"Rapture Pink." There's no messing around with a name like that. If you used all the available "Rapture Pink" products - lipstick, rouge, foundation, face powder - would it be overkill? How pink would you be?

Jane Wyman_Westmore Cosmpetic_tatteredandlost

Jane Wyman is the star of this ad and she's hawking the film A Kiss in the Dark which came out in...can you guess? 1949. Of course it did. Once again the ad is from the April 1949 Photoplay.
Jane Wyman (January 5, 1917 – September 10, 2007) was an American singer, dancer, and character actress of film and television. She began her film career in the 1930s, and was a prolific performer for two decades. She received an Academy Award for Best Actress for her performance in Johnny Belinda (1948), and later achieved success during the 1980s for her leading role in the television series Falcon Crest.

Wyman was the first wife of Ronald Reagan, marrying him in 1940 and divorcing him in 1948, long before he ran for any public office. To date, she is the only woman to have been an ex-wife of a U.S. president, and Ronald Reagan is the only divorced person to hold the office of President. (SOURCE: Wikipedia)
To read more about Wyman, including the fact that she was buried in a nun's habit, click here to go to Wikipedia. To see her IMDb link click here.

As to the movie being hawked:
A Kiss in the Dark is a 1949 comedy film directed by Delmer Daves. It stars David Niven and Jane Wyman. The plot revolves around a pianist that inherits an apartment house full of loony tenants.
Okay, I'd like to see this one. Read more about it here at IMDb.

Now here's what really interests me about this ad: Westmore Cosmetics.

If you love movies you're bound to have heard of the Westmore family. There were always certain names I looked for in the end credits: Edith Head and the name Westmore.
The Westmore Family is a prominent family in Hollywood make-up. Led by their patriarch, George Westmore, the family has had three generations serve Hollywood as make-up artists in various capacities since George's establishment of Hollywood's first make-up department in 1917.

The English wigmaker George Westmore, for whom the Makeup Artist and Hair Stylist Guild's George Westmore Lifetime Achievement Award is named, founded the first (and tiny) film makeup department, at Selig Studio in 1917. He also worked at Triangle but soon was freelancing across the major studios. He understood that cosmetic and hair needs were personal and would make up stars such as Mary Pickford (whom he relieved of having to curl her famous hair daily by making false ringlets) or The Talmadge Sisters in their homes before they left for work in the morning.

He fathered three legendary and scandalous generations of movie makeup artists, beginning with his six sons—Perc, Ern, Monte, Wally, Bud, and Frank—who soon eclipsed him in Hollywood. By 1926, Monte, Perc, Ern, and Bud had penetrated the industry to become the chief makeup artists at four major studios, and all continued to break ground in new beauty and horror illusions until the end of their careers. In 1921, after dishwashing at Famous Players-Lasky, Monte became Rudolph Valentino's sole makeup artist. (The actor had been doing his own.) When Valentino died in 1926, Monte went to Selznick International where, thirteen years later, he worked himself to death with the enormous makeup demands for Gone With the Wind (1939).

In 1923 Perc established a blazing career at First National-Warner Bros. and, over twenty-seven years, initiated beauty trends and disguises including, in 1939, the faces of Charles Laughton's grotesque Hunchback of Notre Dame (for RKO) and Bette Davis's eyebrowless, almost bald, whitefaced look in The Private Lives of Elizabeth and Essex. In the early 1920s he blended Stein Pink greasepaint with eye shadow, preceding Factor's Panchromatic. Ern, at RKO from 1929 to 1931 and then at Fox from 1935, was adept at finding the right look for stars of the 1930s. Wally headed Paramount makeup from 1926, where he created, among others, Frederic March's gruesome transformation in Dr. Jekyl and Mr. Hyde (1931). Frank followed him there. Bud led Universal's makeup department for twenty-three years, specializing in rubber prosthetics and body suits such as the one used in Creature from the Black Lagoon (1954).

Together they built the House of Westmore salon, which served stars and public alike. Later generations have continued the name, including brothers Michael and Marvin who have excelled in special effects makeup, such as in Blade Runner (1982), Mask (1985) and Raging Bull (1980). (SOURCE: Wikipedia)
And here's an interesting piece from a book called The Munsters: A Trip Down Mockingbird Lane by Stephen Cox, Yvonne DeCarlo, Butch Patrick:
The Westmores of Hollywood: The Westmores were comprised of six brothers: Monte, Perc, Bud,Wally, Em, and Frank. Their fiather,George Westmores, began as a wigmaker In Europe. OrIginally from England, the Westmore family immigrated o the United States in 1909 and settled in the Los Angeles area in 1916, where George became a makeup artist on silent films at MGM. He died in 1931, and the sons carried on the craft, dominating the profession for more than half a century.

Son Perce Westmore started young, learnng to be a wigmaker while going to school. He helped his father in the various wig shops and salons he operated. By age fourteen, Perc (pronounced "purse," short for Percival) was a skilled wigmaker and employed by the Paris Hair Company and Hepner's. Later, at Maison Cesare, Perc experimented in the fields of cosmetology and makeup. He painstakingly developed his talents and hones natural ability. In 1923, Perc conceived the first makeup department of the First National Studios, which later consolidated with Warner Bros. For the next thirty years, Perc was under personal contract to Jack warner, working with First National and serving as head of the makeup department at Warners. he became a respected name in the business, just like his brothers.

Perc Westmore entered into an agreement with the Max Factor Company in 19029 (with consent from Warner Bros.) whereby he served for six years as an advisor. Many revolutionary improvements in the cosmetic and wig fields were the result of his eyars there. The hair-lace feature of wig making was created by Perc, for instance. One of his most impressive contributions was the founding of the Hollywood Art School of Makeup.

Perc's abilities to draw, sketch, and paint, combined with his knowledge of sculpting, served him well in creating character makeup and hairstyles. Like most of the Westmores, Perc had his fans, like Bette Davis, who loved his artistry and how he made her look on film. Perc became an authority on feminine beauty techniques, and proved he could apply his knowledge to other businesses. Working in conjunction with his brothers, he founded both the House of Westmore, a beauty salon that operated from the mid-thirties to 1965, and a House of Westmore cosmetics company. At age sixty, Perc was urged out of retirement by his brother, bud, and assigned to do makeup on The Munsters, specifically Al Lewis.

"There are makeup people who didn't work if they wronged Perc, says his nephe, Mike. "Perc was a powerful guy in the business. Very creative and nice, but you didn't cross him. He was a tidy guy. I remember he used to wear these white suits and never got anything on them."

Perc, like his brother Ern, was a drinker, and it became a hindrance in his life and undoubtedly at work. Perc was eventually relieved of his duties with Warner Bros. He had worked on many films in his career, most notably A Midsummer Night's Dream (1935), The Private Lives of Elizabeth and Essex (1939), Casablanca (1943), and Mildred Pierce (1945). The Munsters kept Perc busy during a fragile period in his life, and he put in some fine artistry on the show. Perc's final work was on the 1970 Kirk Douglas film There Was a Crooked Man. He died on September 30, 1970.

"Perc and I got to know each other later in life," says Karl Silvera, who worked with or knew four of the Westmore brothers. "When Perc was fired from Warner Brothers, he lost his confidence. He kept getting lower because nobody would hire him. One of those things. He even tried to commit suicide a couple of times. Bud put him the studio and I was on good terms with Bud at the time. Bud asked if I would mind if Perc would 'work her with you' and I told him, 'Hell, no, I don't mind.' In the beginning, I was doing Grandpa's makeup as well."

"I loved Perc," Silvera says. "He was one of the finest people I ever knew, and probably one of the most talented. I wish I had known him earlier because he was, without a doubt, one of the most creative people I'd ever seen. We had great times together."

