C19 Circuit Event:
A Reading of "Philip,
or The Indian Chief"
The inaugural C19 Circuit event was a resounding success. On February 14th, 2015, a public reading and discussion of a previously unknown nineteenth-century manuscript play was staged at Chicago’s Newberry Library. This fascinating original play set during King Philip’s War was written by Jehiel Lillie, a 26 year-old cadet at the Norwich Military Academy, and was performed at the academy in 1838 by a troupe of fellow students. Couched in self-consciously Shakespearian language and situations, “Philip, or the Indian Chief” provides a romanticized but complex account of Native and British interactions. The play assesses the mixed motivations that prompt war and explicitly critiques the notion of “a war of extermination.”
Sponsored by The Newberry Library, C19: The Society of Nineteenth-Century Americanists, and The Karla Scherer Center for the Study of American Culture at the University of Chicago, the event was free and open to the public.
This well-attended event brought together scholars in literature and history, as well as members of the community. C19 is grateful to everyone who participated and attended, particularly on a cold winter's day.
The C19 Circuits is a new program piloted by the C19 Executive Committee, in the spirit of the nineteenth-century lyceum circuit. These Circuits will offer varied, small-scale regional events in the non-conference year. Please contact if you are interested in hosting an event.