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Cats & Billiards

A Cat-Loving Family [photographs, 1906, 1908]

A Cat-Loving Family [photographs, 1906, 1908]

A Cat-Loving Family [photographs, 1906, 1908]

A Cat-Loving Family [photographs, 1906, 1908]
A Cat-Loving Family
[photographs, 1906, 1908]

The Clemens family adored cats—they even "borrowed" kittens when away from home.

In an 1884 letter, Clemens explained, "There is nothing so valuable in a home as a baby—& no young home is complete without a baby—a baby & a cat. Some people scorn a cat & think it not an essential; but the Clemens tribe are not of these."

Clemens affectionately described one of his favorite cats, Sour Mash: "Every waking moment was precious to her; in it she would find something useful to do—and if she ran out of material and couldn't find anything else to do she would have kittens."

The photographs shown here, taken in 1906 and 1908, include various family cats.
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