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SEPTEMBER 
CHILD 

THE STORY OF 

yean Dalrymple 
BY HERSELF 

lU.rsrRATKD WITH PHOTOGRAPHS 

FK\V CARKKRS in the theater and re- 
la ted arts have been as varied, excit- 
ing and successful as that of Jean Dal- 
nmph\ in the roles of actress, pub- 
licist, director and producer. From a 
unique apprenticeship in a Wall 
Stieet brokerage office, she played the 
Keith circuit during the twilight days 
of vaudeville, "The great John Golden 
introduced her to the mysteries of 
Broadway producing. This "little girl 
from Morristown," as Ward More- 
hnusc always called her, toured the 
world with pianist Jos6 Iturbi, tem- 
peramental Grace* Moore and other 
great artists. The New York City Cen- 
ter draws upon her talents to direct 
their Light Opera and Drama Com- 
panies." She was Coordinator of the 
U.S. Performing Arts Program at the 
Brussels World's ttiir in 1958 (and 
decorated for h-" v >ik with the Or- 

(Continitrd c . hht'k flap) 



3 1148004603452 



li lid 




kansas city |||| public library 

--*" kansas city, missouri 

Books will be issued only 

on presentation of library card. 
Please report lost cards and 

change of residence promptly. 
Card holders are responsible for 

all books, records, films, pictures 
or other library materials . 
checked out on their cards. 



NOV*7 1979 



SEPTEMBER CHILD 

THE STORY OF 

Jean Dalrymple 



EPTEMBER 
CHILD 




THE STORY OF 




by herself 



The September Child is bora under Virgo, the sign of service, 
and often finds a rewarding life of service in the Arts. 



CARROLL RIGHTER 

Astrologist 



ILLUSTRATED WITH PHOTOGRAPHS 



NEW YORK <TW<ra DODD, MEAD & COMPANY 



Copyright 1963 by Jean Dalrymple 
All rights reserved 

No part of this book may be reproduced in any form 
without permission in writing from the publisher 

Library of Congress Catalog Card Number: 63-13557 



Printed in the United States of America 
by The Cornwall Press, Cornwall, N.Y. 



To my fellow workers in the vineyards of the arts, 
many of whom I am indebted to and love, 
and have not even mentioned here 



illustrations 



Following page 144 



Lovely Elizabeth and baby J.D. 

Father 

Father and Madeleine Ross Dalrymple 

The first year 

J.D. at sixteen 

Dominick days 

John Golden days 

Just a Pal 

Dan Jarrett and John Golden 

Ward Morehouse 

First American Theater Wing party 

Pilot Iturbi 

Amparo Iturbi 

Grace Moore 

Arriving in Venezuela 

City Center Board of Directors, 1943 



( Vlil ) ILLUSTRATIONS 

Fiorello LaGuardia 

A Dorothy Kilgallen party 

Gwen Verdon and Robert Dowling 

Franchot Tone and Jose Iturbi 

Jed Harris 

Active Broadway producers, 1946-1947 

General Ginder 

Doctor of Fine Arts 

Korean Palace dogs 

Outdoor cooking at Pinafore Farm 

Mayor Robert F. Wagner 

Receiving the Belgian Order of the Crown 

Newbold Morris and Jos Ferrer 

General Ginder's retirement party, Governor's Island 

Last photo of Father 

Sister Madge Graves 

Ogden R. Dalrymple 

Actor's Equity Golden Anniversary Show 



FOREWORD 



May I Speak to Miss Jean Dalrymple?* 



by 
MILDRED HARRIS 



This is not likely to be an impartial, objective or unbiased 
appraisal o Jean Dalrymple, of New York and Connecticut. It 
can't be. For from the moment I met this completely feminine, 
attractive dynamo, I've watched her help countless numbers of 
people; watched her patch up their lives, marriages, theatrical 
productions, contracts, health, morale, like the round-the-clock- 
one- woman-society- to-aid-the-theater-and-the-human-race she 
really is. 

She is probably one of the major reasons for the soundness 
of AT&T stock, for wherever she is, in her beautiful apartment 
in the East 505, her office in the West 50$ or in her charming 
country house in Danbury, there are two or three phones ring- 
ing constantly. From all over America, all parts of Mexico and 
South America, from England, France, Italy and Spain, from 

* By permission of Promenade Magazine. 



( X ) FOREWORD 

cities as far away as Tokyo, there is a perennial reaching out to 
her by telephone, and in all languages and accents there is that 
constant refrain, "May I speak to Miss Jean Dalrymple?" She 
chatters with them as easily in Spanish and French as in English, 
so when the happy greetings are over the conversation settles 
down to the business of the moment and you should see what 
shenanigans are instantly set in motion! 

A misplaced actor is tracked down, a reservation is made on 
a filled-up plane, capital is raised for a theatrical venture, a 
summer camp is found for somebody's child, a doctor is sent to 
someone ailing, somebody who needs it desperately is cheered 
up, encouraged, invited to come to the country to mend, theater 
tickets for a hit materialize for someone who's just stepped off 
a plane, a strong chairman is dug up for a floundering commit- 
tee, a publisher who wants to meet a certain writer, or vice 
versa, has it worked out for him. It is endless, unbelievable, 
fascinating. 

