San Francisco Letter

Mark Twain

Virginia City Territorial Enterprise/November 15, 1865

Editorial “Puffing”

Let “John Wychecombe Smith, Esq., one of our pioneer merchants, and one among our wealthiest and most respected citizens,” leave in the steamer “to revisit the home of his nativity,” and one of these papers will give you half a column of sorrow and distress about it, and wind up with the eternal “but we are happy to say that not many months will elapse ere he will be with us again” – and forget to mention that a distinguished and war-bronzed Major-General went in the same steamer with the wealthy and successful Smith. The other paper would let John Wychecombe Smith go to the States, or to the devil, either, a dozen times over, and always maintain an insolent silence about it: but let Moike Mulrooney, or Tim Murphy, or Judy O’Flaherty, receive a present of raal Irish whisky from the ould country, and it will never let you hear the last of it.


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