Caroline Simpson Library & Research Collection
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Mrs Crosby as Mrs Willoughby in "The Ticket of Leave Man", January 1866 / Wilson & Co.
1 carte-de-visite ; sepia toned ; 10 x 6.4 cm.
Photographer's name and address below image: Wilson & Co. 267, Pitt Street, Sydney. Pencil inscription on verso: "Mrs Crosby / as Mrs Willoughby / in the Ticket of Leave man.
The "great sensation drama", The ticket-of-leave man by English playwright Tom Taylor was written in 1863 and was one of the first melodramas to deal with criminal life in London. It was first produced at the Olympia Theatre in London in May 1863 and was first produced in Sydney on 26 September 1863 at the Prince of Wales Opera House with Mrs Crosby in the role of Mrs Willoughby. It had another run in Sydney in 1864 and another performance in January 1866 as part Mrs Crosby's Benefit. At this benefit performance, according to the Sydney Morning Herald there was to be a "presentation of her carte-de-visite to visitors in dress circle and stalls".
The benefit celebrated her 12 years' dramatic connection with Sydney, although those years included performances in other Australia colonies and in New Zealand. In 1856 she famously attacked the actress and courtesan Lola Montez with a whip at Ballarat where Montez was performing under the aegis of Mrs Crosby's husband, James Crosby.
Caroline Simpson Library & Research Collection ; CSL&RC PIC: small picture file : Wilson & Co.
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