Miss Dalrymple is a Broadway theatrical producer and direc- 
tor of the City Center's Light Opera and Drama Companies. 
She's the irresistible magnet that lures stars like Helen Hayes, 
Jose Ferrer, Orson Welles, Franchot Tone and Tallulah Bank- 
head into giving brilliant performances at the Center, forsaking 
four-figure salaries for Equity's minimum (|i 15 a week). At this 
very moment, she is polishing up plans for an exciting season 
at the City Center and every theater lover in the metropolitan 
area is eager to learn what she is dreaming up this time. 

Jean shows the characteristics of a very superior person a 
high degree of coordination and concentration. She's a pro at 
everything at golf, gardening, driving, typing, poker (all card 
games), cooking, dancing you name it, she does it superbly. 
She always cooks Thanksgiving, Christmas, birthday and all 
company dinners. Her cooking is exquisite, original. I often 
wish she'd run a restaurant in her spare time. 



FOREWORD (xi) 

Her day in N.Y. begins with a tea-and-toast breakfast in bed, 
a look-see at the newspapers and then she turns to her mail, 
dictating into her machine all morning letters, memos, re- 
leases, scenes for plays, reports, etc. At the same time the 
phones keep ringing and oodles of people are saying, "May I 
speak to Miss Jean Dalrymple?" She chats with them in her 
bubbling soprano voice and gaily solves their problems; at noon 
she dresses for lunch, in a tailored suit designed by Jo Copeland. 
Lunch is usually a conference with a playwright, director or 
producer; plays are constructed or reconstructed, cast or recast, 
and exciting plans are created which often become realities 
because of her energy, insight and unwavering devotion. 

Then she's off to her desk at City Center, where she works, 
dictates, answers the phone every other minute, confers, solves 
everybody's problems, builds her theatrical season. 

Back home she bathes, and dresses for dinner in a Balenciaga. 
This may be another conference and the evening is a play, 
opera, ballet or concert, after which she takes all the morning 
papers home with her, whether she has supped late with friends 
or not, and no matter what the hour, the telephone is ringing 
madly. Did I say telephone? I mean telephones. She has three 
lines. 

"May I speak to Miss Dalrymple?" and she's solving problems 
again, undressing, reading the papers, poring over new manu- 
scripts and books all at once and, I might add, happy as a clam 
and utterly peaceful while she's doing all this. Or maybe she 
catches a midnight plane for some distant city where she will 
lecture the next morning on the theater fresh, vastly informa- 
tive, entertaining. 

In the country, she begins the day with tea-and-toast, reads 
the newspapers, answers the telephone, solves more problems, 
works on scripts. When she puts that work aside she gardens 
under a tremendous sun-bonnet (she's too fair to sun-tan at all), 
then plays golf or practises on her own beautifully kept lawns. 



( Xil ) FOREWORD 

The house guests are writers, actors, directors, producers, con- 
cert artistswonderful guests, for they know how to keep them- 
selves amused and busy all day and when they settle down with 
her for cocktails and dinner, they make Alice's mad tea party 
seem reasonably normal. 

The phone never stops. Hollywood is calling, Dallas, Boston. 
Spain is calling, so are France and Germany. "May I speak to 
Miss Jean Dalrymple?" "Here I am, darling . , . what can I do 
for you?" 

Jean's been a pro all her life. I'm convinced she was born one. 
Back in Morristown, New Jersey, where she grew up, she began 
to write and sell stories when she was still in primary school. 
Her first job in New York was on Wall Street where, though 
still in her teens, she showed an extraordinary grasp of finance. 

However, when the theater beckoned, via a job in a touring 
one-act vaudeville play, Jean surrendered lock, stock and bar- 
rel, to coin a phrase. She's never regretted this move, never 
looked over her shoulder to speculate how it might have been 
had she stayed on Wall St. 

She gave up acting to be a press agent and manage concert 
and theater stars like Jos6 Iturbi and Grace Moore. Now she 
has settled into her favorite role, that o theatrical producer, 
director, playwright. 

"The nicest thing about me is my husband/' she says, and if 
you knew Major General Philip DeWitt Ginder, you'd know 
what she means. Her theater friends have welcomed him into 
their world and I wouldn't be surprised if she's the country's 
favorite army wife. If that seems an extravagant statement, I 
warned you! 

Just reread this and it made me lonesome for her so although 
I don't have a problem handy at the moment, and I don't like 
to shock her by phoning without one, I can invent something 
while I'm dialing her number. I'm saying it, too, "May I speak 
to Miss Jean Dalrymple?" 



introduction 



A charming woman friend of mine asked me to a party a few 
years ago. "Everybody knows that you don't like parties/' she 
said, "so it might be something of a distinction if you came to 
this party of mine." 

It isn't true that I don't like parties. It is going to them that 
I don't like. I once fell half in love with a girl for no better 
reason than that she would drop by my house after a party and 
give me a wonderfully entertaining account of everything she 
had seen and heard during the evening. The fact is that I love 
parties providing they are still fresh and only slightly second- 
hand, the way some people prefer to buy their motor-cars. 

As I had a dinner engagement on the night of my friend's 
party, it was understood that I wouldn't turn up until quite 
late in the evening. The fine art in these matters is to come late 
enough not to have to stay too long, but not too late to alto- 
gether miss the affair. 

So I arrived at this party at about a quarter of one, sure that 
most of the guests would be gone. The real reason that I hate 
going to parties is that I never seem to be able to find an unoccu- 
pied chair to ease myself into (I would rather sit than stand, 

( xiii ) 



( xlv ) INTRODUCTION 

and I prefer sprawling to sitting, but best of all I like lying 
down.) 

