September 24, 1849 (Monday)

Very cool and clear today—pretty much like Fall.

Went to the Arch St. Theatre this evening where I saw Gov. Johnston.  At his appearance he was greeted with a great deal of applause and uproar.

Governor William F. Johnston (1808–1872) was Pennsylvania’s eleventh governor.  As Speaker of Pennsylvania’s Senate, Johnston assumed the governorship when the tenth governor, Francis Shunk, resigned in July 1848 due to poor health. Johnston was elected to his own three-year term the following October.  The governor was in Philadelphia to kick off the campaign season for his party.  Believe it or not, election day was October 9 which makes the campaign season two weeks long (imagine!!).  Johnston was the keynote speaker at a Mass Meeting at Independence Square before a crowd numbering in the thousands.  When he rose to speak, “he was received with three times three [hip, hip, hooray, three times perhaps?] and prolonged acclamation.”  He must have attended the Arch Street Theatre after the speech (it was not mentioned in the papers).

Four more plays were on the docket on September 24, including the original Mose play, New York As It Is (originally titled A Glance at New York) with the estimable Frank Chanfrau as Mose.  See the entry for September 20 for more information.

Sources:

“Great Mass Meeting.” Philadelphia Inquirer. September 25, 1849, page 2.

“List of Governors of Pennsylvania.” Wikipedia http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_Governors_of_Pennsylvania. Accessed September 19, 2011.

“William F. Johnston.” Wikipedia http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/William_F._Johnston. Accessed September 19, 2011.

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