<%@LANGUAGE="JAVASCRIPT" CODEPAGE="65001"%> Letter from Mark Twain to Orion Clemens - Aug. 11, 1872
Mark Twain Letters

Letter from Mark Twain to Orion Clemens

FENWICK HALL, SAYBROOK, CONN. Aug. 11, 1872.

Mark Twain Orion Clemens

MY DEAR BRO.—I shall sail for England in the Scotia, Aug. 21.

But what I wish to put on record now, is my new invention—hence this note, which you will preserve. It is this—a self-pasting scrap-book—good enough idea if some juggling tailor does not come along and ante-date me a couple of months, as in the case of the elastic veststrap.

The nuisance of keeping a scrap-book is: 1. One never has paste or gum tragacanth handy; 2. Mucilage won't stick, or stay, 4 weeks; 3. Mucilage sucks out the ink and makes the scraps unreadable; 4. To daub and paste 3 or 4 pages of scraps is tedious, slow, nasty and tiresome. My idea is this: Make a scrap-book with leaves veneered or coated with gum-stickum of some kind; wet the page with sponge, brush, rag or tongue, and dab on your scraps like postage stamps.

Lay on the gum in columns of stripes.

Each stripe of gum the length of say 20 ems, small pica, and as broad as your finger; a blank about as broad as your finger between each 2 stripes—so in wetting the paper you need not wet any more of the gum than your scrap or scraps will cover—then you may shut up the book and the leaves won't stick together.

Preserve, also, the envelope of this letter—postmark ought to be good evidence of the date of this great humanizing and civilizing invention.

I'll put it into Dan Slote's hands and tell him he must send you all over America, to urge its use upon stationers and booksellers—so don't buy into a newspaper. The name of this thing is "Mark Twain's Self-Pasting Scrapbook."

All well here. Shall be up a P. M. Tuesday. Send the carriage.

Yr Bro.
S. L. CLEMENS.

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