensive collection of 19th century clothing, including Livy Clemen’s gowns and the last jacket of Mark Twain’s famous white suit are laid out for visitors to examine. Fans of antique jewelry will delight in viewing the large assortment of Brooches and Italian mosaic jewelry, from Livy and Samuel Clemens’ collections. The entire mansion is filled with authentic victorian- era artifacts and decorative arts. From top hats and pocket watches, to Printing presses, antique bicycles and billiard tables, the Mark Twain House and Museum holds items of interest for people of all ages. The Mark Twain Store, located on the premises of The Mark Twain House and Museum, offers commemorative gifts, Fine-art prints and posters, music and videos, men’s and women’s accessories, seasonal gifts and children’s items.
There is also a wonderful cafe’ on the grounds of The Mark Twain House and Museum. With seating for 60 indoors, and a beautiful fieldstone terrace dining area outdoors, the cafe’ is an oasis in the middle of the city. A creative,’light’ menu is offered at the cafe’ at The Mark Twain House and Museum. Cafe’ operations are managed by a company named Restaurant Associates. They also manage food- operations at The Smithsonian Institution, The Metropolitan Museum of Art, The Guggenheim Museum and the American Museum of Natural History. The menu at the cafe’ at The Mark Twain House and Museum offers sandwiches,wraps, salads, soups, desserts, snacks and drinks. The Mark Twain House and Museum also holds lectures by major authors and artists, teachers- workshops, dramatic performances and concerts. Group and student tours are held regularly. The facility is also available for rental. The first floor of The Mark Twain House is wheelchair accessible. The museum center is fully handicapped accessible.
The Mark Twain House and Museum
Hours..Monday- Saturday..9:30 am – 5:30 pm
Sunday..12:00 pm – 5:00 pm
Closed Tuesdays..January – April
Admission..Adults (19-64 )..$12.00
Senior Citizens( 65 up )..$11.00
Children( 6- 12 )..$8.00
Children under 6….Free
Air- conditioned Free parking
Closed on January 1st, Easter Sunday, Thanksgiving Day, December 24th and 25th