Friday, January 19, 2018

Mae West: It's Homosexology

MAE WEST left her imprint on Stamford, Connecticut in 1927. This juicy scandal was the subject of a “looking back” article in the Hartford Courant on Sunday, 23 February 2014, which offers new details. This is Part 2 of three segments.
• • Mae West's Imprint on Stamford, Connecticut • • 
• • “Homosexology" • •   
• • Frank Rizzo wrote:  But when Mrs. Hartley learned that the work "concerned itself and none too subtly with “homosexology" and cross-dressing, she "closed the door of her theater to the production."
• • But a hearing was sought by the producers of the play in Bridgeport and the show was allowed to go on — with detectives from New York, where the show would eventually head, in the audience. But the detectives didn't see the show as written because of expurgations demanded by the local police chief.
• • Frank Rizzo wrote:  But adding to the tabloid nature of the event was some off-stage drama, which the Courant reported with a combination of propriety and pulp fiction.
• • "Members of the company had a merry party [at a hotel] after the first performance." Among the participants were Miss Beverly West, sister of the author —- and a married woman —- and Edwin [sic] Elsner, who directed the play.
• • Beverly West cavorting with Edward Elsner • •  . . .
• • To be concluded on Monday.
• • Source: Article by Frank Rizzo, The Hartford Courant, published Sunday, 23 February 2014.
• • On Monday, 19 January 1981 in The N.Y. Times • •
• • Readers of The N.Y. Times opened their newspaper on Monday, 19 January 1981 and they read this startling headline: "Mae West Left Million, Mostly to Her Sister." A reporter based in California filed the story for Reuters, which was date-lined from Los Angeles.
• • Overheard in Hollywood • •
• • “Too much of a good thing can be wonderful,” Mae West famously remarked. And that's certainly true of wining and dining in Palm Beach.
• • In Her Own Words • •
• • Mae West said: “I made my way in a man's world.”
• • Quote, Unquote • •
• • A biography of Mae West mentioned January 19.
• • It was Saturday, 19 January 1889, in Greenpoint, Brooklyn, NY, Battling Jack West and Tillie Delker took their wedding vows before a local minister with Jack's sister Julia West acting as maid of honor.
• • California biographer Emily Wortis Leider wrote: If they knew about it, Matilda's family almost certainly would have attempted to thwart her impetuous marriage at age eighteen to John "Battlin' Jack" West, a cigar-chomping, street-smart tough. The marriage certificate of Tillie Delker and John West, dated January 19, 1889, in the city of Brooklyn — — a separate city then, not yet a part of metropolitan New York — — lists the groom's age as twenty-two, his birthplace as New York City, and his occupation: "mechanic."
• • Source: excerpt from “Becoming Mae West” by Emily Wortis Leider; published by Farrar Straus and Giroux in 1997
• • The Mae West Blog celebrates its 13th anniversary • •  
• • Thank you for reading, sending questions, and posting comments during these past thirteen years. Not long ago, we entertained 3,497 visitors. And we reached a milestone recently when we completed 3,800 blog posts. Wow!  
• • By the Numbers • •
• • The Mae West Blog was started thirteen years ago in July 2004. You are reading the 3879th 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:


• • Photo:
• • Mae West and sister wearing fur coats • • in 1935

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