"Perc's equally talented brother all carve out niches in the industry as well. Monte, who worked in the filed for just a few years, contributed to makeup on Gone With the Wind. Monte died early on, in 1940. Ernest "Ern" Westmore, a longtime film makeup man, died in 1968. Wally Westmore served as Director of Makeup for Paramount Studio for many years. His first films, Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde (1932) and Island of Lost Souls (1933), featured some innovative makeup and film techniques. Wally built a strong reputation in Hollywood and worked on more than 300 motion pictures. He died in 1973. Brother Bud (real name: Hamilton) was affiliated with 20th Century-Fox and then Universal, eventually becoming the latter studio's makeup supervisor. Bud's impressive credits include Abbott and Costello Meet Frankenstein (1948), Creature from the Black Lagoon (1954), Jimmy Cagney's Man of a Thousand Faces (1957), and Spartacus (1960). Just days following Wally's death, Bud died too, with 1973's Soylent Green proving his final film work. Frank began in the forties, and eventually contributed to a long line of films including epics like The Ten Commandments (1956). Frank, the quiet one, who had worked in films and with the art school early on put the story of the family down on paper in his 1976 book The Westmores of Hollywood. The last surviving member of the Westmore brothers, Frank, died in 1985.

"If they had stuck together, they would be as big as any cosmetic company today," Karl Silvera surmises. "They just couldn't pull together, and they competed against each other. At times, they'd stick together; then they'd go back to fighting." Despite the rivalry and bitter betrayals between the famous brothers over the years, the Westores collectively launched a traditions of excellence that anchored the beginnings of Hollywood filmmaking.
Until I saw this ad I'd never heard of Westmore cosmetics. From what I've gathered it was an inexpensive makeup sold at places like Woolworth and Kresge. I don't know if it's still available, but the Westmore Academy still exists.

To see more ads click here and here. And here's another Jane Wyman ad, this time hawking Stage Fright from 1950.

Here's one last column from the November 26, 1945 Time magazine:
When he was in the U.S. last summer, British Cinemagnate Joseph Arthur Rank remarked: "I want to teach English women to look as well as American women." Last week he was busy on a deal to give the job to Hollywood's famed House of Westmore. Under the terms, Rank would make and distribute Westmore cosmetics in Britain. In return, the Westmores would do their best to make Britain's movie queens look just like Hollywood.

No one was better qualified to apply the glamor than the Westmore brothers, Perc (rhymes with nurse), 41, Wally, 39, Bud, 27, and Frank, 22 (now in the Coast Guard). Between them they have personally made up 90% of Hollywood's stars, trained nearly 75% of Hollywood's make-up artists.

The Westmores came by their skill honestly. Their father was a London wigmaker and hairdresser. He was also an iron disciplinarian: he once chained Perc to his wigmaker's bench. In 1909 he packed up his family and set sail for Montreal. There he got a job in a beauty shop. The pay was low, so at night he added to it by glamorizing Montreal's ladies of the evening.

Slip of the Razor. Eventually, the Westmores landed in Hollywood. There, in 1920, Perc broke into the movies by rescuing Film Star Adolph Menjou from the effects of a hasty razor stroke. Menjou had inadvertently shaved off half his mustache just before he was to appear in The Three Musketeers. Young Perc, a beauty-shop apprentice, fixed up the mishap so expertly that he and his father were hired on the spot.

By 1924 Perc, both leader and goad of the brothers, was make-up man for First National (later Warner Bros.), where he has stayed ever since. There he has quietly revolutionized makeup. First he invented the panchromatic base, a tan cream which would evenly reflect all lights, thus keep faces or lips from fading out. Then came the "hair lace wig," which added years of professional life to balding oldsters like Bing Crosby, Charles Boyer, Jack Benny and Fred Astaire, and molded rubber faces for Frankenstein's monster & Mr. Hyde. He also devised a foolproof method for other make-up men to use. He catalogued all women's faces in five basic types, i.e., Claudette Colbert has a "diamond" face, Ann Sheridan a "square" face, etc. The same technique is applied in making up all faces of the same type. For these things, Perc became the highest-paid make-up artist in the world, getting $50,000 a year from Warner Bros. (At Paramount, Wally gets $35,000.)

Slip of the Hand. But when Perc and his brothers branched out into the beauty business in 1933, in a pink-brocaded, chromium and black-glass salon on Sunset Boulevard, their, hand slipped. None had any business sense. The House of Westmore almost folded before they hired a businessman, S. Willard Isaacs, former owner of a local beauty-shop chain, to run it. He still runs the House of Westmore. Last year it grossed $2,225,000 from the sale of Westmore products, $300,000 more from the salon, paid the brothers both salaries and handsome dividends.

Through their pending deal with Rank, the Westmores hope to take a long step toward becoming the world's biggest sellers of cosmetics. But even the present size of the business leaves Perc a little dumbfounded. Said he: "This is all pretty silly. We're really just a bunch of lucky barbers."
Next time you're watching an older film, or even tv show, watch for the name Westmore. Believe me, you've seen it more times than you can count.


GAIL RUSSELL, JOHN PAYNE, and soft hands

I did a post months ago about Jergens so I'm not going to bore myself or anyone else by repeating the information. You can click here to read about Jergen's hand lotion. Gail Russell and John Payne are another matter.

In my continuing searh for stars hawking products I give you Gail Russell and John Payne for Jergen's lotion. Well, actually they're doing it for Paramount who is hoping to spread the word about their movie El Paso. So, let's get started with the stars of our ad. Again, this ad is from the April 1949 Photoplay magazine. A treasure trove I tell 'ya! A real gold mine!

Gail Russel_Jergens_tatteredandlost

Click on image to see it larger.

Our tragic and beautiful leading lady:
Gail Russell (September 21, 1924 – August 26, 1961) was an American film and television actress.

She was born Elizabeth L. Russell to George and Gladys (Barnet) Russell in Chicago, Illinois, and then moved to the Los Angeles, California area when she was a teenager. Russell's extraordinary beauty brought her to the attention of Paramount Pictures in 1942. Although she was almost clinically shy and had no acting experience, Paramount had great expectations for her and employed an acting coach to work with her.

At the age of 19 she appeared in her first film, Henry Aldrich Gets Glamour (1943). Russell appeared in several more films in the early and mid 1940s, the most notable being The Uninvited (1944) with Ray Milland, and Our Hearts Were Young and Gay (1944), in which she co-starred with Diana Lynn. Russell later appeared in the more popular films, Calcutta (1947) with Alan Ladd, and two films with John Wayne, Angel and the Badman (1947) and Wake of the Red Witch (1948).

She continued working after 1947, and married actor Guy Madison in 1949, but by 1950, it was well known that she had become a victim of alcoholism, and Paramount did not renew her contract. She started drinking on the set of The Uninvited to ease her paralyzing stage fright and lack of self-confidence. Alcohol made a shambles of her career and personal life. She was divorced by Madison in 1954, and after a five-year absence, returned to work in a co-starring role with Randolph Scott in the western Seven Men from Now (1956), produced by her friend Wayne, and had a substantial role in The Tattered Dress (1957).

On July 5, 1957, she was photographed by a Los Angeles Times photographer after she drove her convertible into the front of Jan's coffee shop at 8424 Beverly Blvd. Russell was driving under the influence.

She appeared in two more films after that, but was not able to control her addiction, and on August 26, 1961, Russell was found dead in her apartment in Brentwood, Los Angeles, California at the age of 36. She died from liver damage attributed to alcohol. She was found to have been suffering from malnutrition at the time of her death. She was buried in Valhalla Memorial Park Cemetery in North Hollywood, California. (SOURCE: Wikipedia)
You can find her IMDb listing here. Click here to read more about her troubled life and here to see very sad photos of her in the LA Times near the end of her life.

Our very handsome leading man:
John Payne (May 28, 1912 - December 6, 1989) was an American film actor who is mainly remembered as a singer in 20th Century Fox musical films, as well as his leading role in Miracle on 34th Street.

Payne was born in Roanoke, Virginia. His mother, Margie Payne, graduated from the Virginia Seminary in Roanoke and became the bride of George Washington Payne, a developer of Roanoke. They lived at Ft. Lewis, an antebellum mansion that became a state historical property. It was destroyed by fire in the late 1950s. Payne went to Roanoke College then enrolled at Columbia University in the fall of 1930. He studied drama at Columbia and voice at Juilliard School. To support himself, he took on a variety of odd jobs, including wrestling and singing in vaudeville. In 1934, he was spotted by a talent scout for the Shubert theaters and was given a job as a stock player.

