Roughing It

(In Great Britain it was published as 2 volumes: “Roughing It” and “The Innocents at Home” - RT)


Mark Twain


Of California,

an Honest Man, a Genial Comrade, and a Steadfast Friend.
By the Author,
In Memory of the Curious Time
When We Two




Chapter I.

My Brother appointed Secretary of Nevada — I Envy His Prospective Adventures — Am Appointed Private Secretary Under Him — My Contentment Complete — Packed in One Hour — Dreams and Visions — On the Missouri River — A Bully Boat

Chapter II.

Arrive at St. Joseph — Only Twenty-five Pounds Baggage Allowed — Farewell to Kid Gloves and Dress Coats — Armed to the Teeth — The “Allen” — A Cheerful Weapon — Persuaded to Buy a Mule — Schedule of Luxuries — We Leave the “States” — “Our Coach” — Mails for the Indians — Between a Wink and an Earthquake — A Modern Sphynx and How She Entertained Us — A Sociable Heifer

Chapter III.

“The Thoroughbrace is Broke” — Mails Delivered Properly — Sleeping Under Difficulties — A Jackass Rabbit Meditating, and on Business — A Modern Gulliver — Sage-brush — Overcoats as an Article of Diet — Sad Fate of a Camel — Warning to Experimenters

Chapter IV.

Making Our Bed — Assaults by the Unabridged — At a Station — Our Driver a Great and Shining Dignitary — Strange Place for a Frontyard — Accommodations — Double Portraits — An Heirloom — Our Worthy Landlord — “Fixings and Things” — An Exile — Slumgullion — A Well Furnished Table — The Landlord Astonished — Table Etiquette — Wild Mexican Mules — Stage-coaching and Railroading

Chapter V.

New Acquaintances — The Cayote — A Dog’s Experiences — A Disgusted Dog — The Relatives of the Cayote — Meals Taken Away from Home

Chapter VI.

The Division Superintendent — The Conductor — The Driver — One Hundred and Fifty Miles’ Drive Without Sleep — Teaching a Subordinate — Our Old Friend Jack and a Pilgrim — Ben Holliday Compared to Moses

Chapter VII.

Overland City — Crossing the Platte — Bemis’s Buffalo Hunt — Assault by a Buffalo — Bemis’s Horse Goes Crazy — An Impromptu Circus — A New Departure — Bemis Finds Refuge in a Tree — Escapes Finally by a Wonderful Method

Chapter VIII.

The Pony Express — Fifty Miles Without Stopping — “Here he Comes” — Alkali Water — Riding an Avalanche — Indian Massacre

Chapter IX.

Among the Indians — An Unfair Advantage — Laying on our Arms — A Midnight Murder — Wrath of Outlaws — A Dangerous, yet Valuable Citizen

Chapter X.

History of Slade — A Proposed Fist-fight — Encounter with Jules — Paradise of Outlaws — Slade as Superintendent — As Executioner — A Doomed Whisky Seller — A Prisoner — A Wife’s Bravery — An Ancient Enemy Captured — Enjoying a Luxury — Hob-nobbing with Slade — Too Polite — A Happy Escape

Chapter XI.

Slade in Montana — “On a Spree” — In Court — Attack on a Judge — Arrest by the Vigilantes — Turn out of the Miners — Execution of Slade — Lamentations of His Wife — Was Slade a Coward?

Chapter XII.

A Mormon Emigrant Train — The Heart of the Rocky Mountains — Pure Saleratus — A Natural Ice-House — An Entire Inhabitant — In Sight of “Eternal Snow” — The South Pass — The Parting Streams — An Unreliable Letter Carrier — Meeting of Old Friends — A Spoiled Watermelon — Down the Mountain — A Scene of Desolation — Lost in the Dark — Unnecessary Advice — U.S. Troops and Indians — Sublime Spectacle — Another Delusion Dispelled — Among the Angels

Chapter XIII.

