Woman of the Century/Agnes Booth
BOOTH, Mrs. Agnes, actor, born of English parents, in Sydney, Australia, 4th October, 1843. AGNES BOOTH. Her maiden name was Marion Agnes Laud Rookes. Her father was a British army omcer, and he died just before she was born. Her mother was married a second time, her second husband being a Church of England clergyman. Her dramatic tastes and talents were not inherited, for none of her family had ever been on the stage or shown any talents in the histrionic line. As a child she was fond of dancing, and she made her debut in 1857 in Sydney as a dancer, under the stage-name Marion Agnes, with her sister Belle. She joined a minstrel company and played Miss Lucy Long with a "corked" face In 1858 she went to San Francisco, Cal., where, in 1861, she was married to Harry A. Perry, who died in 1862. In Sacramento she joined the company of Mrs. John Wood, in which she played N ailing parts. She next joined Tom McGuire's company, in which she played various parts on a rough tour through the mountains. In 1867 she was married to J. B. Booth, jr., who died in 1881, She is now the wife of Manager John B. Schoeffel, and she retains her stage-name, Agnes Booth. In California she joined the Adah Isaacs Menken "Mazeppa" company. She worked hard and studied thoroughly, and her progress on the stage was rapid. From San Francisco she went to New York in 1865. wlu re she made her debut in the old Winter Garden with John S. Clarke, the comedian. She next supported Fdwin Forrest in Niblo's Garden, where, on 13th November 1865, she appeared as Julie in "Richelieu." She then played successively as Desdemona, Virginia, Ophelia, Marianne in "lack Cade," Cordelia, Colenthe in "Damon and Pythias," and Julia in "The Gladiator." Her reception by press and public was favorable. She b e c am e absolute mistress of all the "business" of the stage, and her dash, spirit, vivacity and fine appearance combined to place her in the front rank of actors. After the Forrest engagement she played with Miss Bateman in "Leah." She made a success in Washington, Chicago and Boston. In Boston she joined the stock company of the Boston Theater, where she remained for five years. After her marriage to Junius Brutus Booth, she played Constance in " King John " in the theater of his brother, Edwin Booth, in New York In 1876 she played Myrrha in Jarrett and Palmer's splendid production of "Sardanapalus" in Booth s Theater. In 1877 she played Cleopatra in the Niblo's Garden production of "Antony and Cleopatra." She next appeared in the Union Square Theater as Lady Fanny Wagstaftein "Pink Dominoes." She then appeared in the " Celebrated Case," in "Engaged," in "Young Mrs. Winthrop," and in "Jim, the Penman," continually growing in art and winning ever new public favors. Notwithstanding her signal success as an actor, Mrs. Booth asserts that she does not like the stage. Her ambition is to own a theater and to I the guide of a stock company. Her home is now in New York City, and she possesses on the New- England coast, in Manchester-by the-sea, a beautiful country home, where, during the summer season, she entertains with most lavish and charming hospitality.