In March of 1877, humorist Mark Twain was staying at the Parker House in room 168. A reporter from the Boston Globe entered Twain’s room, shuttled in by a porter. After a pause of several moments, Twain swiveled around in his large easy chair and faced his visitor. With a local newspaper in hand and puffing on a large cigar, he observed to the reporter, “You see for yourself that I’m pretty near heaven—not theologically, of course, but by the hotel standard.”
Inspired by Twain, Susan Wilson named her anecdotal and lavishly illustrated new book on the history of the Omni Parker House Heaven, By Hotel Standards. Fascinating stories from that book make up her talk, including tales of the illustrious Saturday Club, which regularly drew to the hotel some of the greatest luminaries of the Golden Age of American Literature—like Ralph Waldo Emerson, Oliver Wendell Holmes, Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, Nathaniel Hawthorne, and John Greenleaf Whittier.
(Photo: Wikimedia Commons)