“They are simply awful. They left farm life to go on the stage and are raising larger crops than when tilling the soil. Beans, peas, turnips, carrots, eggs and cabbage literally rain down upon them whenever they shamble onto the stage.”
A Chicago arts publication gave the Cherry Sisters from Marion, Iowa, a scathing review for a performance at Davenport’s Burtis Opera House in spring 1893. Addie, Jessie, Effie and Lizzie were farm girls who were trying to earn a little extra money by showcasing their musical talents, but somehow their performances brought out the worst in Iowa audiences. Iowa History, a weekly column, appears at IowaWatch on Saturdays.