The Very Brief Friendship of Maxim Gorky and Mark Twain

Edward Sorel at the New York Times:

In April 1906, Czar Nicholas caved in to protests from around the world, and released Maxim Gorky from the prison into which he had thrown him. Mark Twain and other writers, hearing that the celebrated author of “The Lower Depths” had been freed, invited him to New York City, and Gorky, still harassed by the secret police, accepted. With him on the voyage was the actress Maria Andreyeva.

Docking in Hoboken, Gorky was cheered by thousands of Russian immigrants, and a day later he was the guest of honor at a white-tie dinner arranged by Twain. Gorky, who spoke no English, came with an interpreter. Through him, he implored the guests to donate money to aid his Bolshevik comrades in overthrowing the czar.

more here.