Mormons and Gentiles — Exhilarating Drink, and its Effect on Bemis — Salt Lake City — A Great Contrast — A Mormon Vagrant — Talk with a Saint — A Visit to the “King” — A Happy Simile

Chapter XIV.

Mormon Contractors — How Mr. Street Astonished Them — The Case Before Brigham Young, and How he Disposed of it — Polygamy Viewed from a New Position

Chapter XV.

A Gentile Den — Polygamy Discussed — Favorite Wife and D. 4 — Hennery for Retired Wives — Children Need Marking — Cost of a Gift to No. 6 — A Penny-whistle Gift and its Effects — Fathering the Foundlings — It Resembled Him — The Family Bedstead

Chapter XVI.

The Mormon Bible — Proofs of its Divinity — Plagiarism of its Authors — Story of Nephi — Wonderful Battle — Kilkenny Cats Outdone

Chapter XVII.

Three Sides to all Questions — Everything “A Quarter” — Shriveled Up — Emigrants and White Shirts at a Discount — “Forty-Niners” — Above Par — Real Happiness

Chapter XVIII.

Alkali Desert — Romance of Crossing Dispelled — Alkali Dust — Effect on the Mules — Universal Thanksgiving

Chapter XIX.

The Digger Indians Compared with the Bushmen of Africa — Food, Life and Characteristics — Cowardly Attack on a Stage Coach — A Brave Driver — The Noble Red Man

Chapter XX.

The Great American Desert — Forty Miles on Bones — Lakes Without Outlets — Greely’s Remarkable Ride — Hank Monk, the Renowned Driver — Fatal Effects of “Corking” a Story — Bald-Headed Anecdote

Chapter XXI.

Alkali Dust — Desolation and Contemplation — Carson City — Our Journey Ended — We are Introduced to Several Citizens — A Strange Rebuke — A Washoe Zephyr at Play — Its Office Hours — Governor’s Palace — Government Offices — Our French Landlady Bridget O’Flannigan — Shadow Secrets — Cause for a Disturbance at Once — The Irish Brigade — Mrs. O’Flannigan’s Boarders — The Surveying Expedition — Escape of the Tarantulas

Chapter XXII.

The Son of a Nabob — Start for Lake Tahoe — Splendor of the Views — Trip on the Lake — Camping Out — Reinvigorating Climate — Clearing a Tract of Land — Securing a Title — Outhouse and Fences

Chapter XXIII.

A Happy Life — Lake Tahoe and its Moods — Transparency of the Waters — A Catastrophe — Fire! Fire! — A Magnificent Spectacle — Homeless Again — We take to the Lake — A Storm — Return to Carson

Chapter XXIV.

Resolve to Buy a Horse — Horsemanship in Carson — A Temptation — Advice Given Me Freely — I Buy the Mexican Plug — My First Ride — A Good Bucker — I Loan the Plug — Experience of Borrowers — Attempts to Sell — Expense of the Experiment — A Stranger Taken In

Chapter XXV.

The Mormons in Nevada — How to Persuade a Loan from Them — Early History of the Territory — Silver Mines Discovered — The New Territorial Government — A Foreign One and a Poor One — Its Funny Struggles for Existence — No Credit, no Cash — Old Abe Currey Sustains it and its Officers — Instructions and Vouchers — An Indian’s Endorsement — Toll-Gates

Chapter XXVI.

The Silver Fever — State of the Market — Silver Bricks — Tales Told — Off for the Humboldt Mines

Chapter XXVII.

Our manner of going — Incidents of the Trip — A Warm but Too Familiar a Bedfellow — Mr. Ballou Objects — Sunshine amid Clouds — Safely Arrived

Chapter XXVIII.

Arrive at the Mountains — Building Our Cabin — My First Prospecting Tour — My First Gold Mine — Pockets Filled With Treasures — Filtering the News to My Companions — The Bubble Pricked — All Not Gold That Glitters

Chapter XXIX.

