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55 J. Copyright Soc'y U.S.A. 623 (2007-2008)
Difficult Clients and Clashing Affidavits: The Prince and the Pauper Litigation

handle is hein.journals/jocoso55 and id is 690 raw text is: © OPYRIGHT
O   DIFFICULT CLIENTS AND
R THE PRINCE AND THE.
N              by WILLIAM
E
R

623
CLASHING AFFIDAVITS:
PAUPER LITIGATIONt

H. MANZ*

I. INTRODUCTION
In April 1890, the loser of a well-publicized lawsuit referred to the
prevailing party as a polecat' and a liar.2 Later, he would call his attorney
an ignorant, blethering gas-pipe . . . [and] a damned fool . . . [who] will
infallibly lose every suit you put into his hands.3 The unhappy litigant
was famous author and humorist Mark Twain; the prevailing party was his
former friend, author and journalist Edward Howard House; and the at-
torney he disparaged was Daniel Whitford of the firm of Alexander &
Green. The case, House v. Clemens,4 involving the dramatization rights
for Twain's famous novel The Prince and the Pauper, was noted in Profes-
sor Catherine Seville's study of Mark Twain as a copyright crusader, which
tThis article is dedicated to Professor Joseph J. Beard who approved its
publication before his death.
*Acting Editor, Journal of the Copyright Society of the USA; Senior Research Li-
brarian, St. John's University School of Law. A.B., College of the Holy Cross;
M.A., Northwestern University, M.L.S., Long Island University; J.D., St. John's
University School of Law. The author's previous writings on late nineteenth- and
early twentieth-century New York legal history include several articles, and The
Palsgraf Case: Courts Law and Society in 1920s New York, published in late 2005
by LexisNexis Matthew Bender.
1 Letter from Samuel L. Clemens to Moncure Conway (Apr. 25, 1890), in MI-
CROFILM EDITION OF MARK TWAIN'S PREVIOUSLY UNPUBLISHED LETTERS
(2001) [hereinafter PREVIOUSLY UNPUBLISHED LETTERS].
2 Id.
3 Letter from Samuel L. Clemens to Fred J. Hall (Dec. 27, 1890), in MARK
TWAIN's LETTERS To His PUBLISHERS: 1867-1894, at 265 (Hamlin Hill ed.,
1967).
4 9 N.Y.S. 484 (Ct. Common Pleas N.Y. County 1890).

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