Oscar Wilde In America

DETAiled verification of Oscar Wilde’s lecture tour of North America



Horticultural Hall

Tuesday, January 17, 1882

The English Renaissance


Newspaper report

The Times (Philadelphia), Jan 18, 1882, 2


Our Philadelphia, Elizabeth Robins Pennell. 

J. B. Lippincott, 1914, 347.


Horticultural Hall

250 South Broad Street, (below Locust), Philadelphia, PA

Built: 1881 (Addison Hutton)

Opened: January 5, 1882, 12 days before Wilde's lecture

Destroyed (fire): May 27, 1893

It replaced: Samuel Sloan's (original) Horticultural Hall on the same site (July 1867-January 31, 1881, fire)

It was replaced by: (New) Horticultural Hall (Frank Miles Day) on the same site (b. 1894-96, demolished 1917)


Many thanks and appreciation to Mark Samuels Lasner (Senior Research Fellow at the University of Delaware Library) for his work in identifying this location, and for confirming the building chronology of the various Horticultural Halls (see feature below).

The First Horticultural Hall

250 South Broad St. | 1867-1881

(Samuel Sloan)

The Third Horticultural Hall

250 South Broad St. |1896-1917

(Frank Miles Day)

Horticultural Halls in Philadelphia

The Second Horticultural Hall

250 South Broad St. | 1881-93

(Addison Hutton)


Horticultural Hall in Fairmount Park (1875-1955)

Part of the Centennial Exhibition

(Hermann J. Schwarzmann)


The Aldine Hotel

1910-1922 Chestnut Street, Philadelphia, PA

Original building built: 1848-1851 as the home of Dr. James Rush

Rebuilt: 1875—77 as a luxury hotel (Yarnall and Cooper) for J.B. Lippincott

Opened: 1877

Demolished: mid 1920s

Expanded: 1895 (Addison Hutton); the taller expansion section to the right is extant


Print and Picture Collection, Free Library of Philadelphia


Copy of Wilde’s Poems (1881) signed in Philadelphia, January 1882.

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Oscar Wilde In America | © John Cooper, 2021