Samuel Clemens, better known by his pen name Mark Twain, was the author of the classic novels Adventures of Huckleberry Finn and The Adventures of Tom Sawyer, and one of America's most beloved writers.
Some time between Christmas and New Year's, someone visited Mark Twain's grave in Elmira, N.Y. Instead of showing their respects, they pried off a plaque with the likeness of the writer who died 105 years ago.
'I guess we were lucky no one touched it for so long,' said Elmira City Historian Diane Janowski. 'It was made and installed in 1937 by an artist who lived here locally, Ernfred Anderson. I have been watching eBay, and it hasn't been on there.'
"Somebody had to bring in a ladder," local history buff Jim Hare told The Star-Gazette, suggesting this was not a random act of vandalism.
Elmira police are still seeking leads into the theft of Twain's plaque and can be contacted at (607) 737-5626.
The Community Foundation of Elmira-Corning and the Finger Lakes has offered a grant up to $10,000 to go towards replacing the stolen plaque, as reported by The Star-Gazette.