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Oscar Wilde In America

oscar wilde's 1882 lecture tour of america

Rockford, IL

The Decorative Arts* | Grand Opera House | Thursday, March 2, 1882

* See Clarification below.



Newspaper report

The Chicago Tribune, March 6,1882, p.5


source note

As to venue and accommodation

The Chicago Tribune, March 5, 1999 | Oscar Wilde Well-received In Rockford . . .Again | by H. Lee Murphy. [1]

"Wilde first became known to Americans during a long lecture tour. Indeed, he stopped to speak one March evening in 1882 at the Rockford Opera House, staying at the old Holland House and dining at the home of a Dr. Thomas Butler, according to the Rockford Daily Gazette account at the time.

The Gazette said that Wilde attracted a small but attentive audience at his Rockford appearance."

[1] While this is not a primary source in itself, it is the reporting of a primary source, and there is no reason to doubt it


As to lecture title

No record is currently available for the title of the lecture Wilde gave in Rockford, although The Decorative Arts was the one he was giving immediately before and after.

See also note at Dubuque

historical note

Grand Opera House
113-117 North Wyman Street, Rockford, IL


Incorporated: November 6, 1880
Opened: November 12, 1881
Seating: 1500
Closed (as an Opera House): 1917
Demolished: April, 1927

Rockford Reminisce

See also:


Writers Program of the Work Projects Administration in the State of Illinois, Graphic arts corporation, 1941 - Rockford (lL)



Holland House, Wilde's accommodation in Rockford (left foreground).

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