Vaudeville– Song, Dance, Slides
Lantern shows were part of the very first vaudeville programming created by Tony Pastor, the “Father of Vaudeville,” who gave some lantern shows himself. An early 1889 Tony Pastor broadside (left) touts a variety of lantern effects by “Prof. Abt” that were popular at the time—art pictures, dissolving views, chromatropes, and the dancing skeleton. Vaudeville was usually variety “family entertainment,” and women were welcome. Lantern shows fit easily into that format.
The Rockland Theatre Vaudeville, 24 years later than Pastor’s, features Illustrated Lecturer Capt. Ralph Brown, with his “World Famous Pedestrian” sweater, and his pistol. The box beside him is probably his camera.
In addition to vaudeville segments, lantern slides were used to keep the audience laughing as the show progressed. The joke slide is from George “Honey Boy” Evans, a well-known comedian
Keystone—Slides in Every School