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When Mark Twain came to Malabar Hill

Mumbai: Raj Bhavan, Maharashtra Governor`s residence in Mumbai, which sits atop Malabar Hill and is surrounded by sea on three sides, had a distinguished visitor 116 years ago. His name was Mark Twain.

Lord Ian Strathcarron from England came to Raj Bhavan last year to see the place which the famous American writer had visited in 1896.

Raj Bhavan spokesperson Umesh Kashikar has mentioned this in the magazine `Aaple Raj Bhavan` (Our Raj Bhavan), edited by him. Twain (1835-1910) is famous for works such as `Tom Sawyer` and `Adventures of Huckleberry Finn`.

Strathcarron, who writes historical travel books, was researching Mark Twain`s visit to India. According to Strathcarron, Twain lunched with the then Governor of Bombay, Lord Sandhurst, at the Raj Bhavan which was then called the `Government House`. The date was January 26, 1896.

The humorist spent two and a half months travelling around what are now India and Pakistan. A year later, he published an account of these travels: `Following the Equator`.

Strathcarron was given a tour of the Darbar Hall, the Banquet Hall, the Dinning Room, Point Bungalow and other interesting places around the Raj Bhavan. He also visited Royal Bombay Yacht Club, Watson`s Hostel, Novelty Theatre (all in Mumbai) and Poona Gymkhana in Pune. "He said he will be writing about experiences of his India tour in the forthcoming book `The Indian Equator: Mark Twain`s India Revisited`," Kashikar said.

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