Radio commission artists enjoy holiday

Here’s one last photo from the August 18 1933 edition of the Toronto Daily Star, which has been a useful source of material:

I searched for the names of the radio artists listed here:

  • Wishart Campbell (1905-1983) has an entry in the Canadian Encyclopedia. He was known as The Golden Voice of the Air, and was active until 1960, when he retired to the Hebrides. He released a number of singles in the 1950s and recorded an album, A Campbell Comes Home, in 1960.
  • The only thing I could find on Beatrice Morson was that she appeared in a Broadway show in 1928.
  • I could find nothing at all on Billie Bell.

So this is Hollywood!

Here’s yet another photograph from the August 18 1933 edition of the Toronto Daily Star, this time of an Australian theatre impresario.

Ben Fuller (1875-1952) was born in London, and first appeared on the stage at the age of nine. His father moved to Australia in 1889, eventually bringing his family with him, and started building a chain of theatres, which his two sons took over in 1910.

Fuller appears not to have been mixed up in any noteworthy scandals during his lifetime. He was knighted by King George V in 1921, so he had been a Sir for twelve years by the time this photograph appeared.


European souvenir hunters

Here is a photograph from the August 18 1933 edition of the Toronto Daily Star of an actor who had lost 22 scarves to people seeking souvenirs:

Ramon Novarro (1899-1968) was born in Mexico, but moved to Los Angeles with his family in 1913 to escape a revolution. He became a huge box-office draw in the 1920s and 1930s, as he took over from Rudolph Valentino as a movie sex symbol.

Mr. Novarro never married Myrna Loy or anyone else. For a while, he was in a relationship with Herbert Howe, who was his publicist. The end of his life was a horrible tragedy: two brothers offered him their sexual services, allegedly tortured him for hours to get him to reveal where he kept his non-existent money, and left him to choke to death on his own blood.


Here comes the bride

Here’s a photo from the August 18 1933 edition of the Toronto Daily Star of a British runner who had just married a British walker.

Searches revealed that Miss V. Horwood appears to have been Virna Horwood, but I could find out little about them.

I turned up two photos of the happy couple (here and here) out exercising together in 1932; these photos appear to have been taken at the same photo shoot, as their clothing is identical in both. But I couldn’t find anything else. It didn’t help that I could not determine what J. E. Tosh’s first name was; perhaps he went through life without one.


Would divorce driver

Here’s a photo from the August 18 1933 edition of the Toronto Daily Star of a woman who was about to initiate a divorce from a race car driver.

Louis Schneider (1901-1942) did indeed win the Indianapolis 500 in 1931. He was born in Indianapolis, and is one of only two home-town drivers to have won it. His last Indy 500 race was in 1933. He passed away from tuberculosis.

Searches for Barbara Schneider and Bee Jone turned up nothing, other than a 1935 press photograph of the divorce that was on a site that my browser flagged as unsafe.


Manchu goes modern

Here’s a photograph from the June 1 1933 edition of the Toronto Daily Star of a Chinese ruler who apparently preferred to wear a business suit.

Wikipedia refers to this gentleman as Puyi (1906-1967). The photo caption above doesn’t mention that Puyi was installed as a puppet ruler (and eventually emperor) of Manuchukuo by the Japanese, serving in this role from 1932 to 1945. He had already been emperor of China between 1908 and when he was forced to abdicate in 1912, so he was not unfamiliar with the role.

While a puppet emperor, he apparently did everything that the Japanese told him to do, including making slavery legal. He also had his servants beaten and took a number of lovers while his wife was busy battling her opium addiction. So it’s safe to say that he was not a particularly decent person.

He was tried as a war criminal after the Japanese were defeated, but was spared execution because Mao Zedong decided that a live former emperor turned commoner was more useful than a dead emperor. He served ten years in prison, and apparently his time behind bars changed him, turning him into a kinder person. He married again in 1962, and passed away five years later.


Makes yacht trip

Here’s a photograph from the June 1 1933 edition of the Toronto Daily Star of a young man who was going to sail around the coasts of France and Spain:

Woodburn S. Thomson served on a number of Canadian Navy ships during the Second World War, rising to the rank of Lieutenant. He eventually moved to the town of Ayr in the county of Waterloo, passing away there in 1989.

I found an obituary for his wife, who passed away in 2005. She is buried next to him in Ayr.


Some swimmer!

Here’s a photograph from the June 1 1933 edition of the Toronto Daily Star of a Canadian swimming competitor.

I couldn’t find a biography of Margaret Hutton anywhere, but I did find a few things:

  • At the 1934 Commonwealth Games, Ms. Hutton won gold medals as part of the 4×110 freestyle and 3×110 medley relay teams.
  • In 1936, she was quoted as saying that bathing trunks are here to stay.
  • A photograph of her from 1949 is in the City of Edmonton archives. The caption states that she is a champion swimmer from California; perhaps she had moved there by the time of the photo.
  • She was elected to the Ontario Aquatic Hall of Fame in 1999.

Will live in Sweden

The front page of the June 1 1933 edition of the Toronto Daily Star contained this photograph of the wife of the United States ambassador to Sweden.

Lawrence Steinhardt (1892-1950) served as the United States ambassador for a number of countries, starting in 1933. His tours of duty:

  • Sweden, 1933-1937
  • Peru, 1937-1939
  • the Soviet Union, 1939-1941
  • Turkey, 1942-1945
  • Czechoslovakia, 1945-1948
  • Canada, 1949-1950

While serving as the ambassador to Turkey, Steinhardt helped numerous Jewish refugees and downed American pilots make their way to safety. He passed away on March 28 1950 when his plane crashed in Ramseyville, Ontario, becoming the first American ambassador to perish on the job.

Mrs. Steinhardt, pictured here, was born Dulcie Yates Hofmann. She passed away in 1974.


Action plus!

I don’t think I will ever grow tired of pictures from the photo page of 1930s newspapers. Here’s another photo from the April 20 1933 edition of the Toronto Daily Star, this time of two tennis players in mid-game.

Bryan Grant (1909-1986) and Lester Stoefen (1911-1970) were quite likely the men’s tennis doubles partnership with the greatest height difference in history.

Grant, who was 5’4″, was nicknamed “Itsy Bitsy the Giant Killer” or just “Bitsy” for short. His specialty was retrieving balls hit by much larger opponents and wearing them out. He was ranked in the United States Top Ten a total of nine times between 1930 and 1941, and played seniors competitive tennis well into the 1970s. He was inducted into the International Tennis Hall of Fame in 1972.

Stoefen wasn’t just six-foot – he was 6’6″. He won three Grand Slam doubles titles with George Lott in 1933 and 1934. He turned pro in 1934, and started a series of head-to-head matches against fellow professional Ellsworth Vines in 1935, winning one and losing 25. He passed away from cirrhosis of the liver in 1970.