After Saturday wedding

Here’s a photo from the October 29 1934 edition of the Toronto Daily Star of a young couple that had just gotten married.

The 1935 Toronto city directory lists Goodwin R. Harris as a partner of the stock brokerage firm of Seagram, Harris, and Bricker. The young couple were living at 498 St. Clair Avenue East. By 1940, he was listed at 220 Strathallan Boulevard in North York, which is where he spent the rest of his life. By 1945, Harris had established his own firm, Goodwin Harris & Company.

Sadly, it appears as though the Harrises did not get to enjoy many years of happily wedded bliss. The 1951 directory lists Goodwin R. Harris at 220 Strathallan Wood, but the 1952 directory does not list him, and the 1953 directory lists his widow, Mary M., at that address. The first directory in which I found a listing for him was 1925, so it’s not as if he married late in life.

George Ian MacLean, Harris’s father-in-law, has a Wikipedia entry. He was the gold commissioner of the Yukon from 1928 to 1932. He passed away in 1939.

How he won fight

Here’s an ad from the October 29 1934 edition of the Toronto Daily Star that describes a sworn oath by a military veteran.

I wonder if anybody ever bothered to ask for Mr. Booth’s sworn statement?

I looked up Isaac P. Booth in the 1934 Toronto city directory and discovered that he did indeed exist: he worked as a painter and decorator and lived at 70 Wayland Avenue. He was listed as the principal resident at this address. There was also a John A. Booth at this address; he was probably Isaac’s son, for reasons which will become apparent later.

Looking forward: the 1939 directory lists Isaac P. Booth as a painter at 796 Gerrard East and the 1942 directory lists him as a painter at 816 Gerrard East. John A. Booth is not listed; possibly, he went off to fight in the war.

In the 1943 directory, Isaac is listed as a decorator and living at 373 Mortimer. John A. is back in the directory – he is now the secretary-treasurer at Arthur W. Flint Company Limited and is listed as the owner at 373 Mortimer. This suggests that Isaac had moved in with John.

After this, things don’t look good, sadly. The 1944 directory lists Isaac at 373 Mortimer with no occupation, and the 1945 directory does not list him. John A. is still at 373 Mortimer – he is a cost accountant for Canadian Line Materials – so I fear that the effects of the war may finally have caught up to poor Isaac.

A baby princess

Here’s a photograph from the October 29 1934 edition of the Toronto Daily Star of a newborn Italian princess.

It’s probably just as well that the newborn princess was too young to register that her entire country was praying for her to have been male.

Maria Pia Elena Elisabetta Margherita Milena Mafalda Ludovica Tecla Gennara di Savoia, to provide her full given name, moved with her mother and her siblings to Switzerland in 1946 after the Italian monarchy was abolished and her parents separated. She married Prince Alexander of Yugoslavia in 1955; they had four children together and were divorced in 1967. Her second marriage was to Prince Michel of Bourbon-Parma in 2003; he passed away in 2018. Princess Maria Pia is still alive – she turned 88 in September.

By the way, all of Italy’s prayers were in vain: Crown Prince Umberto and Crown Princess Marie Jose never produced a son. Their three children were all daughters.

Another romance broken

Here’s a photo from the October 21 1932 edition of the Toronto Daily Star of an actress about to become divorced.

Kathryn Carver (1899-1947) had experienced a tragedy at about the time of this photograph: her sister had passed away, which led to what Wikipedia refers to as a “nervous breakdown”. If this New York Times headline is to be believed, her divorce from Menjou was not as amicable as all that.

Ms. Carver retired from movies in 1934 and wed her next husband, broker Paul Vincent Hall, in 1936. I could find no reference to what caused her to pass away at such a comparatively young age.

Adolphe Menjou (1890-1963) was an American actor, the son of a French father and an Irish mother. Ms. Carver was his second wife; shortly after divorcing her, he married actress Verree Teasdale, and this marriage lasted.

