Booth

Booth

[booth]
Booth, family prominent in the Salvation Army, founded by William Booth. His wife, Catherine Mumford Booth, 1829-90, whom he married in 1855, played a leading part in the foundation and development of the Salvation Army, devoting herself particularly to its work among women and children. Their eldest son, Bramwell Booth, 1856-1929, succeeded his father in 1912 as general of the Salvation Army. Another son, Ballington Booth, 1859-1940, was commander (1885-87) of the Army in Australia and then commander (1887-96) in the United States, where his wife, Maud Charlesworth Ballington Booth, 1865-1948, shared his labors; in 1896 they withdrew from the Salvation Army and founded the Volunteers of America. A daughter of William Booth, Emma Moss Booth-Tucker, 1860-1903, was in charge (1880-88) of the international training homes of the Salvation Army. She and her husband, Frederick St. George de Latour Booth-Tucker, 1853-1929, who had resigned from the India civil service to join the Salvation Army, jointly commanded the Army in the United States from 1896 until her death in 1903. See also Booth, Evangeline Cory.
Booth, Charles, 1840-1916, English social investigator, pioneer in developing the social survey method. Aided by the notable social scientist Beatrice Potter Webb, he made an exhaustive statistical study of poverty in London, showing its extent, causes, and location. This was published as Life and Labour of the People in London (17 vol., 1891-1903). Booth was also active in reform groups interested in the poor and aged. His other writings include Old Age Pensions and the Aged Poor (1899) and Industrial Unrest and Trade Union Policy (1914).

See his selected writings (1967); study by T. Simey and M. Simey (1960).

Booth, Edwin, 1833-93, one of the first great American actors, b. "Tudor Hall," near Bel Air, Md. After years of touring with his father, Junius Brutus Booth, he appeared in New York City (1857) and later toured (1861-63) England. On returning to New York he leased the Winter Garden Theatre, where in 1864 he presented his famous 100-night run of Hamlet (a record unbroken until John Barrymore's 101-night run in 1922). His productions at the Winter Garden terminated in 1865, when his brother John Wilkes Booth assassinated President Lincoln. The ensuing scandal forced Edwin Booth to retire, but he returned to the Winter Garden in 1866. When it burned down, he built Booth's Theatre, New York (1869). He again toured (1880-82) England; his last appearance was in 1891.

See his letters, ed. by D. J. Watermeier (1971); recollections by his daughter E. B. Grossman (1894, repr. 1969); biographies by E. Ruggles (1953), W. Winter (1893, repr. 1968), and R. Lockridge (1932, repr. 1971); C. H. Shattuck, The Hamlet of Edwin Booth (1969).

Booth, Evangeline Cory, 1865-1950, general of the Salvation Army, b. England; daughter of William Booth. At the age of 17, she began evangelistic preaching. She was field commissioner of the Salvation Army in London for five years, commander of the Army in Canada from 1895 to 1904, and commander in the United States from 1904 to 1934. Booth was general of the international Salvation Army from 1934 to 1939. Her works include Love is All (1925), Songs of the Evangel (1927), and Woman (1930). See also Booth, family.

See biography by P. W. Wilson (1948).

Booth, John Wilkes, 1838-65, American actor, the assassin of Abraham Lincoln, b. near Bel Air, Md.; son of Junius Brutus Booth and brother of Edwin Booth. He made his debut at the age of 17 in Baltimore, toured widely, and soon became a star, winning acclaim for his Shakespearean roles. Unlike the rest of his family, Booth was an ardent Confederate sympathizer. He had joined (1859) the Virginia militia company that assisted in the capture of John Brown, but he did not enter Confederate service in the Civil War. Instead, he continued with his theatrical career in the North. For some six months in 1864-65 Booth laid plans to abduct the president and carry him to Richmond, a scheme that was frustrated when Lincoln failed to appear (Mar. 20, 1865) at the spot where Booth and his six fellow conspirators lay in wait.

On Good Friday, Apr. 14, 1865, Booth, having learned that Lincoln planned to attend Laura Keene's performance of Our American Cousin at Ford's Theater in Washington on that evening, plotted the simultaneous assassination of the President, Vice President Andrew Johnson, and Secretary of State William H. Seward. Lewis Thornton Powell, who called himself Payne, guided by David E. Herold, seriously wounded Seward and three others at Seward's house. George A. Atzerodt, assigned to Johnson, lost his nerve. The main act the egomaniacal Booth naturally reserved for himself. His crime was committed shortly after 10 P.M., when he entered the presidential box unobserved, suddenly shot Lincoln, and vaulted to the stage (breaking his left leg in the process) shouting "Sic semper tyrannis!" [thus always to tyrants] "The South is avenged!" He then went behind the scenes and down the back stairs to a waiting horse upon which he made his escape. Not until Apr. 26, after a hysterical two-week search by the army and secret service forces, was he discovered, hiding in a barn on Garrett's farm near Bowling Green, Caroline co., Va. The barn was set afire and Booth was either shot by his pursuers or shot himself rather than surrender. Although it has been said that no dead body was ever more definitely identified, the myth—completely unsupported by evidence—that Booth escaped has persisted. For the fate of others involved, see Surratt, Mary Eugenia.

