"Please don't shoot the organist; he's doing his best" (1882)

Fred Shapiro fred.shapiro at YALE.EDU
Sun Dec 24 01:18:55 UTC 2006

On Sat, 23 Dec 2006, Bapopik at AOL.COM wrote:

> 9 September 1882, Marshfield (WI) Times, pg. 3, col.  1:
> A reasonable request: Some one claims to have found this legend written 
> to a Leadville church: “Please do not shoot at the organist; he is 
> doing his best. ”

Here's earlier:

In a Leadville church there is this notice: "Please do not shoot the 
organist; he is doing his best."
 	News and Observer (Raleigh, N.C.), 31 Aug. 1882

> 20 April 1883, Newark (Ohio) Daily Advocate, pg. 2?, col. 4:
> Oscar at the Pen and Pencil Club. New York Tribune. read: “Please 
> don’t shoot the pianist. He is doing his best.” This about the man

Here's earlier:

Oscar Wilde bobs up again.  He was the guest, a fortnight ago, of the Pen 
and Pencil club, of Paris, and made an afternoon speech about his 
experiences in America.  The brightest and best of the many stories he 
relates was one to the effect that at a ball in Leadville he saw a notice 
over the piano which read: "Please don't shoot the pianist.  He is doing 
his best."
 	Atchison (KS) Globe, 19 Mar. 1883

Fred Shapiro

Fred R. Shapiro                             Editor
Associate Librarian for Collections and     YALE BOOK OF QUOTATIONS
   Access and Lecturer in Legal Research     Yale University Press
Yale Law School                             ISBN 0300107986
e-mail: fred.shapiro at yale.edu               http://quotationdictionary.com

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