This is the only postcard I have that shows the cabin in a dilapidated state before it was restored. The roof is caving in, the walls are leaning, and I doubt if there is a floor. The straw-hatted ladies appear to be having a picnic and in the center of the picnic you see a wooden table. I find the table quite interesting, because it shows up in three of my other postcards.
Here is the cabin after restoration. I have no shots of the inside, but it is probably just one large room. Notice the table under the oak tree to the right. How would you like to have an address such as "Jackass Hill"? Not very high-fallutin'.
This old gent standing at the door of the cabin is W. R. Gillis. He and his brother Jim owned the cabin and worked with Mark Twain in a mining venture that did not pay off, at least for Mr. Twain. He would earn his fortune with his pen. At the bottom of this postcard it reads "Mark Twain's partner W. R. Gillis. Mark Twain cabin near Sonora, Cal."
A postcard of the Historical Marker near the cabin. "On California State Highway 49. One mile to Mark Twain Cabin Replica, with Original Chimney and Fireplace. Here, on Jackass Hill, young Mark Twain while the guest of the Gillis Brothers in 1864-65 gathered material for his 'Jumping Frog of Calaveras' which first brought him fame, and for 'Roughing It'.
In this shot there is a large stack of wood next to the chimney. I would love to see a shot of the fireplace inside. It must be quite large.
Here the table makes an appearance again, leaning towards the chimney. There also appears to be an outhouse in back on the left.
Here is the table again. The large oak near the cabin is also very interesting in the many shots. It has been pruned and loped through the years, and large props put under some of the limbs. I wonder how big it was 140 years ago when Mark Twain lived there?
This postcard erroneously states "Mark Twain's Cabin El Dorado Co. Cal." It is actually in Tuolumne County.
This was one of my favorite places to go when I visited Tuolumne County in my teens and twenties, before Heidi moved there. There is something fascinating about these old miners' cabins. Roughing it is right!
This color postcard shows the old oak tree with it's lopped off branches, bench built around the trunk, and the large props under the branches. This card is a Union Oil Company Natural Color Scenes of the West postcard and states "Mark Twain's Cabin where the author wrote his 'Jumping Frog of Calaveras' stands on Jackass Hill just east of Angels Camp. The region is famed in fact and legend for its 75% pure gold quartz and the hardy pioneers who came with the Gold Rush. Tour the west this year with 76 gasoline."
This is a "Wesco Color Card, reproduced from Natural Color Photographs. Mark Twain's Cabin, Mother Lode Country, in California. Reproduced by Spectratone from a Kodachrome by Mike Roberts".
This card has quite a bit to say. "Mark Twain's Cabin. Jackass Hill. Mark Twain lived in this cabin for some 5 months in 1864-5 as a guest of the Gillis brothers at a time he had to flee San Francisco because of debts. Coarse gold was found on the hill and one quartz pocket produced from one to three hundred dollars a day for three years. This replica of the cabin is built around the old fireplace, undamaged when fire destroyed the original building. The hill received its name from the braying of hundreds of jackasses that paused here overnight as they packed supplies to the mines. It was here that Clemens wrote "Roughing It" and "The Sage of Jackass Hill" The hill is a short distance from highway 49 and north of Sonora and Columbia. M.P." Photo color by Merle Porter.
"Mark Twain's Cabin on Jack Ass Hill, Mother Lode Country of California Gold Rush Days. It was here that Mark Twain put together material for his first writing fame." Little did he know he would become famous for such classics as 'Tom Sawyer' and 'Innocents Abroad'.
I hope you enjoyed your armchair postcard tour of Mark Twain's Cabin on Jackass Hill.