Friday, September 28, 2012

Mae West: Arizona's Ashurst

Wearing a darling hat, MAE WEST posed with Senator Henry Ashurst. They probably met when the movie queen was in Phoenix promoting her hit "I'm No Angel" in 1933 or 1934. Since the campaign for The White House is in its final weeks, let's look at a theatrical elected official who was born during September.
• • Henry Fountain Ashurst [13 September 1874 — 31 May 1962] • •
• • Henry F. Ashurst was born on Sunday, 13 September 1874 in a covered wagon near Winnemucca, Humboldt County, Nevada.  In 1876, his father, a rancher, moved his wife and ten children to Arizona, where the family settled.
• • Able-bodied and mostly self-educated, Ashurst served as a district attorney and member of the Arizona Territorial legislature before fulfilling his childhood ambition of joining the U. S. Senate.  When Arizona achieved statehood in 1912, the Democratic politician was elected by the Arizona legislature as one of the state's two senators, taking office on 27 March 1912 alongside Marcus A. Smith. He was  re-elected in 1916 (by popular vote), and again in 1922, 1928, and 1934, serving for almost 29 years until 1940.   During his time in the Senate, Ashurst was chairman of the Committee on Indian Affairs and the Judiciary Committee.
• • Time Magazine poked fun at Ashurst's political career, calling it "the longest U.S. theatrical engagement on record."  Certain inclinations and habits combined to make him easy to mock such as his self-contradictory voting record, the use of a sesquipedalian vocabulary, and his unending affection for public speaking, which occasionally defeated his purpose but which also earned him a reputation as one of the Senate's greatest orators.
• • Ashurst married once; his wife pre-deceased him.  He suffered a stroke and died two weeks after in Washington, D.C. on 31 May 1962.  He was 87.
• • Eddy Grove [30 July 1917 — 28 September 1995] • •
• • Born in Queens, NY on 30 July 1917, Eddy Grove was 27 years old when he appeared as a soldier in Mae West's Broadway extravaganza "Catherine Was Great."  He had previously appeared in summer stock.
• • From 1951 — 1958, Eddy Grove appeared in about a dozen network TV shows such as "Playhouse 90" and "Dragnet." Afterwards, he devoted himself to teaching the dramatic arts at Julliard, the Yale Drama School, and elsewhere. After he retired, he wrote and starred in a solo show "Yiddish Tales."
• • Eddy Grove died of cancer in Washington, D.C. on Thursday, 28 September 1995.  He was 78.
• • On Sunday, 28 September 1930 • •
• • Mae West decided to take her play "Sex" on the road during August 1930.  The N.Y. Times reported that "Sex" was booked in the Midwest.  The engagement at the Garrick Theatre in Chicago began on Sunday, 28 September 1930.
• • On Wednesday, 28 September 1932 • •
• • This statement was taken from the court case of People v. Voiler: The first indictment charged appellant and two co-defendants, Harry Voiler (a.k.a. Edward Friedman) and Cohen, with robbing one Mae West on Wednesday, September 28, 1932, taking from her money and jewelry [2 Cal. App. 2d 727] valued at $15,400. 
• • The case went to trial and Mae West testified.
• • On Saturday, 28 September 1974 • •
• • The colorful Mae West room in DalĂ­ Theatre and Museum opened on Saturday, 28 September 1974.
• • In Her Own Words • •
• • Mae West said: "I was more concerned when he (Edward Friedman) threatened he'd break my nose — — and maybe I might lose my screen contract, too — — than with the $3,400 in cash and the $12,000 in jewelry he took when that crook held me up (on Wednesday, 28 September 1932)."
• • Quote, Unquote • •
• • A reviewer in Time covered a play by Mae West.
• • "The Constant Sinner" • •
• • Time's critic wrote:  Three seasons ago Mae West's lusty singing of "Frankie and Johnnie" and the nostalgic flavor of bar and brothel scenes made "Diamond Lil" a Broadway hit.  In "The Constant Sinner," which Mae West wrote from her own novel, the bars and brothels are Harlem, 1931, and Mae West does not sing. But "The Constant Sinner" is no tame play, nor is it a dull play.  ...
• • Source: Review: "The Theatre: New Plays in Manhattan" for Time Magazine; published on Monday, 28 September 1931 
By the Numbers • •
• • The Mae West Blog was started eight years ago in July 2004. You are reading the 2441st blog post. Unlike many blogs, which draw upon reprinted content from a newspaper or a magazine and/ or summaries, links, or photos, the mainstay of this blog is its fresh material focused on the life and career of Mae West, herself an American original.
• • Come up and see Mae every day online:

Source: to Google

• • Photo:
• • Mae West • 1933 or 1934
• •
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