Payne toured with several Shubert Brothers shows, and frequently sang on New York-based radio programs. In 1936, he was offered a contract by Samuel Goldwyn, and he left New York for Hollywood. He worked for various studios until 1940, when he signed with 20th Century Fox. Fox made him a star, in 1940s musicals like Tin Pan Alley (1940), Sun Valley Serenade (1941), and Hello, Frisco, Hello (1943). In these films, he was usually cast as somewhat of a supporting player in love with the likes of Sonja Henie, Betty Grable, and Alice Faye. A highlight during this period was co-starring with Gene Tierney and Tyrone Power in The Razor's Edge (1946).

Payne's most popular role may be in his final film for Fox, that of attorney Fred Gailey in Miracle on 34th Street (1947). It is almost certainly his most visible role, as it typically receives frequent airplay during the Christmas season.

Later in his career Payne changed his image and began playing tough-guy roles in Hollywood films noir and westerns including Kansas City Confidential (1952), 99 River Street (1953), Silver Lode (1954), Tennessee's Partner (1955) and Slightly Scarlet (1956). Payne was a contract star with Pine-Thomas Productions where he shrewdly insisted that the films he appeared in be filmed in color and that the rights to the films reverted to him after several years that made him wealthy when he rented them to television.

Payne also starred in a television western series, The Restless Gun (1957-1959). In 1955, he paid a $1,000-a-month option for nine months on the Ian Fleming James Bond novel Moonraker (he eventually gave up the option when he learned he could not retain the rights for the entire book series).

In March 1961, Payne suffered extensive, life-threatening injuries when struck by a car in New York City. His recovery took two years. In his later roles, facial scars from the accident can be detected in close-ups; he chose not to have them removed. One of Payne's first public appearances during this period was as a guest panelist on the popular CBS-TV game show What's My Line.

Payne directed one of his last films, They Ran for Their Lives (1968). His final role was in 1975 when he co-starred with Peter Falk and Janet Leigh in the Columbo episode Forgotten Lady. Later in life, Payne became wealthy through real estate investments in Southern California.

Payne was married to actress Anne Shirley from 1937 to 1943; they had a daughter, Julie Anne Payne. He then married actress Gloria DeHaven in 1944; the union produced two children, Kathleen Hope Payne and Thomas John Payne, before divorcing in 1950. Payne then married Alexandra Beryl Curtis in 1953, and remained with her until his death. He was also the father-in-law of writer-director Robert Towne.

Payne died in Malibu, California of congestive heart failure on December 6, 1989, aged 77. He has two stars on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. (SOURCE: Wikipedia)
You can see John Payne's IMDb listing here. I always thought he was an incredibly handsome man, but for some reason I remember as a kid getting John Payne and Robert Taylor mixed up. Have no idea why.

You can also see a web page devoted to him here.

As to El Paso. I imagine I've seen it, but I don't remember.
El Paso (1949) Ex-confederate officer Clay Fletcher jumps at the chance to reunite with his once lady-friend, Susan Jeffers, when his father, Judge Fletcher, sends him on an errand to El Paso, Texas to get the signature of Susan's father, Judge Jeffers, on a legal document. Once there he finds the judge has become a drunk and a laughing stock, doing the bidding of local magnate Bert Donner and his running dog, Sheriff La Farge. Just as Clay starts straightening out the town's problems, events occur which force him to abandon the legal system and instead adopt the murderous tactics of a vigilante. (Source: IMDb; Written by Doug Sederberg)
It's rather strange to go digging into the lives of these people simply because of finding an old advertisement in a magazine, but that's what fascinates me about ephemera. I never know what will link to what, what story will unfold. Gail Russell died too young and when she did I was too young to be aware of it.

Fame is ephemeral and those in search of it need to remember that.

New book available on Amazon.
Tattered and Lost: Forgotten Dolls

This one is for those who love dolls!

Snapshots from the last 100+ years of children and adults with dolls. Okay, there are a couple of dogs too.

Perfect stocking stuffer!



I guess I always thought that "Lux" in Lux Toilet Soap meant luxurious, and indeed that's what they were going for:
Lux soap was first launched in the UK in 1899 as a flaked version of Sunlight soap. Subsequently it was launched in the US in 1916, and marketed as a laundry soap targeted specifically at 'delicates'. Lever Brothers encouraged women to home launder their clothes without fear of satins and silks being turned yellow by harsh lyes that were often used in soaps at the time. The flake-type soap allowed the manufacturer some leeway from lye because it did not need to be shaped into traditional cake-shaped loaves as other soaps were. The result was a gentler soap that dissolved more readily and was advertised as suitable for home laundry use. Lux is currently a product of Unilever. The name "Lux" was chosen as the Latin word for "light" and because it was suggestive of "luxury."

Lux toilet soap was introduced as a bathroom soap in the US in 1925, and in the UK in 1928 as a brand extension of Lux soap flakes. Subsequently Lux soap has been marketed in several forms, including handwash, shower gel and cream bath soap. (SOURCE: Wikipedia)
This ad, from the April 1949 Photoplay, features Evelyn Keys and Glenn Ford. I actually don't remember Evelyn Keyes. I recognize the name, but not the face. Her major claim to fame was playing Scarlett O'Hara's sister in Gone With the Wind. Okay, right there is where I run into a problem because I watched GWTW once and only once. Let's just say I didn't like it...at all. I know for many people it is THE movie, but for me it was like having all my teeth pulled on one day.

Evelyn Keys_Lux_tatteredandlost
Click on image to see it larger.
Evelyn Louise Keyes (November 20, 1916 – July 4, 2008) was an American film actress. She is best-known for her role as Suellen O'Hara in the 1939 film Gone with the Wind.

Evelyn Keyes was born on November 20, 1916, in Port Arthur, Texas to Omar Dow Keyes and Maude Ollive Keyes, the daughter of a Methodist minister. After Omar Keyes died when she was three years old, she moved with her mother to Atlanta, Georgia where they lived with her grandparents. As a teenager, Keyes took dancing lessons and performed for local clubs such as the Daughters of the Confederacy.

A chorus girl by age 18, Keyes was put under contract by Cecil B. DeMille. After a handful of B movies at Paramount Pictures, she landed her most notable role, that of Scarlett O'Hara's sister Suellen in Gone with the Wind (1939).

Columbia Pictures signed her to a contract. In 1941 she played an ingenue role in Here Comes Mr. Jordan, but the studio evidently thought her too young to play romantic roles in major films, so she spent most of the 1940s playing leads in many of Columbia's B dramas and mysteries. She developed her dramatic skill sufficiently to be given the feminine lead opposite Larry Parks in Columbia's blockbuster hit The Jolson Story (1946). Her later performances were fewer, but noteworthy, like her 1949 role as Kathy Flannigan in Mrs. Mike. Keyes' last important film role was a small part as Tom Ewell's vacationing wife in The Seven Year Itch (1955), which starred Marilyn Monroe. Keyes officially retired in 1956, but continued to act.

She was married to Barton Bainbridge from 1938 until his death from suicide in 1940. Later she married and divorced director Charles Vidor (1943–1945), actor/director John Huston (23 July 1946–February 1950), and bandleader Artie Shaw (1957–1985).[8] Keyes said of her many relationships, "I was always interested in the man of the moment, and there were many such moments." While married to Huston, the couple adopted a Mexican child, Pablo, whom Huston had discovered while on the set of The Treasure of the Sierra Madre.

Her autobiography, Scarlett O'Hara's Younger Sister: My Lively Life In and Out of Hollywood, was published in 1977. Keyes expressed her opinion that Mrs. Mike was her best film. She also wrote of the personal cost she paid by having an abortion just before Gone with the Wind was to begin filming. The experience left her unable to have children. Among the many Hollywood affairs she recounted were those to producer Michael Todd (who left Evelyn for Elizabeth Taylor), Anthony Quinn, David Niven and Kirk Douglas.

She died of uterine cancer on July 4, 2008 at the Peppers Estate Care Home in Montecito, California, near Santa Barbara. She had also suffered from Alzheimer's disease. (SOURCE: Wikipedia)
Click here to see her listing at IMDb.

Lux used a lot of stars to advertise their soap, and yes, many were hawking a movie:
Okay, I'll stop. I'm sure there are a lot more.

Glenn Ford was an actor I always liked. He was in a lot of movies I enjoyed, especially the original 3:10 to Yuma and Blackboard Jungle.
Glenn Ford (May 1, 1916 – August 30, 2006) was a Canadian-born American actor from Hollywood's Golden Era with a career that spanned seven decades. Despite his versatility, Ford was best known for playing ordinary men in unusual circumstances.

