The Ghost of Jerry Bundler


E-text prepared by Sigal Alon, Fox in the Stars,
and the Project Online Distributed Proofreading Team








Copyright, 1908, by W. W. Jacobs and Charles Rock

CAUTION: Professionals and amateurs are hereby warned that “The Ghost of Jerry Bundler,” being fully protected under the copyright laws of the United States, is subject to a royalty, and anyone presenting the play without the consent of the owners or their authorized agents will be liable to the penalties by law provided. Applications for professional and amateur acting rights must be made to Samuel French, 25 West 45th Street, New York.

New York:
25 West 45th Street
26 Southampton Street


Especial notice should be taken that the possession of this book without a valid contract for production first having been obtained from the publisher, confers no right or license to professionals or amateurs to produce the play publicly or in private for gain or charity.

In its present form this play is dedicated to the reading public only, and no performance, representation, production, recitation, or public reading, or radio broadcasting may be given except by special arrangement with Samuel French, 25 West 45th Street, New York.

This play may be presented by amateurs upon payment of a royalty of Five Dollars for each performance, payable to Samuel French, 25 West 45th Street, New York, one week before the date when the play is given.

Whenever the play is produced the following notice must appear on all programs, printing and advertising for the play: “Produced by special arrangement with Samuel French of New York.”

Attention is called to the penalty provided by law for any infringement of the author’s rights, as follows.

Section 4966:—Any person publicly performing or representing any dramatic or musical composition for which copyright has been obtained, without the consent of the proprietor of said dramatic or musical composition, or his heirs and assigns, shall be liable for damages thereof, such damages, in all cases to be assessed at such sum, not less than one hundred dollars for the first and fifty dollars for every subsequent performance, as to the court shall appear to be just. If the unlawful performance and representation be wilful and for profit, such person or persons shall be guilty of a misdemeanor, and upon conviction shall be imprisoned for a period not exceeding one year.”—U. S. Revised Statutes: Title 60, Chap. 3.


Cast at The Haymarket Theatre.

Sept. 9, 1902.

HirstMr. Cyril Maude.
PenfoldMr. George Trollope.
MalcolmMr. Lewis Broughton.
SomersMr. Marsh Allen.
BeldonMr. H. Norton.
Dr. LeekMr. Wilfred Forster.
George (a waiter)Mr. Charles Rock.

Note.—Penfold, Malcolm, and Beldon represent different types of Commercial Travellers.

Original Cast.

PenfoldMr. Holman Clarke.
MalcolmMr. Holmes Gore.
HirstMr. Cyril Maude.
SomersMr. Frank Gillmore.
Doctor LeekMr. C. M. Hallard.
BeldonMr. Cecil Ramsay.
George (a waiter)Mr. Mark Kinghorne.

First produced, St. James’s Theatre, London, June 20, 1899.

Revived. Her Majesty’s Theatre, June 20, 1902. Same cast as above except Mr. Frank Gillmore, whose part was played by Mr. Charles Rock. The Herman Merivale Benefit Matinee.

Haymarket Theatre. Sept. 9, 1902. Ran 100 performances.

Avenue Theatre. Dec. 20, 1902. Ran 38 performances.


Scene.—The Commercial Room in an old-fashioned hotel in a small country town. An air of old-fashioned comfort is in evidence everywhere. Old sporting prints on the walls.

On the table up C. are half a dozen candlesticks, old-fashioned shape with snuffer attached. Two pairs of carpet slippers are set up within fender. Red curtains to window recess. Shutters or blinds to windows. Armchair and about six other chairs in the room. One old-fashioned settle. One small table. Clock. Decanter of water, half a dozen toddy tumblers. Matches, etc. The only light is a ruddy glow from the fire. Kettle on hob. Moonlight from R. of window when shutter is opened. Practical chandelier from ceiling or lights at side of mantelpiece. Doctor’s coat and muffler on chair up L., his cap on mantelpiece.

All lights out, dark stage. Opening music. Curtain rise—ticking of clock heard. Wind, then church clock chimes, the Lights come very slowly up, when the red glow is seen in the fireplace the low murmurs of the characters heard, and gradually get louder as lights come up to when Somers’ voice tops all.

(The stage occupied by all characters except George the waiter. Discovered, Penfold, sitting in arm chair L. of fire, above it. Doctor Leek standing above fire and leaning on mantel-shelf. Hirst sitting on settle below fire and nearest to audience. Somers seated on settle with him but above him. Malcolm and Beldon on chairs R. C., facing fire. All are smoking, and drink from their respective glasses from time to time. Somers has just finished a story as Curtain rises.)

Omnes. Oh, I say, that sounds impossible, etc.

Somers. Haunted or not haunted, the fact remains that no one stays in the house long. It’s been let to several tenants since the time of the murder, but they never completed their tenancy. The last tenant held out for a month, but at last he gave up like the rest, and cleared out, although he had done the place up thoroughly, and must have been pounds out of pocket by the transaction.

Malcolm. Well, it’s a capital ghost story, I admit, that is, as a story, but I for one can’t swallow it.

Hirst. I don’t know, it is not nearly so improbable as some I have heard. Of course it’s an old idea that spirits like to get into the company of human beings. A man told me once, that he travelled down by the Great Western, with a ghost as fellow passenger, and hadn’t the slightest suspicion of it, until the inspector came for tickets. My friend said, the way that ghost tried to keep up appearances, by feeling in all its pockets, and even looking on the floor for its ticket, was quite touching. Ultimately it gave it up, and with a loud groan vanished through the ventilator.

(Somers, Malcolm and Leek laugh heartily.)

Beldon. Oh, I say come now, that’ll do.

Penfold (seriously). Personally I don’t think it’s a subject for jesting. I have never seen an apparition myself, but I have known people who have, and I consider that they form a very interesting link between us and the after life. There’s a ghost story connected with this house, you know.

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