From the Archive: May 1890


In the early days of The Strad, many of the stories were taken from other publications. The very first issue brought readers these two gems from the Daily Telegraph and The American Musician

The Paris correspondent of the Daily Telegraph brings us the following story :— “Profiting by their opportunity, an ingenious trick was played the other night by a pair of thieves upon an English lady who resides near to the Madeleine. A fire broke out in the building, throwing all the tenants of the ‘flats’ into a great state of alarm. The lady in question was aroused by the vigorous pulling of the bell. She opened her door, and saw two strangers, who cried ‘What; don’t you know the house is on fire? Save whatever you think most valuable. You have very little time!’ The lady, who was naturally much dismayed, accepted their offer of assistance, and began hurriedly to remove her household goods. To one man she handed a valuable violin, in a rosewood case; to the other she confided a clock; and she seized herself a picture signed by Détaille. All three got safely to the bottom of the staircase, but here the lady slipped and fell. When she regained her footing she found that one of her obliging friends had relieved her of the painting. When the first alarm had subsided and the fire was seen to be without danger it was ascertained that the two rascals had quietly made off with their spoil.”

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