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Monday, 25 November 2019

Harmony Posters

    The Framed portrait of Lillie Langtry {1912} as she appears on the wall in the Silver Dollar Saloon in ‘Living In Harmony.’

    Continuing the series of ‘Harmony Posters’ with Emilie Charlotte Langtry (née Le Breton; October 13, 1853 – February 12, 1929), known as Lillie (or Lily) Langtry and nicknamed "The Jersey Lily", she was a British-American socialite, actress and producer. Born on the island of Jersey, upon marrying she moved to London in 1876. Her looks and personality attracted interest, commentary, and invitations from artists and society hostesses, and she was celebrated as a young woman of great beauty and charm. By 1881, she had become an actress and starred in many plays in the UK and the United States, including ‘She Stoops to Conquer,’ ‘The Lady of Lyons,’ and ‘As You Like It,’ eventually running her own stage production company. In later life she performed “dramatic sketches” in vaudeville. She was also known for her relationships with noblemen, including the Prince of Wales {later Edward  VII} the Earl of Shrewsbury, and Prince Louis of Battenberg. She was the subject of widespread public and media interest.

     The Judge of Harmony has something in common with Judge Roy Bean, who 1882, moved to southwest Texas where he built his famous saloon, “The Jersey Lilly,” and founded the hamlet of Langtry. Bean had never met Langtry, but he had developed an abiding affection, bordering on obsession, for the beautiful actress after seeing a drawing of her in an illustrated magazine.
    Whether or not the Judge and his silver Dollar Saloon and Court House in Harmony is a parody of Judge Roy Bean and “The Jersey Lillie” saloon and Court House {which still exists to this day in Langtry} is clearly impossible to say either way. After all the framed portrait of Lillie Langtry hanging on the wall of the Silver Dollar saloon might only be coincidental.

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