Each month I publish a newspaper article that featured the traditional Jack-in-the-Green along with a picture or photograph from the archive. Each of these articles is a fascinating window into a bygone era. For more information about the Jack in the Green both current and historical visit our main website at: www.thecompanyofthegreenman.co.uk
1st May 1855: MAY DAY
The old English spectacle of “Jack o’ the Green,” with his attendant swarthy and sooty satellites, was pirouetting gaily through the city streets to-day in celebration of the 1st of May, with an eye to erratic tributes from those stopping to observe the somewhat indescribable dance. The “most respectable master sweep in the colony,” yclept Gordon, astonished the native youth by a grand display of glazed pink, yellow, red, and silver ribbons of a retiring colour, with which he and his “mates” were unlimitedly adorned, and merrily did they dance in mysterious steps to the accompaniment of one fife, one fiddle, and one tambourine, a perambulating orchestra, most effective in attracting the attention of passers-by, and shy quadrupeds. The “morrice dancers” we suppose are not out, as we have not heard of them, and so the sweeps win the stakes of the day.
The Courier, 1 May 1855, page 2.
The picture featured this month is by an unknown artist (any information would be appreciated)