Maurice Barrymore - Marshall, Texas Incident

Marshall, Texas Incident

On March 19, 1879, in Marshall, Texas, Barrymore and fellow actor Ben Porter were shot by an intoxicated Texas and Pacific Railway engineer named Jim Currie (who shared a cell with the accused killer of Diamond Bessie). Porter was killed; doctors spent the night operating on Barrymore to save his life. He made a full recovery, and returned to Marshall for the legal procedures that followed. Currie's brother was mayor of Shreveport, Louisiana and apparently used his influence to secure a not guilty verdict (after a 10 minute deliberation). An enraged Barrymore vowed never to return to Texas.

According to a 2004 A&E Biography piece, after the Ben Porter tragedy, Barrymore asked Georgiana to tour with him and Helena Modjeska in a play he had written. Georgiana and the children had converted to Roman Catholicism under Helena's influence. Learning that he and Helena had resumed their romance, Georgiana, who had been given ownership of the play by Barrymore, forced his hand by closing it. Helena's husband, its producer, sued her. The real reason for Georgiana's actions never got into the press. However, Barrymore's many dalliances did make the tabloids.

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