Broadsides were forerunners of the modern, daily newspaper. Printed on one side of a single sheet of paper, they contained a wide range of materials, including popular ballads, news stories, religious lessons, criminal confessions, and advertising notices. This modest black and white announcement for a play performed at the Federal Street Theatre tells us much about what it would have been like to attend an evening’s entertainment there. Along with a play or plays, one might well have enjoyed paintings, animal acts, feather balancing, rope walking, musical numbers, dance routines, and topical lectures.
Courtesy of the Massachusetts Historical Society