Out Prospecting — A Silver Mine At Last — Making a Fortune With Sledge and Drill — A Hard Road to Travel — We Own in Claims — A Rocky Country

Chapter XXX.

Disinterested Friends — How “Feet” Were Sold — We Quit Tunnelling — A Trip to Esmeralda — My Companions — An Indian Prophesy — A Flood — Our Quarters During It

Chapter XXXI.

The Guests at “Honey Lake Smith’s” — “Bully Old Arkansas” — “Our Landlord” — Determined to Fight — The Landlord’s Wife — The Bully Conquered by Her — Another Start — Crossing the Carson — A Narrow Escape — Following Our Own Track — A New Guide — Lost in the Snow

Chapter XXXII.

Desperate Situation — Attempts to Make a Fire — Our Horses leave us — We Find Matches — One, Two, Three and the Last — No Fire — Death Seems Inevitable — We Mourn Over Our Evil Lives — Discarded Vices — We Forgive Each Other — An Affectionate Farewell — The Sleep of Oblivion

Chapter XXXIII.

Return of Consciousness — Ridiculous Developments — A Station House — Bitter Feelings — Fruits of Repentance — Resurrected Vices

Chapter XXXIV.

About Carson — General Buncombe — Hyde vs. Morgan — How Hyde Lost His Ranch — The Great Landslide Case — The Trial — General Buncombe in Court — A Wonderful Decision — A Serious Afterthought

Chapter XXXV.

A New Travelling Companion — All Full and No Accommodations — How Captain Nye found Room — and Caused Our Leaving to be Lamented — The Uses of Tunnelling — A Notable Example — We Go into the “Claim” Business and Fail — At the Bottom

Chapter XXXVI.

A Quartz Mill — Amalgamation — “Screening Tailings” — First Quartz Mill in Nevada — Fire Assay — A Smart Assayer — I stake for an advance

Chapter XXXVII.

The Whiteman Cement Mine — Story of its Discovery — A Secret Expedition — A Nocturnal Adventure — A Distressing Position — A Failure and a Week’s Holiday

Chapter XXXVIII.

Mono Lake — Shampooing Made Easy — Thoughtless Act of Our Dog and the Results — Lye Water — Curiosities of the Lake — Free Hotel — Some Funny Incidents a Little Overdrawn

Chapter XXXIX.

Visit to the Islands in Lake Mono — Ashes and Desolation — Life Amid Death Our Boat Adrift — A Jump For Life — A Storm On the Lake — A Mass of Soap Suds — Geological Curiosities — A Week On the Sierras — A Narrow Escape From a Funny Explosion — “Stove Heap Gone”

Chapter XL.

The “Wide West” Mine — It is “Interviewed” by Higbie — A Blind Lead — Worth a Million — We are Rich At Last — Plans for the Future

Chapter XLI.

A Rheumatic Patient — Day Dreams — An Unfortunate Stumble — I Leave Suddenly — Another Patient — Higbie in the Cabin — Our Balloon Bursted — Worth Nothing — Regrets and Explanations — Our Third Partner

Chapter XLII.

What to do Next? — Obstacles I Had Met With — “Jack of All Trades” — Mining Again — Target Shooting — I Turn City Editor — I Succeed Finely

Chapter XLIII.

My Friend Boggs — The School Report — Boggs Pays Me An Old Debt — Virginia City

Chapter XLIV.

Flush Times — Plenty of Stock — Editorial Puffing — Stocks Given Me — Salting Mines — A Tragedian in a New Role

Chapter XLV.

Flush Times Continue — Sanitary Commission Fund — Wild Enthusiasm of the People — Would not wait to Contribute — The Sanitary Flour Sack — It is Carried to Gold Hill and Dayton — Final Reception in Virginia — Results of the Sale — A Grand Total

Chapter XLVI.

