Trip to US with Florrie
In 1910 I was asked to go to America by an American lady who was at the concert we gave at Bridgewater House. I said I would like to go if I could take Florence Warren, our best teacher to train a “side” of dancers to illustrate my lectures. This was arranged and we set out in December of that year, very much looking forward to our trip.
We had a very bad voyage and arrived in New York in a blizzard with the boat covered with icicles and the streets deep in snow.
The American lady met us on the quay and almost her first words to me were, “All your engagements are cancelled.” I was aghast, I did not know another soul in America and I could not think what had happened. Then Miss Surbank told me, “A friend of Mr. Cecil Sharp, who lives in New York has been round to various societies and to the Education people, and told them that the Education Authorities of England have thrown you over.” I could not believe my ears and had it not been that I had promised to talk about the
first Sheakespear Summer Season at Stratford-on-Avon and that I had brought over a lot of literature to distribute I think I should have returned to England by the next boat. It took me some weeks personal interviewing before I regained my appointments to lecture as I had no weapons to meet the attack, and no written evidence that lies had been told. However, we did overcome the obstacle and had a very good time. We met the celebrated Adeline Genée and she took a fancy to my teacher and asked her to dance in one of her shows as the earthly maiden in “The Dryad”. This was a great triumph for Florence Warren. As a matter of fact the Morris dances had been included in the English County Council Schools’ curriculum to “cover our work” as the Director of Education told me when on my return to England I told him what had been said in America.