Catherine Hayes World Travel Itinerary

Catherine Hayes travelled the world at a time when the bell tolled almost every day at Lloyds in London to signal the loss of yet another ship. She was lucky not to have been lost at sea. She knew the dangers well enough and no one can doubt her courage and determination. The itinerary which follows is one of my working documents and will be expanded with notes in the published text. I thought it might be useful here to indicate those places in the world which she visited and where my biography should be of most interest. Some people may notice that certain dates and places disagree with all other published accounts. This is to be expected because ‘Virtue and Vice’ will be the first true account of her life.


1839  Limerick- Dublin.Training under Sapio.First public concerts.

1840-1842 Dublin – Belfast – Dublin.Concerts during training.

1842- 1st Limerick Benefit Concert

1842 Dublin – Paris. Opera training under Garcia.

1842-44 gave at least two public concerts in defiance of Garcia

1844 Paris – Milan. Opera underRonconi.

1845 Milan – Marseilles1st Public Opera Performance.

1846 Milan – Vienna and Venice

1847 Venice- Vienna- Bergamo-Verona-Milan.

1848 Verona-Milan-Florence- Bergamo-Florence-Genoa

1849 Genoa-London. (Bishop Knox died in May 1849)

1849Tour of England

1849 Tour of Ireland (incl. Waterford)

1850 Tours of England Scotland, Ireland (incl. Waterford)

1850 Dublin – Rome

1851 Rome – London UK Tour (July/August in France)

1851 Liverpool – New York

1852 New York . Eastern and Southern States. Canada.

P T Barnum’s daughter’s wedding  at Bridgport 1852

1852 NY-Panama- San Francisco.  via Panama Canal

1853 San Francisco – Sacramento-SF- Grass Valley-SF – Chile – Peru

1854 Peru – SF

1854 SF-Hawaii – Australia (Sydney) –Melbourne-Adelaide

1855 Adelaide – Calcutta- Singapore-Java-Melbourne-Sydney.

1856 Australia – England.

1856 Trip to Paris.

1856 Irish Tour

1857 Tours of UK and Ireland. Never returns to S. Ireland again.

1857 Marriage in October. Leaves London for Pau and Biarritz

1858In France until July.  Hasty return to UK from Bayonne

1859-61. Concerts in UK only until DEATH in August 1861

1860 Trip to Paris for Wieniawski’s wedding.

Current Affairs of Lola Montez

Although she died almost 150 years ago, the legend of Lola Montez lives on in Munich where she became King Ludwig’s mistress and he made her the Countess de Landsfeldt. There is a cabaret act in Munich featuring Lola which is described on this German website which includes a topless photo of the dancer.

After her affair with the King ended , Lola went to London where she was married twice on the same day. Presumably, she was still pretending to be a Catholic so that Ludwig would continue her generous allowance. They married first at the French Chapel and went to St. George’s in the afternoon. Lola was already legally married and was charged with bigamy soon afterwards.

I also found that there is a new book “Sex with Kings” by Eleanor Herman which includes Lola Montez as one of the lovers.You can order that for light reading. There is also a German edition “Seks met de Koning”.

Lola Montez didn’t worry about seducing other women’s  husbands. This 1815 cartoon by Rowlandson reminded me of the incident in Australia when she was injured by an irate wife.

Rowland Cartoon

“Neighbourly Refreshment”

Famous Biography

The Famous Biography blog is about the lives of two internationally famous women, Catherine Hayes  and Lola Montez.They both travelled the world and earned fame and fortune. Lola Montez became a courtesan and erotic dancer as a result of circumstances and her extrovert character.

Catherine or Kate as she was popularly known in America and Australia was a lyrics lover and had many written specially for her. One in particular is extremely important in the context of her true lifeand that will be discussed in the new biography ‘Virtue and Vice’.

Catherine Hayes began her singing career in 1839 when she went to Dublin to study under Antonio Sapio. After three years, she returned to Limerick and persuaded the Bishop to underwrite her new dream of becoming an opera star despite the Church’s opposition to stage careers for women.She left Dublin for Paris in October 1842 to study under Manuel Garcia.

Rosenberg tells us in some detail of the evening he spent with Catherine and Mary Hayes at the home of Bowes and his wife ‘just off the Champs Elysee going towards the Arc de Triomphe’. Garcia was also there. After dinner, Rosenberg and Garcia accompanied the ladies home.They left them ‘at their door’ and proceeded past the Madeleine and along to Boulevard des Italiens.His original description of that meeting is important as it proves that Catherine had set up a household of her own in Paris and didn’t live with the Osborne family as others claim.

We don’t know much about Catherine’s life in Paris between October 1842 and April 1844 when she left for Milan.Garcia didn’t allow his pupils to sing in public but we now know that she did so on at least two occasions. Bishop Knox must have continued to support them as usual and was probably a regular visitor to their home. We know that he favoured life on the Continent and in France in particular and that he left Ireland in 1842 never to return to his See. He had a very high income from his Bishopric and his lands and could well afford to live where he choose.

In 1844, Lola Montez arrived and stayed at 24 Rue de la Victoire quite close to where Miss Hayes lived. At that time, Lola was Liszt’s mistress and he’d sent her on ahead to await him in Paris.She said she was there to improve her dancing and actually appeared at the famous Paris Opera dancing in “Le Bal de Don Juan” .Her numbers were entitled ‘Lolita’ and ‘Los Boleros de Cadiz’. She was onlyallowed to give a couple of performances because there were protests from some who said she was below the standard they expected at the Opera.

Life in Paris was anything but dull for the artistic set. Lola got her share of publicity by her usual outrageous behaviour but Kate kept a low profile. Her mother’s presence will have helped her to remain discreet. In 1844, Garcia and Kate appear to annoy each other more than usual and she decides to complete her studies in Milan. She was a difficult pupil at times. Witness the incident at Bowes’ house when she insisted on singing an Irish ballad much to Garcia’s disgust.  No doubt there were other occasions when she kicked over the traces apart from the concerts mentioned above.

Note: Catherine Hayes made a fortune only to lose most of it on her death bed to criminals who forged her will.