Title: Four Years In Europe With Buffalo Bill | A Descriptive Narrative of the Big American Show's Successful Tour in Foreign Lands, Illustrated with Original Photos by the Author

Date: 1908

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Four Years in Europe with Buffalo Bill

  [photo]

W. F. Cody, "Buffalo Bill" 1906.

To. Chad Griffin. In memory of four years in Europe.

  FOUR YEARS IN EUROPE
WITH
BUFFALO BILL
[photo] BY
CHARLES ELDRIDGE GRIFFIN
A DESCRIPTIVE NARRATIVE OF THE BIG AMERICAN SHOW'S
SUCCESSFUL TOUR IN FOREIGN LANDS, ILLUSTRATED
WITH ORIGINAL PHOTOS BY THE AUTHOR
ALBIA, IOWA:
STAGE PUBLISHING CO.
1908.
 

COPYRIGHT, 1908, BY CHARLES ELDRIDGE GRIFFIN.
ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

 

Table of Contents

Page
Letter From Buffalo Bill 10
Letter From Lord George Sanger 11
Buffalo Bill — A Sketch 13
James Anthony Bailey 15
Foreword 17
Chapter I. — 1903 21
Our Ocean Voyage — General Impressions of Old England.
Chapter II. — Summer 1903 27
Opening of the Season — Accident to Buffalo Bill.
Chapter III. — Winter 1903-4 33
Wintering in London — Sights and Scenes of the Great City — A Trip to "Gay Paree," The Fashion Capital of the World
Chapter IV. — 1904 43
Second Year of Buffalo Bill in Great Britain — A Visit to the Potteries — Bonnie Scotland
Chapter V. — Winter 1904-5 48
Again in London — Shop Showing — The Waverly Carnival — Studying French
Chapter VI. — 1905 55
Grand Opening at Paris — A Zigzag Tour of France — Disease Among the Horses — Tragedie de les Cheveaux.
Chapter VII. — Winter 1905-6 69
Marseilles, the Gateway to the Orient — Wintering Under Canvas — More Observations of French Manners and Customs
Chapter VIII. — 1906 73
Opening of the Season at Marseilles — Tour of Italy, Austria-Hungary, Germany and Belgium.
Chapter IX. — 1906-7 85
Closing of the Tour — Departure for and Arrival at New York — Impressions of New York After Four Years Abroad.
Official Roster of Buffalo Bill's Wild West 89
Season 1907
Programme Buffalo Bill's Wild West 91
Season 1907
  [illustration]

It was fun to watch the sea-gulls dive for biscuits which we would throw into the sea.

 

List of Illustrations

Page.
W. F. Cody (Buffalo Bill) 2
Sea-Gulls Diving for Biscuits 7
"All Going Out, Nothing Coming In" 9
Fred. "Eques" Martin 11
Lord George Sanger, "The British Barnum" 11
A Visit to Chateau D'If — Monte Cristo Island 12
James Anthony Bailey 15
In Winter Quarters, Marseilles, France 20
Frederick Bailey Hutchinson 24
Working Under the Southern Sun 26
Office at 45 Ave. Rapp, Paris, and Advance Staff 28
Street Scene, Genoa, Italy, March, 1906 32
Geo. O. Starr, Mrs. A. D. Starr, Mrs. F. B. Hutchinson 32
Mrs. Jule Keene 32
Rouen, France, 1905 36
Sunday "Turn Away" on the Champs De Mars, Paris 40
Bird's-Eye View of Wild West from Eiffel Tower 40
Opening Day at Rome 44
Famous "Petticoat Lane," London 48
Bostock's Hippodrome, Paris 48
A "Bunch" of the Wild West 52
Office at Winter Quarters, Marseilles 56
F. B. Hutchinson Having a Go at Lawn Tennis 56
Les Gallerie De Les Phenomen, or Side Show 60
Opening Day at Genoa, Italy 64
Double-Deck Tramcar Used in England 64
Winter Quarters at Marseilles, France 68
Entrance to Wild West, Champs De Mars, Paris 72
Staff in Winter Quarters, Marseilles, France 76
Col. Cody's Favorite Mounts, Prince and Bayard 76
Les Peau Rouge (Sioux Indians) 80
Johnny Baker and Dollie, the Laughing Horse 80
Le Tragedie De Les Cheveaux 88
Royal Family's Visit to the Wild West, Rome, Italy 84
A Sad Farewell 88
Group of Senegals 92
Mother and Son 92
  [illustration]

"All Going Out, Nothing Coming In."

 

Fac Simile of Letter from Col. Wm. F. Cody (Buffalo Bill).

Wapiti Inn, Yellowstone Park Road.
Pahaska Teepe, Yellowstone Park Road.
[illustration]

Buffalo Bill's Hotels in the Rockies.

Col. W.F. Cody, Prop'r. L.E. Decker, M'g'r.

The Irma Hotel, European Plan

My Dear Griffin,

Thanks your letter. Certainly you can use the photo for your book. Are you to be with us the coming season I hope so.

I haven't had much rest this season winter I mean. As I have so much to do out here but its a change from the show life. And I like too be kept busy. and am feeling fine.

Your's truly

W. F. Cody

  [photo]

Fred "Eques" Martin

English Show Writer

[photo]

Lord George Sanger, "The British Barnum"

From a Photograph Taken on His Eigtieth Birthday.

 

Fac Simile of Letter from Lord George Sanger, the British Barnum

Dear Mr. Griffin,

I am in receipt of your letter, and have the pleasure to enclose a photograph for insertion in your book, as requested.

Yours very truly,

George Sanger

C. E. Griffin, Esq.

  [illustration]

A Visit to Chateau D'If — Monte Cristo Island.

1— The starting point, Old Harbor, Marseilles.

2— A view of the island from a distance.

3— Looking through prison bars toward Marseilles.

 

Buffalo Bill — A Sketch.

Although Col. Wm. F. Cody (Buffalo Bill) has a vast army of personal friends, his tremendous successes (yes, I meant that to be plural) have made him many envious enemies, who assiduously exaggerate and circulate all kinds of villainous and scurrilous stories about the great scout—but that is one of the penalties of being great and famous.

It is really too bad that everybody cannot know the Colonel as his friends know him. He is truly one of the best fellows in the world—open hearted and generous to a fault. Why, his managers have to hedge him in and keep the people from him during the season, otherwise he would have his tents filled with free tickets, and that would not do, as it takes an enormous pile of money to keep so vast a concern moving from day to day.

He is not such an old man as people generally imagine, either. It is common to hear them say, “Why, this cannot be Buffalo Bill—I heard of him when I was a boy.” Doubtless that is true, as Buffalo Bill began making history when he was a boy fourteen years old, in Kansas, during the “Jayhawk” War.

Wm. F. Cody (Buffalo Bill) was born in Scott County, Iowa, Feb. 26, 1846. He moved to Kansas, with the rest of   the family, when but eight years of age. His father was assassinated by the “Cesesh,” in 1855. He is a well preserved man of sixty-two years, and as he is temperate in all things except work, I should say, barring accidents, he is good for twenty-five years yet.

When the Grand Duke Frederick met the Colonel at Vienna, in 1906, he said:

"How old are you, Bill?"

"Sixty."

"Is that all! Why, you are quite a boy yet."

The duke was then eighty-two years old, and it had been seventeen years since he had met Cody.

[illustration]   [photo]

James Anthony Bailey

Born July 4, 1847. Died April 11, 1906.

 

James Anthony Bailey.

The subject of this sketch was born at Detroit, Mich., July 4, 1847, of Scotch-Irish parentage. He left home at ten years of age, and for a time worked on a farm at $3.50 per month.

While serving as a bell-boy in a hotel at Pontiac, Mich., Fred Bailey, general agent of the Lake & Robinson Circus, came there and engaged young Bailey to assist him.

This was his opportunity, and he took advantage of it. His rise from billposter to general agent was rapid, and finally a proprietor in 1872, when he entered into partnership with J. E. Cooper, forming the celebrated “Cooper & Bailey Great International Allied Shows,” visiting Australia, New Zealand, South America and India, returning to America in 1878 and consolidating with Howe’s Great London Shows.

In 1880 he forced P. T. Barnum into a partnership, forming the “Barnum & Bailey Greatest Show on Earth,” which, with the exception of one year, he continued to manage up to the time of his death.

“The little Napoleon of show business”— what an apt synonym! What Napoleon was to the military world, James A. Bailey was to the circus business.

When Bailey picked up a newspaper he did not first turn to the baseball score, nor did he stop to read the news of the day until he had first scanned the market reports and   ascertained the price of cattle, hogs, flour, potatoes, cotton, tobacco, butter, eggs, etc. That told him more than the most thrilling headline — that was his barometer to business conditions.

It was Bailey’s master mind which conceived and executed the idea of making the Buffalo Bill Show a one-day stand show. The Wild West was so tremendously cumbersome that Colonel Cody himself never dreamed that it was possible to make one day stands with it, and for years it would take them two or three days to move from place to place, and would consequently make long stands at expositions and large cities.

In 1904 he invited the five Ringling Bros. into partnership with him by selling them a half interest in the Forepaugh-Sells Show, probably seeing in them his only possible successors.

He was united in wedlock to Ruth L. McCaddon, of Zanesville, Ohio, who was his constant companion in all his struggles and triumphs, and the great showman paid a touching tribute to her devotion in his will. “I know of no one more entitled to the results of our combined labors than my beloved wife, Ruth L. Bailey.” And all his vast estate, amounting to millions, was left to Mrs. Bailey, she being named as administratrix, without bond.

Mr. Bailey passed to the “great beyond” at his beautiful mansion at Mt. Vernon, N. Y., Wednesday afternoon, April 11, 1906, erysipelas being the cause of death. He was interred at Woodlawn Cemetery on Saturday, April 14.

Requiescat in Pace

 

Foreword.

When the late James A. Bailey, undisputed king of the show world, visited the Ringling Bros.’ Circus, at Canton, Ohio, in June, 1902, he unconsciously, perhaps, paid the Ringling Bros. the greatest compliment that could be paid to a rival concern, inasmuch as he had never before deigned to visit a similar institution personally. However, he would keep himself thoroughly posted in their movements by means of his many agents.

On this occasion several employees of the Ringling Show were approached in regard to a tour of England with Buffalo Bill’s Wild West, the following Spring.

I was among the lucky ones, and when I received my contract I felt highly elated at the prospect of a European tour with the most successful amusement institution of modern times.

The great show was transported across the Atlantic on the S. S. St. Paul, American Line, in December, 1902.

A preliminary engagement was played at Olympia, London, opening on the afternoon of Dec. 26, 1902 (Boxing Day), and continuing until April 4, 1903—one hundred and seventy-two performances being given in that city. The show met with instant and long continued success.

It was visited twice by King Edward, Queen Alexandra,   the Prince and Princess of Wales, together with numerous other royal personages, but as the writer was not a party to this preliminary, or prologue, performance, I will confine myself to a description of the road tour only, nine days elapsing from the closing in London until the opening in Manchester.

It is not my intention to tire the reader with useless verbiage or dry statistics, such as the ordinary Circus Route Book affords, but to give a straightforward narrative of the many interesting places visited, and the contretemps met with in such a stupendous undertaking.

Of course, I found plenty to criticise abroad, because it was all so different from what I had seen at home, but I trust I have not been too severe, and I hope any of my foreign friends who feel aggrieved will pay a visit to America, where, I dare say, they will find an abundant field for retaliation.

All of which is respectfully submitted,

Charles Eldridge Griffin.

 

Notice.— Every reader of this book should know the true life story of “Buffalo Bill,” contained in “The Last of the Great Scouts,” by Colonel Cody’s sister, Helen Cody Whetmore. This book is an ornament to any library, contains 244 pages, large, clear type, gold side and back stamp, copiously illustrated by Frederic Remington and E. W. Deming, and intensely interesting and thrilling throughout. Sent postpaid on receipt of $1.00 by

Stage Publishing Co.,
Box 431, Albia, Iowa.

  [illustration]

In winter quarters, Marseilles, France, 1905-6.

 

Four Years in Europe with Buffalo Bill.

CHAPTER I.—1903.

Our Ocean Voyage—General Impressions of Old England.

We left New York City, Saturday, March 28, 1903, at 4 P. M., on the good ship Etruria, Cunard Line, for Merrie England.

The Etruria is one of the staunchest, even though it is the senior, of this oldest of the Atlantic liners. She is 540ft. long and 51ft. wide.

Dinner, our first meal on board, was served at 6 o’clock, and everyone was there with a normal appetite — but, “Oh, what a difference in the morning!”

We were then well out to sea, and the boat was rolling to “beat the band.”

A few old salts smiled and ate their breakfasts, but the majority seemed bent on feeding the fishes.

I remained in my berth all day Sunday, unable to get up or to eat a bite. Monday morning I ventured on deck and the fresh sea air did me good — in fact, from that day on I enjoyed the trip, and ate my regular six meals a day.

They gave us breakfast at 8, bouillon and sandwiches   at 11, luncheon at 12, tea at 5, dinner at 6, and supper at 8 o’clock.

The first cabin or saloon is “gilt-edge,” second cabin good enough for anyone who does not want silk jackets on their potatoes or gold nails in their coffins, and third class, or steerage, is not at all bad going over, but they say it is something awful coming this way.

There was something new every day to vary the monotony. The first thing I would look for when I went on deck was three sea-gulls that followed us all the way over. One of the sailors told me that they would roost on the waves and sometimes on the ship at night.

One day we saw a whale spouting in the distance, and at another time we encountered a number of monster icebergs from the frozen North.

Impromptu concerts were given in the cabin each evening, which culminated in one grand affair April 3, at which time I had the honor of being made chairman of the evening. On April 4 another entertainment was given in the grand saloon for the benefit of the Seamen’s Charity Fund, at which time the Rt. Hon. the Earl of Rosslyn was made chairman. This is the earl who, it is said, came to America in search of an heiress, finally found one at Pittsburg and was “turned down” at the finish. He impressed me as being rather a brilliant young fellow, and not at all like the newspapers have made him appear.