Born as Gwyllyn Samuel Newton Ford at Jeffrey Hale Hospital in Quebec City, Ford was the son of Anglo-Quebecers Hannah Wood Mitchell and Newton Ford, a railway conductor. Through his father, Glenn Ford was a great-nephew of Canada's first Prime Minister Sir John A. Macdonald. Ford moved to Santa Monica, California with his family at the age of eight, and became a naturalized citizen of the United States in 1939.

After Ford graduated from Santa Monica High School, he began working in small theatre groups. Ford later commented that his railroad executive father had no objection to his growing interest in acting, but told him, "It's all right for you to try to act, if you learn something else first. Be able to take a car apart and put it together. Be able to build a house, every bit of it. Then you'll always have something." Ford heeded the advice and during the 1950s, when he was one of Hollywood's most popular actors, he regularly worked on plumbing, wiring and air conditioning at home. At times, he worked as a roofer and installer of plate-glass windows.

He acted in West Coast stage companies, before joining Columbia Pictures in 1939. His stage name came from his father's hometown of Glenford, Canada. His first major movie part was in the 1939 film, Heaven with a Barbed Wire Fence.

In 1942, Ford's film career was interrupted when he volunteered for duty in World War II with the United States Marine Corps Reserve on December 13, 1942, as a photographic specialist at the rank of Sergeant. He was assigned in March 1943 to active duty at the Marine Corps Base in San Diego. He was sent to Marine Corps Schools Detachment (Photographic Section) in Quantico, Virginia three months later, with orders as a motion-picture production technician. Sergeant Ford returned to the San Diego base in February 1944 and was assigned next to the radio section of the Public Relations Office, Headquarters Company, Base Headquarters Battalion. There he staged and broadcast the radio program Halls of Montezuma. Ford was honorably discharged from the Marines on December 7, 1944.

In 1958, he joined the U.S. Naval Reserve and was commissioned as a lieutenant commander with a 1655 designator (public affairs officer). During his annual training tours, he promoted the Navy through radio and television broadcasts, personal appearances, and documentary films. He was promoted to commander in 1963 and captain in 1968.

Ford went to Vietnam in 1967 for a month's tour of duty as a location scout for combat scenes in a training film entitled Global Marine. He traveled with a combat camera crew from the demilitarized zone south to the Mekong Delta. For his service in Vietnam, the Navy awarded him a Navy Commendation Medal. His World War II decorations are as follows: American Campaign Medal, Asiatic-Pacific Campaign Medal, World War II Victory Medal, Rifle Marksman Badge, and the U.S. Marine Corps Reserve Medal. He retired from the Naval Reserve in the 1970s at the rank of captain.

Following military service, Ford's breakthrough role was in 1946, starring alongside Rita Hayworth in Gilda. He went on to be a leading man opposite her in a total of five films. While the movie is mostly remembered as the vehicle for Hayworth's "provocative rendition of a song called Put the Blame on Mame, The New York Times movie reviewer Bosley Crowther praised Ford's "stamina and poise in a thankless role" despite the movie's poor direction.

Ford's career flourished in the 1950s and into the 1960s and continued into the early 1990s, with an increasing number of television roles. His major roles in thrillers, dramas and action films include A Stolen Life with Bette Davis, The Secret of Convict Lake with Gene Tierney, The Big Heat, Blackboard Jungle, Framed, Interrupted Melody with Eleanor Parker, Experiment in Terror with Lee Remick, Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse, Superman and westerns such as The Fastest Gun Alive, 3:10 to Yuma and Cimarron. Ford's versatility also allowed him to star in a number of popular comedies, such as The Teahouse of the August Moon, Don't Go Near the Water, The Gazebo, Cry for Happy and The Courtship of Eddie's Father.

In 1971, Ford signed with CBS to star in his first television series, a half hour comedy/drama titled The Glenn Ford Show. However, CBS head Fred Silverman noticed that many of the featured films being shown at a Glenn Ford film festival were westerns. He suggested doing a western series instead, which resulted in the "modern day western" series, Cade's County. Ford played southwestern Sheriff Cade for one season (1971–1972) in a mix of western drama and police mystery. In The Family Holvak (1975–1976), Ford portrayed a depression era preacher in a family drama, reprising the same character he had played in the TV film, The Greatest Gift.

In 1978, Ford had a supporting role in Superman, as Clark Kent's adopted father, Jonathan Kent, a role that introduced Ford to a new generation of film audiences. Ford's final scene in the film begins with a subtle indirect reference (either sly or coincidental) to Blackboard Jungle - the earlier film's theme song "Rock Around the Clock" is heard on a car radio. In 1991, Ford agreed to star in a cable network series, African Skies. However, prior to the start of the series, he developed blood clots in his legs which required a lengthy stay in Cedars-Sinai Medical Center. Eventually he recovered, but at one time his situation was so severe that he was listed in critical condition. Ford was forced to drop out of the series and was replaced by Robert Mitchum.

The 2006 movie Superman Returns includes a scene where Ma Kent (played by Eva Marie Saint) stands next to the living room mantel after Superman returns from his quest to find remnants of Krypton. On that mantel is a picture of Pa Kent (as played by Glenn Ford). This "cameo" of sorts was Ford's last screen appearance (the photograph is more easily visible in a deleted scene included with the DVD release of the film).

Ford's first wife was actress and dancer Eleanor Powell (1943–1959), with whom he had his only child, Peter (born 1945). The couple appeared together on screen once, in a short subject produced in the 1950s entitled The Faith of Our Children; when they married, Powell was more famous than Ford. Ford subsequently married actress Kathryn Hays (1966–1969); Cynthia Hayward (1977–1984) and Jeanne Baus (1993–1994). All four marriages ended in divorce. Ford was not on good terms with his ex-wives. He also had a long-term relationship with actress Hope Lange in the early 1960s, although they never married.

In 1978, Ford underwent hypnosis at his home in Beverly Hills, and recalled a past life of being a Colorado cowboy named Charlie Bill. He gave a detailed description of a past life, which was tape-recorded for academics at the University of California to study. A second experiment was conducted at the university itself when Ford, then 61, responded well to the hypnosis. This time he did not recall the life of Charlie Bill, but that of a Scottish piano teacher named Charles Stuart. "I teach the piano to young flibbertigibbets", said Ford under the hypnosis, using a quaint old English word for rascals not in common use in California. He allegedly played a few notes on piano during the experiment, despite later telling that he never had been taught to play the instrument. The researchers then managed to locate the grave of a Charles Stuart in Elgin, Scotland, who died in 1840. After being shown a photo of the burial place, Ford said "That shook me up real bad. I felt immediately that it was the place I was buried."

Ford suffered a series of minor strokes which left him in frail health in the years leading up to his death. He died in his Beverly Hills home on August 30, 2006 at the age of 90.[8]
His interment was located in Santa Monica's Woodlawn Cemetery. (SOURCE: Wikipedia)
Click here to see his listing at IMDb.

As to the movie they're hawking, Mr. Soft Touch, it sounds like an interesting Noir film. Haven't seen it and it's not listed to be on TCM anytime soon.
Polish American Joe Miracle (Glenn Ford) returns from fighting in World War II, only to find his San Francisco nightclub under the control of the Mob, and his friend and partner Leo missing and presumed murdered. To get even, he robs $100,000 from his former business, planning to leave the country as soon as possible.

He goes to the apartment of Victor Christopher (Ray Meyer), Leo's brother, where he picks up a ticket Victor and his wife Clara (Angela Clarke) had purchased for him. However, he discovers to his dismay that they could only book him on a ship that sails for Yokohama on Christmas Eve, the next night. He has to hide until then. When the police come to stop Victor from ringing a bell and disturbing the neighbors, Joe pretends to be him in order to spend the night safely in jail. However, Jenny Jones (Evelyn Keyes), a kind-hearted social worker, gets him remanded into her custody instead.

