A collection of materials documenting the tragic end of Edgar Wilson (Bill) Nye's career in 1895.
Bill Nye (1850-1896) was a famous and widely popular Western humorist who began his career as a writer for the Laramie, Wyoming newspapers in the 1870s. He published 14 books including _Bill Nye's History of the United States_ (1894), which sold 500,000 copies. We offer: 1. "How I met Bill Nye." 9 pp. manuscript by bookseller Fred W. Woodward of New York and Washington, ca. 1901. Woodward was the cousin of Boston artist Bert Poole, Bill Nye's partner in a planned series of stage comedy routines. He describes meetings in 1895 with Nye and a train ride with him from Washington to New York, shortly before Nye's disastrous performance in New York on October 28, 1895, which he was unable to complete due, according to Woodward, to drunkenness. The next day Nye and Poole were egged by the audience, leaving the stage in disgrace. The next day Woodward traveled with Nye and Poole to Philadelphia and notes that Nye was sober and successfully completed his performance in Philadelphia. This was his last performance; he reneged on the rest of the contract, going home to North Carolina, where he died a few months later. Frank W. Nye in his _Bill Nye: His Own Life Story_ (1926) denies that drinking caused his father's collapse, documented in the materials offered here, blaming it instead on his poor state of health. With envelope of "Woodward & Lathrop, Washington, D.C." and brief typed note from Woodward to Poole dated March 11, 1901, conveying the promised "Bill Nye" article. 2. Four letters from Bert Poole to Fred E. Woodward: May 23, 1895 (1 page t.l.s on Poole's letterhead); October 7, 1895 (5 pp. a.l.s); November 7, 1895 (5 pp. a.l.s.); November 16, 1895 (2 pp. t.l.s. on Poole's letterhead). The letters document Poole's great expectations for working with Nye, Nye's disastrous performances, the audience responses and embarrassing newspaper coverage, and Poole's woes in trying to continue the itinerary and the financial problems Nye's defection has caused. 3. Four excerpts from New York newspaper stories about Nye and Poole, in both typed and handwritten copies made by Woodward, plus 3 related articles. Bert Poole (1853 - ca.1939) was a Boston-based illustrator and landscape painter known for his panoramic paintings.
Almagre BooksProfessional seller
Book number: 5140
USD 600.00 [Appr.: EURO 515.75 | £UK 452.75 | JP¥ 65686]
Keywords: [NYE, BILL]