A daily paper was issued on board, giving the news of the world by wireless telegraphy. They played quoits on deck, had a billiard, card and bar room, and a well stocked library, so you see we were not badly treated at all.

After being out six days we sighted land—the rocky West coast of Ireland—and here our three sea-gulls were joined by thousands of others, thus losing their identity. It   was interesting sport to throw crackers into the sea and watch the gulls dive for them.

The ship did not land at Queenstown, but came to anchor, while harbor boats took off the mail and passengers. This was about 1 o’clock P. M. A number of real Irish lassies came aboard to sell their beautiful hand-made laces. It was a cold, rainy day, and it struck me as peculiar that they should wear furs and straw hats, but I became accustomed to that incongruity after landing in England, as women wear straw hats there the year ’round.

Five o’clock Sunday morning we arrived at Liverpool. The machinery had stopped, the pulse of the big ship had ceased to beat, and everyone awoke with a start.

During the seven days consumed in the voyage, we had become so accustomed to the constant vibration that when it ceased, it put our nerves all on edge, as it were, and from that time until we landed, at 10 A. M., all was bustle and excitement among the five hundred passengers.

As we scattered, many sad farewells were spoken, as sincere friendships and firm attachments are formed on an ocean voyage.

We had no trouble in passing through the customs, as England is a free trade country; tobacco, liquor and playing cards being about the only contraband articles of any consequence.

From Liverpool we took train at once for Manchester, and such funny little cars, they seemed to be no larger than our narrow gauge cars. There are first, second and third class cars, divided into compartments, with room for ten people in each compartment. The cars are not heated, but, on a cold day, they give you a foot warmer in the shape of a tank of hot water, which, if you go far, will be ice at the end of your journey. Neither are there any toilet conveniences, except on the long distance   express trains. Another peculiarity of English railway travel is they do not check your baggage or luggage; you give a railway porter a penny or two to put your luggage on the train, and at your destination another porter takes care of it for a like amount. The rails are called “metals,” the engineer a “driver,” and the conductor a “guard.”

Manchester is the second largest city in Great Britain, being next to London in size. It is in Lancashire, the centre of the cotton spinning industry. They speak a very peculiar dialect, and it took us some time to get “next” to it. They have an excellent system of trolley cars or tramways, superior to any I have seen in the States. The cars or carriages are double deck, each car is licensed to carry just so many passengers, and are owned by the city.

The English system of coinage is quite different from ours, the unit of value being pounds, shillings and pence. Twelve pence, one shilling; twenty shillings, one pound—($4.80 in our money). Paper money does not circulate promiscuously.

A fellow might as well be broke as to be in London with a £5 note (about $25.00), as no one will take it unless endorsed by some well known business man or firm.

The Spring was very backward, and we all suffered with the cold, although the thermometer did not indicate cold weather. But the dampness was fierce. They use open fireplaces instead of stoves, and put on coal by the thimbleful.

I happened to be in the mill district one evening at 6 o’clock, and of all the noises I ever heard, the clatter of the wooden clogs on the pavement “took the biscuit.” I can only like it to a troupe of cavalry on the march.

The hotels, or “pubs,” as they are called, are open Sunday, but restaurants and eating-houses are closed. So there is no trouble about getting plenty to drink, but I found   [photo]

To Prof Chas E Griffin From F B Hutchinson

Frederick Bailey Hutchinson, Manager of Buffalo Bill's Wild West from 1902 to 1907, inclusive.   it very difficult for a stranger to get anything to eat on a Sunday, even at such an important place as Liverpool.

I did not see a frame building or shingle roof in England, all being substantial brick or stone structures, with slate roofs.

Most of the buildings are from two to four stories. I did not see a “sky-scraper” in all Europe, there being a law forbidding the building of a house taller than the width of the street.

[illustration]   [illustration]

Working under the southern sun, December, 1905.

 

CHAPTER II.—Summer 1903.

Opening of the Season—Accident to Buffalo Bill.

We opened the tenting season of 1903 at Brook’s Bar, Manchester, April 13, Bankers’ Holiday, to turn away business, in a cold drizzling rain, which turned to snow. At the opening performance Colonel Cody was thrown from his horse, or, rather, the horse stumbled, severely spraining one of the Colonel’s ankles, consequently he was unable to ride during the three weeks’ engagement at Manchester, but was driven around the arena in a carriage at each performance.

Saturday, April 24, our press contingent was entertained by the Manchester Press Club, and I had the honor of closing the programme with an exhibition of Yankee magic. Lew Graham, manager of privileges, arranged the programme, which was a most enjoyable one. Major John M. Burke, Harvey Watkins, Chas. S. Wells and Dexter Fellows constituted our press staff, and a capable quartette they proved to be, judging from the immense amount of free advertising the show received.

All the members of the English press I met were a fine lot of gentlemen, and decidedly friendly to Americans.

We closed our three weeks’ stay at Manchester, Saturday night, May 2, and began a three weeks’ engagement at Liverpool, Monday, May 4.

Sunday afternoon, May 10, the good Bishop of Liverpool held services in the arena for the benefit of the Wild West. Dr. Shavasse is a grand, good man, and he delivered   a beautiful sermon, which was highly appreciated by Colonel Cody and his motley assemblage of Indians, cowboys and rough riders from all nations. His lordship was assisted by a large choir of gentlemen and boys, the hymns sung being “Rock of Ages,” “Oh, God, Our Help in Ages Past,” and “Onward, Christian Soldiers.”

The Bishop commenced his remarks by saying: “Colonel Cody and My Friends—It is a singular honor and pleasure my being here to speak to you as an Englishman. Between England and the United States of America I trust there will be never anything else but peace, for we worship God in the same faith and in the same language, and as a Bishop of the National Church, I came here to speak to you a few words on behalf of our Master, Christ.”

His lordship then proceeded to address us on the words of the patriarch Job: “Behold, God is mighty and despiseth not anything.”

During our second week at Liverpool, beginning May 11, we had the “Lord” George Sanger Show as opposition. This is the leading tented aggregation of all Europe, and corresponds in size with one of our ten-centers. Personally “Lord” George is a fine old gentleman of seventy-eight years, but looks twenty years younger.

Diamond and Beatrice, Prof. Roethig, the Royal Shanghai Chinese Troupe, and your humble servant, appeared at a smoker for the Liverpool Press Club, May 15

At Birmingham, June 7, there was born to Chief Standing Bear and wife Laura (Sioux), a squaw papoose, the only one ever born in Great Britain. The little stranger was duly christened Alexandra-Pearl-Olive-Octavia-Birmingham-England-Standing Bear. Two hours after giving birth to the child the mother walked across a large field to our big dining pavilion, ate a hearty meal and returned to her tepee without assistance. Two days later Manager   [photo] The Office at 45 Ave. Rapp, Paris, and advance staff. Reading from right to left: Frank Small, ———, ———, Clarence L. Dean, Major John M. Burk, "Teddy" Mitchell, Bert Conn, Chas. S. Wells, H.H. Gunning.   Graham had them on exhibition in the annex, where they proved a potent attraction.

During the Birmingham engagement Alfonso, our human ostrich, swallowed a £5 note for a skeptic who had more money than brains. Talk about “being from Missouri,” you certainly have to show them over there.

I am sure the reader will pardon me for recording here a very pleasant affair, and especially so to myself, which occurred at Kidderminster, June 16, at which time I was presented by the attaches of the Wild West Side Shows with a handsome gold medal to commemorate my forty-fourth birthday.

June 17 Colonel Cody’s valet suddenly disappeared with a lot of jewels, viz.: A diamond studded pin, given to Colonel Cody by King Edward VII, at Olympia; a double gold rope chain; a diamond horseshoe pendant, presented by the Wild West company; buffalo head cuff links, given by the Grand Duke Alexis of Russia, and about £4 ($20.00) in gold coin.

The matter was placed in the hands of C. C. Murphy, our special Pinkerton detective, who, after three days, captured the thief, recovered the jewels, and had the culprit sentenced to “gaol” (that’s the way they spell it over there) for six months at hard “labour.”

June 27 Jacob Posey, our efficient master of stock, was presented with a fine silver mounted cane by the members of the company, the occasion being “Popular Posey’s” fortieth birthday.

We celebrated our national holiday, July 4, with a grand banquet at Aberdare, South Wales. The decorations were especially fine, and Colonel Cody made one of his characteristic speeches.

At Swansea, Wales, July 14, I was made F. O. S. and   the Sloper award of merit presented to me. The Sloper Club is a popular London organization.

The first fatal accident occurred at Bristol, July 23. Isadore Gonzalez, one of the Mexican riders, was thrown from his horse and instantly killed. He was buried at Bristol. It is just as well, perhaps, that the general public do not realize the danger that forever attends the participants of the Wild West performances. Every time they enter the arena, especially in the bucking horse act, they practically take their lives in their hands.

At Taunton, Aug. 3, for the second time this season, we showed day and date with Lord George Sanger’s Circus. It being Bank Holiday, both shows did capacity business.

We showed at Hastings, Aug. 20. This is one of the favorite seaside Summer resorts of Great Britain, and we were blessed with a beautiful day and corresponding business. Our camp was pitched facing the beach, which was about one hundred yards distant, and we enjoyed ourselves on the sands between shows. Our trains were left at St. Leonards, three miles distant, the drive being along a high sea wall. At night a fierce storm arose and some of the drivers were completely engulfed by the high waves dashing and breaking over the wall.

During the season of 1903 our tour was confined to England and Wales. We heard the clatter of the clogs in Lancashire, saw the noble Hereford on his native heath, ate Banbury cakes from the original cookshop at Banbury, and Yarmouth bloaters at Yarmouth.

The season closed at Burton-on-Trent Oct. 23. Colonel Cody and the American contingent of the Wild West sailed Oct. 24 from Liverpool per S. S. Etruria, Cunard Line, for America, to spend the Winter months at their various Western homes, while the paraphernalia, railway cars, wagons, horses, tents, etc., were taken into Winter quarters   at Stoke-on-Trent. We had a very pleasant and prosperous season, notwithstanding the fact that the elements were against us most of the time. Three hundred and thirty-three performances were given, and it can be recorded with satisfaction that only one performance was omitted, at Bradford, evening of Oct. 6, and that made necessary as a matter of public safety on account of the high gale prevailing at the time.

The tour consisted of one hundred and ninety-four days, divided as follows: Two stands of three weeks; one, two weeks; two, one week; two, four days; three, three days; six, two days, and seventy-eight, one day.

Only seven parades were given during the entire season, and those mainly as competitive measures at points where some of the English circuses were exhibiting on the same day.

The weather conditions throughout the entire season were most depressing, and the fact is recorded by the English press that never in the history of the country has there been a Summer where climatic conditions were as bad as those of this year. The coldest day was at Manchester, April 16, when the thermometer registered 31 degrees, while the warmest was experienced at Hereford, July 2, when the mercury mounted to 86 degrees—quite a contrast to weather experienced by troupers in the States.

  [illustration]

Street scene, Genoa, Italy, March, 1906

  [photo]

Geo. O. Starr,

Managing Director of Barnum-Bailey Co., Ltd.

Mrs. A.D. Starr, Mrs. F.B. Hutchinson.

[photo]

Mr. Jule Keene,

Twenty-four years treasurer of the Wild West.

Died, New York, 1906.

 

CHAPTER III.— Winter 1903-4.

Wintering in London — Sights and Scenes of the Great City—A Trip to “Gay Paree,” the Fashion Capital of the World.

We left Burton, our closing stand, at 8.30 A. M., Oct. 24, by the Midland Railway, and arrived at St. Pancreas Station, London, at 12.30, noon.

Having considerable heavy luggage, we experienced some difficulty in getting it transferred to King’s Cross Station, Metropolitan underground railway, as baggage wagons are not waiting for you, like birds of prey, in the States, such work being done by “outside porters,” with push carts. While it would have cost at least $2.00 to have our luggage transferred in New York, it only cost a half crown (62 cents) in London. However, every railway porter who handles your luggage expects a tip —in fact, the tipping system is so much in vogue that all public servants, to use a “flash” expression, “have their mitts out.” Waiters in first class hotels and restaurants receive no wages at all. On the contrary, they usually pay for the privilege of working by dividing their tips with their chief or head waiter.

The service of the Metropolitan underground railway is not so good as the Boston subway. Soft coal is used, which makes it very dirty, and the cars are old fashioned, but there is no overcrowding, and I believe they can handle more people in a given length of time than we can by our   system. There are no surface tramways in London proper, the Metropolitan covering practically the entire business section with an inner and outer circle.

The “tuppenny tube,” Yerkes’ new system, running from Shepherd’s Bush, West London, through Central London, to the Bank of England, is up-to-date, and even ahead of the Boston subway. Electricity is used for motive power, and the cars are built on the American plan.

Large double-deck ’buses or stages, drawn by two horses (they have since been almost entirely superseded by motor ’buses), take care of the passenger traffic on the surface in Central London. The top of the ’bus is a good vantage ground from which to view the sights of the city.

I felt more at home in London than in any part of England.

There are American shoe stores, American quick lunches, American pharmacies, American barbers, American dentists, American bars, American this and American that, with the irrepressible American himself on every hand “blowing his horn,” and his money at the same time— a verification of the immortal Lincoln’s words, “He who bloweth not his own horn verily it shall not be blown.”

After getting comfortably settled in a flat in the West End of London I started out to see the city. I asked a “bobby” which ’bus for Piccadilly Circus? He said: “You’ll see the name on the ’bus.” Then I commenced reading the signs on the ’buses as they hove in sight: “Grape Nuts,” “Fry’s Cocoa,” “Mellin’s Food,” “Pear’s Soap,” “Carter’s Little Liver Pills,” etc. Finally, when a ’bus was a block past, I discovered in the least conspicuous place in small letters, “Piccadilly Circus.” At last I got the right ’bus, but when we got to Piccadilly Circus there was no circus there. Here in “Ole Lunnon” they have a fashion of calling a circle or centre, from which several streets radiate,   a circus, hence Piccadilly Circus, Ludgate Circus, Oxford Circus, etc.

