Mark Twain Essays Mark Twain - Samuel Langhorne Clemens, better known as Mark Twain, is perhaps the most distinguished author of American Literature. Next to William Shakespeare, Clemens is arguably the most prominent writer the world has ever seen. In 1818, Jane Lampton found interest in a serious young lawyer named John Clemens. With the Lampton family in heavy debt and Jane only 15 years of age, she soon arried John. The family moved to Gainesboro, Tennessee where Jane gave birth to Orion Clemens. In the summer of 1827 the Clemenses relocated to Virginia where John purchased thousands of acres of land and opened a legal advice store.