May 31, 1849 (Thursday)

This is the last day of Spring and the afternoon part of it has been very pleasant.  The grass in Franklin Square is being cut—quite a heavy crop.

Accompanied Mr. Hubbard to the Theatre tonight to see Murdock [sic].

Nathan mentioned that Spring began on March 1.

Franklin Square, one of the original five squares created when Philadelphia’s streets were laid out, was initially common land. The Square, called Northeast Square but renamed Franklin in 1825, is bounded on the north and south by Vine and Race Streets respectively. North Sixth Street and North Franklin Street form the eastern and western boundaries. The city converted it to a park in 1835.  The German Reformed Church used part of the square as a burial ground and graves remain to the present day. It is about four blocks from Nathan’s 1849 address.

Nathan and Mr. Hubbard went to the Walnut Street Theatre to see James Edward Murdoch and Alexina Fisher perform the lead roles in Edward Bulwer-Lytton’s five-act comedy Money (1840). Murdoch also performed the part of Vapid in The Dramatist, or Die All, Die Nobly (alternatively subtitled Stop Him Who Can!) written in 1789 by British playwright Frederick Reynolds (1764–1841). Originally, a five-act comedy, according to the advertisement in the Philadelphia Inquirer, Murdoch and troupe performed a three-act version.

The AAS has a copy of Money, printed in New York in 1845 and  four different editions of The Dramatist, the earliest printed in New York in 1793.

Nathan first went to the Walnut Street Theatre on January 8.

For more information on Murdoch, Fisher, and Bulwer-Lytton, see the entry for March 6.

from the Philadelphia Inquirer, May 31, 1849, page 3.

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