It will not be surprising to those who know me to learn that the first place of amusement I visited in London was Maskelyne & Cook’s Egyptian Hall, of thirty years’ standing, in Piccadilly. They presented a refined entertainment of magic and mystery. The feature of the programme was Herr Valladon, the clever magician, who afterwards toured this country with our great and only Kellar, creating a most favorable impression. The hall itself is small, seats perhaps five hundred people, odd and curious, suggestive of mystery— looks as though it might be a vault in one of the ancient Pyramids. It was in this hall that P. T. Barnum first exhibited General Tom Thumb to London, and where Artemus Ward showed his “Grate Morril Paneramy.”

Other places of interest I visited on this occasion were the Art Gallery in Trafalgar Square, the Houses of Parliament, Hotel Cecil, Mansion House, where the Lord Mayor holds forth; Tower of London, Bank of England, in Threadneedle Street; St. Paul’s Cathedral, etc., all of which, on account of their antiquity, reminds one of the grandeur of ages past. I will give detailed descriptions of most of these places when I have more leisure to visit them.

One Sunday morning, chaperoned by a Hebrew friend, I visited the famous “Petticoat Lane,” in Whitechapel, where the Jews’ Saturday market is held.

There are miles of narrow streets, with squalid shops and booths on both sides of the curb, with every conceivable thing on sale, from fine bric-a-brac to bologna sausage and winkles (a snail-like shell food, very popular among the poor class). The streets are packed with all classes of humanity. Here you get some idea of the immensity of London.

They have a peculiar system of auctioneering. For   example, an article is started at a high figure and the price lowered until a buyer is found.

Imagine, if you can, the combined population of Iowa, Minnesota, Dakota and Nebraska confined to one of our good sized counties, and you have some idea of the density of the population of London, which, in reality, is a country in itself— more interesting than any country I have ever visited.

I left London Saturday, Dec. 12, for a four weeks’ engagement at Bostock’s Hippodrome, Paris, which was in gala attire for La Fete de Noel (Christmas holidays). The boulevards were lined with booths for the sale of holiday goods, and the numerous portable “show shops” were erected at the intersection of principal thoroughfares, giving it the appearance of a great street fair.

Shortly after my arrival in Paris the morning papers came out with a “scare head,” “Paris Sans Pain” (Paris without bread). A big boulangers’ (bakers’) strike was on, and troops of cavalry paraded the streets to prevent rioting.

They bake loaves of bread in Paris fully a yard in length, cut off as much as you wish and sell it by the kilo (two pounds, our weight, making one kilo).

Sunday is the last day of the week in Paris, and is a day set out for pleasure and recreation. I have been informed that there are thirty thousand Americans residing in Paris. It is a common saying in New York that all good Americans go to Paris when they die. It is therefore somewhat astonishing that the Franco-American population is not greater than it is.

The Hippodrome is located in the Boulevard de Clichy. Although one of the finest amusement temples in the world, it was a financial failure until the advent of Frank C. Bostock, an Anglo-American. The building is beautifully finished and furnished throughout; the arena is 125x250ft.,   [photo] Rouen, France, 1905 — Wild West in the foreground.   and the seating capacity is 9,000. Business was immense from the time of Mr. Bostock’s opening, thousands being turned away Sundays and fete days.

Frank C. Bostock is a showman in the best and broadest sense of the word. I only wish the show world had more like him. Although born in the business, he was educated by his parents for the Church. At the age of twenty-six he found old England, his native country, too small for his progressive ideas, and therefore, in 1892, he went to America for elbow room. Here he had room to expand, and after conquering the largest cities in the Western Hemisphere, it was but proper that he should “tackle” the effete East, and have the fashion capital of the world do him homage. Long live “Bostock, the Animal King!”

After a month’s sojourn in the gay capital of France, I was glad to get back to London, where I could make my wants known without making signs. Some of those people who continually poke fun at and take advantage of foreigners (and there are plenty of them in every country) should visit a foreign land themselves and see how they like it. From what I saw of Paris I did not like it as well as London; and London—well, London is not New York.

I had begun to think that I was to be denied the privilege of seeing a London fog, but I was disillusioned Saturday morning, Jan. 23, by waking up and finding it still dark at 9 A. M. The papers declared it to be the worst fog of the century. The street lamps were burning all day, and even then you could not see two feet in front of you. It actually seemed as though you could cut it with a knife. My studio was in West Kensington, opposite the new Post Office Savings Bank Building, which is one of the largest structures in Great Britain, employing 3,000 government clerks of both sexes. The electric lights in this big building looked, through the fog, like stars glimmering through a   cloudy sky. After paralyzing business for the day and causing many accidents, it disappeared as mysteriously as it came. No one seems to know where it comes from or where it goes to.

Talk about “Winter lingering in the lap of Spring.” During the Summer of 1903 we had Winter all Summer, and, just to even things up, it seems, during the Winter of 1903-4 we had Summer all Winter; in fact, I did not see a snowflake, though there were some little flurries of snow in the midlands to the North of us. However, we did have an abundance of rain. The River Thames was four miles wide in places, and many farms were flooded. January was warmer than June of the preceding year. In February grass was green, butterflies were caught on the wing, and the half tame birds in the parks were nesting. Even the snakes at the Zoo had roused themselves from their dormancy and were shedding their skins. Of such are the vagaries of British weather, but there—an English gentleman told me once: “We do not have weather here; we only get samples from America.”

In February, 1904, I paid a second visit to the Tower of London. This ancient castle was founded by Caesar during the Roman occupation, and completed by William the Conqueror in 1078. It embraces almost every style of architecture that has flourished in England since its inception, as the various rulers have added to and made alterations from time to time. It was originally built for a fortress, but has been used as the seat of government, the king’s palace, an arsenal, and is now converted into a museum. The inner ward is reached by going over a stone bridge. Passing the Bell Tower and the King’s House on the left, and the Traitor’s Gate on the right, we then go under the Bloody Tower, turn to the right and we are at Wakefield Tower, where we inspect the crown jewels.

 

The king’s crown, which occupies the most prominent position in the case, was made for the coronation of Queen Victoria, in 1838, from older crowns and the royal collection. There are a number of other crowns, viz: Those of Queen Alexandra, Queen Mary II, Charles II, Prince of Wales and Mary Modena, second wife of James II. The latter is said to be the oldest. It is needless to add that the various crowns contain many costly and historic jewels. Here also may be seen the royal plate, many jeweled swords and royal regalia of various kinds and epochs.

We will now retrace our steps, pass back under the Bloody Tower. To the left we pass, on a raised platform, the gun carriage which carried the mortal remains of Queen Victoria to her last resting place at Frogmore. We next enter the Great White Tower, which is the most conspicuous part of the entire structure. We pass up a small flight of time-worn stone steps, through the Chapel of St. John, where many of the beheaded martyrs lie buried, into the Armory, which was formerly known as the Council Chamber and Banquet Hall. It is divided into four rooms — two upstairs and two down. These four large rooms are completely filled with arms and armor for both man and horse, representing all countries and all ages.

Leaving the White Tower, we pass over the spot, marked by a tablet, where Queen Anne Boleyn, Lady Jane Grey, the Earl of Essex, and various others, were executed, the block and axe still being on exhibition in the Armory. Strangely enough, the benches which surround this sacred spot were occupied by solemn looking ravens, a sinister reminder of the tragedies that were here enacted centuries ago. The unhappy victims were all beheaded with an axe except Queen Anne Boleyn, who was decapitated with a sword. The executioner of the Earl of Essex required three strokes   of the axe to do his bloody work, and was in turn mobbed and beaten by the populace on his way home.

Next we visit the Beauchamp Tower, whose ancient prison walls are covered with inscriptions, carved in stone, in many instances by kings and queens. The history of these inscriptions alone make quite a large book. One over the fireplace, in Latin, is especially pathetic: “The more suffering for Christ in the world, the more glory with Christ in the next.— Arundell, June 22, 1587.” Taken all in all, the Tower of London is one of the most interesting relics of bygone ages in all Europe.

The Drury Lane pantomime is as much an English institution as a London fog or the income tax. Every playhouse of any consequence concentrates the efforts of the year on this holiday spectacle. The pantomime season begins on Boxing Night, Dec. 26, and runs until the beginning of Lent. The various theatres will present “Puss in Boots,” “Aladdin,” “Cinderella,” “Blue Beard,” “The House That Jack Built,” and so on through the entire gamut of fairy tales. I had the pleasure of attending the Theatre Royal, Drury Lane, seeing the time honored “Humpty Dumpty,” with such notables in the cast as Dan Leno, the king’s jester; Herbert Campbell (both of whom have since passed to the great beyond), Harry Randall, and many others equally as clever, but not with the reputations. Our definition of a pantomime is “a play without words.” The English pantomime is therefore paradoxical, being pantomime that is not pantomime at all, but what we would call extravaganza or spectacular burlesque. Americans as a rule do not take to this style of entertainment, but I enjoyed it very much, although parts of it I found a little tedious. The comedy was good, being mainly topical, bristling with local hits, the singing fair, the ballets fine, and the scenery simply gorgeous.

  [photo]

A Sunday "turn away" on the Champs De Mars, Paris, 1905

[photo]

Bird's-Eye view of the Wild West from the Eiffel Tower — Gallerie De Machins in the distance.

 

That reminds me of an incident that happened in New York recently — pardon the digression: Young “Bob” Hunting, aged six, had been up to see the Barnum & Bailey Show at Madison Square Garden, and was describing to me what he had seen, with all the eloquence at his command. He had apparently got to the end of his string, so I asked him as seriously as I could: “Now, ‘Bob,’ what was the best thing you saw up there?” He studied for a moment and then answered enthusiastically: “Why, the wagons.”

I think the English respect and admire Americans more than the people of the States generally imagine. Of course, we have our critics as well as our champions. Englishmen who have made failures in the States are prone to condemn everything American, but, happily, they are few and far between. Some American artists (all performers are artists in Europe) who have never been considered “in it” at home, have achieved great success over here. On the other hand some famous stars at home have been dismal failures on this side. It is human nature to “speak well of the bridge that carries us safely over”— that is, from a selfish standpoint.

Although clothing and dress goods are somewhat cheaper in London than America, it cost us almost a third more to live there than in New York. I will quote some of the prices which prevailed while we were there: Flour, 20 cents for five pounds; bread 7½ cents for a pound loaf; milk, 7 cents per quart; potatoes, 2 cents per pound; tea, 42 cents per pound; coffee, 42 cents per pound; soft coal, 33 cents per hundredweight; butter, 30 cents per pound; margarine, 12 cents per pound; eggs, 20 cents and 30 cents per dozen; rump steak, 24 cents per pound; sirloin steak, 48 cents per pound; pork chops, 18 cents per pound; chickens, 60 cents   and 80 cents each; mutton, 8 cents and 14 cents per pound. Well, I ate plenty of mutton, which reminds me:

Mary had a little lamb,
It grew up into mutton;
I ate so very much of it,
I feel just like a but’n.

[illustration]  

CHAPTER IV.— 1904.

Second Year of Buffalo Bill in Great Britain — A Visit to the Potteries — Bonnie Scotland.

I left the English metropolis to begin my second tour of Great Britain about the middle of April, beginning the season with Buffalo Bill’s Wild West, at Stoke-on-Trent, Monday, April 25.

Mr. Lew Graham had during the Winter resigned as manager of privileges, and returned to the States to take the same department with Ringling Bros.’ World’s Greatest Shows, and I was selected by the management to fill his position with the Wild West.

Stoke is the centre of the potteries district, and the Winter quarters of Barnum & Bailey, Ltd., [1] which forms a small city in itself. There are twelve buildings of brick and iron, everything being under cover from railway cars to stakes and toe-pins. Here everything connected with the Wild West had been gone over, repairs made where necessary, painted and renewed during the Winter months, a force of two hundred men being employed for this purpose.

This was my first visit to Stoke, and I found it very interesting. It reminded me of Johnstown, Pa., before the flood—a dingy conglomeration of villages under separate   municipal control, embracing all together a dense population of working people, a veritable beehive of industry. Both coal and potter’s clay is mined there in enormous quantities; in fact, the place is all undermined, and occasionally there is a cave-in, houses demolished, and lives lost, just the same as in the mining districts of America. I went on a tour through one of the big potteries, and I found the process of making an ordinary dinner plate both complex and interesting. China clay, when ready for the potter’s wheel, is composed of rot marl (clay), granite, cornwall stone, flint and feldspar, all ground fine and reduced to a putty-like substance, which is molded into shape on a revolving wooden wheel, dried and then baked in an immense kiln with graduated heat. The people of the potteries are hard-working, warm-hearted, bright, kind and intelligent.

After showing a week in the midlands we jumped over into North Wales, to the beautiful and picturesque Llan-dudno-by-the-Sea. We put in three weeks in Wales, from May 2 to 21, then into Cornwall to Land’s End, showing at Penzance May 30. Thence Northeast, showing around and in the suburbs of London for three weeks. July 13 found us at Windsor, and I had the pleasure of visiting historic Windsor Castle, over which floated the royal standard, denoting that King Edward was at home.

At York, July 4, the whole show was a mass of red, white and blue bunting, in honor of our national holiday, the bands played patriotic airs, and the entire company sat down to a regular Yankee dinner, which almost made us forget, for the time being, that we were “strangers in a strange land.”

July 11 to 16 our tents were pitched on the Town Moor Recreation Grounds, Newcastle-on-Tyne, the most beautiful park I have ever seen used for show purposes, abounding in beautiful lakes, fountains, islets, flowers, shrubbery   [photo] Opening Day at Rome, March 22, 1905.   and grassy lawns. Newcastle is one of the leading manufacturing cities of Great Britain, and is truly the metropolis of the North of England, full of historic interest and replete with the most modern phases of a manufacturing city. The great national arsenal and ordnance works, and numerous shipbuilding plants, among them the largest one in the world, are located between Newcastle and the sea.

