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Oscar Wilde In America

a selected resource of oscar wilde's visits to america

The Location of Chickering Hall

130 Fifth Avenue, New York, NY

Oscar Wilde’s first lecture on his 1882 lecture tour of North America was held at a Chickering Hall [1], a concert auditorium in New York City.

As can be seen from the 1895 street plan opposite, Chickering Hall was situated at 130 Fifth Avenue, which is the lot at the north-west corner of Fifth Avenue and 18th Street—indeed, this is the location of the same address today.

The hall measured 75 feet on Fifth Avenue and 135 feet along Eighteenth Street [2].

Marked on the plan is a recent manuscript notation indicating the line of arriving carriages that contemporary reports said stretched around the corner for the sold-out event.

St. Ann's Church


As can be seen on the plan and image opposite, the former Christ Church—at the time adopted by St Ann's (1859—1898)—situated behind the hall at 7 West 18th Street.


Oscar Wilde's lecture at Chickering Hall

St. Ann's Church for the Deaf-Mutes

[1] George B. Post, 1875.

[2] New York 1880 - Architecture and Urbanism in the Gilded Age, ROBERT A. M. STERN, THOMAS MELLINS and DAVID FISHMAN, The Monacelli Press, 1999.



Chickering Hall with its entrance on Fifth Avenue in this contemporary print.


Chickering Hall interiors (New York Public Library)

web site by cooper design Oscar Wilde In America