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Today In Charleston History: February 13

1829

To generate support for their proposed railroad, to the Savannah River, the Charleston & Hamburg Rail Road Company built a test track of rail 150 feet long in the middle of the cobblestoned Wentworth Street in Charleston. They added flanged wheels to a small flat cart, which they then loaded with forty-seven bales of cotton. A single mule, hitched to the cart, was able to pull this load, four times a normal load, with ease, amazing the spectators. 

1900

James O’Neill appeared as D’Artagnan in The Three Muskateers at the Academy of Music, with Maud Odell, billed as “the beautiful South Carolina girl.” Odell was born in Beaufort, S.C. and had appeared in several productions in New York.

Maude_Odell

Maud Odell, Library of Congress 

Odell’s first major success was The Prisoner of Zenda, in which she appeared for 400 nights in New York. She later performed in Show Boat, and Tobacco Road. Her career spanned almost 40 years.

Odell was found dead of a heart attack in her dressing room just before a performance of Tobacco Road. She was buried at the cemetery of St. Peter’s Catholic Church in Beaufort, South Carolina.

academy of music

Academy of Music, Market and King Street (present site of the Riveria Theater.

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