July 20 the big Western Show made its entry into Bonnie Scotland at Hawick, pronounced by the natives, Hike, and we had a two mile “hike” to the show grounds through a Scotch mist, which in America we would call a drizzling rain. Here I saw the first thistle I had seen for more than two years, and it seemed like seeing some one from home, as we used to have more than a plenty of them in the old Hawkeye State where I was raised. There were 20,000 soldiers encamped at Hawick, including the king’s favorite regiment, the famous Black Watch.

At Dumbarton, where we stopped for one day, July 30, our tents were pitched in another beautiful park, with all the trimmings—lakes, swans, etc., while Giant Ben Lomond, famous as the rendezvous of Rob Roy, loomed up in the distance.

Aug. 1 to 6 found us at Glasgow, the metropolis of Scotland, and there we did the largest week’s business in the history of the Wild West as a traveling organization, and only excelled by the abnormal business of the Chicago World’s Fair season, in 1893.

Sunday morning, Aug. 7, we invaded the Scottish capital, one of the grandest cities I have ever visited. Princess Street, with its rows of fine stores on one side, and a beautiful valley between the mountains, topped by historic Edinburgh Castle on the other side, is certainly a picturesque dream.

While Edinburgh is “in it” for beauty, it does not com-   pare so favorably with Glasgow for business, notwithstanding our success was very pronounced. Municipally both cities are splendidly administered. We put in two months in Scotland, and our business was immense throughout the Scottish tour.

We re-entered England at Carlisle, Sept. 15, and the remaining five weeks of the season were put in on the West coast of England, closing our season at Hanley, North Staffordshire, Friday, Oct. 21. The next day, Oct. 22, Colonel Cody and the Wild West contingent sailed for America, while the horses, rolling stock and paraphernalia went into Winter quarters at Stoke-on-Trent.

During the season we covered England, Scotland and Wales, from the East to the West, and Land’s End on the South to John O’Groat’s on the North. Considering that very few Englishmen have accomplished this, it is somewhat of an achievement to boast of. Press Agent Frank Small, who wore his Scottish kilts on the Scotch tour, took photographs of the Indians at Land’s End and John O’Groat’s.

To the average foreigner it would perhaps seem incredible that such a vast concern as Buffalo Bill’s Wild West, comprising 800 people and 500 horses, could put in two seasons, or more than twelve months’ continuous showing, in such a small section of territory. While the tight little island, only a speck on the map of the world, is not so small as some Americans imagine, considering the vast section of the earth’s surface it has populated and dominated, it is very large indeed.

The season has been the best in the history of the show, and the members of the Wild West, from the highest to the lowest, bid farewell to merry old England with keen regrets and sincere good wishes for the prosperity of her hospitable people, the fairest and squarest country in the world to a stranger.

 

CHAPTER V — Winter, 1904-5.

Again in London — Shop Showing —The Waverly Carnival — Studying French.

At the close of the season of 1904 I returned to my studio at West Kensington, London. By this time I was well acquainted in the big city and found it a first class place to live. During this time I had all kinds of experiences in show business, from “penny gaffs” to music halls and society entertainments— my adventures in that line will make a book of itself.

But I must tell you about my second visit to Scotland and the great Waverly Carnival. I left gray old London for Edinburgh, justly styled by tourists as the modern Athens, a distance of four hundred miles. The train runs through without change and is modern, being built as nearly on the American plan as it is possible to have them over there, with their short curves and narrow tunnels. They call them corridor trains. Sleeping and dining cars are run through. They serve an excellent four course luncheon for the low price of half crown (sixty-two cents). Until recently there were three classes on all British railways, but a great many of them have abolished the second class, retaining only the first and third, which are practically the same, except in price—indeed, you would hardly know the difference but for the paper labels which are pasted on the doors of the compartments to denote the class, and these are changed as occasion requires. The advent of the American   one class trolley cars and the “tube” railways of London are tending towards a universal class throughout Great Britain.

I went to Edinburgh under a three weeks’ contract with Sir Henry E. Moss, for his Twentieth Annual Waverly Market Carnival, which opened Boxing Day, Dec. 26, and closed Saturday, Jan. 14. The market is located at the East end of Princess Street, near the post office, in the central part of the city. It occupies a floor space of about 200x600 feet, with an ornamental terraced roof which is on a level with Princess Street, and laid out in beautiful shrubs and flowers. This annual carnival has been for some time recognized as a national Scottish institution. The main entrance is down the Waverly steps, between the market and the North British Hotel, leading to the Waverly Station, which is the largest in the world. The general admission to the carnival is 6d. (12 cents), with 6d. extra for a seat, and 3d. extra for each side show, of which there were fifteen, ranged on the North side of the hall. On the South side was a huge stage for vaudeville and circus acts, with seats for about 2,000 persons. Amer’s Military Band of forty musicians furnished excellent music. There were gorgeous roundabouts, shooting saloons, photographic galleries, ball games, and stalls of every conceivable kind that go to make a carnival interesting. The doors were open from 11 A.M. until 11 P.M.; the stage performance running from 2 to 5 and 7 to 10.30 P.M., with frequent intermissions for the benefit of the side shows.

Sir H. E. Moss, the manager of the carnival, is the B. F. Keith of Great Britain. He is the managing director of the Moss Empires, Ltd., controlling, in addition to the carnival, twenty-seven high class music halls, scattered throughout the kingdom, of which the famous London Hippodrome is the head. His father, James Moss, belonged to an old Lancashire family, and young Moss was, practically   [photo] Famous "Petticoat Lane," London. [photo] Bostock's Hippodrome, Paris   speaking, brought up in the business, belonging to that class which we in America would call cross-road showmen. When his father toured with a concert party, young Moss was the accompanist, and sang a humorous song at the piano. Subsequently the elder Mr. Moss became the proprietor of the Horne Music Hall, at Greenock, where he installed his son as manager. At the age of twenty-three he acquired his first music hall, the Gaiety, in Edinburgh. This house had never enjoyed a very savory reputation, and Mr. Moss decided on a revolution. He made one plucky attempt after another to attract respectable people with a purified entertainment, but without success. The climax of his misfortunes came when he organized a great New Year’s entertainment in 1878. He spent large sums in advertising, but the result was dire disappointment. Success, however, eventually came, and he has never looked back since.

His son, James, who was married to a daughter of Sir Robert Cranston, the Lord Provost of Edinburgh, died in 1904, at the beginning of a most promising career. This was a terrible blow to Mr. Moss — indeed, he has never seemed quite the same since. He has a younger son, Charles, who has assisted materially in the success of the carnival, and whom we will probably soon see regularly installed in the managerial harness. Hogmanay (New Year’s Eve) and New Year’s Day are the premiere festival days of the year in Scotland. Several years ago the Scotch borrowed the Christmas habit from the English, and even now it seems only a preliminary celebration leading up to the climax of gayety, which is reached on New Year’s Day. On the other hand, Englanders are rapidly adopting the Scotch Hogmanay — surely “fair exchange is no robbery.” All day Saturday, the last day of the old year, the streets were thronged with people, the weather being brae (cold), and I then thought I had never seen so many drunken persons in my   life, but as evening advanced it grew worse, and the debauch continued all night. My lodgings were in Greenside Place, which seemed to be about the centre of the disturbance. It was impossible to sleep on account of the continuous singing and playing of musical instruments, of which the accordion seemed to predominate. “Bill Bailey” and “Blue Bell” are indelibly engraved on my musical memory, as they were the favorite airs. The “pubs” closed at 10 o’clock, so they laid in a supply of bottles, and as the hour of midnight drew near they repaired to the Old Tron Kirk, in High Street. As the clock tolled the hour of the new year, they drank the contents and broke the bottle on the walls or on heads that happened to be in the way. The next day, Sunday, was a busy day for the ambulances and hospitals.

As the celebration was continued Sunday and Monday night, sleep was quite out of the question. Monday the crowds were so dense in Princess Street and Waterloo Place that it was nearly impossible to get through, and although the price of admission to the carnival was doubled, the place was packed from 10 A.M. until 11 P.M. Tuesday there was another crush, mostly trippers from the surrounding towns. Saturday, Monday and Tuesday, Dec. 31, Jan. 2 and 3, were declared legal holidays, and all business, except that of catering to the holiday crowds, was suspended. But with all the drunkenness, the number of fights and similar infractions of the law were comparatively few. On the whole, I am inclined to the belief that the common people in England have a more wholesome regard for law and order than in the States. I am sorry to say, however, that what amounts almost to a national pastime over there, is wife beating, and the first American that invents a patent safety lamp that can be thrown across the room without exploding, will, in my humble estimation, reap a rich harvest.

The carnival closed Saturday, Jan. 14. On the 15th   (being Sunday) I took a much needed rest, but Monday, Jan 16, I went sight-seeing, and I certainly saw the sights of Edinburgh to my heart’s content, so that when night came I felt tired to death, and my head was full of old castles, ruined palaces, monuments and other bric-a-brac too numerous to mention. The first place of interest I visited was Sir Walter Scott’s monument, located in the beautiful Princess Street Gardens. It is two hundred feet in height and has a heroic marble statue of the great poet underneath its Gothic arches. It cost about £16,000 ($80,000), and is adorned with statues of prominent characters in Scott’s works, and with likenesses of the famous Scottish poet. It was designed by George Meikle Kemp, son of a shepherd on the Pentland Hill, who, when a boy of ten, had his enthusiasm stirred by a visit to Roslin Castle and Chapel, and subsequently devoted many years of his life to the study of Gothic architecture. Unfortunately the young architect did not survive to see the work far advanced, being one night accidentally drowned in the Union Canal.

A little further West on Princess Street is the National Gallery. A visit here among such beautiful pictures and artistic statues inspires even pouvre moi with a desire to become an artist. The work that impressed me most was an unfinished picture, John Knox dispensing the sacrament at Calderhouse; on the farther side of a long table, which crosses the picture horizontally, stands in the centre the great reformer handing a communion cup to a lady seated at the left. Beyond her are others seated at the table, and behind them a bearded man passes with a basket of bread while on the right is a knight with bread in his hand, two men in armor reading from the same book, and others. In the foreground to right and left are more figures, including several children. The head of the reformer and the groups to the right are almost completed,   as are two isolated heads on that side and three to the left, but otherwise the figures are only sketched in pencil. There is a pathetic side to this picture which illustrates the uncertainty of human life. The artist, Sir David Wilkie, commenced the picture in 1839. In 1840 he went on a journey to Constantinople, Egypt and the Holy Land, from which he never returned, having died on the homeward voyage. He was buried at sea.

My next stop was at historic, battle scarred Edinburgh Castle, one of the most conspicuous and picturesque citadals in all Europe. Built on a solid granite rock of volcanic origin, it has stood the rack of ages. It covers eleven acres at the bottom, seven acres at the top, and is 443 feet above sea level. The castle rock was probably a favorite post of the ancient Caledonians. The earliest recorded fact, however, is the capture of the fortress in 626, by Edwin, the Saxon king of Northumbria. The walls vary from ten to seventeen feet in thickness, and it strikes one as being well nigh impregnable, but the modern methods of sapping and mining, used so successfully by the Japanese at Port Arthur, would probably reduce it in a short while.

In describing the principal interesting points of the castle, we will commence at the top, which is reached by a steep, winding roadway. Passing through a large court, we enter the old Parliament Hall, now converted into an armory 80x30ft. and 27ft. in height. Next we inspect Queen Mary’s room, where James VI of Scotland and I of England, was born, June 19, 1566. On the Northern parapet we find “Mons Meg,” a relic of the fifteenth century, said to be the largest and oldest piece of ordnance in all Europe. It measures 13ft. in length, 7ft. in circumference, has a calibre of 20 inches, and weighs upwards of five tons. Near the breech is a considerable rent, which occurred in 1662, when firing a salute in honor of the Duke of York, afterwards   [photo] A "Bunch" of the Wild West, taken in the Old Colosseum, Rome.   James VII. Piled up alongside of it are a number of massive stone balls that would barely go into an ordinary sized washtub, said to be some of the identical ones fired from “Meg,” and afterwards found on Wardie Moor, three miles distant.

The following is an extract from the chamberlain’s roll, in the quaint language of the time: “To certain pioneers for their labour in the mounting of Mons out of her lair to be shot, and for the finding and carrying of her bullets after she was shot, from Wardie Muir, to the Castle, etc., 10d” (20 cents); “to the minstrels who played before Mons down the street for 14d and for 8 ells of cloth to cover Mons, 9¼ d.” A few feet to the rear of Mons we enter St. Margaret’s Chapel, the oldest and smallest church in Scotland, 16½x10½ft., and at least eight hundred years old. The crown room, containing the royal regalia; the courtroom and the prison, with its horribly significant chains and manacles, completed my tour of the castle. The barracks, accommodating about eight hundred soldiers, being modern, I did not visit. From the castle a seven minutes’ walk brought me to the National Museum in Chamberlain’s Street, where they have everything in natural history from a tiny bug to the skeleton of a whale seventy-eight feet long. My time was only too limited here. So far as my observation goes, however, it is hardly up to our own Metropolitan Museum in New York. Next I walked down to South Bridge Street, passed the old Iron Kirk, across North Bridge, passed the post office, county prison and Calton Hill Cemetery, which contains Lincoln’s monument, erected by Scotch-Americans in 1893. A little farther East we inspect the Burns monument, while right opposite, high up on Calton Hill, the Royal Conservatory looks down upon us. Hollyrood Palace was the next point of interest; I visited the picture gallery, containing upwards of a hundred por-   traits of Scottish kings; Lord Darnley’s rooms, from which a private stairway leads to Queen Mary’s apartments, which have undergone very little change, save by the ravages of time, since they were occupied by that unhappy queen. The bed of Charles I is to be found in the paneled audience chamber, as is also a grate, said to be the first used in Scotland. Still more interesting is Queen Mary’s bedroom, with its ancient bed and moldering finery. The Chapel Royal, in ruins, where Queen Mary and Lord Darnley were wedded, and the royal vault, containing the remains of a long line of Scottish kings and queens, restored to their last resting place by the good Queen Victoria. Edinburgh has a population of 300,000, and is a progressive, go-ahead city.

