100 Years Ago: 254th Minstrel Show a Success, Another Bellevillian Wounded

The Intelligencer April 17, 1917 (pages 1, 2)

“254th Minstrel Show One Grand Success. Minstrel shows may come and Minstrel Shows may go, but the memory of the 254th Battalion Minstrel Show of 1917 will live forever. …  A great deal was expected by the audience, because of rosy-hued advance notices; but the entertainment far exceeded the most optimistic expectations.

Smoothness and ease was the rule throughout. No nervousness, that is so customary in amateur productions, was shown by a single performer, and Belleville today is showering congratulations upon the different members of the Company for their faultless work, and upon the management for securing Miss Marguerite Snow. …  Theatrical Belleville, present en masse, sat back in pleasurable anticipation, and it was not to be disappointed. The appearance of this delightful star was rather unexpected. In consequence of her many interesting screen appearances in Belleville, the popular little actress appeared in an absolutely new role; that is, as herself.

As Miss Marguerite Snow, we must confess that Miss Snow rivalled the many delightful heroines that she has created, and with her few short words of sincere good wishes for her host of admirers in Belleville, and the patriotic reference to the cause that had made her put aside her arduous duties in Trenton, where she is appearing, supported by many of the world’s greatest film Artists, for the Canadian National Features Limited, to come to Belleville, and accept the most exacting duty that any true thespian can be called upon to fulfill and that is to be one’s self. …  The next appearance of Miss Snow, on the screen, will be followed with interest by Bellevillians. …

Congratulations are due to every member of the company and to them through their excellent leader Lieut. R. Hinchey who conducted the music throughout in his thorough capable manner.”

The Intelligencer April 17, 1917 (page 2)

“Bellevillian Wounded. The following telegram from the Officer of Records, conveys the intelligence that another brave Bellevillian has been wounded.

Ottawa, April 13. Mrs. J. Hammett, 81 St. Charles Street, Belleville. Sincerely regret to inform you 306481 Signaller Theophilus Geo. Hammett, artillery, officially reported admitted to No. 3 General Hospital, Boulogne, April 6th, 1917; gunshot wound in back, slight. Will send further particulars when received. Officer in charge of Records.”