Mystery and Crime Poetry posted January 1, 2017

This work has reached the exceptional level
The two men who lived as ladies that rocked London Society

The Ballad of Fanny and Stella

by Meia (MESAYERS)

In Victorian London, vice thrived, sodomy was punished by the death penalty and children were traded as sexual toys. There the strange tale of Fanny Park and Stella Boulton begins. The author has placed a warning on this post for sexual content.
You've seen on Television
That startling transition,
On the show 'Little Britain'
Just maybe?

About two Cross-dressed Bella's
Who insist "I'm a lady!"
But clearly, and really,  
Are cross-dressing fellas!

They look quite a state,
But made me contemplate
Where such bawdy actions would lead.

If you're still in need of something to read
Here's the story of Fanny and Stella.
Come one, come all, lets have a ball
Take my hand, as your grand storyteller!

Now Fanny and Stella were famous 'He-She's'-
They looked like the belles of the city
But stripped down to nude
(And this is quite rude)
What hung down was not quite so pretty.

They called themselves "Sister"
And weren't short of a Mister
To escort them to the Opera, or Balls.
But their lascivious favours
And lewd behaviours
Got them locked up behind prison walls.

They waltzed around London
And oft had the gumption
To treat men as if they were spouses.
They put bread on the table
As I said, in this fable
By making merry in hotels and houses.

They were on the old game
But soon achieved fame,
And admirers lined up to adore.
Most men didn't care, what was in their underwear-
They just entered in through the backdoor!

It was said it was Stella,
Who looked least like a fella;
Not blessed with her charms was Miss Park.
But still anyway, she found men to lay,
For it all looks the same in the dark!

They faked womanly shapes, with corsets and tapes
And padding and makeup, and powders and blush.
This caused such confusion, for it gave the illusion
That the pair were both ladies, radiant and lush.

When the case came to trial
Because they'd been caught
In the act of their impersonations,
The country went wild,
For these 'loose and defiled'
'He-She' dramatic sensations!

This most talked about case
Was put into place
Their real names released-Boulton and Park.
Subjected to painful tests, targets of wicked jests
And the witnesses- men they had played for a lark.

The sheepish punters complained,
Their high reputations now stained,
About fumbling carried on in the dark.

They claimed they'd been duped,
And had never once looked
At the appendage of Boulton or Park!

In the end both 'He-She's'
Were finally set free,
And carried on dressed as females.
Sadly they'd grown apart
And, so, made a fresh start.

In countries that just did not care,
At faux females, no glare
Whatever they wanted or chose to wear
The people did not stop or stare.

Whether dressed up in frocks,
A wig with long locks
Or top hats, starched shirts and coat tails.
To be effete was in, and to be sure not a sin
That would land you in vile stinking jails!

For Fanny and Stella,
Might well have been fellas-
But were delicate women, most truly
And I think they did make
No disgusting mistake
That required them to face judge and jury.

To be born in a form, that leaves you forlorn
Must have been even worse in those days.
Your world would be turned, your fingers got burned
And you could be caught double quick!
Transsexuals of that time
Were crossing a line,
They were seen then as perverse and sick.

Victorian Britain,
A curious blend
Of repressed and obsessed sexuality.
The real and pretend.
The rent and the mend
So many obsessed with 'morality'.

For Queen Vic loved a shag
The bitter old Hag,
But shrouded herself with banality.
Yet jailed 'commoners', for 'voracious carnality'.
Was strict on morality, banned most sex, in totality,
What happened to this pair was a dreadful calamity.

So we'll raise a glass to Fanny and Stella
For having the courage to do as they chose.
They were brave in their stance
And when they fancied a dance
They rubbed it right in the old Bills nose!



