Samuel L. Clemens (popularly known as Mark Twain), together with Silas Snozzlebottom, of Columbus, Ohio, was to-day arraigned before Justice Brown, of the Superior Court, charged with having caused a destructive fire by leaving his campfire unattended. The eminent humorist and author was evidently unaware of the seriousness of his offense for he positively refused to engage an attorney to defend him. When called upon to plead he began to explain that while he confessed to lighting the fire, and leaving it unattended, he wished the Judge to realize that it was the act of God in sending the wind that spread the flames that caused the destructive fire which ensued. The Judge agreed with him, and then grimly said it was a similar act of God which impelled him to levy a fine of $500.00 and one month in jail for leaving his campfire subject to the influence of the wind. The humorist began to smile “on the left,” and expressed an earnest desire to argue the matter out with the Judge, but with a curt “Next Case!” Mark was dismissed in charge of an officer and retired “smiling a sickly smile,” and though he did not “curl up on the floor,” it is evident that the subsequent proceedings interested him no more.
THOMAS STARR KING AT LAKE TAHOE
In 1863 Thomas Starr King, perhaps the most noted and broadly honored divine ever known on the Pacific Coast, visited Lake Tahoe, and on his return to San Francisco preached a sermon, entitled: “Living Water from Lake Tahoe.” Its descriptions are so felicitous that I am gratified to be able to quote them from Dr. King’s volume of Sermons Christianity and Humanity, with the kind permission of the publishers, Houghton, Mifflin Company, Boston, Mass.
LIVING WATER FROM LAKE TAHOE
When one is climbing from the west, by the smooth and excellent road, the last slope of the Sierra ridge, he expects, from the summit of the pass, which is more than seven thousand feet above the sea, higher than the famous pass of the Splugen, or the little St. Bernard, to look off and down upon an immense expanse. He expects, or, if he had not learned beforehand, he would anticipate with eagerness, that he should be able to see mountain summits beneath him, and beyond these, valleys and ridges alternating till the hills subside into the eastern plains. How different the facts that await the eye from the western summit, and what a surprise! We find, on gaining what seems to be the ridge, that the Sierra range for more than a hundred miles has a double line of jagged pinnacles, twelve or fifteen miles apart, with a trench or trough between, along a portion of the way, that is nearly fifteen hundred feet deep if we measure from the pass which the stages traverse, which is nearly three thousand feet deep if the plummet is dropped from the highest points of the snowy spires. Down into