I rang the doorbell and walked upstairs to find the house so 
packed with people that there was hardly room to make my ar- 
rival known to my hostess. Fortunately I was able to pick up a 
glass of champagne from a tray which was being pushed slowly 
through the crowd by an elegant colored maid, and stood there 
in the hall silently cursing all these uncomfortable chairless 
routs, as I sipped my drink and waited for a shift among the 
guests, in the hope of edging my way into the living room, a 
long L shaped affair, dominated, or rather threatened by a steep 
balustraded staircase. 

At last I somehow managed to work my way into the party 
proper, only to find myself immobilized in a crush of people. 
And then, in a narrow space between a billowing pink taffeta 
skirt and a black trouser-leg, immaculate except for a streak of 
cigarette-ash, I saw a tiny footstool with a gloriously free area 
of perhaps three millimeters around it. It was with relief that I 
accomplished the minor acrobatic feat of landing my behind 
squarely on the target, though I was compelled to employ the 
leverage of a gentleman's knee that stuck out conveniently. 

That knee, as it turned out, belonged to Howard Dietz, the 
lyric writer. Dietz is a man I see rarely, but always with pleas- 
ure. We soon had our heads together and were well launched 
on our favorite subject which is vaudeville. 

Let us begin by saying that Howard and I remember hun- 
dreds of vaudeville acts, their routines and their jokes and their 
exact place on the bill, and even their billing. Ted Lewis was, 
and of course still is, billed as "The High-Hatted Tragedian of 
Song." Van and Schenck were known as "The Pennant- Win- 
ning Battery of Song-Land" and Phil Baker was always billed 
as "A Bad Boy from a Good Family." Who will remember these 
things when we are gone? 

But what Dietz and I were now discussing was an even more 



INTRODUCTION ( XV ) 

esoteric phase of vaudeville: The opening music. Every estab- 
lished act was introduced by a tune that became part of the act 
So when the audience heard the opening strains of music they 
knew who was coming on, even before the name of the act ap- 
peared in a frame on either side of the proscenium. There were 
even songs that, popular as they may have been on their own 
merits, were even better known to the public as the special 
property of some favorite vaudeville act. Such for example, was 
'Ida/' a delightful old song which, if it is at all remembered 
now, it is only because it would bring on the stage Eddie Leon- 
ard, the greatest soft-shoe dancer in the music halls. Or "Shine 
on Harvest Moon" which was Nora Bayes' song. That song was 
written for her by her husband, Jack Norworth, but the song 
which brought him on in his own act after he and Miss Bayes 
parted company was "I Wonder Who's Kissing Her Now/' And 
everybody knows the lady who appears after a few bars of 
''Some of These Days/ 1 

What we were now absorbed in, Dietz and I, was in challeng- 
ing each other: When you heard this tune (and here followed 
a bit of humming) who came on? And first one and then the 
other of us would be bent over in concentration. Who did come 
on to "When Roses are Blooming in Picardy"? 

The room had gradually grown quiet. Some people had left 
but quite a few had stayed on, and they were now also absorbed 
in the little game we were playing. 

It was growing late and I felt tired. 

"I'm ready to quit," I said to Howard, "but before I do, I 
think I'll just throw you one more." 

I whistled a few bars of "I'm Just Wild About Harry" and 
then I gave a fair imitation of a telephone bell. I arose from the 
damned, cramping footstool. "Think hard, Howard," I said. 
"You may be courting social disaster." 

Howard stared at me for a moment. "Lots of acts used I'm 
Just Wild About Harry/ " he said. 



( XVI ) INTRODUCTION 

"Not with the ringing of a telephone bell tacked on after the 
fourth bar/' I said. 

"Yes/* said Howard, "I was afraid of that." He closed his 
eyes and thought. And went on thinking. 

I walked over to the door and threw a kiss to my hostess, who 
was standing near the staircase, a modest smile on her face, 
looking, I thought, rather like George Washington awaiting the 
pleasure of the Continental Congress in Philadelphia, but of 
course she was smiling with her own teeth. 

Somebody said, "Are you just going to walk out and leave 
Howard and the rest of us with this headache?" 

"Well," I said with a sigh, "I will give you some hints. Out of 
that act came a playwright, a theatrical producer, a public rela- 
tions expert, a near-championship golfer, a fair pianist, a noted 
lecturer. . . ." 

Everyone looked bewildered. 

"The name of the act, as you should all have known, and 
particularly you, Howard, was 'Just a Pal/ a sketch starring 
Dan Jarre tt and a girl of eighteen who in time became a play- 
wright, a theatrical producer ..." 

"Jeannie!" somebody cried, and everybody turned around to 
applaud our smiling hostess. 

Ladies and gentlemen, as we show folks say, I give you the 
one and only Miss Jean Dalrymple. . . . 

JED HARRIS 



I 




chapter 



F c 



OR OVER TWENTY YEARS I have said that I am living on a gift 
of time because on April 1 1, 1936, a plane crashed in the harbor 
at Port-of-Spain, Trinidad. Five of us were trapped in the fast 
sinking cabin. Two of us got out alive. 

