The Mark Twain Boyhood Home & Museum
In 1803, the United States paid France $15 million for 828,000 acres of land west of the Mississippi River. Only 16 years later, the enterprising Moses Bates established the town of Hannibal, MO.
The Clemens Family
The allure of this riverboat town fit the dreams of John Clemens, a Tennessee native who was trying, but failing, to run a general store in Florida, MO. John moved his family, including four-year-old Sam, to Hannibal in 1839 and built this house on a piece of land that his cousin purchased.
When the family hit hard times in 1846, they moved across the street to live with the Grant family above their pharmacy. After John passed away in 1847, when Sam was only 11 years old, they moved back to this house. In 1851, Sam's sister Pamela married and moved to St. Louis. Two years later, the remaining Clemens family—Jane and her sons Orion and Henry—moved to Iowa, while 17-year-old Sam took off for solo adventures in St. Louis and beyond.
The In-Between Times
The house was used as rental property until 1911 when it was scheduled for demolition. Hannibal citizen
[Photo captions read]
• Mr. and Mrs. George Mahan
• Dedication on May 15, 1912
The WPA Protects
The museum building next to the Boyhood Home and the stone wall surrounding the courtyard were completed in 1937 by the Works Project Administration. The wall served as a firewall between the Twain property and a lumberyard.
The home was fully restored and stabilized between 1990-91. This included rebuilding two rooms at the back of the house that had been removed around 1885.
Reasons To Be Proud
Opened to the public in 1912, the Boyhood Home is one of America's earliest historic homes. It is on the National Register of Historic Places and is designated as a National Historic Landmark.
Erected by Mark Twain Home Foundation.
Topics. This historical marker is listed in this topic list: Notable Buildings.
Location. 39° 42.732′ N, 91° 21.481′ W. Marker is in Hannibal, Missouri, in Marion County. Marker is in the garden between the Mark Twain Interpretive Center and the rear entrance to the Boyhood Home. Touch for map. Marker is at
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Mark Twain (a few steps from this marker); Mark Twain's Boyhood Home (within shouting distance of this marker); a different marker also named Mark Twain (within shouting distance of this marker); Becky Thatcher's Home (within shouting distance of this marker); Tom Sawyer’s Fence (within shouting distance of this marker); Mark Twain's Father's Law Office (within shouting distance of this marker); Grant's Drug Store (within shouting distance of this marker); "Huckleberry Finn House" Reconstruction (within shouting distance of this marker). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Hannibal.
Also see . . .
1. The Mark Twain Boyhood Home & Museum. (Submitted on September 22, 2020, by William Fischer, Jr. of Scranton, Pennsylvania.)
2. Mark Twain Historic District National Register Nomination Form. (Submitted on September 22, 2020, by William Fischer, Jr. of Scranton, Pennsylvania.)
Credits. This page was last revised on September 22, 2020. It was originally submitted on September 22, 2020, by William Fischer, Jr. of Scranton, Pennsylvania. This page has been viewed 46 times since then. Photos: 1, 2, 3. submitted on September 22, 2020, by William Fischer, Jr. of Scranton, Pennsylvania.