The Nabobs of Those Days — John Smith as a Traveler — Sudden Wealth — A Sixty-Thousand-Dollar Horse — A Smart Telegraph Operator — A Nabob in New York City — Charters an Omnibus — “Walk in, It’s All Free” — “You Can’t Pay a Cent” — “Hold On, Driver, I Weaken” — Sociability of New Yorkers

Chapter XLVII.

Buck Fanshaw’s Death — The Cause Thereof — Preparations for His Burial — Scotty Briggs the Committee Man — He Visits the Minister — Scotty Can’t Play His Hand — The Minister Gets Mixed — Both Begin to See — “All Down Again But Nine” — Buck Fanshaw as a Citizen — How To “Shook Your Mother” — The Funeral — Scotty Briggs as a Sunday School Teacher

Chapter XLVIII.

The First Twenty-Six Graves in Nevada — The Prominent Men of the County — The Man Who Had Killed His Dozen — Trial by Jury — Specimen Jurors — A Private Grave Yard — The Desperadoes — Who They Killed — Waking up the Weary Passenger — Satisfaction Without Fighting

Chapter XLIX.

Fatal Shooting Affray — Robbery and Desperate Affray — A Specimen City Official — A Marked Man — A Street Fight — Punishment of Crime

Chapter L.

Captain Ned Blakely — Bill Nookes Receives Desired Information — Killing of Blakely’s Mate — A Walking Battery — Blakely Secures Nookes — Hang First and Be Tried Afterwards — Captain Blakely as a Chaplain — The First Chapter of Genesis Read at a Hanging — Nookes Hung — Blakely’s Regrets

Chapter LI.

The Weekly Occidental — A Ready Editor — A Novel — A Concentration of Talent — The Heroes and the Heroines — The Dissolute Author Engaged — Extraordinary Havoc With the Novel — A Highly Romantic Chapter — The Lovers Separated — Jonah Out-done — A Lost Poem — The Aged Pilot Man — Storm On the Erie Canal — Dollinger the Pilot Man — Terrific Gale — Danger Increases — A Crisis Arrived — Saved as if by a Miracle

Chapter LII.

Freights to California — Silver Bricks — Under Ground Mines — Timber Supports — A Visit to the Mines — The Caved Mines — Total of Shipments in 1863

Chapter LIII.

Jim Blaine and his Grandfather’s Ram — Filkin’s Mistake — Old Miss Wagner and her Glass Eye — Jacobs, the Coffin Dealer — Waiting for a Customer — His Bargain With Old Robbins — Robbins Sues for Damage and Collects — A New Use for Missionaries — The Effect — His Uncle Lem. and the Use Providence Made of Him — Sad Fate of Wheeler — Devotion of His Wife — A Model Monument — What About the Ram?

Chapter LIV.

Chinese in Virginia City — Washing Bills — Habit of Imitation — Chinese Immigration — A Visit to Chinatown — Messrs. Ah Sing, Hong Wo, See Yup, &c.

Chapter LV.

Tired of Virginia City — An Old Schoolmate — A Two Years’ Loan — Acting as an Editor — Almost Receive an Offer — An Accident — Three Drunken Anecdotes — Last Look at Mt. Davidson — A Beautiful Incident

Chapter LVI.

Off for San Francisco — Western and Eastern Landscapes — The Hottest place on Earth — Summer and Winter

Chapter LVII.

California — Novelty of Seeing a Woman — “Well if it ain’t a Child!” — One Hundred and Fifty Dollars for a Kiss — Waiting for a turn

Chapter LVIII.

Life in San Francisco — Worthless Stocks — My First Earthquake — Reportorial Instincts — Effects of the Shocks — Incidents and Curiosities — Sabbath Breakers — The Lodger and the Chambermaid — A Sensible Fashion to Follow — Effects of the Earthquake on the Ministers

Chapter LIX.