A few years later I saw Thornton Wilder's beautiful play, 
Our Town. In it Emily returns from death to the living world 
for a brief moment and finds it so full of exquisite and moving 
incidents which she had failed to notice while she was alive that 
she flees back to the peace of her hilltop grave, calling out, "Oh, 
earth, you're too wonderful for anybody to realize you," and she 
asks the Stage Manager through her tears, "Do any human be- 
ings ever realize life while they have it every, every minute?" 

And dear Frank Craven, my lifelong friend who played the 
Stage Manager so simply and so superbly, answered, "No." 

I thought, I do, at least I try to, and I vowed, I always will! 

Sometimes I think I can remember back to when I was about 
two or three. That probably is not so and I remember only what 
I was told of those years. But I am sure I remember my father 

( 3 ) 



(4) SEPTEMBER CHILD: 

taking me on Sunday mornings "to see the horsies" before I was 
four. Father had a big coal-and-lumber yard in Morristown, New 
Jersey, right across from the railroad station. The yard is still 
there, but it has long since belonged to another family. 

Father's delivery wagons were drawn by Percherons big, 
handsome Flemish horses with enormous rumps and great, hairy 
feet. Father imported them from Europe and was very proud of 
them. I was, too. Holding his hand, I would walk by the stalls 
looking up at their huge rear ends and think with pleasure that 
my father was very rich and very important. He was tall, blond 
and handsome, and even a short stroll with him was an event 
since I seldom saw him alone. 

We lived with my grandmother, my aunt Laura, and my 
nurse, Miss Anna High. My mother had died when I was fifteen 
months old. It was difficult to find out about her death because 
no one would ever talk about it, but when I was old enough 
really to persist, I was told she had been "put away" for treat- 
ment of violent headaches and extreme nervousness. I think the 
poor girl (she was only twenty-one when she died) had what to- 
day we would call a nervous breakdown. Anyway, I also was told 
that one snowy December night she broke out of the hospital in 
her nightgown and bare feet and tried to come home* She caught 
pneumonia and died a few days later. I wrote to the hospital 
when I grew up and received the bare information that she died 
of "edema of the lungs/' I once saw a lovely, colored miniature 
of her, painted on ivory. It showed a strong but sweet face, 
candid hazel eyes, fair skin and piled-up masses of curly auburn 
hair. 

The Murphy family worked for us: Mr. Murphy and his boys 
in the lumber yard; Eddie Murphy, his brother, as the coach- 
man; Mrs. Murphy and the girls three of them in our rambling 
Victorian house. Mrs. Murphy was the cook. She was a big, red- 
faced woman who was always cheerfully mumbling and grum- 
bling. Katie, her youngest daughter, was the nursemaid the 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( 5 ) 

maid for the nurse, Miss High, and for me. She was a wild Irish 
beauty with black hair, pink cheeks, white skin and the kind of 
pale blue eyes that usually go with very blond hair. They looked 
curiously out of place under her heavy black brows. Grand- 
mother took a dim view of Katie and always said she'd come to 
no good end. She may have been right, too, because Katie 
eventually ran away and was never heard from again. 

Miss High was a Scottish lady of impeccable character and 
correctness and was with me from the day I was born. She was 
good and kind and gentle and had a sweet, sweet face. She was 
loving and devoted, but she was also very strict and I was far 
from spoiled. Like us, she was a Presbyterian, but the Murphys 
were Catholics and I was the only one in the household who 
thought theirs was a sensible and practical religion. 

Father was born twenty years after my "y un g est " aunt, 
Laura, and so I remember everyone in the family as very old. 
Grandmother must indeed have been well along because she 
was almost fifty when Father was born. The doctor had been 
treating her for a "change-of-life tumor/' and he was as surprised 
as she was when it turned out to be Father. 

Grandmother was a tiny woman with bright red hair which 
the servants confidentially told me was a wig. She wore it parted 
in the middle and looped back like window curtains on either 
side of her face, rather like Queen Victoria, whom she resem- 
bled. She was mellow when I knew her, but she had had a 
dreadful temper when she was young. 

Grandfather died shortly after my mother did, and it was 
said her death hastened his as he was very fond of her. He had 
been a Civil War heroa major in the Engineers, and he had 
built the famous Swamp Angel Battery which is off the coast of 
Charleston, S. C. His death was the result of an old wound in 
the leg which suddenly "acted up" and could not be cured. I 
was brought up on stories of his goodness and strength. 

I did not know anything about my mother's people. I was in 



(6) SEPTEMBER CHILD: 

my teens before I met my mother's mother and began to find 
out about her side of the family. No one ever spoke of my 
mother and when 1 asked about her, the answer was always the 
same: "She was a lovely girl, very brilliant; only twenty-one 
when she died. She loved you very much." Period. But one day 
Katie whispered to me, after making me swear on my father's 
life that I'd never tell, that my "poor mother was crazy in the 
head and had had to be put away." 

I was too young to know exactly what that meant, but it 
sounded as though she had been put in jail for a dreadful crime. 
I looked and looked into the serene face and calm eyes of her 
ivory miniature, and I wept for her. 



Evidently Father and all the family feared I would take after 
my mother, and they thought that the way to keep me from 
losing my mind was to keep me from using it. I had, as a con- 
sequence, no formal education. But Miss High taught me pho- 
netics, and I could read before I was five. Above all, she taught 
me how to learn and made it important, even exciting. She 
used to say: 

"If you don't learn something new each day, your life will go 
by as though you had never lived at all." Years later, when I 
produced The Cherry Orchard, I realized she was paraphrasing 
Chekhov. Fortunately for me, Miss High was an erudite old 
lady and she taught me many, many things. 

