Nellie McHenry

Mrs. John Webster
05/29/1853 - 05/4/1935

Nellie McHenry was born in St. Louis in 1853. Early in her career she performed with the Hooley Comedy Company in Chicago where she met Nate Salisbury. Along with Salisbury, McHenry and her husband, John Webster, helped establish the Salisbury Troubadors with whom they toured for 18 years in the 1870's and 1880's. With the Salisbury Troubadours she appeared in "Patchwork," "Green Room Fun," "The Brook," and "Tom, Dick and Harry." After the Troubadours disbanded, McHenry had continued success as a star on her own, playing some of the same repertoire, as well as "Night at the Circus" in which she performed in an 1895 production at the Seattle Theatre. McHenry played multiple roles in that production including Mlle. Milan, Mlle. Electra Queen of the Arena, and Nancy Brown. McHenry's husband, John Webster, disappeared one night; it is assumed that he drowned in Niagara Falls.

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Grau, Robert. Forty Years Observation of Music and Drama. New York: Broadway Publishing Company, 1909. [New York Public Library's copy of the book is available online vai HathiTrust:;view=1up;seq=16] "Did Webster Commit Suicide? Believed Nellie McHenry's Husband Drowned Himself at Niagara." New York Times, 6 December, 1899, p.1. "Nellie McHenry Dead; Comedienne Was 82; Won Success with Salisbury Troubadours, Whom she Helped Organize." New York Times, 5 May 1935, p. N6.