On my return to London I was informed that the Wild West would tour France the coming season, opening at Paris in March. I went at once to the Berlitz School of Languages in Chancery Lane, to see about taking some French lessons. I went into the office and stated my wants in as few words as possible. The old professor looked over his spectacles at me and said: “What part of America do you come from?” I said: “How do you know I come from America?” He replied: “That is sticking out all over you, but you are a puzzle to me at that. Usually I can tell what section of America you come from—East, West, North or South — but in your case I am at sea.” Then I told him my business, that I was a traveler, and I was a mystery to him no longer.

 

CHAPTER VI— 1905.

Grand Opening at Paris — A Zigzag Tour of France — Disease Among the Horses —Tragedie de les Cheveaux.

I left London for Paris, March 15, to rejoin Buffalo Bill’s Wild West for a tour of continental Europe. As our season did not commence until April 2, we had about two weeks for sightseeing.

Our grounds were beautifully laid out in the Champs de Mars (Military Field), midway between the Gallerie de Machines and Le Tour Eifel. This historic ground is the site upon which the great Napoleon marshaled his forces, and it is also the scene of all the great Paris expositions.

Our tented city was artistically arranged in national groups, on grassy lawns, with graveled walks, the tents being of the regulation kind used in army field life. The main pavilion was the largest ever used for a similar exhibition, with a seating capacity of 17,000, which was inadequate to accommodate the immense crowds at least twice during every week of our stay in Paris.

Sunday night, June 4, Buffalo Bill’s Wild West concluded what may be justly termed the most pleasantly prosperous engagement in the history of the white tents.

Colonel Cody, a Hawkeye by birth, is personally lionized by the Parisians, and his unique exhibition, so full of his-   torical and dramatic interest, made a wonderful impression upon the susceptible French public.

The twenty lessons I took in French, at the Berlitz School of Languages, London, only gave me a faint idea of what the language was like, but as I was required to make my lectures and announcements in French, I had my speeches translated, and was coached in their delivery by M. Corthesy, editeur le Journal de Londres. Well, I got along pretty fair, considering that I did not know the meaning of half the words I was saying. Anyway it amused them, so I was satisfied. I honestly believe that more people came in the side show in Paris to hear and laugh at my “rotten” French than anything else, and when I found that a certain word or expression excited their risibilities, I never changed it. I can look back now and see where some of my own literal translations were very funny.

Colonel Cody’s exhibition is unique in many ways, and might justly be termed a polyglot school, no less than twelve distinct languages being spoken in the camp, viz.: Japanese, Russian, French, Arabic, Greek, Hungarian, German, Italian, Spanish, Holland, Flemish, Chinese, Sioux and English. Being in such close contact every day, we were bound to get some idea of each other’s tongue, and all acquire a fair idea of English. Colonel Cody is, therefore, entitled to considerable credit for disseminating English, and thus preserving the entente cordial between nations.

The first place of public interest that we visited in Paris was the Jardin des Plants (botanical and zoological garden) and le Musee d’Historie Naturelle. The zoological collection would suffer in comparison with several in America I might mention, but the Natural History Museum is very complete, and is, to my notion, the most artistically arranged of any museum I have visited.

Le Palais de Trocadero, which was in sight of our   [photo] The Office at winter quarters, Marseilles. F.B. Hutchinson, Chas. Meredith, Ben Powell, Bill Cloud, John Eberle, Leah Monterey. [photo] F.B. Hutchinson having a go at lawn tennis. Marseilles, December, 1905.   grounds and facing the Champs de Mars, is filled with art treasures dating from the early ages up to the present time. L’Hotel des Invalides contains relics of past wars and illustrates the glories of le militaire de France.

Adjoining the great War Museum is a magnificent chapel, surmounted by a great gilded dome, under which rests the mortal remains of the great Napoleon, while in a circle around his tomb lie the ashes of his relatives and generals.

From le grand roue (the big wheel) in the Ave de Suffren, which overlooked our camp, you could get an excellent bird’s-eye view of Paris. Connected with the big wheel was a music hall, cafe and ballroom. On one of my visits there I enjoyed the rare privilege of seeing a real French duel between two rival editors. Now, do not think that I am a bloodthirsty wretch who delights to revel in gory bull fights, etc. On the contrary, this was funny. The weapons were swords, they were desperately in earnest, each one must have expected to be killed, as each one had brought a physician. After a few feints one was scratched on the back of the hand, drawing a few drops of blood, and thus outraged honor was satisfied. Of course we all went up in le Tour Eifel, which was virtually in our front yard. It is curious what different sensations are experienced by those who make the ascension. Some become exhilarated, while it makes others actually ill. Some seem possessed of a hypnotic desire to jump off into space, while others are indifferent to any but ordinary feelings. The tower is 991 feet height, and the base covers seven acres. The more you see and study it the more beautiful it becomes. It is so gracefully symmetrical in its proportions that it seems to be architecturally perfect.

There are two classes of people in Paris; one class is there for the sole purpose of making money, and the other   class to spend it. They are both working overtime, and as a result you pay top prices for everything. They do not seem to have regular prices for their goods, but go on the principle that “a sucker is good for all that he will stand for.”

The French people are overflowing with experimental energy, and I have no doubt but that some day they will solve the aeronautic problem. One day I witnessed a balloon race in which there were eight contestants; in fact, there was scarcely a day passed but that there was one or more balloons hovering over the Wild West Show grounds.

What seems to be the principal fault of the French people — or rather the Parisian — is their extreme excitability and social immorality. Paris, being a cosmopolitan city, a city almost entirely given up to pleasure, is corrupted by foreign contact, inasmuch as they cater to the vicious tastes of the idle rich of all nations, therefore it is a wonder that it is not worse than it is.

One day a few hundred students in the Boulevarde St. Germain, who had a grievance against on of the maitres, were making a public demonstration, and were dispersed by the gendarmes, who handled some of the rioters rather severely. The next day they made their appearance again, in increased numbers, and marched to the office of the prefect of police, who received them politely — a Frenchman is polite, above all things — made a diplomatic speech denouncing the former action of his subordinates, and in a few minutes they were marching down street, cheering for the police just like a lot of capricious children.

The boulevards are broad, well paved and kept remarkably clean. The pavements in front of the cafés are almost blocked with chairs and little round tables, at which men and women sit day and night, sipping their wine or pernod (absinthe). There are a lot of low grade men there who are   supported by hardworking women. One day a woman was pointed out to me in the street pulling a baker’s wagon almost as large as a house, while her husband was seated at one of these tables, drinking wine with a gaily dressed woman of the street.

Most of these tradesmen’s carts have one or more dogs harnessed to the axle, who really and quite cheerfully, it seems, do all the work, while the man or woman does the guiding.

They drink wine at their meals instead of tea or coffee, and although immense quantities of it are consumed, they seldom drink between meals, and there is much less drunkenness there than in Great Britain or America.

The French women do not possess the natural beauty and splendid physique of the English and American women, but they have a knack of arranging costumes and toilets to make themselves very attractive for the minimum d’argent, and some very beautiful and unique toilets are to be seen there.

Although Paris was both beautiful and interesting, when we gave our farewell performance on the Champs de Mars, night of June 4, and went to bed in our own sleeping cars, to wake up many miles away, we were indeed a happy lot. Why? Because nine weeks is too prolonged a stay in any one place for those accustomed to one-day stand circus life in America.

Our first stop out of Paris was at Chartres, a ville of 5,000 inhabitants, fifty-five miles Southwest of Paris. The change was indeed refreshing. Instead of the Eifel Tower, the big wheel, the huge Gallerie de Machines and the red sand of the Champs de Mars, we were greeted with growing grass, green trees and running streams. There we had an opportunity of seeing the difference between the cosmopolitan Parisian and the true French provincial, the latter re-   minding us very much of the happy country circus crowds at home. We stopped one day each at Allencon, Fleurs, St. Lo and Cherbourg, in Normandy. Our stay in the latter city should have been longer, as it is one of the principal seaports of France, and in spite of the cold, drizzling rain which prevailed all day, thousands of people were turned away at both performances.

Rouen, where we exhibited June 15 and 16, on the Champs de Mars, is an interesting old world city of 116,000 inhabitants. I took some snapshots here of the great cathedral, 1,100 years old, and the swinging bridge across the River Seine, which is a great architectural curiosity. Two iron pillars about one hundred feet high support a span across the river; on this is a trolley carrying a sort of car from side to side within a few feet of the water. It is the conception of an English mind, and is, in my mind, only a freak of engineering skill.

The giant clock which is carved in stone over an arch in the Rue de la Grosse Horlogerie is another mechanical oddity built in the eighteenth century.

Our next stop was at Havre for two days. This is an important seaport on the English Channel. We were billed there for four performances, but on account of a long haul and a soft lot the afternoon performance on the first day and the evening performance of the last day were abandoned.

At Arras, June 22, we saw a mammoth Wild West poster in the Cathedral entrance — rather a unique sight to us Westerners.

We stopped one day each at Donar, Calais and Boulogne, all seaports on the English Channel. At Boulogne the fisher folk in their quaint costumes reminded us of Bonnie Scotland. We occupied the entire market place for our tents, which enclosed a large cathedral. We had barely got   [photo] Les Gallerie de les Phenomen, or side show, 1906.   our canvas enclosure erected when a funeral applied for admission, but they finally decided to drive on to another church.

June 28 found us at Armentieres, in the extreme North of France, on the Belgian border. Tobacco in France is a government monopoly, the prices are high for an inferior quality, and many of the boys took advantage of the cheap and superior quality over the border. The solitary oarsman operating the only ferry across the narrow river did a thriving business all day. He capsized one boatload, to the great amusement of those on shore.

July 1 to 4, inclusive, we spent at Lille, a prosperous silk manufacturing city of 210,000 inhabitants. July 4 we celebrated our national holiday. The entire encampment was gorgeously decorated in tri-colored bunting, a grand banquet was served to the members of the company, the bands played patriotic airs, and Colonel Cody (Buffalo Bill) made one of his characteristic speeches, in which he eulogized the French nation for the important part they had played in American history. James A. Bailey, “the little Napolen of the show business,” and his able lieutenant, George O. Starr, were visitors. This was the last time we saw Mr. Bailey alive.

July 11 to 13 we exhibited at Reims, in the centre of the great champagne district. The city is undermined with huge wine vaults, excavated out of the solid chalk. Many of those in the company who had never tasted champagne before took advantage of its cheapness, and succeeded in getting on a seven dollar "jag" for thirty cents.

At Charleville, July 14, we had an opportunity of seeing how the French people celebrate their national independence day. This is equivalent to our Fourth of July, and commemorates the fall of the Bastile. Charleville-Mezzier was sacked and burned by the Germans in 1871, and the village still shows signs of that memorable struggle.

 

The next day, July 15, we exhibited on the Champs de Mars, Sedan, where Napoleon III met defeat in 1871.

During the month of July we traveled along the Belgian, German and Swiss frontiers, and as these towns were all well fortified, our audiences, in many instances, were more than half military, who were accorded a reduced rate, that being a national custom. They are a well behaved lot of fellows, being composed of all classes, the conscript system being in vogue — doctors, lawyers, tradesmen, mechanics, et al., all being liable to three years’ service, for which they receive pay at the rate of un sou (1 cent) per day. The rations are barely enough to sustain life, and if the poor soldier has no money or friends, he has a sorry time of it indeed.

At Luneville, July 21, our camp was pitched in a basin, surrounded by hills or mountains, which formed a great natural amphitheatre, from which those who had neither the price nor the inclination to pay, could, and did, view the performance gratis. “Grand stand hill” was lined with French soldiers, whose red caps and trousers, blue coats and white over-gaiters, with the green grass for a background, formed a unique picture, full of color.

Aug. 4 we began a ten days’ stay at Lyons, the third city of France, with a population of nearly 500,000. Lyons is celebrated for the manufacture of silks.

Sunday, Aug. 20, was a gala day at Vichy, the Saratoga of France, where the Shah of Persia and suite, numbering about fifty persons, honored us with a visit. There were fully 17,000 people present, and when Colonel Cody shook hands with His Highness, the applause was tremendous. The Comptesse de Paris and party occupied a private box on the same occasion. If France were still a monarchy she would probably be the reigning queen, as she is next in line of succession.

En route from Rion to Montlucon, Aug. 22, one of our   huge stock cars was derailed by a misplaced switch. The railway force labored for about two hours to replace it, without success. Finally our crew of “razor-backs” came to the rescue, and had the car on the track in fifteen minutes.

As a whole, the railway service in France is good, but the wages are very low. My opinion is that those who are most in favor of government ownership of railroads in America would be the first to complain were the present order of things reversed.

We had some terrific storms during the season, but the most severe of all struck us at Orleans, Aug. 25. It completely demolished the big tent, and scores of people were more or less injured, but none fatally.

On the morning of Aug. 24, by special invitation, we visited the Exposition, which had been running here since May. Among its most interesting features were Le Ville de Noir (the Black City), composed of ninety Senegals, from the French colonies in Africa.

On every hand we are reminded by beautiful paintings, sculpture and marked historical spots that this was the birthplace of Joan of Arc.

Wednesday, Aug. 30, we viewed the partial eclipse of the sun at Thouars. This unusual spectacle was followed by a terrific electric storm, lasting about twenty minutes. Lightning struck one of the Wild West horse tents and instantly killed four horses, among them the two valuable white Arabians which Colonel Cody drove to his private carriage. Several of the attaches of the stable department suffered from shock, but none were seriously injured.