She takes him to the Borden Street Settlement House, where the down and out are helped, among them a talkative, opinionated carpenter named Rickle (Percy Kilbride). As they get better acquainted, Jenny and Joe begin falling in love, though she turns down the advances of a married wife beater. Joe causes trouble. He turns the tables on some youths who try to cheat him at craps and also accidentally falls on an old piano, breaking it. Feeling responsible, he goes to a nearby piano store (actually a front for a gambling parlor) and, pretending to be newly assigned to the police precinct, cons the owner into donating a piano in return for Joe turning a blind eye to the illicit activities there. However, he is recognized by newspaper columnist Henry "Early" Byrd (John Ireland).

Byrd tries to find out from Jenny if Joe is staying at the settlement house, but she refuses to divulge anything. From Byrd's description, Jenny realizes that Joe is not Victor. Then, when she finds out Joe also has a pistol, she insists he leave. Byrd returns and tries to get Joe to tell him the name of the man providing protection to the crooks, but Joe refuses to talk. When he collects his money, Jenny pleads with him to give it back so they can start a life together. He counters by asking her to leave the country with him. Neither accepts the other's proposal. Meanwhile, the mobsters force Clara to tell them where Joe is hiding and start a fire to smoke him out. They recover the money, while the settlement house is left in smoldering ruins.

Joe enters the nightclub through a secret passageway and takes the money again from the new boss, Barney Teener (Roman Bohnen). Then he hires some men to dress up as Santa Claus to distribute presents to the children at a fundraiser at the settlement house. Joe slips in as another Santa and leaves the money to pay for the rebuilding. As he slips away, Jenny realizes what is going on and chases him out into the street, calling his name. Hearing this, the waiting mobsters shoot Joe in the back. The film ends at this point, leaving it unclear whether he will live or die, or what the future holds for the couple. (SOURCE: Wikipedia)
Does it strike anyone else that it's sort of funny that they're using Lux soap to hawk a film called Mr. Soft Touch? How often did that work out so perfectly? Let's see, Betty Grable was hawking The Beautiful Blond from Bashful Bend and Wabash Avenue, June Allyson for High Barbaree, and Judy Garland for Ziegfield Follies. I'm guessing Lux never found a better movie title than Mr. Soft Touch.

*Well, not me personally. I've got a cousin's wife who keeps cranking out enough soap to keep me clean for years to come.


JOAN CRAWFORD and faux pearls

I haven't made up my mind if I believe Joan Crawford would choose to wear faux pearls. Oh sure, in a movie I can imagine it, but on her own? I imagine her being a bit of a diva and turning a cold shoulder to anyone who offered her fakes. I'm trying to envision the "authentically designed Chinese-type, rose-quartz plastic case" sitting on her dresser. I mean, come on...she wouldn't use wire hangers!

Here's Joan in an ad for Deltha Simulated Pearls in the April 1949 Photoplay. Of course, what's she's really doing in the ad is hawking her latest movie, Flamingo Road.

Joan Crawford_Deltah_tatteredandlost
Click on image to see it larger. (SOURCE: April 1949 Photoplay)

To see more ads featuring "stars" wearing Deltha pearls click here.

As to Flamingo Road:
Flamingo Road (1949) More at IMDb

Carnival dancer Lane Bellamy finds herself stranded in a southern town ruled by corrupt political boss Titus Semple. Lane becomes romantically involved with sheriff Fielding Carlisle, a weakling whose career is being driven by Titus. Seeing Lane as a liability to his own political ambitions, Titus mounts a campaign to get her driven out of town. She finds she can't get a job and even gets arrested on a trumped-up morals charge. Released from jail, Lane finds work as a "hostess" at Lutie-Mae's road house, where she meets Dan Reynolds, another member of the town's political machine. They marry and move to a home on Flamingo Road, the town's social pinnacle. Their marriage is soon marked by scandal when a drunken Carlisle visits Lane at home one evening and shoots himself. (Written by Daniel Bubbeo dbubbeo@cmp.com)
Now carnival dancer Lane Bellamy, I can imagine her wearing simulated pearls and being thrilled. Lovingly looking at them, holding them up to the light to see their faux luster. Joan? "Get these damn things off of me!"

To see the trailer for the movie click here, or just enjoy a little bit of Joan's sultry singing below.

Click here to read a post I did last year featuring a photo of Joan. Okay, so really it's about Hymie Fink, but I think Hymie should be mentioned at least once a year, Joan or no Joan.


The HIDDEN MOVIE AD...it's on my lips

The next several posts are going to be hidden movie ads. Movie stars as hucksters for products in order to sell movies. It's done everyday, but back in 1949 the studios did not have the immediate inundating access they have now. These days actors are trotted out to talk shows to hawk their films. It's in their contracts. Choose not to do it? Good luck with your reputation in the industry. And actors willingly do commercials just to keep their face in the public eye and make extra cash. I'm not holding it against any of them. If I could do a commercial and get checks in the mail I'd be a happy camper. Trust me, you don't want to see me on your screen.

Meg Randall_Tangee_tatteredandlost
Click on image to see it larger. (SOURCE: April 1949 Photoplay)

For your viewing pleasure I give you Meg Randall. Who? Meg Randall:
Meg Randall (born 1 August 1926 in Clinton, Oklahoma) was a film actress. A graduate of the University of Oklahoma, Randall signed a movie contract with Universal Pictures in 1949 and, that same year, appeared in the film noir classic Criss Cross and played Babs Riley in the comedy film The Life of Riley. Randall was credited as Gene Roberts before 1949. Meg also starred as Kim Kettle in several of the "Ma and Pa Kettle" movies. She continued to act in films until the late 1950s. (SOURCE: Wikipedia)
What you see above is the entire post at Wikipedia. I didn't cut it down. Apparently Ms. Randall found other things to do with her life than act in movies. Click here to see a list of her work posted at IMDB. And click here to see an interesting movie poster for a noir film she starred in called Without Warning.

The other star is Richard Long. Long I remember from episodic television. Remember The Big Valley? Then you remember Richard Long. How about Nanny and the Professor? Oh come on, own up to it. You watched it, at least once.
Richard Long (December 17, 1927 – December 21, 1974) was an American actor better known for his leading roles in several ABC television series, including The Big Valley and Nanny and the Professor.

Long was the fifth of six children born in Chicago, Illinois, to Sherman D. Long, a commercial artist who operated his own studio, and Dale McCord Long. The family lived in several locations in Illinois before settling in Evanston, Illinois. Long attended grammar school in Evanston, Waller High School in Chicago, and then the Evanston Township High School. In 1944, the family relocated to Hollywood, California, and Long attended Hollywood High School for his senior year. Long said that as a teenager he had "no intention of becoming an actor. I took senior drama class because it was a snap course, and I needed the credit for my English requirement".

At Hollywood High School, Long caught the eye of a talent scout from Universal-International by accident. Casting director Jack Murton gave a ride to a couple of students and asked them if a school play was scheduled. The boys told Murton about the excellent male lead actor, Richard Long. In 1946, Long was hence cast in his first film, Tomorrow Is Forever as Drew, the son of Claudette Colbert. The role had been unfilled for months, and producers selected Long who most closely matched the credentials required.

Early in his career, Long appeared in several films as a juvenile lead, including four of the nine Ma and Pa Kettle pictures. He was cast as Tom Kettle, the eldest son of the characters played by Percy Kilbride and Marjorie Main. His second film was the Orson Welles's The Stranger as Noah, the brother of Loretta Young's character. He also played "Jeff Taylor" in The Life of Riley and played "Frank James" in the 1950 movie Kansas Raiders. He moved into leading man status in horror movies such as Cult of the Cobra (1954), and House on Haunted Hill (1959) before he achieved considerable success on television, including the series Bourbon Street Beat (1959–60). He also appeared on episodes of The Twilight Zone and The Alfred Hitchcock Hour.
In 1963, Long was cast in the MGM romantic musical Follow the Boys, along with costars Connie Francis, Paula Prentiss, and Roger Perry.

In 1965, at the age of thirty-eight, Long began his role as attorney Jarrod Barkley, oldest son to rancher Victoria Barkley (Barbara Stanwyck), in 112 episodes of The Big Valley, the last of the major Four Star Television series, a Western which ran on ABC from 1965–1969. The series was set in the 1870s. Long also directed several episodes of The Big Valley. In 1953, Long had costarred with Stanwyck in the film All I Desire.

