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Hannibal, Missouri is the place to be on July 4th!

Hannibal Missouri is known as the boyhood home of Samuel Langhorne Clemens, better known as Mark Twain. The Clemens family lived in Hannibal from 1839 until 1853. Samuel was only four when his family moved from Florida to Missouri. These were formative years for the boy and when he became a writer in later years, his childhood memories were the basis for many of his stories.

The Mark Twain boyhood home is still on Hill Street in Hannibal. It is now the property of the city. Hannibal city officials keep the home in good repair along with the famous Tom Sawyer white washed fence next to the house.

The law office of J.M. Clemens is across the street. Mark Twain’s father presided there as justice of the peace, in the 1840s. The court room provided the setting for the trial of Muff Potter in Mark Twain’s story.   

The home of Beck Thatcher, Tom Sawyer’s first sweetheart, in Mark Twain’s book, The Adventures of Tom Sawyer, is across the street from Mark Twain’s old home.

Mark Twain, long after his demise in 1910, is definitely a character of the Ad world. Many of the old buildings and landmarks are named after Mark Twain.  The Mark Twin Museum was built in 1937. The Mark Twain Restaurant is located acts from the Best Western Hotel Clemens. The Mark Twain Memorial Lighthouse is at the top of Cardiff Hill in Hannibal. The Lighthouse was built by the city, near where Mrs. Holiday’s house stood and it was dedicated in t 1935, the 100 anniversary of Mark Twain’s birthday. Hannibal is also home for the Mark Twain Bridge; Mark Twain Hotel; and the Mark Twain Cave.

There are several statues throughout the city. The statues of Huck Finn and Tom Sawyer, Mark Twain storybook characters, are at the base of Cardiff Hill in Hannibal. It’s been there 80 years. More recently, in 2003, a Mark Twain statue was donated by a Hannibal family and erected in the Riverview Park, at the Riverboat Landing.

The Mark Twain Cave is two miles south of Hannibal. Visitors may take the tour of the cave from Memorial Day to Labor Day. The Hannibal Calendar is exciting with something going on all the time. This year the National Tom Sawyer Days are on the fourth of July weekend. This will be the 64th year for the celebration. Visit www.hannibaljacees.org to learn more.  

If anyone is looking for something different to do, Hannibal is a fun and interesting place to visit. Look for antiques and find Ad World collectibles. Enjoy the local cuisine such as apple dumplings and Mississippi malts. Listen to the riverfront music. Have a good time and be sure to visit the Mark Twain Cave.

It was on visit to Hannibal, that I found the Mark Twain Bobble Head statue at the gift shop at the entrance of the Mark Twain Cave in 2004. The statue is made of resin, stand 5-inches tall, including the book the statue is standing on. The Adventures of Tom Sawyer, is oriented on the spine of the book. Details of the statue are rather minute. Notice the molded hair, eyebrows, and mustache. Look for the miniature buttons and bow tie in his clothing.