Julia Marlowe & Madame Brough's Saloon

The Boneyfiddle Childhood of a World Famous Actress and Women's Voting Rights Activist

Julia Marlowe became a world famous Shakespearian actress in the 1880s and emerged, in her later years, as one of the first celebrity activists in the women's suffrage movement. Known as Fanny Brough, she was the daughter of John and Brough.

According to a Portsmouth Times article from 1888, Madame Brough operated a Front Street Saloon, which was popular with "river roustabouts and tough characters generally." Fanny lived with her siblings in a residence, two doors to the east of her mother's notorious bar, which has long been rumored to have doubled as a brothel, or "fast house," as claimed in the Times reporting.

Today, Robert Dafford's mural that memorializes Marlowe and her Boneyfiddle childhood can be found directly in front of her family's residence and the location of Madame Brough's Saloon.