Dan Marble

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Danford Marble (1807 - May 13, 1849) (best known as Dan Marble) was an American comedic actor who gained great popularity playing "Yankee" roles in the 1830s and 1840s.

Marble was born in East Windsor, Connecticut in 1807 and made his stage debut in 1831 at Chatham Garden Theatre in New York, playing the role of Rollin Roughhead in Fortune's Frolic by John Till Allingham.

Marble had great success playing the role of famous daredevil jumper Sam Patch starting in 1836. He first played the role at the Eighth Street Theatre in Buffalo, New York, where Patch's successful jump at nearby Niagara Falls in 1829 made him a local legend. Marble went on to star in a number of "Sam Patch" plays throughout the United States. He also went to England to perform in September 1844, returning to America in 1845.

Marble died of cholera in Louisville, Kentucky on May 13, 1849.[1] Humorist Jonathan Falconbridge Kelly wrote a biography of Marble which was published in 1851.

Marble married Anna Warren (1815–72) of Philadelphia, an actress and daughter of actor William Warren (1767-1832), on November 13, 1836.[2] Their son Edward Marble was an actor and songwriter.[3][4]

Selected performances[edit]

  • Sam Patch the Yankee Jumper(1836, New York debut in 1837)
  • Sam Patch at Home
  • Sam Patch in France
  • Sam Patch the Jumper (1844)
  • Vermont Wool Dealer (1838) (play by Cornelius Ambrosius Logan) (Marble played the Yankee role of "Deuteronomy Dutiful")
  • Yankee Land (1842) (play by Logan)
  • The Game Cock of the Wilderness (1845) (by William Leman Rede)
  • Family Ties (1846) (play by Joseph M. Field, debuted at the Park Theatre in New York on June 19, 1846)[5][6]
  • The Stage Struck Yankee (1849) (by O.E. Durivage)[7]


  1. ^ Berg, Albert Ellery. The drama, painting, poetry, and song, p. 292 (1884)
  2. ^ A Biographical Dictionary of Actors, Actresses, Musicians, Dancers, Managers & Other Stage Personnel in London, 1660-1800: W. West to Zwingman..., p. 76 (1993)
  3. ^ (17 December 1897). Edward Marble - Some Account of a Popular Song-Writer, Actor and Playwright, Boston Evening Transcript
  4. ^ (21 September 1900). Edward Marble (obituary), The Lafayette, Vol. 27, No. 1, p. 8
  5. ^ (July 1879). The American on the Stage, Scribner's Monthly, pp. 324-35.
  6. ^ Scharnhorst, Gary. Kate Field: The Many Lives of a Nineteenth-century American Journalist, p. 8 (2008)
  7. ^ Jortner, Maura L. Playing "American" On Nineteeth-Century Stages; Or, Jonathan in England and Jonathan at Home (2005 Ph.D. Thesis, University of Pittsburgh) (Chapter 5 of thesis includes great detail about Marble's career with reference to additional sources for research)

External links[edit]