Lust for Fame

The Stage Career of John Wilkes Booth


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About the Book

The first book on Booth’s ten tumultuous years on the stage, with a wealth of rare period illustrations reproduced with special techniques yielding results of better quality than the originals.
The book evaluates his performances through newspaper reviews and the recorded opinions of his contemporaries; it also separates Booth the actor from Booth the assassin. Previously unpublished letters are included, some in facsimile.
John Wilkes’ famous brother Edwin was not necessarily the leading actor of his era: this book indicates why John Wilkes Booth might claim that distinction.
One of the appendices is an exhaustive chronology of all his performances, and all fellow cast members.

About the Author(s)

The late Gordon Samples was the director of Special Collections at San Diego State University. He was a long-standing collector-scholar of Lincoln and Booth material.

Bibliographic Details

Gordon Samples
Format: softcover (6 x 9)
Pages: 256
Bibliographic Info: photos, facsimiles, references, appendices, bibliography, index
Copyright Date: 1998 [1982]
pISBN: 978-0-7864-0586-2
Imprint: McFarland

Book Reviews & Awards

“a competent exposition…filled with primary source material”—Library Journal; “a noteworthy chronicle”—Choice; “diligent and extensive”—Theatre Journal; “choice of illustrations is excellent…a fine collection of photographs”—Nineteenth Century Theatre Research.