Miss High's great regret was that she had not learned to play 
the piano and she hoped that I would. I yearned to play, too, 
but no one would let me. Father was a marvelous pianist and 
also the organist of the First Presbyterian Church. Mother had 
played the violin. They must have spent wonderful hours mak- 
ing music together. 

Miss High was supposed to have a day off each week, but 
she never took it because, as she told Father, all her friends had 



The Story of Jean Dairy mple ( 7 ) 

died or moved away, and she had no particular way in which 
to enjoy it. But, she said, perhaps she could have Saturday and 
take me into New York to the matinee performances of the 
Metropolitan Opera? She said she loved music and I did, too, 
and she enjoyed my company more than anyone's. So Father 
got us a subscription to the Saturday matinees for every other 
week. On the alternate Saturdays we would go to New York, 
anyway, and Miss High would take me to concerts at Carnegie 
Hall, to vaudeville at the Old Palace Theater, or even to a play 
if she thought it fitting. 

Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs was the first play I 
thoroughly understood, although I had enjoyed several before. 
Its impact was terrific. I remembered it virtually word for word, 
and the following week I taught it to a group of my playmates. 

It could not have been easy since nothing was written down 
and I had to teach everyone his or her part from memory. I 
played the wicked stepmother because no one else would; every- 
one wanted to play Snow White. When I thought we were 
ready, I put on the show in our drawing room, to the astonish- 
ment of the grownups. I imagine it must have been a rather 
abridged version, but it went very well. When I looked into 
the hand mirror and asked, "Mirror, mirror in my hand, who's 
the fairest in the land?" the mirror answered (a little boy spoke 
on cue in a sepulchral voice), "Snow White 1" I still remember 
the gasp from our audience when I angrily dashed the mirror 
to pieces in the fireplace. (Katie had had the foresight to take 
out the mirror and substitute a piece of plain glass. She never 
would have permitted me to break a mirror.) 



This pleasant and ordered life came to an abrupt and startling 
end one day. Father married again. My stepmother was young 
and modern and not long out of college. Her name was Made- 
leine Ross, the daughter of Morristown's wealthiest real estate 



(8) SEPTEMBER CHILD: 

and Insurance broker. Madeleine and Father had been child- 
hood sweethearts. "She had a fit when George married Eliza- 
beth," Grandmother said, "but she's landed him at last/' 

Father took a big house on Early Street, on the other side of 
town, and when they came back from their honeymoon, I was 
sent to live with them. Neither Miss High nor Katie came with 
me. This was the first tragedy of my life and I remember it 
well: Grandmother, Aunt Laura, Mrs. Murphy, Katie and I 
all in tears. Miss High was pale but she did not weep. She did 
not believe in a display of emotions. Evidently Father and 
Grandmother had had a great disagreement over his marriage. 
Anyway, Father did not come for me, and I was sent off to my 
new home in a new carriage with a new coachman who did not 
even say hello to me. 

My stepmother did not hold with what she called the non- 
sense of my way of life with Grandmother. Victorian holdover, 
she called it. I was to be brought up by her in an up-to-date, 
twentieth-century manner. She started out by sending me to a 
barber and having my long, fine hair cut short, Buster Brown 
style. She said that would strengthen it and it would be easier 
for me to comb. She knew Miss High had always combed and 
arranged my hair. My white starched dresses, white socks, patent 
leather Mary Janes disappeared, I was thrust into rompers, and 
my bare feet were plunked into sandals. 

Then I was turned out into the back yard to play. I did not 
know how to play. I was a young lady, not a puppy dog. I was 
half sad and half bursting with indignation, but there was 
nothing I could do about it. I was in a house full of strangers. 
I did not know any of the servants. The cook was not my friend. 
She would not even let me in the kitchen. I was not supposed 
to ruin my eyes reading. I could not find any of my books any- 
way, and I was not allowed to wander through the house look- 
ing for them. I was kept strictly in the yard or in my room 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( 9 ) 

(never to be called the nursery) where I had all of my meals 
alone. I did not know what to do with myself. 

I solaced myself by living in a fairy tale. I was a princess who 
had been spirited away and transformed by a beautiful witch, 
and the back yard with its few trees was an enchanted forest. 
One day, soon, a handsome prince would come and rescue me 
and take me back to the palace. 

Summer came, and Father and my stepmother went to Eu- 
rope. I took it for granted that I would be sent back to Grand- 
mother's, but instead I was trundled off to Father's farm in 
nearby Bernardsville. I had heard a great deal about the farm 
while I lived at Grandmother's, but I had never been taken 
there. A Mr. and Mrs. Haines ran it for Father, and all of our 
vegetables were grown there and all of our chickens, lamb, 
pork everything but beef and staples came from there. The 
Haineses had five little daughters. Georgianna was the one 
nearest my age. I shared her room and immediately fell in love 
with her. 

I came to love all the Haineses, and all the dogs, cats, sheep 
and even the pigs, especially the baby ones. It makes me sick to 
this day to see one roasted and with an apple in its mouth. The 
contrast of being with a large, happy, busy family after the 
lonely time in the new big house and that grim back yard 
warmed and thrilled me. We all had work to do. Lots of it. I 
was taught to weed. There were acres of garden, and I took 
great pride in pulling up every single weed in the rows allotted 
to me. 

