After a brief stint as a Confederate cavalry militiaman (not included in the account), he joined his brother Orion Clemens, who had been appointed Secretary of the Nevada Territory, on a stagecoach journey west.
I enjoyed this book a great deal because I currently live in the area of northern Nevada where a lot of the book takes place. He describes a lot of the details about silver and gold mining that were very educational to me and helped me appreciate what went on during the flush times in California and Nevada.
Although the author claims this book to be nonfiction, I believe he did one hell of a lot of embellishing of the stories told in the book... I think not to be deceitful but to make the book more interesting and humorous.
I have loved Twain since I first read Huck Finn when I was a kid and now that I am in my late sixties was really grateful to discover this book and learn more about the man and what made him tick.
A wonderful and highly amusing account. I had to subtract one star, however, because of the less than accurate things said about the Mormons.
Best Western Book I've Read
I thoroughly enjoyed this book. This is one of the first novels Mark Twain ever wrote and his brilliance as a story teller is quite evident in this account of old west events as written in 1872. Some of it is written with obvious embellishments to facilitate the entertainment of the reader but much of it is based on facts. This should be a top priority read for any Mark Twain fan or anyone interested in 19th century life.