There was a time...  

 John Salicco 
Historical Impersonator, Writer and Musician


The 49er:
A Gold Run Musicianer
Time frame: 1850's

The Klondike
Tales of a Sourdough
Time Frame: 1898

The Banjo:
An American Gypsy
Time frame: 19th Century

  Jacques Portier:
Old Nor'Wester
Time frame: 1830's

The Great Depression:
How do you spell relief?
Time frame: 1930's


Story Telling


There was a time in History
 Seminar Series



This presentation was originally developed from "Diggin's" performances at Columbia State Historic Park in California and then adapted for Inquiring Mind, a program  of Humanities Washington.  Please contact me for details.


The 49er - A Gold Run Musicianer

This is a 50 minute one man show featuring several Stephen Foster songs and original 19th Century material taken from a song book published by Mart Taylor in the 1850’s.  John performs this material using an authentic antique 19th guitar and a self-made replica 19th Century fretless banjo.


“Mart Taylor and his Original Company” is based on an authentic historical personage who entertained throughout the California gold camps of the 1850s.



For the State of Washington


John adapts this presentation for the 1850's Puget Sound.  Olympia's "Pioneer Democrat" printed a review of a "Taylor's Minstrels" performance in Washington Territory in 1859. (This was a different Taylor, but of similar profession.)  As the Puget Sound filled with farmers, loggers and other entrepreneurs during the 1850’s, the thriving communities of Tumwater, Olympia, Port Gamble and even the new muddy settlement of Seattle, were hungry for entertainment.  With the regular steamship service available in the 1850s, it became possible for theatrical troupes, minstrel shows and other forms of entertainment to profitably ply their trade in the Washington territory.

Above image scanned from a Wm Dunniway tin type taken MMXI, in Columbia, CA



This presentation is suitable for elementary through adult audiences.




Fee for a single performance of this program is $300 + transportation & lodging, if outside the greater Seattle/ greater Seattle/ Tacoma/ Olympia, WA area. 

Usual program length is approximately 1 hour.

For booking information:

email or call 206-497-0049
Write: 3607 Broadmoor Dr NE, Tacoma, WA  98422


                        Special California Heritage Presentation  


This one man show can be offered as an outdoor presentation to complement 19th Century reenactments or themed events complete with a tent and printed programs.  The Show can be presented every few hours during the day.  A "first person" living history 19th Century camp can be maintained for single or multi-day events with replica 19th Century cooking implements and other accoutrements remaining on display between shows. 

For complete camp set up at special events, basic one day fee is $500.00; multiple day events add $100.00.  per day. ( Out-of-area travel expenses not included. ) 











John Quincy Adams/ The 49er/ The Banjo: An American Gypsy/ Jacques Portier/ The Great Depression/ Story Telling/ Nisqually Seminar Series/ Flat Seventh/ Inquiring Mind/ About Us/ John Salicco Bio/There was a time in History/ John's Performance Calendar/ Links