At Quimper, Sept. 11, we encountered an English colony with a lot of excursionists from the Isle of Jersey. It seemed strange indeed to have people ask us questions in English, and after wrestling with a foreign language so long,   we were almost at a loss to form sentences in our native tongue.

Morning of Sept. 12 we were treated to a beautiful view of the harbor of Brest, with the formidable French fleet at anchor. Here is where the English and French navies had their fraternal maneuvers to seal the entente cordial, which has been of immense value to France in a commercial way. The English forgot their old resolve to stay at home and spend their holiday money and flocked to the French resorts by the thousands. My friend, Sydney Wire, writing me from Paris at the time, said: “Never in its history has the French capital been so engulfed with English-speaking people.”

At St. Malo, Sept. 14, we had another big crowd of English visitors from the Channel Islands.

Sept. 15 found us at Reims, where the final chapter in the Dreyfus case was enacted. The Palais de Justice, where he received his final pardon, was close to the show ground and was visited by many of the show people.

Bordeaux, with a population of 256,638, was the next large city we visited, making a ten days’ stay there on the beautiful Place Quin Conces, situated in the heart of the city. Well, it would be equivalent to Union Square in New York City, surrounded by beautiful statues, heroic monuments, sparkling fountains and everything that goes to make a public park attractive. At the back or rear entrance was the river and wharf, with its varied shipping, the huge barges of wine casks being mainly in evidence. Broad stone steps lead up to the grounds between two ancient stone towers representing commerce. Standing almost in the side show door was a magnificent gray stone soldiers’ monument, about two hundred feet high, one of the finest in all France, “A la memoire des Girondes.” At the base of this monument, on either side, are beautiful bronze marine groups   [photo] Opening day at Genoa, Italy, March, 1906 [photo] Double-deck tramcar used in England.   of statuary representing peace and progress. One block to the East of us was the beautiful Theatre Municipal, and to the South, a short block, was a fine monument in memory of and surmounted by a heroic statue of “Gambetta, Pere de la Pays” (Father of the Country). Oct. 1, our last day at Bordeaux, was celebrated by many of us going to Aux Arenes Espagnole to see a Spanish bull fight. All were unanimous in declaring it to be the most beastly and blood-thirsty exhibition they had ever seen. There is a law against bull fighting in France, and as the bull ring is located on city property the aldermen are solemnly brought to justice every Monday morning (bull fights always take place on Sunday) and fined F.16 ($3.20).

Four days after our departure from Bordeaux, the annual fete or fair, one of the largest in France, held in honor of the grape harvest, was given on the grounds we occupied. Le Societe des Forain (the society of open air showmen) made a desperate fight to keep the Wild West out of Bordeaux, but without avail. They boycotted and scandalized us in every conceivable way, but despite that fact, and that it rained torrents eight of the ten days we were there, we did a good paying business.

Oct. 3 we showed at Bayonne, only two miles from Biaritz, the famous coast resort, and twenty-five miles from the Spanish main. The little blue, toboggan-like caps told us plainly that our audience was composed mainly of Spaniards. It is a strongly fortified place, in remembrance of the many bloody wars between France and Spain in the misty past. There are miles and miles of stone masonry, and the city is completely surrounded by a moat which could be flooded with water in case of attack.

At Pau, Oct. 4, we got our first glimpse of the Lower Pyrennes. It is a great Winter resort of English and American tourists. En route from Pau to Tarbes, thirty-seven   miles, we passed Lourdes, famous for cures of the faithful. There we had a fine view of the Upper Pyrennes, including le pic du Middi, or South peak (10,000 feet), which was covered with this year’s snow, and as there was a strong wind from that direction, we nearly perished with the cold. Although the show ground was five kilometres from the city, and a drizzling rain prevailed, we had two immense audiences.

Oct. 6, at Mount de Marsau, our tents were pitched on the racetrack, surrounded by a turpentine grove, five miles from town, and only cabs and carry-alls to convey the crowds to and from the show — well, many of us had to ride “Shank’s ponies.”

Oct. 9 we stopped at Bergerac, where M. Rostand dug up his quaint character of Cyrano. The ancient chateau of the great fighter is one of the interesting relics that link the past with the present.

At Beziers, Oct. 21, 22, we occupied the military field, adjoining which was the bull ring, one of the largest and finest we had seen, built of red brick in circular form, with a seating capacity for 12,000 people. It is a noticeable fact that where we find these bull rings, the people seem to partake of the savagery they suggest. Only a short time before we were there the audience tore up and set fire to the benches because the management refused to kill another bull, after already killing six, the advertised number. After a bull fight the carcasses are cut up and sold to the people for food. Is it any wonder that such people are savage?

Oct. 23 we were on the shores of the Mediterranean, at Cette. The Hooligan element was very much in evidence there, reminding one of the early days in America, when the “bad” element of a section regarded the advent of a circus as an intrusion or menace, and would attack the show people for no other reason than that they were strangers. One of   their favorite pastimes on this occasion was throwing stones at the drivers, out of the darkness. Finally it became necessary to charge them on horseback, and they proved to be a bunch of arrant cowards, as is usual in such cases. At least a dozen of them will never forget the Wild West. Cette is a city of 35,000 population and a fortress of the premiere classe.

Oct. 27 found us at the ancient city of Nimes, rich in Roman antiquities. When Colonel Cody and the Wild West were here in 1889 they exhibited a month in the old stone arena, which is almost as ancient as the Colosseum at Rome, and built on the same lines. Several of “our boys” had their pictures taken there. Considering its great age, it is still in a good state of preservation, being in use now as a bull ring.

Oct. 30 we exhibited at Arles, another old Roman town much frequented by tourists. The arena here, which is still used as a bull ring, was built in the year 400 B. C.

Nov. 1 we arrived at Marseilles, our goal. We closed the season of 1905 Nov. 12, at which time an audience of 15,000 people assembled to see the farewell performance. The season was a most arduous one, seven and one-half months’ continuous showing without a Sunday’s rest to break the monotony. Besides the ordinary trials of a showman’s life we had opposition with another big American institution, McCaddon’s International Shows, featuring a Wild West, and, worst of all,

LE TRAGEDIE DES LES CHEVEAUX.

Shortly after leaving Paris glanders broke out among the bronchos, and government veterinaries were placed with us to combat the dread disease. Forty-two horses were taken out and shot in one day.

When we closed the season at Marseilles we only had about one hundred bronchos left to give the performance, two hundred having been killed during the season.

 

Our magnificent draught stock, which was under the care of Jake Posey, of Cincinnati, never came in contact with the bronchos, so they did not become contaminated. When the show was finally put away in Winter quarters, Mr. Bailey and Colonel Cody, equal owners of the Wild West, held a consultation, and it was decided to kill the remaining hundred bronchos and burn all the trappings, that being the only way of stamping out the plague, and importing new bronchos and trappings from America for the next season. After the first batch of forty-two horses were taken out and shot I took a long article, written for the American press, to Fred. B. Hutchinson, the manager, asking for his approval. He read it carefully, knit his brows a little and handed it back to me, saying, “Charlie, the least said about this the better;” hence the story has never been publicly told until now.

[illustration]   [photo]

Winter quarters at Marseilles, France.

Daily exercise of horses.

 

CHAPTER VII.— WINTER 1905-6.

Marseilles, the Gateway to the Orient — Wintering Under Canvas — More Observations of French Manners and Customs.

From November, 1905, until March, 1906, we Wintered under canvas at Marseilles, the semi-tropical climate of that latitude rendering such a heretofore unheard of proposition possible. When Manager Fred Hutchinson first spoke of doing this, the old boys shook their heads, but Colonel Cody, having full confidence in his young manager, after pulling us safely through one of the most strenuous seasons ever experienced by any show, thought “Freddy” knew best — and “Freddy” did know best. “All’s well that ends well,” and Mr. Hutchinson received great credit from everyone for his forethought in saving the firm a lot of trouble and expense.

Marseilles is the most important seaport of France, having one of the finest harbors in the world and a population of 500,000. You get an excellent vue d’oiseau of the city from L’Eglise Notre Dame de la Garde, which is situated on a rocky promontory 500 feet above the sea. The chapel is surmounted by a steeple 150 feet high, supporting a huge bronze statue of the Madonna, which is out of all proportion to the size of the main structure, which gives it a peculiarly odd appearance. There is also in the same enclosure a battery of artillery, soldiers’ barracks, a government signal station and a cafe restaurant. On the occasion of my visit   services were being held, and the music from the splendid choir and big organ was particularly impressive.

On the North from Notre Dame, extending in a semi-circle around the city, are the Maritime Alps, while on the South you have a fine view of the Mediterranean and the extensive harbor, filled with ships of every nationality, all of which is set off by several rocky islets, on the smallest of which is that famous fortress, the Chateau d’If, from whence the great Dumas took his inimitable character of Monte Cristo. For one franc you can visit this island in a comfortable steam launch, see the ancient prisons and the dungeon where Edmund Dantes was imprisoned, and at the same time get a sensation of mal de mer if you are not a good sailor.

Leaving Notre Dame by winding stone steps, we go down through Pharo Park, where the Pasteur Institute, Medical College and Morgue are situated, also getting a closer view of the dock and the Transborder Bridge. Then we come to the Cannebier, the literal meaning of which is a tub of beer. This is the main “stem” of the city from which all the principal rues radiate, and is a busy place at all times. This is the particular pride of the Marseillian, who says: “Paris would be a very nice place of they only had le Cannebier.”

I never saw so much bad coin in my life as in France, and particularly Marseilles. It is not considered bad form to pass out a counterfeit piece if you have been unwise enough to accept one. The government does not seem to make any effort to keep bad money out of circulation. If you tender a bad coin at the post office or bank, they merely hand it back, saying “Pas bon.”

Everyone in France has a little money — even the beggars have money in bank usually, because they make a business of it.

 

A golden rule in French pronunciation is, pronounce a word any old way except the way that it is spelled.

The respect shown the dead by the French people is commendable. No matter what a person has been or done in life, all is forgotten in death. When a funeral cortege passes through the street everybody stops and uncovers his head. The cemeteries are carefully attended and are a thing of beauty. The premiere classe (there are eight classes of funerals) are placed in vaults underground, surmounted by a small chapel containing a shrine, with photographs of the dead all beautifully decorated with flowers, real or artificial. Bread is their staff of life, and wine is cheap. Their bread is the best in the world and costs about 20 centimes, or 4 cents per demi kilo (one pound), for the best quality. When the Germans invaded France in 1870-71 the soldiers wrote back home: “This is a great country; the people eat cake all the time,” their bread being so different from the black or brown bread which they were accustomed to at home. A cheaper quality of bread is baked in huge loaves as large as a washtub. One cent’s worth of this bread and a half litre of cheap, sour wine, which costs one cent, will make a substantial meal for a working man. Almost every other food is dearer there than here or England. Good bacon costs forty cents a pound; sugar, seven cents; milk, eight cents; ham, $1.00.

There is not the same standard of home life in France as we have in America or England, as is attested by the cafes and restaurants everywhere. They will eat bread and drink a little wine three or four times a day at home and all go out to a restaurant for dinner. You can get a fair six course dinner there, including tea, coffee, milk or wine, for thirty cents, or by purchasing ten tickets you may have it for twenty-five cents a meal. Day board, by the month, $12.00. I never had as good a French dinner in all France as I used   to get for fifty cents at a French restaurant in Twenty-eighth Street, New York, kept by one “Spanish John,” who, by the way, happened to be an Italian.

An ordinary shave costs you three cents, and haircutting is four cents. After le barbe has lathered and shaved you, it is your turn to go to the wash bowl, wash the lather off, return to the chair and he finishes the job.

The South of France is much like parts of our own South, primitive and behind the times. Their patois is a mixture of French, Spanish and Italian. They are very excitable and passionate. They work milk cows like oxen, and their horses, which are very small, are yoked together.

  [photo]

Entrance to the Wild West, Champs De Mars, Paris, 1905.

The line up Sunday morning, at 11 o'clock, for tickets.

 

CHAPTER VIII.—1906.

Opening of the Season at Marseilles—Tour of Italy, Austria-Hungary, Germany and Belgium.

Buffalo Bill’s Wild West inaugurated their twenty-fourth annual tour at Marseilles, France, March 4, 1906, on the same grounds where we closed our 1905 tour, and where the show was Wintered.

The first week out, beginning at Marseilles, March 4, and ending at Nice, March 10, was the biggest opening week, financially, in the history of the show. While we were at Nice everybody had the Monte Carlo fever, and the boys tell some amusing tales of “how they did not break the bank.”

March 13 was cut out to make the run from Nice to Genoa, Italy, which, to my notion, was the most beautiful route ever traversed by a show train. On one side of us was the blue Mediterranean, and on the other were high mountains, full of snow. The almond trees were full of fragrant blossoms.

During the run Colonel Cody sat on the observation platform of his private car and received a perfect ovation from immense throngs of people at every stazione. The formalities of the customs were all arranged in advance by General Agent Clarence L. Dean, so we experienced no delay on that score. We were in four sections, the last one arriving at Genoa at 2 P. M., or, according to the Italian   system of reckoning time, 14 o’clock (24 o’clock being midnight).

Our first performance was given at Genoa, afternoon of 14, and thousands of people were turned away, and the side show—well, many circuses would be “tickled to death” to do the business that our side show did. Morning of 15 two new 60ft. middle pieces were put up, thus adding considerably to our seating capacity, and yet thousands were unable to gain admission. It is my humble opinion that we should have remained at Genoa at least a week.

Genoa, the birthplace of Columbus, is one of the most beautiful cities I have visited anywhere. The English fleet was at anchor while we were there. Lord Charles Beresford and about 2,000 jackies attended the performance, night of 16.

Spezia, March 17, was one day only, and then we filled our immense amphitheatre for two performances with country people whose enthusiastic applause seemed to have no bound.

Livorno, 18, 19, 20, during the celebration of the three hundredth anniversary of the city government, was to big business at every performance. Evening of 19 a strong wind came up at about 6 o’clock, and the night show had to be abandoned, which gave many of us an opportunity of witnessing a magnificent display of fireworks by the city.

