John Lawrence Toole Papers

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John Lawrence Toole papers
Creator: Toole, John Lawrence, 1830-1906
Call Number: D.40
Dates: 1850-1907
Physical Description: 2 boxes
Language(s): Materials are in English
Repository: Rare Books, Special Collections, and Preservation, River Campus Libraries, University of Rochester

Table of Contents:

Biographical/Historical Note
Scope and Content
Related Materials
Content List
Series I: Correspondence
Series II: Theater materials
Collection Overview
Title: John Lawrence Toole papers
Creator: Toole, John Lawrence, 1830-1906
Call Number: D.40
Dates: 1850-1907
Physical Description: 2 boxes
Language(s): Materials are in English
Repository: Rare Books, Special Collections, and Preservation, River Campus Libraries, University of Rochester

Biographical/Historical Note
John Lawrence Toole, actor and theatrical manager, was born in London in 1830. His father, James Toole, was usher in the Central Criminal Court at the Old Bailey and toastmaster of the city of London. John L. Toole was employed as a wine merchant's clerk when he became a member of the City Histrionic Club in 1850. Encouraged by his success as an amateur, he made his professional debut in October 1852 at the Queen's Theatre, Dublin, under the management of Charles Dillon. He transferred to the Theatre Royale, Edinburgh in July 1853, where he became a popular comedy favorite. Toole played his first professional London engagement October 1854 to March 1855, but was not a great success and returned to Edinburgh until April 1856. In 1856 he was hired by Charles Dillon to play at the Lyceum Theatre, London, where he stayed until 1858. In the summer of 1857, Toole made his first provincial tour, a practice which he continued throughout his career, sometimes with his lifelong friend Henry Irving. Toole transferred in 1858 to the Adelphi Theatre, London, managed by Ben Webster, where he stayed until 1867. He then went to the Gaiety Theatre, London, but was not well received. He opened the Globe Theatre, London, under his own management for a season in 1877, and then opened the Folly Theatre in 1879. Renaming it Toole's Theatre in 1882, he played there until almost the end of his career in 1895. He kept a small stock company and presented farcical comedies, burlesques and travesties of popular plays. Toole married Susan Kaslake, a young widow, in 1854. Their son Frank died in 1879, their daughter Florence died in 1888 and Mrs. Toole died in 1889. Toole left the stage in 1888, but upon his return in 1890 he toured Australia, where he was well received. By 1892 his health had begun to break. Toole's Theatre was demolished in 1895, after the expiration of the lease, and Toole made his last public appearance in 1896. He became a helpless invalid, living in retirement in Brighton until his death in 1906.

Scope and Content
The collection consists of correspondence, manuscript notes, manuscript parts as played by Toole, programs of amateur productions in which he appeared, broadsides and handbills, memorabilia, photographs and newspaper clippings. The letters from Toole to his brother Francis, beginning in 1852, deal with every aspect of provincial theatre life, including contracts with managers, size of audience and box office receipts, the reactions to particular pieces of business in the performance, practical jokes and personality conflicts. The shorter sequence of letters to E.Y. Lowne, who was apparently a City merchant and contemporary of Toole, deals with many of the same topics over a longer span of time. The correspondence between Toole and others includes letters addressed to E.Y. Lowne in his capacity as manager of Toole's personal affairs during his absences in Australia and during his illnesses.

Toole, John Lawrence, 1830-1906
Lowne, E. Y. (Edward Y.)
Toole, Francis
The John Lawrence Toole papers is open for research use. Researchers are advised to contact Rare Books, Special Collections, and Preservation prior to visiting. Upon arrival, researchers will also be asked to fill out a registration form and provide photo identification.Use
Reproductions are made upon request but can be subject to restrictions. Permission to publish materials from the collection must currently be requested. Please note that some materials may be copyrighted or restricted. It is the researcher's obligation to determine and satisfy copyright or other case restrictions when publishing or otherwise distributing materials found in the collections. For more information contact rarebks@library.rochester.eduCitation
[Item title, item date], John Lawrence Toole papers, D.40, Rare Books, Special Collections, and Preservation, River Campus Libraries, University of RochesterRelated Materials
See also: John Lawrence Toole Estate Papers and Clement William Scott Papers .

Administrative Information
Author: Finding aid prepared by Rare Books and Special Collections staff
Publisher: Rare Books, Special Collections, and Preservation, River Campus Libraries, University of Rochester
Rush Rhees Library
Second Floor, Room 225
Rochester, NY 14627-0055

Content List
Series I: Correspondence
Other persons represented by correspondence with J.L. Toole and E.Y. Lowne: Addison, Carlotta; Albery, James; Anderson, James Robertson; Bancroft, Marie Effie (Wilton), Lady [3]; Bancroft, Sir Squire Butterfield [6]; Bateman, Kate; Besant, Sir Walter; Blanchard Caroline C.; Bourchier, Arthur; Bramston, J.H.; Butler, H.; Cecil, Arthur; Coburn, Charles; Creswick, William; Ellis George Cressall; Farren, Ellen; Folkard, Julia B.; Grain, Richard Corney; Hare, Sir John; Hatton, Joseph; Jones, Henry Arthur; Keeley, Mrs. Mary Ann (Goward) [3]; Kendal, Dame Madge [2]; Kendal, William Hunter; Lacy, Walter; Langtry, Lillie; Lumley, Ralph Robert; Martin, Helena Saville (Faucit), Lady; Merivale, Mrs. Elizabeth (Pitman); Montgomery, Walter; Morton, John; Maddison; Murray, Henry Leigh; Naylor, Henry; Onions, H.H.; Perry, Joseph; Pinero, Sir Arthur Wing [2]; Primrose, Archibald; Philip, 5th Earl of Rosebery; Purnell, Thomas; Reeves, John Sims; Russell, Henry; Steele, John Charles; Stirling, Arthur; Tennyson, Mary [2]; Terry, Edward O'Connor [4]; Tree, Sir Herbert Beerbhom; Ward, Geneviéve; Webb, Henry; Webster, Benjamin Nottingham [3]; Wigan, Alfred Sydney; Wyndham, Sir Charles; Wyndham, Robert Henry [2]

Box 1, Folder 1-4Correspondence, 1852-1907
Box 1, Folder 6-15John Lawrence Toole to Francis F. Toole, 1852-1875
Box 1, Folder 16-17John Lawrence Toole to Francis F. Toole, undated
Box 1, Folder 18John Lawrence Toole to Francis F. Toole, fragments
Box 1, Folder 19John Lawrence Toole to Francis F. Toole, bound volume
Box 2, Folder 1-4John Lawrence Toole to E.Y. Lowne, 1852-1893
Box 2, Folder 5John Lawrence Toole to E.Y. Lowne, undated
Box 2, Folder 6Memoranda
Box 2, Folder 18Unidentified correspondent
Series II: Theater materials
Box 2, Folder 7Manuscript part of Valentine in play "The two friends"
Box 2, Folder 8Manuscript part of Cyrus Bloom in play "Lonely man of the ocean"
Box 2, Folder 9Manuscript portion of play "Trying a magistrate"
Box 2, Folder 17Manuscript: Remarks before curtain at reopening of Toole's Theatre, 1882
Box 2, Folder 10Notes for speech at 33rd Royal General Theatrical Fund dinner
Box 2, Folder 11Programs of amateur dramatic societies, 1850-1852
Box 2, Folder 12Posters, 1852-1861
Box 2, Folder 13Programs, 1870-1886
Box 2, Folder 14Menus and tickets, 1875-1890
Box 2, Folder 15Photographs
Box 2, Folder 16Newspaper clippings

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