[New York]: Lauter & Becker, 1860-1862.
Hardcover. Octavo. Quarter calf and marbled papercovered boards. Text in German. Spine perished, both boards detached, modest foxing and small chips and stains, particularly on the last couple of handbills, overall good or better. The volume contains 46 handbills for German musical comedies and light operas, as follows: 40 handbills printed rectos only for Wilhelm Diehm's Forsyth St. Conzert-halle (hand-numbered 2-41; apparently one is lacking) and six handbills printed rectos only for Steuben Haus in the Bowery (hand-numbered 42-47). Each show seems to have run for a week or two, and as they run consecutively, one can be reasonably certain that Steuben Haus suceeded the Forsyth Street Conzert-halle. The proprietor of Forsyth Street is listed as Nathaniel Rosenbaum, but Steuben Haus was founded and run by Sixtus Ludwig Kapff, a Wuerttemberg revolutionist who was forced to flee to the U.S when the 1848 movement was crushed. He served briefly in the Union Army before returning to New York City to found his theater. During the 19th Century, New York had the third largest German population of any city in the world, and musical theatre played an important role in the immigrant population's community, and one imagines even more so during the Civil War. Perhaps because of the language barriers, surprisingly little research has been done on the subject. A nice volume of ephemeral handbills that helps illustrate the vibrancy of the German musical theatre in daily immigrant life.