In 1970–71, he and Juliet Mills starred in the ABC sitcom Nanny and the Professor. Long played widowed college professor Harold Everett, and Mills was Phoebe Figalilly, the English housekeeper and nanny for Long's three children. In 1973 he stared alongside Julie Harris in the short-lived series Thicker than Water. In 1974, Long appeared on the television game show, Match Game. He also finished a television movie called Death Cruise, which was his last work.

Long had cardiac problems throughout his adult life and had suffered a heart attack in the latter 1950s. As a boy, he had suffered pneumonia, which apparently weakened his heart. He was also a heavy smoker and drinker. He died in 1974, aged 47, after suffering multiple heart attacks at Tarzana Treatment Centers in Los Angeles. He was cremated, and his ashes were scattered at sea.[citation needed]
Personal life

Long served in the United States Army during the Korean War. He was twice married. His first wife of fourteen months, actress Suzan Ball (a cousin of Lucille Ball) died of cancer in 1955 at the age of twenty-one. In 1957, Long married actress and model Mara Corday (birth name Marilyn Watts), with whom he had three children, Carey (born 1957), Valerie (born 1958), and Gregory (born 1960).

A few years after her husband's passing in 1974, Corday's friend Clint Eastwood offered her a chance to return to filmmaking with a role in his 1977 film The Gauntlet. (SOURCE: Wikipedia)
You can click here to see Long's IMDB page.

The Life of Riley? I don't remember the movie. I DO remember the tv show starring William Bendix and watched it for years.
The Life of Riley, with William Bendix in the title role, is a popular American radio situation comedy series of the 1940s that was adapted into a 1949 feature film, a long-run 1950s television series (originally with Jackie Gleason as Reilly) and a 1958 Dell comic book.

The show began as a proposed Groucho Marx radio series, The Flotsam Family, but the sponsor balked at what would have been essentially a straight head-of-household role for the comedian. (Groucho went on to host Blue Ribbon Town from 1943 to 1944 and then You Bet Your Life from 1947 to 1961.) Then producer Irving Brecher saw Bendix as taxicab company owner Tim McGuerin in Hal Roach's The McGuerins from Brooklyn (1942). The Flotsam Family was reworked with Bendix cast as blundering Chester A. Riley, a wing riveter at the fictional Cunningham Aircraft plant in California. His frequent exclamation of indignation became one of the most famous catch phrases of the 1940s: "What a revoltin' development this is!" The radio series benefited from the immense popularity of a supporting character, Digby "Digger" O'Dell (John Brown), "the friendly undertaker." (SOURCE: Wikipedia)
And did you think Tangee was a product from the past not available today? Wrong. The Vermont Country Store has been selling it for years. Never tried it. Haven't used lipstick since high school and then it was Yardley of London and ONLY Yardley of London.

Next up...Joan Crawford.



Mother is a Freshman_tatteredandlost
(SOURCE: April 1949 Photoplay)

Don't go looking for this one to purchase. Apparently it's not available. I just checked TCM and they don't have it listed to be shown anytime soon. Doggone it! Now that I've seen this ad I'm curious.
Synopsis from TCM

In New York, Abby Abbott and her seventeen-year-old daughter Susan live on a trust fund established by Abby's late husband. The money is allocated every three years by the family attorney, John Heaslip, who advises Abby that she is currently overdrawn and that the next payment will not occur until the following year. Abby, who has rejected Heaslip's proposal of marriage, is concerned that Susan will not be able to continue her studies at Pointer College, and investigates a scholarship fund, set up there by her grandmother, which awards $3,000 annually to any female of high morals with the name of Abigail Fortitude. Like her grandmother, Abby's maiden name is Abigail Fortitude, so she decides to enroll at Pointer as the scholarship would see them through until the next trust fund payment. Abby is also anxious to check on Susan, who is enamoured of a young English professor, Richard Michaels, who has secretly been writing pulp murder mysteries under a pen name. Abby decides that she will not reveal that she is Susan's mother, but after she manages to pass the entrance exam, she has an interview with Dean Gillingham, who has noted that she and Susan share the same home address. After the dean agrees to keep her secret, Abby enrolls in takes Richard's English course. Richard shows considerable interest in the mature, sophisticated woman in his class, and later, suggests that Abby could benefit from additional tutoring and arranges to see her one evening at his house. What Abby initially fears might be a compromising situation turns out to be a pleasant evening when Dean and Mrs. Gillingham arrive as fellow dinner guests. During the evening, however, the dean slips up and calls Abby, "Mrs. Abbott." Both men are surprised when Abby remarks that one of her classmates is reading an "awfully lurid thing" called The Gravedigger and the Chambermaid , which Susan had earlier purchased. When Richard escorts Abby back to her dorm, he asks her if she is married and she explains her situation and that she is Susan's mother. He invites her to the Sophomore Cotillion and they kiss goodnight. Susan, meanwhile, thinks her mother is checking Richard out as a potential son-in-law. Later, matters become complicated when Susan tells her mother that she is really in love with Richard as, by then, Abby is too. When Richard fails to invite her to the cotillion, Susan agrees to go with student body president Beaumont Jackson and, unaware that Richard has invited Abby, asks John Heaslip to escort her. Abby does not want to hurt Susan and tries to get out of going with Richard but he insists. On their way into the dance, Beau surprises Susan by telling her that he is in love with her. At the dorm, meanwhile, Richard and John both show up to escort Abby and reveal that they know each other from student days at Yale. At the dance, John surprises Abby with the news that he has sold some of her stocks and that she is now financially stable and need not continue in college. Susan is upset about her mother being with Richard, but when Abby decides to give him up, he tries to convince Susan that she should encourage her mother in her love for him. Later, as Abby says goodbye to Richard, Susan runs up and begs her to stay at the college and with Richard. After Susan returns to Beau, Richard confesses that he is the author of The Gravedigger and the Chambermaid and Abby confesses that she has read it--twice.
Okay, this is another one I've never seen. I used to watch the Loretta Young show as a kid just to see her enter the room. That's all I remember about the show. The sweeping entrance. She was a stunningly beautiful woman. And I've always liked Van Johnson. If anyone sees this is going to be on somewhere give me a heads-up.

If they made this movie today the Young character would probably be played by Pamela Anderson in a see through blouse and Adam Sandler in the Van Johnson part. You just know they'd make the remake tacky and stupid with a lot of 14 year old boy humor.

You can read more about the movie here at IMDB.



This ad for the movie "Take Me Out to the Ball Game" is from the April 1949 Photoplay magazine. I don't think I've ever seen this movie. Well, if I did, I don't remember it. Geez, I can't believe there's a Gene Kelly movie I haven't seen.

What fascinates me about this ad is probably what fascinated everyone about this ad...ummmm...the tight sweater that was painted for the Esther Williams character. Doesn't this seem just a little extreme and tacky, yeah that's the word I want...TACKY for Esther Williams? The song shouldn't be "Take Me Out to the Ball Game" but "June is Bustin' Out All Over." That sweater looks like it's about to explode!

Take Me Out to the Ball Game_tatteredandlost
Click on image to (dare I say it?) see it larger.

Okay, so they were marketing this movie for some reason to horny men in a magazine women read. Most likely the guys were somewhat disappointed by the Busby Berkeley production if the sweater girl is what they were hoping for. I guess the logic was women would want to see the movie because of the stars and this ad was what women could use to get guys interested in going to the movie. Esther deserved a lot better than this.

I'm sorry, maybe it's just me, but there just seems to be a lot of double entendres in this ad. I actually do believe advertising is this subtly manipulative. These lines didn't show up in the copy by accident:
It's tops in musicals.
They're back together.
Okay, tell me I'm reading too much into this. It's past my bedtime. I shouldn't be thinking so much.


JANE WITHERS was never second fiddle

For many of us Jane Withers is the woman who, as a child, played Shirley Temple's nemesis. She ripped the head off of a doll with such glee that I was convinced this is who this person really was. I loved Shirley which meant I had to dislike Jane. If I'd been born earlier I'd have known that wasn't the real Jane Withers. I missed out on Jane's youthful career as a star of her own films. It wasn't until Josephine the Plumber came along that I began to find out who she was. Took me awhile to get used to seeing her as a grown woman when years before I'd first seen her as a child actor. Such is life when you grow up watching movies from the 1930s when you're actually born in the 1950s.
Jane Withers (born April 12, 1926) is an American actress best known for being one of the most popular child film stars of the 1930s and early 1940s, as well as for her portrayal of "Josephine the Plumber" in a series of TV commercials for Comet cleanser in the 1960s and early 1970s.

