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[newspaper clipping]
       THE PARADE OF THE NEW YORK FIREMEN.
  New-York s reception of the son of Queen Victo-
ria culminated on the night of the thirteenth Oc-
tober.  Nothing so unique, so picturesque, so char-
acteristic of our metropolis as the firemen s parade
has been attempted or achieved during the brief so-
journ of the Baron Renfrew in this city.  His en-
trance might have rivaled it in effect and splendor,
but for the mismanagement, which gratified the van-
ity of certain military officials, at the expense of the
honest curiosity and cordial interest of one half of
our population.  The ball was, emphatically, a bun-
gle.  But the procession of the firemen proved
an immense success the crowning feat of me-
tropolitan enthusiasm.  When the blue-eyed,
smooth-faced youth, whom, in virtue of his position
and maternity, we have delighted to honor, shall
have recrossed the Atlantic, and the remembrance
of his progress through his own colonial domains
and these mighty states, which sprang into national
existence in consequence of the oppressive rule of
his great-grandfather, shall appear like a long, daz-
zling unreal pageant, be sure that one of its bright-
est epochs will be occupied by the red shirted firemen
of the Empire city.
  He has never seen, he could not see, anything in
Europe like it or akin to it.  In military display, the
old world far excels the new; it is a necessary an
ornamental appanage to royalty.  The reviews of
St. Petersburg, Berlin, Vienna, London not to
mention Paris always martial, and trebly so under its
imperial r gime outdo all that our citizen-soldiery
can effect in panoply and appurtenances  the
price, pomp and circumstance of glorious war.   It
is a national boast, and an honorable one, that we
have scarcely any standing army, or need of it;
that we can protect ourselves and our rights without
resorting to the established organization of  Yahoos
hired to kill as many of their species in cold blood as
is possible  as Captain Lemuel Gulliver defines
soldiers.  Our revolutionary nativity put that fact
beyond question.  So the traveled American looks
with complacency on 
                  the long array of helmets, bright
              The long array of spears, 
sometimes visible in the Champs de Mars and Hyde
park, consoling himself with the thought that the
first are worn, and the second leveled, not by the
people, but by the myrmidons of royalty.  In all
probability Baron Renfrew has beheld and admired
many such spectacles.  He were deficient of the ca-
pacity for admiration were it not so.
  It was a grand spectacle, admirably executed.
New-York, mobile and excitable as she is, never
originated or witnessed a finer, or turned out in
greater force to do honor to the sensation of the
time.  We have good antecedents in the way of
crowds, as witness Kossuth, Atlantic cable, and Jap-
anese celebrations, but these were rivaled, if not
eclipsed, by the tens of thousands who, on the even-
ing of Saturday last, gathered together to witness
the firemen s parade in honor of our royal visitor.
  From the east and west and north and south parts
of the metropolis they came, simultaneously with
shades of evening, all thronging towards the pro-
posed line or march, and especially to the center of
attraction, the temporary residence of Baron Ren-
frew.  The night was propitious, clear, and cold, suc-
ceeding a bright, bracing, autumnal day dark,
withal, though the stars shone brilliantly.  At the
appearance exhibited by our city, did not
     The man in the moon laugh loud with glee,
      They re merry! they re merry on earth!  quoth he?
We wonder.  Fancy the Diablo Boiteux of witty, world-
knowing Alain R ne le Sage, taking a nocturnal
flight over the house tops of New-York on the occa-
sion!  Would not the spectacle below have excelled
anything in show if not in vital interest, exhibited
to Don Cleophas in sunny Madrid.
  From Fourteenth street to Fourth avenue, up
Fourth avenue to Twenty-third street, through
Twenty-third street to Madison avenue, up Madison
avenue to Twenty-sixth street, through Twenty-sixth
street to Fifth avenue, down Fifth avenue to Four-
teenth street, through Fourteenth street to Fourth
avenue, down Fourth avenue to the Bowery, through
the Bowery to Chatham street, through Chatham
street, around the lower end of the Park, up Broad-
way to Union Squre all along the pre-determined
route, in short, had spectators collected, intent on
the coming pageant some, patiently or impatiently,
waiting it hours in advance.
  In the upper portion of the city, where the fire
fire companies stood enranked until the order of
march should be given, there and, as said, at the
place of review, the crowd was thickest.  If not
generally, as dear Tom Hood wrote,
           A current jam, but one that wouldn t spread, 
at some times and in some places, it justified the ap-
plication of the quotation.  But it was one of the best
humored crowds conceivable.  All the irregular area,
north, east, and south, Madison square and the Fifth
avenue filled with human beings, perhaps fifty thou-
sand persons, who eddied and swayed to and fro, or
massed together like the billows of the Atlantic dur-
ing a rising storm.  No storm was brooding, how-
ever, but only a manifestation of feeling and sponta-
neous loyalty to ties of kinship, strong than his-
toric animosity or national prejudice.
Page
Title:Thomas Butler Gunn Diaries, Volume Fourteen: page fifty-five
Description:Newspaper clipping describing a firemen's parade in honor of the Prince of Wales.
Subject:Balls (Parties); Edward VII, King of Great Britain; Firemen; Gunn, Thomas Butler; Hood, Thomas; Kossuth, Lajos; Le Sage, Alain Rene; Military; Parades
Coverage (City/State):[New York, New York]; Europe
Coverage (Street):4th Avenue; 5th Avenue; 14th Street; 23rd Street; 26th Street; Broadway; Chatham Street; Madison Avenue; Union Square
Scan Date:2010-04-26

 

Volume
Title:Thomas Butler Gunn Diaries, Volume Fourteen
Description:Includes descriptions of attending a lecture by J.H. Siddons on Queen Victoria; seeing tightrope walker Charles Blondin perform; boarding house living; his freelance writing and drawing work; visits to the Edwards family and his friendship with Sally Edwards; a visit of the Prince of Wales, the future Edward VII of Great Britain, to New York; his work as a reporter for ''The New York World;'' a visit to a dog fighting establishment; an evening spent at the 4th Ward police station awaiting 1860 election returns; and Gunn's experience as a correspondent for ""The New York Evening Post"" in Charleston, South Carolina, in the aftermath of South Carolina's secession from the federal government.
Subject:Boardinghouses; Civil War; Elections; Gunn, Thomas Butler; Journalism; Military; Police; Publishers and publishing; Secession; Slavery; Slaves; Travel
Coverage (City/State):New York, New York; Charleston, South Carolina
Note:Thomas Butler Gunn was born February 15, 1826, in Banbury, England, and came to New York in 1849. During the Civil War he worked as a correspondent for the New York Tribune and the New York Evening Post. He returned to England in 1863, and died in Birmingham in April 1903. The collection includes twenty-one volumes of his diaries, including newspaper clippings, letters, photographs, sketches, and various other items inserted by Gunn. Diary entries date from July 7, 1849, to April 7, 1863, and include his experiences with the New York publishing and literary world, his descriptions of boarding houses, his travels throughout the United States, and his experiences traveling with the Federal army as a Civil War correspondent.
Publisher:Missouri History Museum
Rights:Copyright 2010 Missouri History Museum.
Source:Page images, transcriptions, and metadata of the Thomas Butler Gunn diaries have been provided by the Missouri History Museum.