Theodore Roosevelt > New York > Page 233
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Theodore Roosevelt (1858–1919).  New York.  1906.

Page 233
 
very patriotic and boisterously anti-British; and on the other hand many English actors who came to America to make money were unwise enough to openly express their contempt for the people from whom they were to make it. Rival theatrical managers would carefully circulate any such remarks, and the mob would then swarm down to the theater, fill it in a dense mass, and pelt the unfortunate offender off the boards as soon as he appeared. The misused actor was not always a foreigner; for a like treatment was occasionally awarded to any American against whom the populace bore a grudge. Certain of the newspapers—not a few of which were edited by genuine Jefferson Bricks—were always ready to take a hand in hounding down any actor whom they had cause to dislike. Some of these outbreaks were very serious; and they culminated in 1849 in the “Astor Place,” or “Opera-house” riot. On this occasion the mob tried to gut the theater where an obnoxious English actor was playing, but were held in check by the police. They then gathered by thousands in the streets, and were finally fired into by the troops, and dispersed with a loss of twenty killed,—a most salutary and excellent lesson.
  Other riots were due to more tangible troubles. The enormous immigration had created a huge class of unfortunates who could with difficulty

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