The headline "Miss MAE WEST Now Admits Marriage" was a news story Mae fought and held at bay for two years. Hold my hand and let's go back in time.
• • On Friday, 9 July 1937 • •
• • It took two years from the time a Milwaukee civil servant discovered Mae West's marriage license and then for Frank Wallace to hold court with the news media, offering to tell all about his naughty nuptial night in April 1911 with a fellow vaudevillian — — whereupon Mae issued a jet-stream of cloudy denials such as "I was too young to get married in 1911" and "Never heard of the guy."
• • When the movie queen admitted (after her former spouse sued her in court and asked for a portion of her income) that, yep, she had walked down the aisle in Milwaukee, every newspaper from here to kingdom come printed an article about the secret marriage and Mae's unromantic status as a "kissless bride." The screen siren revised her statements from "Never heard of Frank Wallace" to "No, I never lived with him as man and wife." Here's one of those newspaper features.
• • "Miss Mae West Now Admits Marriage. NEVER lived with Husband" • •
• • Los Angeles (USA) July 8 — Miss Mae West, the screen actress, who for many years has denied that she has ever been married, has now admitted that Mr. Frank Wallace, a vaudeville artist, became her husband 26 years ago.
• • Her statement is the outcome of a lawsuit brought by Mr. Wallace to compel her to admit the relationship, and to divide their joint property, which, he alleges, exceeds 100,000 dollars (£Aust 25,000). Miss West denied that she had ever lived with him, and alleged that he subsequently "remarried" without obtaining a divorce from her.
• • Source: Article transmitted by The Sydney Morning Herald (on page 12) Friday, 9 July 1937.
• • On Thursday, 9 July 2009 • •
• • A Mae West impressionist was hired to pay a visit to the Women Republicans of Central Kentucky during their High 5 anniversary celebration on Thursday, 9 July 2009.
• • In Her Own Words • •
• • Mae West said: "Personally, I have had to fight in one of the hardest professions in the world — — the theatre. There is no quarter asked or given."
• • Mae West said: "I was too young to get married in 1911."
• • Quote, Unquote • •
• • The headline read: "Mae West Has Other Things To Do." This amusing news item was published in Tasmania on Monday, 9 July 1951.
• • New York, Sunday — Mae West would like to accept an Australian offer, but commitments will prevent her from going. She made this clear when commenting on a report that she and Sally Rand (strip-tease artist) had been asked to state the terms on which they would fly to Australia to head a parade in the role of Lady Godiva during Jubilee celebrations at Dubbo, New South Wales.
• • Source: Article by Australian Associated Press, printed by The Mercury (on page 3); published Monday, 9 July 1951
• • By the Numbers • •
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• • Photo: • • Mae West • • in 1937 • •
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