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The Prince in St. Louis.


September/October 1860

From The Missouri Democrat, Friday, September 28, 1860.


He Drives through the Principal Streets,
and then Proceeds to the Fair Grounds.


He Views the City from the Court House Dome.


The prince entertained visitors at his rooms in Barnum’s Hotel, until 12½ o’clock on Wednesday night.  Numbers of our citizens called upon him, and were received with great urbanity.  He was the recipient, during the night, of two delightful serenades.

The public having been notified through the morning papers of the time of the departure of the Prince from the hotel, for the Fair Grounds, a large crowd gathered at the corner of Walnut and Second streets, to witness his entrance to his carriage.  At eleven o’clock a handsome barouche, with four black horses, driven by Mr. Jesse Arnot, reined up in front of the ladies’ entrance to the hotel, and in a few minutes thereafter the royal visitor, accompanied by Lord Lyons, the Duke of Newcastle, and Mayor Filley, came down the steps, and took their seats in it.  Five other carriages followed, into which the Earl of St. Germains, Gen. Bruce, and other distinguished and white hatted personages of the suite, escorted by Col. O’Fallon, Judge Bates, Robt. Campbell, James M. Yeatman, D. A. January, Henry Shaw, and Dr. Adreon, bestowed themselves.

At the first appearance of the Prince he was greeted by cheers, to which he responded by lifting his hat.  As the cortege passed up Walnut street the mob became excessive, almost choking the way.  Most of the citizens were content with a passing view of the Royal party, but the rabble closed in after the carriages and for a time threatened to overwhelm the Prince with their rude and vulgar attentions.  The route of the procession, as advertised, was faithfully followed, and at every point along the line thousands were congregated to feast their eyes upon the Prince.  A little fast driving enabled the party to escape in some degree the great pressure of the mob, and reach the Fair Grounds in good season.  The cortege entered the enclosure between 12 and 1 o’clock, and in a few minutes thereafter passed into the Amphitheater.

The scene at this moment was thrilling and very impressive.  At least thirty thousand persons were packed and jammed in the seats and along the promenades of the amphitheater, and at the moment of the entrance of the Prince there arose from this vast multitude a prolonged and hearty cheer, the ladies at the same time waving their handkerchiefs, and the gentlemen raising their hats.  The Prince modestly lifted his hat, and the cheering continued.  Slowly the carriages passed around the circle, the occupants of each section of the amphitheater giving him a special welcome, and some of the ladies casting their boquets [sic] at the Prince, while the band in the pagoda played the lively and inspiring “Hail to the Chief.”

Passing once around, the carriages drew up in the center and the Prince and his party alighted on the ground.  This was the signal for renewed cheering.  They then passed up into the second balcony of the pagoda, where they were saluted by “God save the Queen” from the band.  At the first strains of this familiar anthem, the immense audience sent forth another shout, and when it was immediately followed by “Hail Columbia” and “Yankee Doodle,” the cheering became wild and irrepressible.  Not only the Prince, but many of his suite lifted their hats at the astonishing enthusiasm and good will expressions of the people.  Quiet being restored, the bulls, cows and heifers to which premiums had been awarded, were led into the arena.

After being minutely examined by the party, the royal visitor coming down from the pagoda and giving each prominent animal a close inspection, the cattle were led out.  Next came the entries for the great second St. Louis prize of $600, offered to the best roadster stallion.  More than twenty of the finest stallions in the country came prancing into the ring, among which were Silver Heels, Ethan Allen, 2nd Green Mountain, Black Hawk, Draco, Granite State, Humboldt, and Young Hiram Woodruff.  The trials of speed around the ring were very exciting to the people, and seemed highly interesting to the distinguished visitors.  The Duke of Newcastle was particularly struck with the proud and graceful action of Silver Heels.  The Prince also, evidently, viewed him with partial eyes.

