Addendum: Booth Brothers
Central Park. I’m sitting on a bench dedicated to the memory of a Jewish couple; in addition to the superb people watching, it also gives me a view of the Shakespeare statue. White blossoms from the tree overhead land on its head and shoulders, making this bronze-cast Shakespeare look like it has a particularly bad case of dandruff.
Googling the statue (constant googling being an unfortunate compulsion I’ve developed in the age of the smart phone), I’m reminded of the Baader-Meinhof Phenomenon (a cognitive bias whereby once you learn something you appear to find yourself repeatedly encountering it) when I see that it was Edwin Booth who raised the funds for the erecting of the statue. Further reading also shows that there is also in the city a statue of Booth himself. Wondering where it is, I discover it is in Gramercy Park. The statue of Booth is of him portraying his most famous role – Hamlet. On my phone I flick through some of my old photos of the city. There’s one of Gramercy Park I took a few years ago that I was quite proud of at the time I took it, and there on the right is the Booth statue – previously anonymous to me. There is no statue to John Wilkes Booth*
*Although a police officer in Troy, Alabama, Joseph Pinkney Parker, did in 1906 commission a memorial for him.