That was a wonderful summer, and I learned all sorts of new 
things. How to milk a cow. Very hard work for small hands. 
How to milk a goat, which was easier, and the milk was de- 
licious. How to collect eggs (I had my own little pullet hen 
which laid an egg just for me every day; it was always cooked 
just right). How to ride bareback on my pony, which had been 
brought out from town for me. How to saddle and bridle her 



( 10 ) SEPTEMBER CHILD: 

and hitch her up to the little wicker cart. How to catch frogs 
at night with a lantern, a bit of red flannel and a net. How to 
make a bed for seeds and how to plant them. Oh, the satisfaction 
of seeing them grow and mature, of picking and eating the 
vegetables. 

When harvest-time came, I heard I would soon be sent back 
to live with Father and my stepmother. I went to bed every 
night praying that, by some miracle, I would be allowed to stay 
at the farm. If I could not go back to Grandmother and Miss 
High, then the farm was the next most wonderful place in the 
world. 

One night I suddenly thought that if I lit a candle and prayed 
to one of Katie's saints Saint Anne had been a great favorite of 
hersmaybe I'd be saved. There was a candle in a china candle- 
stick on the dresser in the bedroom. I put it on the table next 
to my bed and, kneeling down, I prayed to it and Saint Anne, 
trying to remember the Hail Mary that Katie had taught me, 
the only Catholic prayer I knew. 

The reward came the very next morning! Father and my 
stepmother would not be back from Europe for at least another 
month and I could stay at the farm! 

The month of reprieve passed much too quickly and I heard 
that Father and my stepmother had returned to the States but 
were going to remain in New York for a while to see the plays. 

Every night now I lit a candle and said my prayers, and one 
day the reward again came. Grandmother, Aunt Laura and Miss 
High arrived at the farm to take me back to the palace. I never 
had to go to the cold, big house on Early Street again. 

But when I was once more in Grandmother's house, I found 
a great change had come over it. The gaiety had gone, probably 
with Father's going. Grandmother was not well and was very 
unhappy because Father had sold the family lumber business 
and had moved away from Morristown for good. She said it was 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( ll ) 

all because my stepmother hated the town and wanted to live 
In New York where she could "gallivant." 

There were other calamities, too. Katie had run away; Mrs. 
Murphy had lumbago; and Aunt Laura did most of the cooking. 
Grandmother stayed in bed a great deal, and gloom had settled 
over the house. 

Aunt Laura was not a very good cook, but like Mrs. Murphy, 
she did not mind having me help her. In fact, she welcomed it. 
I had often watched Mrs. Murphy at work, since I used to spend 
a good deal of time in the kitchen, and when Aunt Laura tried 
to prepare something special and did not do it the way Mrs. 
Murphy did, I would correct her. Often I would correct her so 
much that she would laugh and say, "Very well, you do it." 

I never could figure out whether Aunt Laura really admired 
my kitchen work as much as she said or was just happy to have 
me do it, but whatever it was, I achieved my first fame by mak- 
ing a molasses cake which won first prize at the Morris County 
Fair. It was a cooking competition definitely not for children, 
and when it was discovered that the prize had been won by 
little Jean Dalrymple, "The Princess of Morristown," it caused 
a mild furore and the Morristown Record printed the story 
and my recipe on the front page, with my picture. 

This was the first clipping for my scrapbook. Aunt Laura 
bought several dozen papers, and I helped her clip out the 
article which she proudly sent off to our friends and relatives 
and, of course, to Father and my stepmother in New York. This 
led, shortly afterward, to another change in my life. 

Miss High said that money must be earned and never ac- 
cepted for doing nothing, and so I earned my allowance as far 
back as I can remember. I made a penny for ironing hand- 
kerchiefs, and since there were no cleansing tissues in those 
days, this was a good source of revenue. I was paid something 
each week for picking and arranging the flowers for Grand- 
mother and for cutting the stems and changing the water each 



( 12 ) SEPTEMBER CHILD: 

day. I also won a few cents from her by playing whist. (Miss 
High was against our "gambling," but Grandmother pooh- 
poohed her.) 

All of this led me to think I should really get on to earning 
money outside the family circle. One day in the children's 
supplement of the Newark Sunday Call I read they were giving 
cash prizes for the best essay on "Swat the Fly/' I always had 
been taught to swat the fly and I knew all about the perils of 
leaving them unswatted, so I sat down and wrote out something 
in my by then elegant Spencerian hand and sent it off. I won 
five dollars. 

From then on, I was determined to be a writer and I sub- 
mitted stories and essays regularly to the St. Nicholas Magazine 
and to the Newark Sunday Call Very often I would get a check 
for two dollars or five dollars which I took completely for 
granted. I was surprised only if I did not win the contest or 
sell my stories. 



One morning at breakfast Grandmother, in a great flutter, said 
she had something to tell me. I knew exactly what she was go- 
ing to say. I could not imagine why she, Aunt Laura, Miss High 
and Mrs. Murphy, who had come in from the kitchen to hover 
anxiously behind Grandmother's chair, were so embarrassed. I 
had read enough to know that in due time after a man and 
woman married the stork brought them a baby, and so it was 
no surprise to me when Grandmother finally managed to stam- 
mer out that I now had a little brother named Ogden. I thought 
this exciting and wonderful, and I could not understand why 
they all looked so stricken. 

