The party entered and took their places. . . . While waiting they studied their programs. First was an overture by the orchestra, after which came “The Gleasons, in their mirth-moving farce, entitled ‘McMonnigal’s Courtship.’ “... After this came a great array of other artists and speciality performers, musical wonders, acrobats, lightning artists, ventriloquists, and last of all, “The feature of the evening, the crowning scientific achieve־־ ment of the nineteenth century, the kinetoscope.” McTeague was excited, dazzled. In five years he had not been twice to the theater. Now he beheld himself inviting his girl and her mother to accompany him. . . .
The kinetoscope fairly took their breaths away.
“What will they do next?” observed Trina in amazement. “Ain’t that wonderful, Mac?”
McTeague was awestruck.
“Look at that horse move his head,” he cried excitedly, quite carried away. “Look at the cable car coming—and the man going across the street. See, here comes a truck. Well, I never in all my life! What would Marcus say to this?”
“It’s a drick!” exclaimed Mrs. Sieppe with sudden conviction. “I ain’t no fool; dot’s nothun but a drick.”
“Well, of course, Mamma,” exclaimed Trina; “it’s—”
But Mrs. Sieppe put her head in the air. “Гт too old to be fooled,” she persisted. “It’s a drick.” Nothing more could be got out of her than this. . . .
On their way home they discussed the performance. . . .
“Wasn’t—wasn’t that magic lantern wonderful, where the figures moved? Wonderful—ah, wonderful!”
From Frank Norris, McTeague: A Story of San Francisco, 1899. Title supplied. McTeague presumably saw the Vitagraph or the Lumière Cinématographe—not the Kinetoscope. The Kinetoscope was a peep-show machine—which could be viewed by only one person at a time.