Rustic Lens
Mark Twain

Mark Twain’s Home Town – Hannibal, Missouri

Hannibal Missouri is an awesome little town along the Mississippi River. It’s also the setting for Mark Twain’s books “The Adventures of Tom Sawyer” and “The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn”. Samuel Clemens lived there when he was a boy and many of the characters in the books wereinspired by people he knew growing up there. My family absolutely loves his book and movie about going out west to strike it rich gold mining, “Roughin’ It”. They are pretty proud of Mark Twain in Hannibal, his name is everywhere. I have always loved his writing and while researching the route I was going to take on a recent trip, I discovered Hannibal. There’s a wealth of information about things to do and see while in town on their Visit Hannibal website.  I was thrilled to see that you could go on a ride on an actual riverboat! Unfortunately, I was there in the beginning of December and they weren’t running the tours. It’s most definitely on my bucket list of places to go back to.

mark twain riverboat
The Mark Twain riverboat at sunrise

We rolled into town late at night after driving from Cheyenne Wyoming. It was supposed to be a 12 hour drive, but it always seems to take me longer. In preparation for our visit we listened to the audio book version of “The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn” along the way.  My girls and I were very glad to finally get into our hotel that night. A bonus of the very clean and reasonable hotel is that it was across the street from the Mark Twain boyhood home and museum.

Mark Twain boyhood homeI am a photographer, so I got up before sunrise with the idea of capturing an awesome shot of sunrise over the mighty Mississippi. After walking through the brick-lined street between the museum and Becky Thatcher’s house, I set up my tripod right in the middle of Main Street and got this cool shot.

hannibal missouri

Another block or so and I was at the riverbank where this cool statue is.

mark twain statue

On the other side of the Mark Twain riverboat I found an old jetty leading out into the river and into the sunrise. I couldn’t resist.

Mississippi river sunrise

After the color show, I walked back up to the hotel and woke my girls up to get breakfast and go through the museum. For some reason, they didn’t want to get up before sunrise with me. We ate a great breakfast at the Mark Twain Dinette and then proceeded on to the museum. All of the people we encountered were really friendly. We really enjoyed the displays at the museum and walking through Mark Twain’s boyhood home. Cassie got suckered into painting a fence.

tom sawyer fence

I highly recommend visiting Hannibal and I hope to visit again in a nicer time of year. I bet it’s amazing in the spring and summer.

See my full Gallery of Hannibal Here.

What’s your favorite Mark Twain book?


Evan Jones

I am a landscape and travel photographer who is drawn to old and rusty stuff as well as beautiful landscapes. I like to explore the backroads of the Northwest United States and anywhere else I can get to. My blog is at

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