As he approached the end of his life, Clemens grew more lonely and melancholic. He took on a biographer, a personal assistant, and a dozen or so surrogate grandchildren. He traveled to Bermuda for health and relaxation. He played billiards with friends. He also built a house in Redding, CT. and called it Stormfield, after one of his characters who makes a trip to heaven.
Clemens approached death stoically, but in a sense it had always been a familiar friend, providing him a rich field for humor and a hope for release from what had often been a difficult life.
When he died on April 21, 1910, newspapers around the country declared, The whole world is mourning. By then, Sam Clemens had long since ceased to be a private citizen. He had become Mark Twain, a proud possession of the American nation.