On June 4, 1901, Paul Laurence Dunbar read his poetry and prose at a charitable event in Richmond, Virginia.
Paul Laurence Dunbar, a gifted poet and scholar, has been engaged to read in this city next week for the benefit of the Old Folks' Home, which has recently been opened for colored people at No. 115 West Jackson Street.
"A Noted Negro." The Times (Richmond, Virginia). May 30, 1901. Page 8.
Paul Laurence Dunbar, Author and Dialect Writer, at True Reformers Hall, June 4th, in Virginia and Kentucky Stories. Benefit of The Old Folks' Home of the Richmond Charitable Union. Admission, 50 cents.
Advertisement. The Times (Richmond, Virginia). June 1, 1901. Page 4.
Mr. Paul Laurence Dunbar
True Reformers' Hall
Tuesday Eve. June 4th, 8 p.m.
Benefit of Old Folk's Home of Richmond Charitable Union
The Poet and His Song
When Malindy Sings
The Warrior's Prayer
Mt. Pisgah's Christmas 'Possum
Recital program, June 4, 1901. Paul Laurence Dunbar Papers, Ohio History Connection (Microfilm edition, Roll 5).
Mr. Paul Laurence Dunbar, the brilliant and scholarly poet and prose writer, entertained a fashionable and select audience Tuesday evening, June 4th, at True Reformers' Hall. The entertainment was on the most refined order.
"Mr. Dunbar in Richmond." The Richmond Planet (Richmond, Virginia). June 8, 1901. Page 1.
In a letter to his wife Alice in Washington, D. C., Paul expressed disappointment about the amount of money he earned at the event. He remained in Virginia a few more days to give another recital in nearby Petersburg.
I wanted to write you yesterday but was kept going so that I did not get the time. The reading was a great success, though they failed in the $100 guarantee. It was a $93.75 house and an enthusiastic one. I am delighted with Richmond and the people, but I wants '00. We go to Petersburg this afternoon.
Paul Laurence Dunbar to Alice Moore Dunbar, June 5, 1901. Paul Laurence Dunbar Papers, Ohio History Connection (Microfilm edition, Roll 8).
Petersburg, Va. - Paul Laurence Dunbar will recite at Oak Street Methodist Church (colored) tomorrow night.
"Negro Poet to Recite." The Times (Richmond, Virginia). June 6, 1901. Page 5.
The Chicago friends of Paul Laurence Dunbar will be pleased to know that he is meeting with marked success in his readings in Dixieland. This week he is touring "Old Virginie," incidentally gathering fresh material for a new story, but at the same time entertaining crowded houses.
"Chicago: The World's Fair City Viewed by the Appeal Man." The Appeal (St. Paul, Minnesota). June 15, 1901. Page 4.
Paul traveled a great deal during the spring of 1901: New York in March; Florida in March and April; Alabama in April; and New York, Illinois, Indiana and Ohio in May. Meanwhile, Alice remained at home in Washington with Paul's mother Matilda. Alice's letters reveal her unhappiness about the amount of time she was apart from Paul.
Will you please telegraph me what time your train will arrive? I do so want to be at the station to get a glimpse of you soon. Will you really come home that early? It seems too good to be true. But then you speak of running away again. That's the drop of wormwood to my cup of wine.
Alice Moore Dunbar to Paul Laurence Dunbar, April 22, 1901. Paul Laurence Dunbar Papers, Ohio History Connection (Microfilm edition, Roll 8).
Your jolly letter came while my beloved one was gone again, this time to Richmond and Petersburg, Va. He returned from Chicago last Sunday, the 2d, stayed until Tuesday, went away and returned this past Saturday. He is in reality a bird of passage. However, he is home again and sitting contentedly near me reading after a supper of much onions, as usual.
Alice Moore Dunbar to Hattie Hopkins, June 10, 1901. Paul Laurence Dunbar Papers, Ohio History Connection (Microfilm edition, Roll 6).