The First Play in America in English and Its Contribution to the First Amendment : “Ye Bare and Ye Cubbe” (1665) by W. Darby

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This is a new edition of Dr. Eis's 2003 monograph on the first play performed in America.


"Because a script of the play, Ye Bare and Ye Cubbe has not survived, Eis’s contention that the free speech ideals of Jefferson, Madison, Pendleton, and company were informed by the ensuing seventeenth-century court case might be dismissed as a far-flung conjecture. However, Eis’s defense of his position is so comprehensively researched and so clearly and engagingly explicated as to render his argument plausible."
Dr. Brooks Miles Barnes,
Librarian, Eastern Shore Public Library

Table of Contents




Introduction: A Call to Arms

Chapter 1: The Discovery of the Irregularities in the Case

Chapter 2: Background on the Time and Place

Chapter 3:Colonial Politics and Economics: Motives in the case

Chapter 4: The Title of the Play Considered as Evidence

Chapter 5: The Nature of the Performance of the Play

Chapter 6: Charges in the Court Case Reexamined for Political Implications

Chapter 7: Deconstruction of the Trial Records

Chapter 8: The Question of Opportunity for the Accused

Chapter 9: Profiles of the Defendants and the Plaintiff

Chapter 10:William Darby, A Mysterious Arrival

Chapter 11:Was Darby Connected to interdicted Theatre in London?

Chapter 12:The Dossier of Edward Martin, Plaintiff, and the Quaker Connection

Chapter 13:Confirmation of the Crime Scene, Its Bearing on the Case, and a Persistent Oral History of the Events

Chapter 14:The Fowkes’ Tavern Site Considered and Confirmed

Chapter 15:Surprise Witnesses: The Testimony of the Maps and New Discovered Evidence

Chapter 16:The Taint of Conflict of Interest: Politics of the Trial Reexamined

Chapter 17:A Postscript: The “Accomack Three” after the Trial

Chapter 18: An Unexpected Legacy: The Case of Ye Bare and Ye Cubbe and the Bill of Rights Considered

Chapter 19: Evidence in Three Intersecting Source Documents

Chapter 20: After the Revolution

Exhibits 1-35

Appendix I

Appendix II

Works Cited


Other American History Books

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