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Mark Twain

A Few Places

The Rotunda at the University of Virginia
The Rotunda at The University of Virginia

ictured at left, one of Thomas Jefferson's favorite places. Below, a comprehensive listing of "must visit" sites on the world-wide... um, no, just a few interesting places. Each comes with observations to help you decide if you're interested, and provide insight as to why I was. Some of these sites are late-90's anachronisms (which is why I still like them!), some have kept current. Some were built by friends, some I just found by searching, as varied as DC's major-league zoo or a respected, DC-based art research museum. The list grew in an organic fashion, if you will. Enjoy!

Mark Twain Quotes
rhumba.com's popular selection of randomized Mark Twain quotes is one of this site's most visited pages. Be sure to read the hand-picked 'Mark Twain Quote of the Month.' These are hand-picked from the great writer's letters, are more in-depth than the usual Mark Twain quotes page "words of witty wisdom," and show a different aspect of the man's genius. Previously featured Twain quotes are archived and available as well.

Adventures of Huckleberry Finn
The Great American Novel. This scholarly site features the entire text with ilustrations, and some interesting history. Be sure the check-out the scandalous promotional buckslip.

The Adventures of WebSlinger
Talented MCI'er Kenny Neal created this fun and imaginative look at how one can use the Web to actually do stuff. Includes two editions, from March '96 and September '96. Nice job Kenny.

Catherine's Hacking Cat(s)
The original hacking cat caught my eye a few years ago when it appeared on the front of the (then fledgling, then huge, now GONE) t@p online web community. A good-natured, witty piece of animated web art, it has (judging from our log files) acquired somewhat of a cult following. But wait—there's more! Shortly after the original went 'off the air,' artist Catherine Delett created a second, more sophisticated version. It doesn't stop there! Just when you thought it was safe, the siren song of crass commercialism rears its head, and lo, it's The Great Hacking Cat Sell-Out! (No, Ms. Delett did not do that one—she was as surprised as I was!)


The Drop Zone Virtual Museum
Interested in World War II, told through the eyes of some of the toughest hombres to experience the real deal? This loving site is populated with stories and photos related by surviving veterans of the US Army's 82nd Airborne Division. In the site's own words:

Paratroopers and Glidermen were the US Army's elite infantry units. America's airborne forces spearheaded the war's most pivotal campaigns and were brought in to hold the battle line at all costs. The Drop Zone Virtual Museum is dedicated to preserving "human history" by examining the oral histories, testimonies, and artifacts of the participants. These are their stories...

Leisure Town
Man O Man this guy can tell a story. Yeah, all his stuff is 'for mature readers' (no, it's not a porn site). Much is profane and violent, some is big-time juvenile. But tristan a. farnon brilliantly utilizes models, photos and a cast of characters consisting of rabbits, giraffes, dogs, clowns and what-have-you to create a world bereft of societal pretense, leaving only honest, if raw, original stories.

The Moonlit Road
The deep, dark American South, presented monthly in a series of written pieces. Skillful design complimented by beautifully rendered artwork. Current stories comes with a very cool feature: hear the stories read via realaudio, or shockwave, by the author, in true Southron Story Telling Style.


Tommy's List of Live Cam Worldwide #1
Like spying on people? Well, not people really, but this long list of links to web-based cameras worldwide offers glimpses of far flung scenic vistas, street views, inside views, whatever. Not sure who Tommy is, but he's the man. If it's raining where you are, perhaps it's not in Singapore …

The Ultralight Experience
Being interested in how personal narrative succeeds on the web, and seeing so few examples of that success, I am especially impressed with this site, another from the Rewind Play catalog. It's about one man's love affair making, flying and living ultralights. My entry to the guestbook sums up my opinion:

Who: Brian A.
Where: Fairfax, VA USA
When: Friday, November 21, 1997 at 20:32:12 (EST)
Comments: What a   b e a u t i f u l   s i t e .   You've outdone yourself, eh? A great site to look and learn, for anyone wondering how personal narrative should appear on the web. This site flows like a river; the content is beautifully mananged. The visitor comes away with a real, honest depth of understanding of the sport and your experiences and love. Executed throughout with exorbitant amounts of technical skill, art and imagination. Bravo Jim!

In the wake of his site's overwhelming success ('The Ultralight Experience' was a project cool site, and is on its 5th volume of guestbook entries!), Jim has returned to the air (in more ways than one) with a sequel: Flyin' My Trike: The Ultralight Experience Chapter 2. Another great web-effort.

The Valley of the Shadow: Two Communities in the American Civil War
Yet another site from the servers at U.Va. The 'Valley' project is a fascinating look into the day-to-day existence of two similar communities, one in Pennsylvania, one in Virginia, in the time before and during the Civil War. Newspaper reports and editorials (believe me, objective journalism was NOT the order of the day!), maps, letters, diaries, church records, census records. A top-notch web resource. If you're captivated by the conflict, spend some time here and come away with a profound historical experience.


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