Was honored today with a call from the Misses Mc—y and E—a S—h, who represented themselves as cousins, this excusing what would otherwise be considered a very improper proceeding. The McK—ys came to town today and stop at Dr. Smith’s. Called on them this afternoon, went to the W. T. this evening to see the “Hunchback”—It is a splendid play and admirable performed.
The putative cousins are sisters Elizabeth and Sarah McKay, along with their friend Emma Smith, young women Nathan often mentions. Nathan visits the McKays while in Norristown. Dr. Smith is, perhaps, Emma’s father.
Nathan and his “cousins” went to the Walnut Street Theatre to see The Hunchback (1832), a play in five acts by James Sheridan Knowles (1792–1862). Charlotte Cushman and Charles Couldock played the leading roles.
“James Sheridan Knowles.” Merriam Webster’s Biographical Dictionary. Springfield, MA: Merriam-Webster, 1995. Gale Biography In Context. Web. 31 Oct. 2011.