I have no doubt that the clipping about my prize molasses 
cake and Aunt Laura's note about how helpful I'd become 
around the house gave Father the Idea that I could be helpful 
around his house in New York. Anyway, shortly after this, 



The Story of Jean Dalvymple ( 1 B ) 

Grandmother told me Father would like me to live with him 
but he would not insist on it. It was up to me. 

As much as I loved my Morristown family and my life with 
them, I must have loved my father more, because I was proud 
and happy when I learned that he missed me and needed me. 
I am afraid Aunt Laura, Miss High and especially Grandmother 
were shocked and brokenhearted when I decided immediately 
to go to New York. Those words, needed me, did it. They made 
me feel my place was with Father. 

1 was put on the train alone with my bags and Father met me 
in Hoboken. I had always been thrilled when I saw the New 
York sky line from the ferry, and it was doubly exciting this 
time because I actually was going to live in the center of this 
glorious city. Father had an apartment in the old Fifth Avenue 
Hotel which was then at two hundred Fifth Avenue, at Twenty- 
third Street. It was a delightful place, with what I considered 
a very elegant atmosphere. 

Father and my stepmother seemed to lead a giddy life, always 
on the go to the theater and to parties. I was left to my own 
devices most of the time and I was always alone nights with the 
baby and the nurse. After a while, as Father and my stepmother 
had more confidence in me, I was left completely alone with 
the baby on the nurse's night off. As a result I always had to 
stay home later on and keep an eye on the children, no matter 
how many nurses or maids there were around. 

I continued reading and writing, of course. There was a con- 
test in the old New York World for young people an essay on 
Manhattan. I entered it as I entered all the children's contests 
for writing, and I won one dollar. It was my first New York 
big-time prize and I was tipsy with pride when I showed it to 
Father, but his only comment was, "Well, when you cash it, 
don't break the bank." 

I do not remember how we got there, but suddenly we were 
living in the outskirts of Philadelphia in a lovely little house 



( 14 ) SEPTEMBER CHILB: 

looking out over a golf course where Father and my stepmother 
played from time to time. I was soon aware that another baby 
was on the way. Madge was born, unexpectedly, one sunny 
Sunday morning in December. 

My second teeth had come in by this time to fill up the 
space in the side of my mouth that had been empty since my 
first teeth were knocked out by a fall downstairs on my fourth 
birthday. These new ones were slightly crooked, and two of 
them arrived with dents in them where they had been injured 
while they were in the soft, formative stage in my gums. For- 
tunately my stepmother had an absolute fetish about teeth, and 
I was immediately sent off to the dentist who filled the dents 
with almost invisible bits of porcelain, one of which, believe it 
or not, remains intact to this day. 

I fell madly in love with the dentist who was young and 
very handsomeblond and tall like Father. I made my way 
back and forth to his office alone after the first visit. One day on 
the way home I was fascinated by the posters outside a movie 
theater. I had never seen a movie. It was in midafternoon and 
the admission was only a nickel, so I went in, intending to stay 
just long enough to see what it was like. I was so fascinated 
that I stayed for the whole program, and when I came out, it 
was almost dark. I flew home, hoping to arrive before Father, 
and found my stepmother very worried. I thereupon told her 
a weird story about being late because I had gone for a long 
automobile ride with the dentist. 

When Father came home, he was infuriated with the dentist 
for keeping me out riding all afternoon, telephoned him and 
discovered the lie. He flew into one of his tempers and started 
to drag me out of the room, undoubtedly to thrash me, but I 
cried out, "Father, forgive me, I'm only a child," which so 
convulsed him with laughter that he forgot to wallop me. 

The movie I had seen was a William S. Hart western. It 
made such an impression on me that from then on I devoted 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( 15 ) 

myself to writing stories exclusively for him, and some years 
later he actually bought one, saying he could use a scene or two, 
and he sent me a check for fifty dollars. 

Even Father was impressed by this and bought me an Oliver 
typewriter, and my stepmother, who had become almost as big 
a movie fan as I, bought me an expensive mail-order course in 
scenario writing. "Close-up/* 'long-shot/* "fade-in," "fade-out" 
all of these technical movie terms fascinated me and years 
later were very useful to me, but I bless my little Oliver and 
the pamphlet that came with it, Touch Typing Self -Taught. 
I diligently went to work on A S D F G F and; L K J H J. From 
that day to this, typing has been a pleasure and in one way or 
another has led oddly enough to unexpected turns in my life. 



chapter 



I 



T WAS IN Philadelphia that my stepmother began to change. 
After the unscheduled birth of Madge, which took place before 
the doctor could arrive, she was never exactly ill, but she was 
never quite as well as she had been. She no longer cared to 
play golf and she refused to start again on the usual round of 
parties. She had decided that Philadelphia was just as provincial 
as Morristown and the people there just as narrow and dull. 

She became tremendously interested in health foods and ways 
to regain her strength. She bought books on nutrition and put 
all of their theories into practice, not just for herself, but for 
all of us. We had wheat germ, alfalfa tea and yogurt years before 
they were generally used, also raw sugar, brown rice, cracked 
wheat, blackstrap molasses and millet. She constantly went to 
lectures about health and was quite obsessed with the power of 
sunshine. She even urged Father to move the family to Florida 
or California. 