Repeatedly did the members of the royal party give earnest expression to a sentiment of deep delight at the imposing and beautiful scene presented by the vast area of the Amphitheater filled to overflowing with the festive multitudes.  The glorious sight was one never to be effaced from the memory of any appreciating spectator.  Having lingered to enjoy it longer than their engagements and limited time in strictness allowed, and having heartily honored the regal lunch spread for them in the Directors’ room, the Prince and suite, accompanied by their municipal hosts, re-entered their carriages, passed once around the crowded park and within the inclosure, and then set out upon their return from the Grounds.  The circular drive through the eagerly hurrying masses of popular sovereigns with their wives and children and nurses and babies, furnished intense delectation to tens of thousands who had been unable to find even standing room in the amphitheater.  Yet were there other thousands upon the Grounds, who failed to realize the confessed object of their excursion, “to see the Prince.”  The royal progress down Grand avenue, St. Charles Road, Morgan street, and Washington avenue, was excellently well attended at all points by exhaustlessly flocking crowds of the curious.  At the Academy of Art, corner of Washington avenue and Fourth street, the party stopped, entered, and curiously surveyed the rare treasures of laborious genius that taste has collected there.  Some surprise, and very much discriminating admiration were expressed, in view of the mature art exhibited in the productions there displayed.  At this locality, the attending crowds rapidly increased, and when the vehicles were again moving, the progress down Fourth street was amid multitudes of the kings, princes, dukes and lords, “the popular sovereigns,” of this democratic republic.

The Prince’s ingenuous and modest bearing called forth numerous and hearty expressions of approbation, and to these he would quickly respond by raising his hat and slightly bowing.  At the Court House, a visit to the room of the fire alarm telegraph, and the dome, had been arranged and was now proceeded with.  The Prince and retinue had evinced considerable curiosity respecting the telegraphic fire alarm.  The mystery of the useful invention was explained to them by Superintendent Benson, and on a hint it was promised that they should have the opportunity to witness with what quickness the engines come heated and ready to the spot designated by an alarm.

Next, the party ascended to the lofty dome, escorted by Judge Lightner, of the County Court, and Mr. Rumbold, the able architect engaged on the premises.  These gentlemen had considerately procured telescopes for the party from Blattner’s, and with these Lord Lyons and others scaled the highest point accessible, and regaled themselves with extensive views of the city and its surroundings.  His Highness the Prince, His Grace the Duke of Newcastle, and His Honor Mayor Filley, were contented to survey the interesting scenery from a less dizzy altitude.

With many mutual felicitations the party descended, and soon alighted again at the door of Barnum’s.  Their luxurious and cozy rooms, retired from the almost ubiquitous gaze of the curious, were doubtless entered with relief and gratification.

At about five o’clock, in accordance with a pre-arrangement, Mr. George Kyler, of the Board of Fire Engineers, waited upon the Prince, to apprise him that the fire alarm and a turn-out of the fire engines for the district would take place.  His Highness and suite then appeared upon the porch fronting on Walnut street, the fire-alarm was given, and with the usual speed and quickness—with which our people are familiar—the engines Missouri, Davis Moore, and Underwriter came thundering and blazing to the scene.  It only needed that a conflagration should break out in the vicinity clearly to exhibit to the illustrious visitors the peculiar excellence of our Fire Department.  As it was, the firemen imagined a conflagration, and the engines named were then played upon it with extinguishing vigor.  The amount of water thrown, and the distance to which it was ejected, received the unqualified commendation of all observers.

Soon afterwards, the three engines drew up in order on Second street, and entertained the guests of Messrs. Barnum & Fogg, as well as the inevitable crowds in attendance, with the ear-splitting screams, shrieks, yelps, &c., accompanied by the artistic variations, which so eloquently attest the powers of the steam machine to contend with the wild element of fire.

Baron Renfrew and his companions felt the necessity of enjoying a quiet evening and night, and were therefore compelled reluctantly to decline some otherwise attractive invitations.  As during the night of Wednesday, a serenading party last night discoursed delicious melodies beneath the Prince’s window.  The musicians last night were a violinist and harpist, each truly skillful players.

The Royal party leave by an independent train, this morning at 9 o’clock, for Cincinnati.