Shorts at Wimbledon

Here’s a picture from the March 23 1932 edition of the Toronto Daily Star, featuring a woman wearing shorts at Wimbledon.


A Google search for Miss G. E. Tomblin didn’t turn up much. There’s a stock photo of her at the Chiswick Hard Court Club in London, in which she is obviously wearing the same shorts. And Tennis Forum has a short biography of her (search for her name to find it).

Apparently, she tried to qualify for Wimbledon every year from 1925 to 1937; she made it into the main draw in 1929, only to be blown away 6-0, 6-0 by Helen Wills, the eventual winner.

Countess Alexandria

Here is one more photo from the March 23 1932 edition of the Toronto Daily Star:


Prince Erik of Denmark gave up his (distant) right to the throne of Denmark when he married Lois Frances Booth on February 11 1924. The couple separated in 1934 and divorced in 1937, and the former Princess Erik married her secretary, Thorkild Jueslberg. She passed away in 1941.

A detailed article on the marriage of Prince and Princess Erik can be found here.

Countess Alexandra Dagmar Frances Marie Margrethe of Rosenborg, pictured here, married Ivar Emil Vind-Röj, Master of the Royal Hunt, in 1951. She passed away in 1992.

A new record

Here’s a photograph from the March 23 1932 edition of the Toronto Daily Star of a woman who had just set a record in the 50-yard low hurdles:


Evelyne Hall (1909-1993) won a silver medal in the 80-metre hurdles at the 1932 Olympic Games. She failed to qualify for the 1936 Games. She later became a coach and a physical education instructor.

Betty Robinson (1911-1999) was recovering from a 1931 plane crash at the time of this photo. Before the crash, she won the gold medal in the 100-metre dash at the 1928 Amsterdam Olympics. After the crash, she needed two years to learn to walk normally again. By 1936, she still could not crouch in the starting blocks for a sprinting race, but was able to participate in the 4×100 metre relay in the Berlin Olympics. The United States won that race when the German team dropped their baton.

Mary Terwilliger does not have a Wikipedia page, but she is listed in the Northern Illinois University Hall of Fame (along with her brother, a decathlete). She was successful in a number of running events in the 1930s, but did not qualify for either the 1932 Games or the 1936 Games.

Lone rider of the dawn

The photo section of the March 23 1932 edition of the Toronto Daily Star yielded a number of interesting photographs. Here’s the first one, of jockey Earl Sande:


Earl Sande (1898-1968) had been America’s leading jockey in 1921, 1923, and 1927. His comeback in 1932 did not last long, as he retired later that year. However, he continued his racing career as a trainer, and excelled at that too, becoming America’s leading trainer in 1938. He later owned his own racing stable.

Four panther women

Here’s one last photo from the March 20 1933 edition of the Toronto Daily Star, featuring four young actresses:


The reference to “panther women” is from a talent contest that Paramount Pictures held to cast the role of Lota, The Panther Woman, in the 1932 movie Island of Lost Souls. (This photo is undoubtedly a few months old.) According to this article, approximately 60,000 women entered the contest.

The winner of the contest was Kathleen Burke (1913-1980) (second from right in the photo above). She went on to appear in about 20 more films in the 1930s before ending her film career in 1938.

Verna Hillie (1914-1997) was entered in the Panther Woman contest against her wishes, as her mother had submitted her application. She didn’t win, but Paramount gave her a movie contract anyway. She was given rough treatment by the studios: first, Paramount dropped her after she contracted Bell’s palsy. After recovering, Universal dropped her when she refused Carl Laemmle Jr.’s advances. She retired from acting in the 1940s to raise her family.

Lona Andre (1915-1992) also received a contract from Paramount for her strong finish in the contest. She worked steadily in movies between 1933 and 1943, appearing in more than 50 pictures. In 1935, she eloped with actor Edward Norris; the marriage lasted four days. In 1938, she set a record for a woman golfer, playing 156 hours of golf in 11 hours and 56 minutes. After her acting career, she became a successful real estate broker.

Gail Patrick (1911-1980) was also offered a standard Paramount contract (though she negotiated better terms for herself). She appeared in more than 60 films between 1932 and 1948. After her acting career, she became a television producer, serving as the executive producer of the Perry Mason television series between 1957 and 1966.

Wikipedia has another photo of Hillie, Andre, and Patrick.

Track attraction

Here’s another photograph from the photo page of the March 20 1933 edition of the Toronto Star:


It’s noticeable that Ms. Hirsch was described as “pretty”. No one particularly cared whether the male thoroughbred trainers were handsome.

A search turned up this article on Mary Hirsch. Apparently, her 1933 application was “tabled”, but she persisted, and she was licensed to train in Illinois and Michigan in 1934. By 1936, she was licensed to train almost everywhere, and she trained an entry in the 1937 Kentucky Derby, becoming the first woman to do so. Her training career ended in 1940 when she married racing official Charles McLennan.

Canadian treasure seekers return

Here’s a picture from the photo page of the March 20 1933 edition of the Toronto Daily Star, featuring an expedition that hoped to find gold but didn’t.


In this photo, the men look a little bit unhappy. And you can’t really blame them, given that they spent a year looking for treasure and not finding it.

The City of Vancouver archives has a brief biography of John Edwards Leckie (1872-1950). He served in the Boer War and World War I, and was involved in the mining business. I found a photograph of him as a younger man here.

An Internet search yielded several articles on the treasure on Cocos Island, including some possibly bogus reports that treasure has been found. The Guardian has a brief history of the island and its pirates.

Enjoy holiday

Here’s a photograph from the March 20 1933 edition of the Toronto Daily Star of a Toronto couple on holiday:


Notice that Mr. Bertram is still dressed in a three-piece suit and tie on holiday. This was presumably the convention back then.

I tried to trace the Bertrams in the Toronto city directories. He was easy to find in the 1933 directory – he had a listing in bold face. He appeared in every directory up to 1937, but was not in the 1938 directory. There is no listing for his widow in 1938, so either she predeceased him or the Bertrams moved elsewhere.

I’m kind of hoping that he moved, and that he and his wife got to enjoy more Bermuda holidays.


The March 17 1920 edition of the Toronto Daily Star contained this notice:


Out of curiosity, I tried to trace S. Cohen. His road was a winding one:

  • In the 1920 Toronto city directory, Samuel Cohen was listed as a cleaner with a work address of 1088 Yonge and a home address of 107 Robert.
  • In 1921, he was listed as Samuel Cohn at the same addresses.
  • In 1922, he was listed as Samuel Cohn, with just a home address of 107 Robert and no listed occupation.
  • In 1923, he was listed as a cleaner and presser at 19 Macpherson Avenue, with a home address of 107 Robert.
  • In 1924, he was listed as living at 19 Macpherson Avenue with no occupation.
  • In 1925, he was now listed as the owner of Northern Clothing Exchange at 19 Macpherson Avenue.

He wasn’t at 19 Macpherson in 1926, and there was no Samuel Cohen working as a cleaner or presser elsewhere in the city that year. His name is a common one – there were at least two Samuel Cohens working as cleaners and pressers in the 1928 directory – so I was unable to trace him after that.