Withers began her career as a child actress, first on local radio broadcasts in Atlanta, Georgia as "Dixie's Dainty Dewdrop". By the age of three, she was singing and imitating adult celebrities. In the early 1930s Withers and her family moved to Hollywood; she worked as an extra and a bit part player in several films in 1932 and 1933.

Withers's big break came when she landed a supporting role in the 1934 Shirley Temple film Bright Eyes. Her character Joy Smythe was spoiled and obnoxious, a perfect foil to Temple's sweet personality. In a 2006 interview on TCM's Private Screenings with Robert Osborne, Withers recalled that she was hesitant to take this role because she had to be so "mean" to Shirley Temple and she thought the public would hate her for it (video clip). In a humorous scene of the two little girls playing with dolls, Withers tells Temple that she is going to the kitchen to get "the biggest knife I can find and operate on YOUR doll!" She also tells Temple: "There ain't any Santa Claus, because my psychoanalyst told me!" Withers received positive notices for her work, and was awarded a long-term contract with Fox.

Through the remainder of the 1930s she starred in several movies every year, including Ginger (1935), The Farmer Takes a Wife (1935) and Little Miss Nobody (1936), usually cast as a wholesome, meddlesome young girl in films less sugary than Temple's vehicles. Moviegoers flocked to see her films, and Withers became one of the top 10 box-office stars in 1937 and 1938. Her popularity was such that Fox gave her "name" co-stars: the Ritz Brothers (in Pack Up Your Troubles) and Gene Autry (in Shooting High). Withers also took a flyer in screenwriting: she wrote the original story filmed as Small Town Deb, under the pseudonym "Jerrie Walters." (SOURCE: Wikipedia)
It's because of Jane Withers that I began collecting vintage paper dolls. Seeing her doll collection in person was all I needed to get the collecting juices bubbling. I just wish I had some actual Jane Withers paper dolls. Several were printed by the Whitman Company in the 1930s and 40s. (See Mary Young's "Lowe and Whitman Paper Dolls" pg.s 40, 44, 46, and 49). You'll often find them for sale on eBay. They're on my want list. Especially the set illustrated by Avis Mack. I want an original, just like the lady herself.

Jane Withers post card_ft_tatteredandlost

Jane Withers card_bk_tatteredandlost

Jane Withers is one classy lady.


TYRONE POWER was a pilot

I've grown up hearing my dad tell me about the time he was in flight training school in Corpus Christi, Texas during World War II and he met Tyrone Power. My dad was a cadet and Power was, as dad recalls, a First Lieutenant. They were standing with a Captain and Power offered to buy my dad a Coke. Unfortunately, the room where the Cokes were was officer's only so my dad had to say no, but he's always liked that he was asked. Later that day when my dad was flying Power was flying in formation next to him.
In August 1942, Tyrone Power enlisted in the Marine Corps. He attended boot camp at Marine Corps Recruit Depot San Diego and then attended Officer's Candidate School at Marine Corps Base Quantico, where he was commissioned a Second Lieutenant on June 2, 1943. Because he had already logged 180 solo hours as a pilot prior to enlisting in the Marine Corps, Tyrone Power was able to go through a short, intense flight training program at Naval Air Station Corpus Christi, Texas, where he earned his wings and was promoted to First Lieutenant. Power arrived at Marine Corps Air Station Cherry Point, North Carolina in July, 1944 and was assigned to VMR-352 as an R5C transport copilot. The squadron moved to Marine Corps Air Station El Toro in California in October 1944. Power was reassigned to VMR-353 and joined them on Kwajalein in February 1945. He flew cargo and wounded Marines during the Battle of Iwo Jima and the Battle of Okinawa. He returned to the United States in November 1945 and he was released from active duty in January 1946. He was promoted to Captain in the reserves on May 8, 1951 but was not recalled for service in the Korean War.

In the June 2001 Marine Air Transporter newsletter, Jerry Taylor, a retired Marine Corps flight instructor, recalls memories of World War II. He speaks of training Tyrone Power as a pilot, saying, "He was an excellent student, never forgot a procedure I showed him or anything I told him." Others who served with him have commented that he was well-respected by those with whom he served. (SOURCE: Wikipedia)
Tyrone Power was a very handsome and talented man who died very young, age 44. It always makes me pause when I find out the age some of these people died. Their lives seemed so full and yet I've technically, year wise, outlived them. I guess that would be the true definition of a movie star. They shown brightly, no matter how briefly, and left behind a trail of stardust.

Tyrone Power post card_ft_tatteredandlost

Tyrone Power card_bk_tatteredandlost
Click on either image to see it larger.

I don't think we have many movie stars these days. We have actors and we have celebrities. Sometimes the actors are also celebrities. Sometimes actors end up as celebrities because they lose sight of their importance in the scheme of things. Lindsay Lohan started out as a good actress and then something went terribly wrong. I can't imagine anyone making a post card of her home. Perhaps a post card showing a map of L.A. with a dotted line showing all the clubs she went to in one night. That's a post card I can imagine. Sorry, I used to like the girl, but she'll never be a movie star. She's forever relegated to celebrity. She'll never match the luster of someone like Tyrone Power. Of course, in the days Power was working the studio system still existed so his personal identity was being defined by publicity departments. Perhaps a good thing. Lohan could do with a lot less publicity and instead a department to redefine her image because she's proven inept at doing it herself. Sad, very sad.



This house was on my morning circuit of Toluca Lake. By that time it was no longer owned by Gene Autry. Toluca Lake, unlike Beverly Hills, is more of a "real" neighborhood. Yes, the houses are very very nice and very very expensive, but, unless things have changed dramatically, they look like normal houses. There were never any ostentatious palaces. Even Bob Hope's house was pretty simple looking from the outside. Of course, I've been gone for a long time so it might have been turned into Narcissism Avenue with McMansions everywhere. Shudder the thought. There was one street that at Christmas time was magically transformed into a beautiful wonderland of lights just like other neighborhoods across the country.

Gene Autry post card_ft_tatteredandlost
Gene Autry card_bk_tatteredandlost

Hard for me to imagine that there are people who don't know anything about Gene Autry, but I imagine that most of the younger generation haven't a clue about who he was. I remember how stunned I was when I went to a video store and asked for a Danny Kaye movie and got a blank stare back from the young Goth behind the counter. I knew I'd crossed over into old age and was happy to be there.
Orvon Gene Autry (September 29, 1907 – October 2, 1998), better known as Gene Autry, was an American performer who gained fame as The Singing Cowboy on the radio, in movies and on television for more than three decades beginning in the 1930s. Autry was also owner of the Los Angeles/California Angels Major League Baseball team from 1961 to 1997, as well as a television station and several radio stations in southern California.

Although his signature song was "Back in the Saddle Again", Autry is best known today for his Christmas holiday songs, "Here Comes Santa Claus" (which he wrote), "Frosty the Snowman", and his biggest hit, "Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer".

He is a member of both the Country Music and Nashville Songwriters halls of fame, and is the only celebrity to have five stars on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. (SOURCE: Wikipedia)
I think it's time for me to pull out my old Autry CDs and dream of what seemed to be a simpler time. Of course, it wasn't, but Gene could make you feel that with a song in your heart, a well trained horse under your butt, and a funny sidekick anything in life could be overcome.


HOLLYWOOD, once upon a time

For 8 years my zip code was Hollywood. My post office was in Hollywood and was always an interesting place to visit. The last few years I lived in Los Angeles my mail carrier was kind enough to deliver my vacation hold mail instead of making me go to the post office. By that time there were far too many certifiable crazy people on the streets that I simply avoided Hollywood at all costs. Let's just say Reagan opened the doors of the institutions and when the people got out they were given a bus ticket. When asked where they wanted to go they said "Hollywood." Suddenly the lovely Armenian community was inundated with people who followed you down the street yelling.

These images of Hollywood are from another time. I don't know the date this was published, but I imagine it might have been bought by my mother when she took a trip across country in the early 40s with some girlfriends for a visit to Hollywood years before she met my dad.