See memoir by his sister, Asia Booth Clarke (1930, repr. 1971, 1996); biographies by R. G. Gutman and K. O. Gutman (1979) and G. Samples (1982); M. W. Kauffman, American Brutus: John Wilkes Booth and the Lincoln Conspiracies (2004).

Booth, Junius Brutus, 1796-1852, Anglo-American actor. After experience in the provinces, he appeared at Covent Garden. In 1817, with his portrayal of Richard III, he established himself as a rival of Edmund Kean. In 1821 he emigrated to the United States, where he spent most of his remaining life. An imposing tragic actor with a full, rich voice and a rugged grandeur, Booth had an erratic personal life complicated by intemperate habits. His son Junius Brutus Booth, Jr. excelled as a theatrical manager, while Edwin Booth surpassed his father as an actor. A third son was the assassin of President Lincoln, John Wilkes Booth.

See S. Kimmel, The Mad Booths of Maryland (2d ed. 1969).

Booth, William, 1829-1912, English religious leader, founder and first general of the Salvation Army, b. Nottingham. Originally a local preacher for the Wesleyan Methodists, he went (1849) to London and entered (1852) the ministry of the Methodist New Connexion Church, but in 1861 he began independent evangelistic work. In 1865, with the help of his wife, Catherine Booth, he started the East London Revival Society (soon known as the Christian Mission) in Whitechapel, London. The Christian Mission developed in 1878 into the Salvation Army. General Booth, a remarkable organizer, traveled widely, winning recognition wherever he went. In 1890 he published In Darkest England and the Way Out in collaboration with W. T. Stead. See Booth, family; Booth, Evangeline Cory.

See biographies by G. S. Railton (2d ed. 1912), H. Begbie (1920), St. J. Ervine (2 vol., 1934), H. C. Steele (1954), E. Bishop (1964), and R. Collier (1965); R. Hattersley, Blood and Fire (2000).

Tarkington, Booth (Newton Booth Tarkington), 1869-1946, American author, b. Indianapolis. His most characteristic and popular works were his genial novels of life in small Middle Western towns, including The Gentleman from Indiana (1899), The Conquest of Canaan (1905), and the trilogy Growth (1927), made up of Turmoil (1915), The Magnificent Ambersons (1918; Pulitzer Prize), and The Midlander (1923). Alice Adams (1921; Pulitzer Prize), considered by some his best novel, tells of the frustrated ambitions of a romantic lower-middle-class girl. He wrote several amusing novels of boyhood and adolescence, the most notable being Penrod (1914) and Seventeen (1916). His plays include a dramatization of his own historical romance Monsieur Beaucaire (1901) and Clarence (1921).

See his reminiscences, The World Does Move (1928); biography by J. L. Woodress (1955, repr. 1969); study by K. J. Fennimore (1974).

(born April 10, 1829, Nottingham, Nottinghamshire, Eng.—died Aug. 20, 1912, London) British religious leader, founder and general (1878–1912) of the Salvation Army. At age 15 he underwent a religious conversion and became a revivalist preacher. In 1849 he went to London, where he became a regular preacher of the Methodist New Connection (1852–61) and then an independent revivalist. Aided by his wife, Catherine Mumford Booth (1829–90), a fellow preacher and social worker, he founded the Christian Mission in 1865, which in 1878 became the Salvation Army. He traveled worldwide to lecture and organize branches of the Army. His proposals for remedying social ills received widespread acceptance and the encouragement of Edward VII.

Learn more about Booth, William with a free trial on Britannica.com.

(born July 29, 1869, Indianapolis, Ind., U.S.—died May 19, 1946, Indianapolis) U.S. novelist and dramatist. He became known for satirical and sometimes romanticized pictures of Midwesterners in humorous portrayals of boyhood and adolescence that include the young-people's classics Penrod (1914), Seventeen (1916), and Gentle Julia (1922). The trilogy Growth (1927) includes The Magnificent Ambersons (1918, Pulitzer Prize; film, 1942), which traces the decline of a once-powerful and prominent family. Alice Adams (1921; film, 1923, 1935), a searching character study, is perhaps his most finished novel.

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(born May 10, 1838, near Bel Air, Md., U.S.—died April 26, 1865, near Port Royal, Va.) U.S. actor and assassin of Pres. Abraham Lincoln. Born into a family of famous actors, he achieved success in Shakespearean roles but resented the greater acclaim enjoyed by his brother, Edwin Booth. A fanatical believer in slavery and the Southern cause, he made plans with co-conspirators to abduct Lincoln; after several failed attempts, he vowed to destroy the president and his cabinet. On April 14, 1865, he shot Lincoln during a performance at Ford's Theatre. Though he broke his leg jumping from the president's box, he was able to escape on horseback to a Virginia farm. Tracked down, he refused to surrender and was shot, either by a soldier or by himself.

