HE WAS A FAKE WILLIAMS. ~ Person Who Collected Money Here Not the Veteran Minstrel.

March 27, 1908

Person Who Collected Money Here
Not the Veteran Minstrel.

After using burnt cork on his face for thirty-eight years to appear in almost every variety of stage performances, saving a small bank roll, raising a family and being comfortably well off, Billy Williams, the old minstrel, finds than an impostor had been visiting every city in the country, using the name of Billy Williams and depending on charity for support. Billy Williams, the original and only, is at the Auditorium theater this week with "The Way of the Transgressor."

A man who claimed to be Billy Williams came to Kansas City last fall. He said illness caused principally by drink, had forced him to quit the stage, and his wife and children, as well as himself, were in need of money to keep them from starvation A benefit was given for him and he secured a tidy sum from local sympathizers. He then disappeared and was heard of in other cities playing the same game.

The original Billy Williams is 53 years old and has been on the stage since 1870. Besides his minstrel career, he was seven years with the Gray & Steve company, five years with the "South Before the War" company, five years in vaudeville with his daughter, who is now the wife of a well known showman and five years with "The Way of the Transgressor" company which is now playing at the Auditorium theater. It will be remembered that the "Billy Williams," who was an object of charity here last fall, delivered a temperance lecture in a local church, and stated it was from his own experience that he was able to speak. The is one reason the real Billy Williams is indignant.