Click on any image to see it larger.



This is one of those flip-down multiple image post card folders, published by the Longshaw Card Company. I have not included all the images. My favorite is the one of Warner Brothers, my old neighborhood. I lived right behind Warners and Universal Studios back lot. I used to walk by Warners every morning on my walk through Toluca Lake. My apartment complex was at the base of the mountain behind the studio and was recently in the news as the place actor Corey Haimes died. It was strange to turn on the news and see the complex on my screen. "Home!" was my first thought.

hollywood_fold-out 2_tatteredandlost

I haven't been to my old neighborhood for many years and the last time I drove through it was unrecognizable. It was all very corporate with high rises everywhere. Small apartment buildings and little office buildings were gone. At least the Smoke House restaurant is still there, just out of view on the card. It's a Hollywood institution even if it was in the "valley."

Hollywood_fold-out 1_tatteredandlost

Whatever you think of Hollywood it's still just a place where people live and work. It's a fun place to live when you're young, but not a place where I wanted to grow old.


Mother's Day BARKER CARD

For anyone who has been with this blog for at least a year you might remember me discussing the scrapbooks of a man named Ted Kramer. I bought two books at a flea market that were being sold by one of his daughters. Full of his memories from college, courting his wife, birth of his daughters, and holidays. Here is one from the early 50s from Ted to his wife, Pearl.

To Ted and Pearl and the lives they led. Why their memories so carefully saved by Ted ended up at a flea market on a foggy cold day I'll never fully understand.

Mothers Day_Barker Card_ft_tatteredandlost

Mothers Day_Barkers Card_tatteredandlost
Click on either image to see them larger.


SPIN AND MARTY were sizzling hot!

To my 5 year old eyes Spin and Marty were hot, and I didn't even know what hot meant. Okay, better term...they were dreamy. I loved Spin and Marty. And I loved Peter Pan. And I loved the Everly Brothers. I was 5. I don't have to defend myself.

Last Sunday I took a spin around the flea market. I hadn't been there since last fall. It was alive with sellers and buyers and lookers and wanderers. I covered all the areas which I haunt and found nothing the first time through. Then I went down the back aisle one more time in hopes of finding at least one little scrap. I found this. I couldn't walk away when the guy said, "One dollar." Okie dokie then. Spin and Marty is mine.

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Click on any image to see it larger.

I had no idea the show was actually based on a book published in 1942 called Monty Markham by Lawrence Edward Watkin. This edition was published in 1956 by Whitman Publishing; illustrations by Tony Sgroi.
Lawrence Edward Watkin (12/01/1901, New York, USA - 12/16/1981, San Joaquin County, California, USA) was an American author and scriptwriter. He has become known especially as a scriptwriter for a series of Walt Disney films of the 1950s.

Lawrence Edward Watkin was at first an English professor in Washington and Lee University in Lexington, Virginia. His first novel On Borrowed Time, written in 1937, was published and remains his best known work. The novel was dramatized in 1938 by Paul Osborn and was survived a successful run on Broadway. A Hollywood film version, with Lionel Barrymore and Sir Cedric Hardwicke followed in 1939. Watkins' next novel, Geese in the Forum (1940), was an allegory about university structures.

In 1947 Walt Disney hired Watkin to adapt the stories of Herminie Templeton Kavanagh featuring Darby O'Gill. The project was finally realized in 1959 as Darby O'Gill and the Little People. By that time, Watkin had written numerous other screenplays for Disney. The first of his Disney screenplays was Treasure Island (1950), adapted from the Robert Louis Stevenson novel. Three screenplays followed, which were produced by Disney in Great Britain. The popular Disney television serials Spin and Marty (1955–1957) were adapted by Jackson Gillis from Watkin's 1942 book Marty Markham. Watkin was producer of Disney's 1956 western, The Great Locomotive Chase. (SOURCE: Wikipedia)

Anthony "Tony" Sgroi (26/9/1924 - 16/7/1998, USA)
Tony Sgroi drew several adventure and western strips for Dell/Western Publishing in the 1950s. He created such Disney comics for Dell as 'Robin Hood', 'Stormy the Thoroughbred', 'Young Davy Crockett', 'Man in Space', 'Mars and Beyond' and 'Spin & Marty'. He also did 'Range Rider', 'Gene Autry', 'Johnny Mack Brown', 'Champion' and 'Tarzan'. He was an animator for Warner Bros, Walter Lantz, Bob Clampett and Hanna-Barbera. (SOURCE: LAMBIEK.NET)

Warner Bros.: Animator 1942-1944. - Walter Lantz: Animator 1947-1951. - Hanna-Barbera: Layout artist 1962-1978 (The Jetsons, Jonny Quest, Secret Squirrrel, Atom Ant, Space Ghost, The Herculoids, The Banana Splits Adventure Hour, The Harlem Globetrotters, Devlin, Jabberjaw, Scooby-Doo, Superfriends). - Ruby-Spears Productions: Layout artist 1983-1987 (Alvin and the Chipmunks). - HannA-Barbera: Character designer 1986 (Wildfire) and 1989-1990 (Hagar the Horrible, A Pup Named Scooby-Doo, Tom and Jerry Kids). Model designer on Jonny Quest 1996-1997.

Fawcett Comics: Artwork for Lash LaRue and Monte Hale 1950s. - Western Publishing: Artwork for Range Rider, Panhandle Pete, Rex Allen a.o. 1952-1958.
To see Tony Sgori's IMDB list click here.
Spin and Marty was a popular series of television shorts that aired as part of ABC's Mickey Mouse Club show of the mid-1950s produced by Walt Disney. There were three serials in all, set at the Triple R Ranch, a boys' western-style summer camp. The first series of 25 eleven-minute episodes, The Adventures of Spin and Marty, was filmed in 1955. Its popularity led to two sequels – The Further Adventures of Spin and Marty in 1956 and The New Adventures of Spin and Marty in 1957.

The serials were based on the 1942 novel Marty Markham by Lawrence Edward Watkin. The producer for Disney was Bill Walsh and the screenplay was written by Jackson Gillis. The shows' success led to the Spin and Marty comic books of the late 1950s. The first season's 25 episodes with bonus material were released on DVD by Disney in 2005.

Premise and major characters
The series starred David Stollery as the rich, orphaned Martin "Marty" Markham and Tim Considine as the poorer Spin Evans, the most athletic and popular boy at the Triple R Ranch. When the pampered Marty first arrives at the ranch in a chauffeur-driven limousine, his contemptuous dismissal of the dude ranch as a "dirty old farm" and evident fear of horses result in his ostracism by the other boys, led by Spin. By the end of the first series, however, Marty overcomes his fears and wins acceptance, becoming close friends with his erstwhile foe, Spin. Supporting roles include Sammy Ogg as their jokester sidekick Joe Simpson, and B.G. Norman as Ambitious, Marty's first friend at the Triple R. The second serial adds Annette Funicello and Kevin Corcoran to the cast as Annette and Moochie, respectively. The third serial adds Darlene Gillespie, and quickly turns into a showcase for song and dance sketches as part of a "Let's put on a show!" storyline reminiscent of Mickey Rooney–Judy Garland movies. All three serials also co-star Roy Barcroft as Triple R owner Col. Logan, Harry Carey, Jr. as popular counselor Bill Burnett, and J. Pat O'Malley as Perkins, Marty's butler and the Triple R's assistant cook. In the first two serials, Leonard Geer played Ollie, the wisecracking (and wise) stablehand in charge of the horses.

The series featured a couple of songs, Triple R Ranch song ("Yippee Yay, Yippee Yi, Yipee Yo"), as well as a song about Slue-Foot Sue ("Buckaroo"), named for Pecos Bill's tragic love story. Among the musical pieces featured in the third series was a cover of the Disney song Nowhere in Particular by Perkins and Sam the cook. (SOURCE: Wikipedia)
To hear the shows theme song click here.

And if it wasn't for Spin and Marty I might have never known what a snipe hunt was. Thanks guys...not that anyone ever asked me to go on a snipe hunt...but I was prepared if'n they did.

And there's a part of me that still longs to live at the Triple R. I think it's all the white fences. I love white fences around pastures.

Ever wonder what became of the actors who portrayed Spin and Marty?