Menjou was a Republican and a fervent anti-Communist; he testified before the House Committee on Un-American Activities that Hollywood was “one of the main centers of Communist activity in America”. This earned him the enmity of other actors, including Katharine Hepburn; when the two appeared together in State Of The Union (1948), she only spoke to him when acting.

Ain’t no lady

Here’s another photograph from the photo page of the October 21 1932 edition of the Toronto Daily Star, this time of a man who was dressing up as a woman for a theatrical production.

A search revealed that Jack Frankish became a war correspondent during the Second World War and, sadly, passed away during the Battle Of The Bulge, dying two days before Christmas Day, 1944. He is buried at the Henri-Chapelle American Cemetery and Memorial, near Liege, Belgium.

After the ball was over

Here’s a photograph from the photo page of the October 21 1932 edition of the Toronto Daily Star of a young woman who had just been proclaimed queen of the campus of the University of Oklahoma.

A search turned up an obituary for Mary Jayne Ramsey, nee O’Sullivan; Ms. Ramsey was born in about 1912, so the date matches with this photograph. She was married in 1935; by the time she passed away in 2005, she had three children, nine grandchildren, and 14 great-grandchildren.

This kitty bites

Here’s a photograph from the October 21 1932 edition of the Toronto Daily Star of a singer with her exotic pet.

Lily Pons (1898-1976) went on to a distinguished career as an opera singer and actress. She appeared at the Metropolitan Opera as a principal soprano until 1960. She made three musical films for RKO Pictures between 1935 and 1937, and she appeared frequently on radio and television. She became a citizen of the United States in 1940; a town in Maryland named itself Lilypons in her honour.

The pet jaguar shown in this picture turned out to be an ocelot; named Ita, it was very attached to Ms. Pons but was deemed a hazard to visitors. It was eventually donated to the New York Zoological Gardens.

YouTube has a number of videos of Lily Pons, including footage from 1936 and 1947. She was the celebrity guest on a What’s My Line? episode in 1955.

Grand jury finds true bills

These photos of two men accused of murder appeared on the front page of the October 21 1932 edition of the Toronto Daily Star:

This gave me an opportunity to re-access a very useful, if somewhat ghoulish, resource: a list of everyone who was ever sentenced to death in Canada. Sure enough, if you go down all the way to page 304 of 319 in the document, you find Ewart G. Warren. He was convicted of shooting and killing William George Moore on October 5 1932 in the course of a robbery.

Warren, who was listed as married, was tried speedily – the trial lasted from November 7 to 10 of that year. He was found guilty and, despite a recommendation for mercy from the jury, was hanged on February 3 1933.

The entry also lists Harold Hicks – he was also charged, but was found guilty of manslaughter.

The 1932 Toronto city directory lists Ewart G. Warren – he was listed as a watchman at the Roadway Section of the Department of Works. Needless to say, he was not listed in the 1933 directory.

Police champion high jumper

Here’s a short article from the October 15 1938 edition of the Toronto Daily Star describing the exploits of a Toronto policeman who climbed onto a roof to capture a suspect.

I looked up Police Constable Ernest Goble in the Toronto city directories. Sure enough, he appears in the 1938 directory as working at Police Station 7. He then went off to fight in the war – the 1944 directory lists him as being on active service.

After the war, P.C. Goble returned to his old job. By 1949, he had been promoted to detective. The last directory that he appears in is 1952; the 1953 directory does not list him. There is no entry for a widow in the 1953 directory, so my hope is that he was promoted to an even better job outside of Toronto.

As for the man he captured: the 1938 city directory lists Bruce A. Thornley as working as a salesman at Canada Chewing Gum Sales and living at 58 St. Anne’s Road. The 1939 directory lists him as a shopper at Philco Products; I have no idea whether he changed jobs voluntarily or whether the chewing gum company fired him because of his notoriety. He is listed with no occupation in the 1940 directory and does not appear after that.

Coincidentally, the two men lived on the same street, though not at the same time. Thornley lived at 4 Pearson Avenue in 1940, and Goble moved to 210 Pearson Avenue sometime during the war.