Poor Again — Slinking as a Business — A Model Collector — Misery loves Company — Comparing Notes for Comfort — A Streak of Luck — Finding a Dime — Wealthy by Comparison — Two Sumptuous Dinners

Chapter LX.

An Old Friend — An Educated Miner — Pocket Mining — Freaks of Fortune

Chapter LXI.

Dick Baker and his Cat — Tom Quartz’s Peculiarities — On an Excursion — Appearance On His Return — A Prejudiced Cat — Empty Pockets and a Roving Life

Chapter LXII.

Bound for the Sandwich Islands — The Three Captains — The Old Admiral — His Daily Habits — His Well Fought Fields — An Unexpected Opponent — The Admiral Overpowered — The Victor Declared a Hero

Chapter LXIII.

Arrival at the Islands — Honolulu — What I Saw There — Dress and Habits of the Inhabitants — The Animal Kingdom — Fruits and Delightful Effects

Chapter LXIV.

An Excursion — Captain Phillips and his Turn-Out — A Horseback Ride — A Vicious Animal — Nature and Art — Interesting Ruins — All Praise to the Missionaries

Chapter LXV.

Interesting Mementoes and Relics — An Old Legend of a Frightful Leap — An Appreciative Horse — Horse Jockeys and Their Brothers — A New Trick — A Hay Merchant — Good Country for Horse Lovers

Chapter LXVI.

A Saturday Afternoon — Sandwich Island Girls on a Frolic — The Poi Merchant — Grand Gala Day — A Native Dance — Church Membership — Cats and Officials — An Overwhelming Discovery

Chapter LXVII.

The Legislature of the Island — What Its President Has Seen — Praying for an Enemy — Women’s Rights — Romantic Fashions — Worship of the Shark — Desire for Dress — Full Dress — Not Paris Style — Playing Empire — Officials and Foreign Ambassadors — Overwhelming Magnificence

Chapter LXVIII.

A Royal Funeral — Order of Procession — Pomp and Ceremony — A Striking Contrast — A Sick Monarch — Human Sacrifices at His Death — Burial Orgies

Chapter LXIX.

“Once more upon the Waters.” — A Noisy Passenger — Several Silent Ones — A Moonlight Scene — Fruits and Plantations

Chapter LXX.

A Droll Character — Mrs. Beazely and Her Son — Meditations on Turnips — A Letter from Horace Greeley — An Indignant Rejoinder — The Letter Translated but too Late

Chapter LXXI.

Kealakekua Bay — Death of Captain Cook — His Monument — Its Construction — On Board the Schooner

Chapter LXXII.

Young Kanakas in New England — A Temple Built by Ghosts — Female Bathers — I Stood Guard — Women and Whiskey — A Fight for Religion — Arrival of Missionaries

Chapter LXXIII.

Native Canoes — Surf Bathing — A Sanctuary — How Built — The Queen’s Rock — Curiosities — Petrified Lava

Chapter LXXIV.

Visit to the Volcano — The Crater — Pillar of Fire — Magnificent Spectacle — A Lake of Fire

Chapter LXXV.

The North Lake — Fountains of Fire — Streams of Burning Lava — Tidal Waves

Chapter LXXVI.

A Reminiscence — Another Horse Story — My Ride with the Retired Milk Horse — A Picnicing Excursion — Dead Volcano of Holeakala — Comparison with Vesuvius — An Inside View

Chapter LXXVII.

A Curious Character — A Series of Stories — Sad Fate of a Liar — Evidence of Insanity

Chapter LXXVIII.

Return to San Francisco — Ship Amusements — Preparing for Lecturing — Valuable Assistance Secured — My First Attempt — The Audience Carried — “All’s Well that Ends Well.”

Chapter LXXIX.

Highwaymen — A Predicament — A Huge Joke — Farewell to California — At Home Again — Great Changes. Moral.


A. — Brief Sketch of Mormon History
B. — The Mountain Meadows Massacre
C. — Concerning a Frightful Assassination that was never Consummated

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