Mark Twain - How Was Mark Twain Affected By the Civil War?

Mark Twain
Mark Twain.

Question: Mark Twain - How Was Mark Twain Affected By the Civil War?

How was Mark Twain affected by the Civil War? Did he fight? Did he object? What happened to Mark Twain during the Civil War?

Answer: Mark Twain & His Experience With The Civil War

Mark Twain had been a journalist and a riverboat pilot, but he enlisted in the Confederate militia in 1861--just as the Civil War was getting started. The war would last until 1865, but Mark Twain didn't stay a soldier long.

Instead, he went West, where he briefly became a gold miner (a profession at which he failed miserably) and a journalist.

Mark Twain -- An Account of Soldiering

Mark Twain said: "I was a soldier two weeks once in the beginning of the war, and was hunted like a rat the whole time. Familiar? My splendid Kipling himself hasn't a more burn't in, hard-baked and unforgettable familiarity with that death-on-the pale-horse-with-hell-following-after which a raw soldier's first fortnight in the field--and which, without any doubt, is the most tremendous fortnight and the vividest he is ever going to see."

Mark Twain -- What He Said About The Civil War

Mark Twain said that the war "uprooted institutions that were centuries old... transformed the social life of half the country, and wrought so profoundly upon the entire national character that the influence cannot be measured short of two or three generations."

Mark Twain Becomes The Famous American Writer

Mark Twain's journalism eventually took him to Hawaii and the Sandwich Islands, but his experiences out West also led him to write "The Celebrated Jumping Frog of Calaveras County and Other Sketches," which was first published in 1867.

Mark Twain -- Life on the Mississippi

In Life on the Mississippi, Mark Twain wrote, "In the South the war is what AD is elsewhere; they date from it."

Mark Twain -- The History of a Campaign That Failed

In "The History of a Campaign That Failed," Mark Twain wrote a semi-fictional account of his experience with the Missouri militia.

Of course, A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court has also been seen as a reflection on the Civil War.