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A Turner Bugler, 2004

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The Lindell Hotel Ball.


November and December 1863

From The Missouri Democrat, Thursday, November 26, 1863.


Immense Concourse, &c.

The great Lindell Ball is over. The immense palace on Washington avenue looks down on the world this morning as tranquilly as if its magnificent halls were not, last night the exciting scene of “the event of the season” in St. Louis. Yet it is our duty to congratulate the proprietors, the managers, and the public, on the successful consummation of the ball. It is ended, though scarcely, in hundreds of dreamy minds for whose imagination still protracts the inspiring music, the exhilarating dance, the gorgeous light, the patriotic colors, and the jubilant crowds.

To those who were there, nearly any description would seem inadequate; but they who were not, and everybody really was not there—can never be sufficiently told how the stupendous affair came off. The next thing to the ball itself is to write about it and talk about it, which will be best and most abundantly done at leisure hereafter. The lateness of the hour forbids us from now venturing much upon details.

In no particular, that we can discover, has the projected grand opening fete of the Lindell failed. The vast halls were densely crowded with the elite of St. Louis and of other cities far and near. The display in attire and personal decoration was marvelously rich and brilliant. All that wealth could pour forth, or art devise, or taste contribute, was essentially lavished to grace the occasion. The music left nothing for the fondest devotion of Apollo or of Terpsichore to desire. Chief among the decorative features was a studied luxuriance of national ensigns, with which the vestibule and promenade were hung. The only drawback to the general felicity was the jam by which around [illegible] for dancing were necessarily diminished. Commencing at an early hour, the influx of festive guests increased in rapidity and volume till past midnight. The Ladies’ Ordinary, specially appropriated to the [illegible], was densely filled long before their fascinating exercise began.

The tables were spread in the Gentlemen’s Ordinary in four long parallel rows. Around the room was dispersed the foliage of an abundance of mammoth plants from the greenhouse. The three gorgeous chandeliers, and the immense mirrors, with sixty-four globe-lights, set the imperial board in an imposing light. The array of edibles and viands, with rich and curious ornamental confectionary, was a sight of rare beauty. Five hundred plates were laid for the guests. There were pyramids of grape clusters, pagodas of candies, with myriads of quaint and charming devices indefinitely varied—the artist in this line being Pezoli, of Fifth and Pine.