The decorous Panton Street of to-day was
another very sink of iniquity. Night houses abounded, and Rose Burton's and Jack
Percival's were sandwiched between hot baths of questionable respectability and
abominations of every kind. Stone's Coffee House was the only redeeming feature,
and, as it existed in those days, was a very spring of water in a dry
But it must not be assumed that, although Percival's was a "night house" it was to be classed with its next door neighbours. Here the sporting fraternity radiated after all important events; here Heenan lodged after his fight with Tom King; and one can see him - as if it were yesterday - receiving his friends and backers on the following Sunday with his handsome features incrusted in plaster of Paris and smiling as if he had been awarded the victory he was undoubtedly choused out of.
'One of the Old Brigade' (Donald Shaw), London in the Sixties, 1908