Wood, William Burke
William Burke Wood, actor-manager (b at Montréal 26 May 1779; d at Philadelphia, Pa 23 Sept 1861). He was the first native-born N American to achieve notable success in the theatre; Wood's parents had immigrated to Canada before the American Revolution and returned to NY c 1784. At 19, Wood made his acting debut in Annapolis, Md, with Thomas Wignell's company. Over the years he found favour as a polished comedian. Wignell's troupe was based at the Chestnut St Theatre, Philadelphia, which Wood eventually managed for 16 years (1810-26). He introduced many indigenous plays and wrote Personal Recollections of the Stage (1855).