The Archive, in conjunction with the Center for Mark Twain Studies, affords scholars the uniquely rewarding experience of ready access to a collection of primary and secondary materials on Twain as well as the opportunity to live and work in the same home, Quarry Farm, where Twain spent some of his most productive summers in the 1870s and 1880s.
In addition to various editions of Twain’s work, the collection includes photographs, books from Twain’s library and the library at Quarry Farm, books and articles written about him, and microfilms of letters and manuscripts from the Mark Twain collections at the Bancroft Library in Berkeley, the Mark Twain Memorial in Hartford, Vassar College and the Huntington Library. Through the generosity of friends over the years, the collection has also acquired a fine collection of Mark Twain titles in languages other than English, the Love Collection of framed photographs and autographs, correspondence between Twain and members of his Elmira circle such as E.M. VanAken, Dr. Frank Darby and Julia Jones Beecher, letters written by Twain at the end of his life and other photographs and memorabilia that add greatly to the scope and interest of the collection.
The Mark Twain Archive, located on the second floor of the Gannett-Tripp Library, houses the collection of Mark Twain materials belonging to Elmira College.
Rich woodwork, period furnishings and marble accents create a setting reflective of the significance of the collection and offer a quiet, comfortable work area for Mark Twain researchers. The ceiling panels and the relief above the mantle are from Klapproth’s Tavern, which Twain was known to frequent during his summers in Elmira.
Access to the Mark Twain Archive is by appointment only.
The Mark Twain Archive is available to anyone with a research need that can be served by the collections. The Archive exists primarily to serve the needs of researchers but, with sufficient notice, it is sometimes possible to arrange for a tour for small classes or for visitors with a legitimate interest in the collection.