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The Vault at PfaffsAn Archive of Art and Literature by the Bohemians of Antebellum New York
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      Mort Thomson, Will Waud & C. Eytinge.

[newspaper clipping continued: first column]
lous.  There were even whispers, asserting the fraud-
ulent performance of that culinary operation else-
where, but these probably the suggestion of some
Breckinridge and Lane democrat did not obtain
general credence.  A hog, a heifer, a sheep, 2,000
loaves of bread, and ten barrels full of biscuit, these,
with the ox, formed the staple of the entertainment,
Mr. Palmo superintending the cuisine.  Up to 1  
o clock, carving was the order of the day within the
enclosure, expectation without.  Then the feeding
commenced.  Two or three boys laden with trays
full of bread, at first attempted a circuit of the
crowd, from within the ring.  Very soon their trays
were empty.  Just five minutes more, the hungry or
vivacious applicants had leapt over the frail barrier
into the enclosure, and were, democratically, helping
themselves.  Of the twenty-five policemen solicited
for the purpose of maintaining order, not more than
three were present, and those helpless.  So the mob
had it all their own way, and, of course, instituted
a lively time of it.
  It was a general, promiscuous, scramble, in which
the food disappeared in a twinkling, not altogether

[newspaper clipping continued: second column]
down the throats of the hungry.  The good white
leaves were thrown into the air, and men pelted each
other with biscuit, until the ground was white with
the fragments, or pursued each other, contesting the
possession of beef bones.  Here might have been ob-
served a boy securing, with difficulty, half a dozen
leaves; there a couple of Irishmen, their teeth dili-
gently employed on an anomalous-looking fragment
of roast heifer; elsewhere a little party surrounding
the dismembered hog.  Suppose an occasional shower
of salt, a few barrels sportively distributed on the heads
of the multitude, spasmodic cheers, the band play-
ing patriotic tunes, the wind blowing, the dust flying,
the mob increasing, and you have the culmination of
the scene.  In the midst of it, when all the tables
were upset, their contents scattered, and nothing but 
hilarity and confusion rampant, Mr. Douglas arrived,
in honor of whom the band played  Hail to the
chief  with more of drum to it than was absolutely
necessary and the crowd flocked to the grand stand.
He arrived with commendable punctuality at two
o clock, when there might have been fifteen thousand
persons present.

[Gunn s diary continued]
  In the midst of the culinary area, I found
Mort Thomson and bore him company throughout
the entire proceedings.   After the scramble was
over, Will Waud appeared (on duty for Frank
Leslie) and Woodward, once of the Picayune,
looking coarse and roughly dressed, contrary to
his former style.        Many other men were there
whom I knew, more to whom I was introdu-
ced, to the accompaniments of brandy drinking.
Mort and I had eaten a preliminary sandwich
or two at a stall.    Clarence Eytinge turned
up at 2, when we were departing   he on duty
for the Ill. News   so the four of us returned
together, Mort getting out near his residence.
I kept on, parted with Waud and Eytinge,
Title:Thomas Butler Gunn Diaries, Volume Thirteen: page two hundred and twenty-eight
Description:Includes newspaper clipping written by Gunn for ''The New York World,'' describing a barbecue for Douglas.
Subject:Douglas, Stephen A.; Eytinge, Clarence; Food; Gunn, Thomas Butler; Journalism; New York world.; Palmo; Police; Thomson, Mortimer (Doesticks); Waud, William; Woodward
Coverage (City/State):[New York, New York]
Scan Date:2011-01-29


Title:Thomas Butler Gunn Diaries, Volume Thirteen
Description:Includes descriptions of boarding house living, his freelance writing and drawing work, antics of New York literary Bohemians, Frank Cahill fleeing for England after spending money that was meant for ''The New York Picayune,'' visits to the Edwards family, the state of Charles Damoreau's marriage, a sailing excursion to Nyack with the Edwards family and other friends on the Fourth of July, a fight between Fitz James O'Brien and House at Pfaff's, witnessing a fire at Washington Market, the execution of pirate Albert Hicks on Bedloe's Island, an excursion aboard the ship Great Eastern, a vacation at Grafton with the Edwards family, his growing friendship with Sally Edwards, Lotty Granville's behavior with Brentnall and Hill at his boarding house, Frank Bellew's return to England, and visits to dance houses in the Fourth Ward with friends for an article.
Subject:Boardinghouses; Bohemians; Gunn, Thomas Butler; Journalism; Marriage; Publishers and publishing; Women
Coverage (City/State):New York, New York; Grafton, New York
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 2011 Missouri History Museum.
Source:Page images, transcriptions, and metadata of the Thomas Butler Gunn diaries have been provided by the Missouri History Museum.