Maryland State Archives
Museum Online

Straddling Secession:
Thomas Holliday Hicks
and the Beginning of the Civil War in Maryland

Cipriano Ferrandini's life has sparked much speculation. Because he worked as a barber in Barnum's City Hotel, Ferrandini may well have had occasion to encounter another man who sought to assassinate Abraham Lincoln-John Wilkes Booth. Indeed, Booth was known to frequent the hotel when he was in Baltimore. The intriguing prospect of a meeting between Booth and Ferrandini was the inspiration for Hollis Thoms to write "The Moustache," an opera imagining what might have happened had the two men ever crossed paths. Shown here are two pages from the opera's score.

At left is a portion of an early scene, where Booth and a barmaid named Abigail sing "If You've Only Got a Moustache," by Civil War-era musician Stephen Foster. On the right is an excerpt from a scene near the end of the opera in which Ferrandini talks about a speech given by Lincoln prior to his inauguration in 1861.

To read the script of "The Moustache," click here.

Click on images to enlarge

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