Learn more about Booth, John Wilkes with a free trial on Britannica.com.

Edwin Booth, photograph by Bradley and Rulofson

(born Nov. 13, 1833, near Belair, Md., U.S.—died June 7, 1893, New York, N.Y.) U.S. actor. Born into a noted theatrical family, he played his first starring roles in Boston and New York City in 1857. He became famous as Hamlet, appearing in the role for 100 consecutive nights in 1864–65. When his brother John Wilkes Booth assassinated Pres. Abraham Lincoln, Edwin withdrew from the stage until 1866. In 1869 he opened his own theatre, but mismanagement forced him to sell it in 1873. His interpretations of Hamlet, Iago, and King Lear won great acclaim in England and Germany. He founded the Players' Club in New York in 1888.

Learn more about Booth, Edwin (Thomas) with a free trial on Britannica.com.

Edwin Booth, photograph by Bradley and Rulofson

(born Nov. 13, 1833, near Belair, Md., U.S.—died June 7, 1893, New York, N.Y.) U.S. actor. Born into a noted theatrical family, he played his first starring roles in Boston and New York City in 1857. He became famous as Hamlet, appearing in the role for 100 consecutive nights in 1864–65. When his brother John Wilkes Booth assassinated Pres. Abraham Lincoln, Edwin withdrew from the stage until 1866. In 1869 he opened his own theatre, but mismanagement forced him to sell it in 1873. His interpretations of Hamlet, Iago, and King Lear won great acclaim in England and Germany. He founded the Players' Club in New York in 1888.

Learn more about Booth, Edwin (Thomas) with a free trial on Britannica.com.

(born April 10, 1829, Nottingham, Nottinghamshire, Eng.—died Aug. 20, 1912, London) British religious leader, founder and general (1878–1912) of the Salvation Army. At age 15 he underwent a religious conversion and became a revivalist preacher. In 1849 he went to London, where he became a regular preacher of the Methodist New Connection (1852–61) and then an independent revivalist. Aided by his wife, Catherine Mumford Booth (1829–90), a fellow preacher and social worker, he founded the Christian Mission in 1865, which in 1878 became the Salvation Army. He traveled worldwide to lecture and organize branches of the Army. His proposals for remedying social ills received widespread acceptance and the encouragement of Edward VII.

Learn more about Booth, William with a free trial on Britannica.com.

(born May 10, 1838, near Bel Air, Md., U.S.—died April 26, 1865, near Port Royal, Va.) U.S. actor and assassin of Pres. Abraham Lincoln. Born into a family of famous actors, he achieved success in Shakespearean roles but resented the greater acclaim enjoyed by his brother, Edwin Booth. A fanatical believer in slavery and the Southern cause, he made plans with co-conspirators to abduct Lincoln; after several failed attempts, he vowed to destroy the president and his cabinet. On April 14, 1865, he shot Lincoln during a performance at Ford's Theatre. Though he broke his leg jumping from the president's box, he was able to escape on horseback to a Virginia farm. Tracked down, he refused to surrender and was shot, either by a soldier or by himself.

Learn more about Booth, John Wilkes with a free trial on Britannica.com.

Eva Selina Laura Gore-Booth (22 May 187030 June 1926) was an Irish poet and dramatist, and a committed suffragist, social worker and labour activist. She was born at Lissadell House, County Sligo, the younger sister of Constance Gore-Booth, later known as the Countess Markiewicz.

Both she and Constance, who later became a prominent Irish revolutionary, reacted against their privileged background and devoted themselves to helping the poor and disadvantaged. Eva became involved in the suffragette movement and in 1890, with help of Constance, founded a suffrage society in Sligo.

In 1895, Eva became seriously ill with tuberculosis. In the following year, while convalescing in Italy, she met and fell in love with Esther Roper at the villa of Scottish writer George MacDonald. Esther Roper was a young English woman who was then secretary of the North of England Society for Women's Suffrage. Instead of returning to Ireland, Eva went to live in Manchester with Esther. They became joint secretaries of the Women's Textile and Other Workers Representation Committee.

Eva was also an accomplished poet. Her first published volume was highly praised by Yeats. After World War I, Eva and Esther became members of the Committee for the Abolition of Capital Punishment and worked for prison reform.

As she grew older, Eva was forced to give up active work but continued writing poetry. Esther took care of her throughout her long illness and they were together at the end. Eva died in 1926 at her home in Hampstead, London.

After Eva's death, Esther collected many of her poems for publication and wrote a biographical introduction to them. Esther was extremely reticent, and little is known of her final years. Constance wrote of her: "The more one knows her, the more one loves her, and I feel so glad Eva and she were together, and so thankful that her love was with Eva to the end."

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