Thomas Ernest Boulton and Frederick William Park were two Victorian cross-dressers and homosexuals who appeared as defendants in a celebrated trial in London in 1871, charged "with conspiring and inciting persons to commit an unnatural offence". After the prosecution failed to establish that they had anal sex, which was then a crime, or that wearing women's clothing was in any sense a crime, both men were acquitted.But not after horrendous and painful medical tests and embarrassment and derision in a men's prison."Two naked young men lie on neighbouring couches, their heads bowed in embarrassment. Standing nervously around them, heavily perspiring and trying to ignore the overwhelming stench of sweat, sewage and misery (for the youngsters have been without access to washing facilities or toilet roll for over two weeks), are six doctors, four warders, two orderlies and three detectives, as well as the men's solicitor and a man from the Treasury representing the public interest. One by one, the doctors come forward to examine the two men, pulling and probing their genitals, parting their buttocks and peering at their anuses through powerful lenses. Each takes his turn to insert a finger,metal speculums, and there is some discussion about a scar on one prisoners anus: a varicose vein, or a relic of syphilis?" The two are utterly destroyed and mortified after weeks in a filthy men's prison. They have lived as, and look almost exactly like women, after all, with their tiny corset trained waists,flared hips and rounded bottoms, and delicate hands and feet.

(Thomas) Ernest Boulton (1847-1904) was born on 18 December 1847 in Tottenham,England, He died of a brain tumour on 30 September 1904. From childhood he liked wearing female clothing, and was encouraged in his impersonations of maids and other women by his mother; he used the nickname "Stella". Ernest, just 20, was the more naturally beautiful of the pair, and very attractive in his feminine guise. The son of a shipping broker, Ernest had a wonderful soprano voice and was determined to be a singer until his father pushed him into a career as a banker.

Frederick William Park (1846-1881) was born on 21 November 1846 and christened on 5 January 1847 in Wimbledon, Surrey, the son of barrister. His headstone in Mount Hope Cemetery, Rochester NY, USA, cites a death date of 29 March 1881.
As they became friends, Boulton and Park formed a theatrical double act,(and probably a sexual relationship although they treated each other as 'sisters') touring as Stella Clinton (or Mrs Graham) and Fanny Winifred Park, and receiving favourable press reviews for their performances.

For around two years they also frequented the West End of London in both women's and men's dress, attending theatres and social events. They were ejected from both the Alhambra Theatre and the Burlington Arcade on several occasions. On one occasion they were bound over to keep the peace after being mistaken for women dressed as men which was also unlawful at the time.

Their rigorous corset training, small hands feet and feminine features (particularly Stella's who looked far more like a woman than a man)meant that even naked their bodies, nipped in at the waist and flaring at the hip,dainty and fine boned and hairless, was indistinguishable from a woman, except for the obvious give away! This is a world of butterfly glamour, perched unsteadily atop a real one of permanent drunkenness, grubby stockings and painful anal sores.

Stella's most famous lover was Lord Arthur Pelham-Clinton, son of the Duke of Newcastle and godson of Prime Minister William Gladstone who had lived with "Stella" as husband and wife for years and had exchanged love letters with Stella.

The fact of the matter is most of these 'customers' were Etonians,and in my findings, that place breeds homosexual interest at an age where the sexuality is still developing. It is far less common in middle and lower classes, or was in those days, to marry and keep a 'boy on the side', called the 'Greek method', it actually 'normalised' what Oscar Wilde did-it seems Victorian Britain was rife with it-did you know that at one stage women having orgasms during sex was thought to cause the Clap-It definitely wouldn't have been as widely spread if that was the case!

Women in fact, were told to "Lie back and think of England" until they had produced the necessary amount of sons and heirs and then largely, by today's standards, then often became 'beards' for their husbands selfish desires. As we know Queen Victoria was mad about sex, she bloody loved it,but hated anyone else having it!Funny old bird.

The arrest of the flamboyantly dressed Miss Fanny Park and Miss Stella Boulton precipitated a sensational show trial that shocked and titillated Victorian London in equal measure.

For more info read

Pays one point and 2 member cents.

Save to Bookcase Promote This Share or Bookmark
Print It View Reviews

You need to login or register to write reviews. It's quick! We only ask four questions to new members.

© Copyright 2018. Meia (MESAYERS) All rights reserved.
Meia (MESAYERS) has granted, its affiliates and its syndicates non-exclusive rights to display this work.