Another royal romance mooted

The January 7 1925 edition of the Toronto Daily Star contained this photograph of Prince George, the youngest son of King George V of England, and a prospective bride-to-be:


Poppy Baring (1901-1980) was actually almost married to two princes of England:

  • Albert, the Duke of York and the future King George VI, proposed marriage to her in 1921. She accepted, but his mother shot down the marriage. (The course of the British monarchy, and British history, would have been drastically changed had the marriage gone through!)
  • Prince George proposed in 1927, but this time it was King George V who rejected the marriage. This didn’t stop the two from having an affair.

She became known as one of the Bright Young Things of the 1920s, and later opened a dress shop and married a Eton cricketer.

Prince George eventually married Princess Marina of Greece and Denmark in 1934, but kept busy with a number of affairs (including with Kiki Gwynne, mentioned earlier in this blog). He was killed in a military air crash in 1942.

Prince Henry, mentioned in the text of this article, did marry Lady Mary Scott, though this didn’t happen until 1935. She lived to be 102, passing away in 2004.


The final stage of radio

Here’s an item from the photo page of the January 7 1925 edition of the Toronto Daily Star:


Lucrezia Bori (1887-1960) was a lyric soprano, but was also a great fundraiser: in 1932, at the peak of the Great Depression, she organized a committee to raise money to save the Metropolitan Opera. She retired from singing at the Met in 1936.

YouTube has a number of links of her singing, including this one of Ms. Bori and Joseph Bentonelli singing La Bohème in 1937. (Trivia note: the symphony orchestra in this performance was conducted by Otto Klemperer, the father of Werner Klemperer of Hogan’s Heroes fame.)


Pictures from U-boats

The January 7 1925 edition of the Toronto Daily Star contained articles about an upcoming silent film commemorating the Zeebrugge raid of 1918.



It’s worth recalling that 1918 was as recent to the readers of this paper as 2013 is to us today!

Searches on YouTube for this film are a bit inconclusive, but I think you can see it in three parts: Part 1, Part 2, and Part 3.

The Zeebrugge raid didn’t work, by the way: the blockade ships were put in the wrong place, and the Germans were able to get their submarines through at high tide. Oh well.


Teeth $10.00

Here’s a dentist ad from the January 7 1925 edition of the Toronto Daily Star:


Those teeth look kind of gross, actually.

Dr. Boyle appears in Toronto city directories up to 1927. I don’t know what happened to him after that. One clue is that the 1925 directory lists his home address as well as his work address, but the 1927 directory does not – this suggests that he moved out of town. The 1928 directory doesn’t provide a listing for his widow, which supports this hypothesis, I think.


Leaves $150,000,000

A brief article in the October 24 1925 edition of the Toronto Daily Star mentioned that a teenage girl was about to become very wealthy.


James Buchanan Duke (1856-1925) and his father gave enough money to a small college in North Carolina that it was renamed after them. It is now Duke University.

Doris Duke (1912-1993) became known as “the richest girl in the world” after receiving her father’s bequest. Looking at her biography, it looks like she did the sort of things that people with a lot of money do: philanthropy, buying real estate, various hobbies and interests.


The new Mrs. Sitwell

The October 24 1925 edition of the Toronto Daily Star had this photograph related to a marriage between a Montreal woman and a member of a famous British literary family.


Oddly enough, neither the bride nor the groom appear to be in this photo.

After yesterday’s long, drawn-out divorce drama, it’s a relief to discover that Sacheverell Sitwell and his new bride remained married until her death in 1980.


Divorce 1925 style

The October 24 1925 edition of the Toronto Daily Star had an article about a divorce proceeding that was far from amicable, to put it mildly:


I was curious what happened, so I did a search for Hilda Betty Cooke in the Toronto Daily Star newspaper archives. The divorce turned out to be a long and bitter process – there were Daily Star articles going back at least to late 1924, and on into 1926. I found five others, and there were probably several more. I’ll just list the headline and sometimes a brief summary;

In chronological order:

  • September 24 1924: Wife sues James Cooke for $50 a week alimony
  • January 14 1925: Argument continued in the Cooke case: there apparently were allegations against Mrs. Cooke that were not proven
  • January 21 1925: Court hears a rumor Mrs. Cooke is in U.S.: she had allegedly moved to Buffalo with her mother and five-year-old daughter
  • January 27 1925: Father given custody of the Cooke child: she had allegedly been guilty of “marital misconduct” with three men
  • March 25 1926: Find both Cooke parents fit and proper persons: a judge in Salt Lake City, Utah, ruled that the child’s happiness would be endangered if she were to be returned to her father, a comparative stranger. The Cookes had recently been divorced in Reno, and had originally married on December 28, 1918.

That was the last article I could find that mentioned the divorce, but I also found a June 9 1926 article in the Daily Star in which it was alleged that members of the Cooke family had done some monkey business related to mortgages:

Cooke Jun 9 1926

This was the latest reference I could find to Mrs. Cooke, at least as late as 1929.

I also searched for Mr. Cooke in the Toronto city directories: there is a James H. Cooke listed as a barrister in the 1925 and 1926 directories, but not after that.


Real telephone city

The October 24 1925 edition of the Toronto Daily Star provides evidence to suggest that editors that were looking for column filler didn’t necessarily proofread it carefully.


It’s quite impressive that San Francisco (to use the more conventional spelling) led the world in telephones per capita, given that 1925 was less than two decades after the earthquake of 1906.


Is barred from revisiting the U.S.

The October 24 1925 edition of the Toronto Daily Star included a photograph of a Hungarian countess who had been barred from the United States.


Countess Károlyi (1892-1985) was born Katinka Andrássy. (Actually, her birth name was
Katalin Andrássy de Csíkszentkirály és Krasznahorkai, but that’s rather a lot to say or write.) She married Mihály Károlyi in 1914.

The Count was prime minister and president in Hungary just before it became a Communist republic in 1919. Wisely, he got out of town immediately after that. He passed away in 1955.

By the way, the Count’s full name was Mihály Ádám György Miklós Károlyi de Nagykároly. That’s a fairly long handle too.


Myles Thomas

The August 22 1925 edition of the Toronto Daily Star contained a photo of a pitcher for the Toronto Maple Leafs baseball team who was in some demand:


When I looked Myles Thomas up in Baseball Reference, I discovered that he had a 28-8 record for the Maple Leafs, who were considered a class AA club at that time. No wonder he was in demand!

However, he didn’t wind up with the Chicago Cubs – in 1926, he landed with the New York Yankees. He pitched for the Yankees and Washington Senators from 1926 to 1930, with middling success. He did appear in 108 major league games in total, which is a lot more than many players.

After his major league career ended, Thomas pitched in the minor leagues until 1935. He passed away in 1963.