March 21 we made the run from Livorno to Roma, a distance of 334 kilometres (205¾ miles). The last section left Livorno at 5 o’clock A. M., crossed the Tiber at 17.30, and entered the capital city at 18 o’clock, according to Roman time.

Never in the twenty-four years’ history of the Wild West was there such a crowd of people to welcome its arrival. The streets were blocked and traffic suspended in the vicinity of the station. The police reserves were called   out, and they finally cleared the way for us to the Piazzi d’Armi, where we were to exhibit.

Sunday, March 25, the Wild West was honored by a visit from the King and Queen of Italy, Count of Turin, Count and Countess Quicciardini, and the members of the court. After witnessing the spectacle throughout, King Victor Emanuel commanded a private performance for the following day. Punctually at 10 o’clock their majesties arrived, accompanied by their children and suite. The royal audience heartily applauded the performance, and Colonel Cody received the personal congratulations of the king, also a gold cigarette case, with the royal monogram and crest, studded with diamonds, and a beautifully worded letter, thanking him for both performances.

Morning of March 27 Press Agent Frank A. Small, who, by the way, is the biggest Small you ever saw, standing nearly seven feet tall, received the following characteristic telegram from Geo. Ade: “Six hungry Yanks will be on the lot at noon; notify the cook tent.”

The party included George Ade, the Sultan of Sulu; Booth Tarkington, the Gentleman from Indiana; Mr. Thompson, Mr. Sweet, et al. They were not only after something to eat, but were in search of material for their literary work, and I guess they got it. Anyway, they had the run of the show and seemed to be having a jolly good time. Mr. Ade presented the snake charmer in the Side Show with a box of bon bons. “The bravest little lady in the land” untied the string, and—had a snake fit. Instead of bon bons the package contained a large spiral spring snake, about nine feet long. Ade was very industrious all day trying to spend an American paper dollar among the privilege people. Frank S. Griffin was the first one to turn it down; Frank remembered him from the Ringling Show when Ade was a regular trouper. But I think the sight of   that dollar bill made Frank homesick, as he left a “good thing” and returned to the States a few days later. Hall Caine was also among our distinguished guests at Rome.

Rome has a population of 500,000, and is the most interesting city, historically, in all Europe. Whole libraries of books are published descriptive of its wonders, and as every encyclopedia tells of its past glories, I will not attempt to describe with my feebls powers of description its manifold wonders. Suffice to say we visited the Colosseum, Pantheon, Quirinal, etc., and were not disappointed.

All through April the weather was abnormally warm, even for Italy. Many attributed this to the eruptions of Vesuvius. We were never nearer than two hundred miles to the active volcano, but we had several scares and everything was made ship-shape as for a big storm, which turned out to be clouds of red dust, while the supposed lightning was also from old Vesuvius.

All kinds of bad things were predicted for us in Italy, and many of us had it down as a land of anarchists, with bombs and stilettos, but we found the people the most peaceable and more subject to police control than any country we visted outside of England. The police, too, are a fine looking and efficient body of men.

We bade farewell to sunny Italy with many regrets, and crossed over into Austria, at Trieste, May 12, where we remained for four days to capacity business. Trieste has a population of about 40,000, and is a seaport of considerable importance. It formerly belonged to Italy, and two-thirds of the population are Italians. Although German is the official language, the people will not stand for the Austrian flag or speak the German language.

May 17 and 18 found us in the quaint city of Agram, capital of Croatia. Although they have their own language, parliament, government officials and revenues, they are   [photo] The staff in winter quarters, Marseilles, France December, 1904 [photo] Col. Cody's two favorite mounts, Prince and Bayard. Johnny Baker, Ben Powell, F.B. Hutchinson.   under the protection of Austria. In 1886 Agram was totally destroyed by an earthquake, but now it is a very beautiful and substantial city of 20,000 happy and contented inhabitants. The State Theatre, which is maintained by the government for the perpetuation of the Croatian language, is a particularly attractive structure, almost on a par with the Grand Opera House at Paris.

From Agram we went up through the picturesque Austrian Tyrol to Vienna (1,800,000 population) on the Danube. We played a most successful three weeks’ engagement on the Prata, at the very doors of the Great Rotunda, a relic of the Exposition of 1878. There was scarcely one out of the forty days at Vienna that we did not entertain royalty. Doubtless we could have remained there all Summer and made money.

When Colonel Cody visited Vienna in 1900, the Grand Duke Frederick was skeptical about the genuineness of the wild horses in the bucking act, and being a gruff old fellow, was not backward at all about saying so, whereupon the Colonel invited him to a special exhibition the next morning. His Highness arrived somewhat in advance of Colonel Cody, and when they brought the buckers into the arena he insisted on remaining there also. The first mount made a dash directly toward His Highness, and but for the fact that Bill Langdon risked his own life by jumping in and pulling the duke out of the way, he doubtless would have been killed. This same old grand duke visited with Colonel Cody several times while we were in Vienna. He recalled the above circumstance of his former visit, adding that he was a skeptic no longer.

The Prater, where our tents were pitched in Vienna, is the playground of the big city —a veritable Coney Island. There were parks, gardens, theatres, circuses — in fact, everything in the way of Summer amusement, in full blast.   Within two minutes from our main entrance you could take a trip to heaven, hell, the North Pole, or any old place, for four cents. As ours was the “big show,” everything was proclaimed American. There was even “American sourkrout” and “American beer.” But the funniest, or rather most ridiculous thing I saw there, was an alleged American flag displayed at one of these “joints.” It had four white and brownish-red stripes, with seven eight-pointed white stars on a green field.

June 15 we made a run South, of one hundred and seventy-five miles, to Budapest, capital of Hungary, a fine city of 800,000, on the Danube. The city takes its name from Buda and Pest, which are now united by ten of the handsomest bridges in the world. Hungary is noted for its carriage and racing horses, and Budapest is one of the greatest horse markets in Europe. It was therefore but natural that the people should take a great interest in the Wild West, and, although every stitch of canvas was spread and every inch of seat plank in place, our enormous seating capacity was taxed to the utmost. While the entire programme was well received, Colonel Cody’s shooting on horseback, the bucking horses, Johnny Baker’s shooting act, the “Horse Fair,” introducing our 200 magnificent draught horses; the Develin Zouaves and the Arab Troupe met with special favor. Eight days were not long enough for Budapest, as thousands of people, many coming from a distance, were unable to gain admission.

From Budapest we made a month of one day stands in Hungary. I am sorry to say that business was not up to our former standard. Hungary is purely an agricultural country, their methods of harvesting primitive, and a majority of the population, both men and women, were in the fields at the time we were there.

At Bekesaba, July 2, the order of “Tigers” visited the   grave of Henry Clark, who was buried there in May, 1901, by the “Tigers” of the Barnum & Bailey Show. Speeches were made, and Prof. Sweeney’s Cowboy Band rendered appropriate selections. To illustrate the friendly feelings that the Hungarians entertain for a stranger, I will mention the fact that Mr. Clark died just before the show’s departure, and one man was left behind to attend the burial. He was assisted in every way by the natives, and five hundred school children followed poor Clark’s body to its last resting place. The burial lot was purchased by the “Tigers,” who also placed an appropriate monument over the grave.

We celebrated our fourth Fourth of July in foreign lands at Szeged, Hungary. The front of the show was artistically decorated in red, white and blue, Caterer Ballard gave us a fine dinner, the bands rendered good old Yankee airs, and we almost felt as if we were at home rather than on the frontier of Europe and Asia.

We showed all the outposts of Eastern Europe along the borders of Turkey, Bulgaria, Roumania, Servia and Russia. We certainly had our troubles with interpreters. Some towns would be about equally divided between four or five nationalities, and, although they all understood German, the official language, each would insist on being addressed in his native language. We think we have a race problem in America, but it is more complicated and acute in Eastern Europe, and it is not a matter of color, either. The majority of the peasantry are on a par, educationally, with the negroes of our Southern States, and the poor Jew is far more persecuted. The stores and shops illustrate their wares on their signboards, because the majority of the population cannot read. Krakau, Lemberg and all towns along the Russian border were particularly lawless. They seemed to be a lot of natural born agitators.

Our first stand in the great German Empire was at   Zitau, Saxony, Aug. 15. For the three months preceding this date we had a multiplicity of languages to contend with, viz.: Hungarian, German, Slavonic, Roumanian, Czech, Servian, Polish, etc., and it certainly seemed good to get into a country where a universal language was spoken.

We played an unusually successful four days’ engagement at Dresden, the capital of Saxony. Although we had rain every day, we turned people away at every performance except one. I never saw so many people on a show ground in my life as there were at Dresden, Sunday afternoon, Aug. 19. Although our seating capacity was about 17,000 people, we could not accommodate half of those who desired admission. There is a large colony of English and Americans at Dresden, who support a very respectable English daily newspaper. Governor Francis and family, of Missouri, visited with Colonel Cody while we were at Dresden.

About this time our closing date, Sept. 21, was announced, and we all began to prepare for it. The Indians were particularly active in buying clothes and valises—made in Germany. The cow punchers also put on European “togs,” which so changed their personal appearance that one scarcely knew the other, and we all had to get acquainted over again.

We were at Plauen Aug. 24, where we encountered regulation German business— the very best.

At Weimar, Aug. 26, Colonel Cody received a telegram from the Grand Duke of Saxe-Weimar, who regretted his absence from home, and his consequent inability to visit the Wild West, but the following day His Highness and party came over from Weisbaden in motor cars. Colonel Cody also received royalty at Gera.

United States Consul Harris, at Chemnitz, was born in the same county in Iowa where Colonel Cody first saw   [photo] Les Peau Rouge (Sioux Indians). [photo] Johnny Baker and Dollie, the Laughing Horse A most intelligent broncho — one of the three hundred killed with glanders.   the light of day, and he and his family were made a part of our troupe while we were at Chemnitz.

At Eisenach, Aug. 27, the home of Martin Luther, the Reformer, the citadal was visited by a number of our boys.

Fulda, Prussia, where we stopped Aug. 28, is only a small town of 20,000 population, but we had a fair afternoon and good night attendance.

At Hanau, Aug. 29, we exhibited on one of Napoleon’s historic battlefields.

We had our first view of the Rhine at Worms. While it is a magnificent stream, it does not, in my opinion, possess the natural beauty of our great Mississippi or Hudson Rivers. While the Germans take every advantage of their natural resources, we, as a nation, have been sadly neglectful of them, especially as to our inland waterways.

Aug. 31 found us at Saarbrucken, a city of 244,000 population, on the Saar River, with the city of St. Johann, 440,000, on the other side.

Sept. 1 and 2 we had four big houses at Metz, Alsace-Lorain (58,000 population), which was surrendered to Germany by the French in 1871. Although under the German government, it is still a French city, to all outward appearances.

Sept. 3 we were at the little principality of Luxembourg, where four kinds of money circulate, viz.: Luxembourg, German, French and Belgian.

At Bonn, Sept. 6, we were visited by the Princess Victoria of Prussia, youngest sister of the Kaiser, and a niece of King Edward VII of England. During the morning she paid a personal visit to Colonel Cody, who gallantly escorted her through the camp.

We made our last stand in the great German Empire at Munich-Gladbach, Sept. 8 and 9, to capacity business at every performance. We found Germany to be a well gov-   erned country, and well disposed towards the big American show.

We jumped into Belgium at Verviers, Sept. 10, where our reception was all that could be desired, from every standpoint. In fact, it seemed like home to get back where French was spoken. I believe this is the only country, except China, where the “coin of the realm” has a hole in it. Their one and two cent nickel pieces have a round hole through the centre. Belgium is the most densely populated country in all Europe. Area, 11,373 square miles; population, six and one-half millions.

At Namur, Sept. 11, we did a fine day’s business on a very dusty lot.

Charleroi, where we exhibited Sept. 12, is a big iron and steel town much like our own Charleroi in Pennsylvania. It was a “cracker jack,” to use one of Colonel Cody’s expressions — one of the banner stands of the season. The police were mounted on horseback, and had to keep on the move around the tents to keep the disappointed thousands, unable to gain admission at the doors, from going under the side walls.

We stopped one day at Mons, Sept. 13, to good business.

Sept. 14 we invaded Brussels, the Belgian capital, for a four days’ stay, and, although it rained torrents every day, we did capacity business with a full spread of canvas and all the seats up. Bruxelles (French) is a bright and gay cosmopolitan city of 531,000 people, aptly named “Petite Paris,” as it seems to be entirely given up to pleasure. Everybody was apparently having a good time there. The cafes are as popular there as in Paris, the men being especially fond of them, and sit for hours at the little round tables drinking absinthe, wine, coffee or cognac. They spend their time at these cafes instead of being at work, and allow their poor,   hard-working little wives to slave their lives away in keeping a grocery, or a laundry, or some such place.

From Brussels we went to Antwerp (Anvers), the business metropolis of Belgium, where we remained two days, Sept. 18, 19. We had fine weather and did a big business both days. It was amusing to see the beggars of Antwerp make a dash for us when we left the cars, but they soon awoke to the fact that we were not tourists. The red guide-book seems to be a signal to the beggars for an onslaught, and they will follow the poor inoffensive tourists about, weeping and wailing, until they are literally forced to give them a few sous in sheer desperation. It is said there are more street beggars in Antwerp than in any European city, outside of Spain and Italy.

From Antwerp we moved to the old fashioned town of Ghent, in Flanders (population, 180,000). We gave two performances there Sept. 20, and one performance afternoon of 21, which closed the season of 1906. While we had many struggles and hardships during the season, all obstacles were overcome by Manager Fred B. Hutchinson and his efficient staff. Take it all in all, the tour was a most successful one, both financially and artistically.

