Saturday, December 29, 2018

Iowa's Buffalo Bill Is the Man in the Moon

Digital Collage © Roy R. Behrens
Vincent Starrett (Chicago Tribune book columnist Charles Vincent Emerson Starrett), Born in a Bookshop: Chapters from the Chicago Renascence. Norman: University of Oklahoma Press, 1965, p. 154—

My only other clear memory of Washington days is a visit to Keith's Theater, where I heard and met the famous old minstrel James Thornton and his wife Bonnie. The rest of the bill was a bust as far as I was concerned, but the opportunity to meet the man who had written "When You Were Sweet Sixteen"—to say nothing of "My Sweetheart's the Man in the Moon" and "The Irish Jubilee"—was too good to miss…But I was sorry to have missed an encounter, a few weeks earlier, between Jimmy and Colonel William F. Cody. The theater manager told me about it with great glee. Cody also had been eager to meet an old favorite, and Jimmy had been brought around to his box. The manager made the introductions. "Jimmy," he said, "I want you to meet the famous Buffalo Bill, who is an admirer of yours." "Glad to know you, Mr. Bill," said Jimmy, shaking hands solemnly. "What part of Buffalo do you come from?"

The secret handshake?