Colonel Cody, Jule Keene and family, Major John M. Burke and the Indians sailed for America on the S. S. Zealand, from Antwerp, Sept. 22. Bill McCune, the Mexicans, Prof. Sweeney’s Cowboy Band, and the balance of the American contingent sailed from Southampton, Eng., on the Philadelphia, the same date. All of the bronchos, except the buckers and a few culled from the draught stock, were sold in a bunch to a Brussels firm, who sold them at auction in Ghent. The cars and wagons were shipped to the Barnum & Bailey Winter quarters at Stoke-on-Trent, and the balance of the stock and Wild West paraphernalia were shipped by the Atlantic Transport Line to New York.

  [illustration]

The royal family's visit to the Wild West at Rome, Italy, 1906.

 

CHAPTER IX.—1906-7.

Closing of the Tour—Departure for and Arrival at New York—Impressions of New York After Four Years Abroad.

The last of our four years abroad (1906), during which we encountered sixteen different languages, was a particularly trying one. When we closed our season at Ghent, Belgium, afternoon of Sept. 21, I felt as though I was on the verge of nervous prostration, having been at a high nervous tension all Summer, as a result of the constant effort to understand and make myself understood in so many foreign lands.

As soon as the strain was off it seemed as though I would collapse if I did not get away from it. Therefore I hied myself to London as soon as possible.

After listening to polyglot languages for two years, it seemed so strange to hear nothing but our native tongue.

While walking in the streets of London we would involuntarily turn around and stare at people merely because they were talking English.

On Oct. 13 we embarked on the good ship Lucania, Cunard Line, for America, and after a pleasant voyage of six days and a few hours, landed at New York Oct. 20.

I had heard so much of the exactions of the American custom officials, that I felt greatly relieved when the ordeal   was over. For my part I cannot see where they are any more severe than in other countries.

In “little old New York” once more, I could quickly see a change in the conditions of four years ago. In the first place I never saw the streets in such bad condition as they are now— a result of the great activity in building. The Flatiron and Times Building were new to me, and it made my neck stiff trying to look up to the top. A trip down lower Broadway, among the sky-scrapers, reminded me of going up the Royal Gorge towards Leadville. The subway had been completed during my absence, and after riding in the old District Underground Railway and “Tuppenny Tube” of London, and the Metropolitan Underground Railway of Paris, I unhesitatingly pronounce the New York subway the most perfect in the world, with the “Tuppenny Tube,” of Central London, a close second.

The great bandwagon-like touring cars, or rubber-neck wagons, were also something I had never seen before, and it struck me as being a cheap and efficient way of seeing the sights of the city. They start from most of the prominent hotels every hour, with a guide who points out the principal objects of interest on the route, and the fare is only one dollar for the trip.

When I left America, four years ago, the souvenir postcard craze had not yet struck New York, but upon my arrival in England, I found it was all the rage there. Upon my return to New York I found the disease, after a careful diagnosis, to be far more acute than it ever was in Europe.

During my absence abroad I had heard and read a great deal about the New York Hippodrome, and while its immense proportions came up to my expectations, I was disappointed in the spectacle, “A Society Circus.” I have since seen at this establishment two grand bills— “Pioneer Days” and “Neptune’s Daughter,” and “Sporting Days” and “The   Battle of the Skies” —which, for general grandeur, mysterious effects, feminine beauty and scenic splendor, excel anything of the kind that I saw in all Europe.

The songs were all new and the vaudeville situation revolutionized, inasmuch as most of the vaudeville theatres had been doing their own booking, while now the bookings are in the hands of the agents, this custom prevailing also in Europe—Tony Pastor being a notable exception to the above rule.

The numerous penny arcades and moving picture shows scattered all over the city were another new wrinkle in American showmanship, and the great business they were all doing demonstrated that it was indeed a long felt want— cheap, popular and innocent amusement for the masses.

The people are more polite in Europe than in America. In England everything is “‘if you please;” France, “sil vou plais;” Germany and Austria, “bita shane;” Hungary, “tashik;” Italy, “gratia,” etc.— all very polite. Well, you know how it is here; there is at least room for improvement.

I also noticed what I never knew before—that Americans are more given to the use of slang than any other nation in the world, and that the slang expressions most in vogue four years ago are now almost obsolete, while other bon mots have been coined to take their place.

“Benzine buggy,” “skiddoo,” “twenty-three” and “lemon” were all as incomprehensible to me as so much Chinese.

But these were only impressions of New York City, which is not America any more than London is England or Paris is France.

THE END.

 

Official Roster of Buffalo Bill's Wild West

Season of 1907

U.S.A.

Cody & Bailey Owners
Fred Bailey Hutchinson Manager
Louis E. Cook General Agent
M. Coyle R.R. Contractor
Major John M. Burke Press Agent in Advance
Walter K. Hill Press Agent in Advance
S.H. (Pop) Semon Contracting Agent
D.F. Lynch Contracting Agent
E.H. Wood Agent Advertising Car No. 1
D. De Baugh Agent Advertising Car No. 2
W. Ford Agent Advertising Car No. 3
Chas. Meredith Special Agent
Thomas Clare Twenty-four Hour Agent
S.H. Fielder Twenty-four Hour Agent
L. Monterey Inspector of Advertising
F.W. Hall Press Agent With Show
T.L. Evans Head of Financial Department
Joe Bailey Harper Treasurer
Reginald Whitehead Chartered Accountant
Charles Mercer Secretary
Johnny Baker Arenic Director
Matt Sanders Master of Properties
Cy Compton Chief of Cowboys
Thomas Rankine Principal Announcer
Wm. Sweeney Bandmaster
  [photo]

Le Tragedie De Les Cheveaux — Condemned To Die.

[photo]

A Sad Farewell.

 

With Buffalo Bill

Jacob Posey Master of Stock
Jacob Platt Superintendent of Canvas
D. Ballard Caterer
Thomas Tune Chef
Peter Halstead Master Mechanic
Col. Chas. Seely Legal Adjuster
R.P. Murphy Master Transportation
John Eberle General Superintendent

Ticket sellers — White Wagon, Reserves— O.S. Demske and John Hammel; Red Wagon, General Admission— Ben (Blondy) Powell and Karl E. Grigsby; Blue Wagon, General Admission— Nate Davis and Bill Cloud.

Ticket takers — Carlo Ratte, Robert Coverdale, Frank Quinn, Wm. Boyd, Frank McKay.

Side Show — Chas. E. Griffin, Manager; Paul J. Staunton, Principal Orator; Fred I. Griffin, Assistant Orator and Ticket Seller; C.F. Mack, Ticket Seller and Punch and Judy; John Lovely and H.E. Tudor, Ticket Takers; Octavia, Snake Charmer; Griffin, the Yankee Yogi, conjuror; Fred Walters, Blue Man; Lentini, Three-Legged Man; Jessica, Moss Haired Lady; Harry Wilson and Harry Keigel, Tattooed Men; Grace Gilbert, Auburn Bearded Venus; Marvelous Mandy, Man With Iron Skull; Miss Anna, Physical Culture Girl; Sig. Sagatta's Belgian Hare Band; J.D. Cramer, Elastic Skin and Giraffe Neck; Julia Griffin, Mind Reader; C.A. Bonney, Scotch Piper and Polyphonist; Mlle. Equinas, Parisian Horse Lady; Balbroma, High Priest of the Fire Worshippers; Prof. James T. Jukes, one of the Original P.T. Barnum Bohemian Glass Blowers; Tito Altobelli's Italian Band; Monroe Sisters,   Musical Artists; Horace E. Tudor, Master of Side Show Canvas.

Concert— Chas. E. Griffin, Manager; Togo and Sarbro, Japanese Jugglers; Clymer, Allen and Monroe Sisters, Musical Act; Julia Arcaris, Song and Dance; James and Celia Welch, Comedy Sketch Artists; Major Kelleher, Drum Major; Miss Daly, Vocalist; Boyd and Lovely, Eccentric Comedians; James Rutherford, Monologue.

Candy Stands— Walter Beckwith, Superintendent; C. Zelno, “Babe” Ramsay, Assistants.

Programs— Joseph Meyer, 27 East Twenty-second Street, New York, Lessee; Tom Burke, in Charge.

Mythoplasm (Moving Picture Show in Black Tent)— Al. Conlon, Manager; Clarence Wright, Electrician.

Lights (Bolte & Weyer System)— Pete Walker, Superintendent.

Pinkerton Detective— J. Garner.

Chief Ushers— Wm. McCune and Archie Daly.

Chief Porter— Charles Carroll.

 

Programme Buffalo Bill's Wild West

Season of 1907

U.S.A.

1— OVERTURE. “Star Spangled Banner”— Cowboy Band, Wm. Sweeney, Leader.

2— GRAND REVIEW. Introducing Rough Riders of the World, genuine Sioux and Cheyenne Indians, Cowboys, Cossacks, Mexicans, Scouts and Guides, veteran members of the United States Cavalry, a group of Western Girl Rough Riders, and a detachment of colorguards, soldiers of the armies of America, England, Germany, Japan, Russia, Arabia and Mexico.

3— RACE OF RACES. Race between a Cowboy, Cossack, Mexican, Arab and Indian, on Mexican, Broncho, Indian and Arabian horses. Attention is directed to the different seats in saddle by the various riders.

4— U. S. ARTILLERY DRILL. Showing the old muzzle-loading methods. The guns used are relics of the Civil War.

5— PONY EXPRESS. A former Pony Express rider will show how telegrams of the Republic were distributed and carried across the continent previous to the building of telegraphs and railways.

 

6— EMIGRANT TRAIN. Illustrating a prairie Emigrant Train crossing the plains. It is attacked by marauding Indians, and they are repulsed by the scouts and cowboys. While in camp there will be a quadrille on horseback, and other camp-fire amusements.

7— ARABS AND JAPANESE. In various feats of agility.

8— AN ATTACK ON THE DEADWOOD STAGECOACH BY INDIANS. Repulse of the Indians and rescue of the stage, passengers and mail, by cowboys and scouts.

9— COL. W. F. CODY. The original Buffalo Bill, the last of the great scouts; the first to conceive, originate and produce this class of realistic entertainment. He will give an exhibition of expert shooting from horseback, while galloping around the arena.

10— THE BATTLE OF SUMMIT SPRINGS. One of the deciding conflicts in Indian warfare was fought on July 11, 1869, in Eastern Colorado, near the border line of Nebraska. The command was composed of the Fifth United States Cavalry and Pawnee scouts, under the command of Gen. E. A. Carr, of the United States Army. Buffalo Bill was chief of General Carr’s scouts and guides. The Indians were renegades from the tribes of Sioux, Cheyennes and Arapahoes, banded together under the leadership of Tall Bull, and were known as “The Dog Soldiers.” These Indians had been murdering and committing depredations on the borders of Kansas and Nebraska, and this command had been sent to discover and   [photo] Group of Senegals. Orleans Exposition, 1905 [photo] Mother and Son. Orleans Exposition, 1905   annihilate them if possible. After several days’ scouting, Buffalo Bill found the Indian trail, which the command at once followed, and after continuing for more than two hundred miles, Buffalo Bill located the Indian camp, and in a spirited assault the forces under General Carr completely routed Tall Bull and his “Dog Soldiers,” capturing their entire village, killing many of the warriors and capturing the Indian women and children. They also rescued two white women which the Indians held as prisoners. During the engagement Buffalo Bill shot and killed the Indian chief, Tall Bull.

11— DEVLIN ZOUAVES. In manual of arms, lightning drills, finishing with an exhibition of wall-scaling, showing the adaptability of citizen-soldiery in warfare.

12— A GROUP OF AMERICANS from Old Mexico, Illustrating the use of the lasso.

13— VETERANS FROM THE SIXTH United States Cavalry in military exercises and exhibitions of athletic sports and horsemanship on Western range horses.

14— JOHNNY BAKER. The celebrated American Marksman.

15— THE GREAT TRAIN HOLD-UP AND BANDIT HUNTERS OF THE UNION PACIFIC will be a scene representing a train hold-up in the Western wilds. The bandits stop the train, uncouple the engine from the coaches, rob the express car and   blow open the safe. Meanwhile the passengers are lined up and despoiled of their valuables. The scene ends with the arrival of the Bandit Hunters of the Union Pacific, who capture or kill the robbers.

16— INDIAN BOYS’ RACE. Racing by Indian boys on bareback ponies.

17— COWBOYS’ FUN. Picking objects from the ground, lassoing, and riding wild horses.

18— COSSACKS FROM THE CAUCASUS OF RUSSIA In feats of horsemanship.

19— A HOLIDAY AT “T-E” RANCH IN WYOMING. The final number on our programme will be a holiday at “T-E” Ranch, the home of Buffalo Bill. The frontiersmen and cowboys have assembled for an afternoon of pleasure. The arrival of the mail-carrier, which is always an important event, and a troop of range horses in high school acts. The festivities are interrupted by an attack on the ranch by a band of Indians, and they are repulsed by the cowboys, the scene of present happy ranch home life is transposed into one of the old, strenuous days by dramatic license, to form a climax to the ending of the exhibition, permitting the red and the white men to line up in compact, friendly mass, to effectively give the audience a FINAL SALUTE.

 

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"The Last of the Great Scouts

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Notes

In December, 1907, the Ringling Bros. acquired, by purchase, all the rights, titles and interests of the Barnum & Bailey, Ltd., which was an English syndicate. This makes the five Ringlings, viz., Al., Otto, John, Charlie and Alf. T., the most extensive owners of show property in the world—the Ringling Bros.’ World’s Greatest Shows, Barnum & Bailey’s Greatest Show on Earth and the Adam Forepaugh & Sells Bros.’ Combined Shows, comprising the three biggest shows in the world, excepting, of course, Buffalo Bill’s Wild West.

Title: Four Years In Europe With Buffalo Bill | A Descriptive Narrative of the Big American Show's Successful Tour in Foreign Lands, Illustrated with Original Photos by the Author

Publisher: Stage Publishing Co.

Date: 1908

Keyword: Frontier and pioneer life -- West (U.S.)

Editorial Statement | Conditions of Use

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