Instead of those glamorous-sounding places where I longed 
to go, although I really had little idea what they were like ex- 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( 17 ) 

cept that In California they made movies, we ended up in 
Newark, New Jersey. We had a house in a pretty place called 
Homestead Park. 

My stepmother disliked Newark intensely, but she never 
expressed this to Father, only to me. I wish I could remember 
why we lived in Newark. It probably had something to do with 
Father's work. He was still in the lumber business, but I do 
not believe things were going as well as they might have, be- 
cause we no longer had servants. There was a sort of girl to 
look after Madge, but I do not recall anyone else except a 
woman who came in now and then to clean and do the laundry. 

I adored my little sister, Madge. She was my only doll. I 
was constantly making things for her. Grandmother had taught 
me to knit and crochet, and if I could not get my stepmother to 
buy wool for me, I used string to make caps and jackets. Later 
when she bought an electric sewing machine, with all sorts of 
delightful attachments, I could not be pried loose from it. I 
would buy remnants for twenty-five or thirty cents and make 
adorable pinafores and frilly dresses with lots of ruffles--! loved 
the ruffling attachment for beautiful Madge. She was a honey 
blonde with olive skin, and she and Franchot Tone are the 
only people I know with brown-gold eyes. 

Then one day Father told me my stepmother and the two 
little ones were going to stay with her aunt in Port Jervis, New 
York, for a while, and I was to go back to Grandmother's in 
Morristown. Oddly enough, this was terrible news. I had be- 
come so attached to my stepmother and the children that the 
thought of being separated from them made me miserable. How- 
ever, I did not protest as I saw that Father for once was serious 
and worried-looking. Later I realized that his worry was over 
my stepmother's health, not money matters. She had been grow- 
ing more withdrawn and vague all summer, taking less and less 
interest in anything but reading and lying in the sun. 

Aunt Laura was waiting at the station with the carriage to 



( l8 ) SEPTEMBER CHILD: 

take me home. I was so weary and upset that when we got 
there, I went right to sleep. 

I awoke next morning to terrible news. 

Miss High was dead. She had died about two months before 
quietly and peacefully in her sleep. She had never wanted to 
trouble anyone, not even then. Father had known about it but 
evidently could not bring himself to tell me. 

Without Miss High, the place seemed empty and I was bit- 
terly unhappy. Everything about the house had changed. It 
even smelled different: musty and with an appalling odor of 
stale fruit. There was always a large bowl of fruit on the dining 
room table and I suppose, through the years, this odor had 
permeated the whole house. 

Grandmother was horrified to learn I had never gone to 
school and after a few weeks it was decided that I should be 
tutored by my father's cousin, Ella. She was a retired school- 
teacher with a firmness and clarity of thought which I admired. 
I loved studying with her and hated it each day when the les- 
sons came to an end. Ella's house had that same musty, stale- 
fruit smell that I came to associate with the homes of old people. 
It was the only thing I did not like about going there. 

I learned something about my family background from Ella, 
but only on Father's side. She never mentioned my mother, or 
anything about her family, and I must say, at that age, I was not 
overly curious. I had a romantic picture of my mother pieced 
together from words and phrases dropped here and there. 

"She was neat as a pin/' someone would say. And again: 
"She had the most beautiful hair I ever saw." "She was so tiny/' 
"How could she have learned so much in such a few years?" 
"She died so young/' "She was so proud of her beautiful baby/* 
"Everybody loved her." "That girl could do anything/' 

From all of this I had a lovely image, but where she came 
from, and who her people were, I was not to find out for 
years. 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( ig ) 

I started to write again and now took my stories and articles 
to Cousin Ella for corrections, and she was pleased at having 
so few to make. She said I should concentrate on becoming a 
writer, that I expressed myself with clearness and had a par- 
ticular gift for dialogue. "You could write plays/' she said after 
reading one of my stories. "You write sparsely with little em- 
bellishment, let the characters speak for themselves, and you 
hate to stop and describe things in detail." 

This led to my dramatizing the Old Testament's Book of 
Ruth into a play which I called Whither Thou Goest. My class 
in Sunday School put it on. I also dramatized Joseph and His 
Coat of Many Colors, which was played by the children. 

All during this time I went to the movies once a week and 
corresponded faithfully with William S. Hart. I heard from him 
until his death, but I never met him. I often wonder how he 
came to single out my letters. I did not believe picture stars ever 
looked at their fan mail, but he evidently did. He himself wrote 
me on an old typewriter with a missing W and he told me in 
one of his early letters that I ought to learn to type, too, even 
though, he added, I wrote a clear hand. He was very compli- 
mentary when I started on the Oliver. 

Word finally came from Father saying that the family was 
again settled in New York and he would like to have me come 
back. I was eager to go, but on the train that took me back 
to New York I was suddenly torn with emotions. I was happy 
at the prospect of being back in New York with Father and my 
stepmother and the children. At the same time it was a wrench 
to leave my Morristown family. I knew somehow that I would 
never see Grandmother again, and I never did. 



Life was very different in New York this time. We did not live 
in a hotel and we were far from the center of town. In fact, we 
lived up on Washington Heights. In those days it was a beauti- 
ful place with the Cloisters nearby and open fields and even 



( 2O ) SEPTEMBER CHILD: 

farms in the Dyckman district, just beyond. It seems such a 
short time ago. 

We lived in an apartment house. I had gone back to my 
enchanted-princess dream again, and this was the palace. Ac- 
tually it was only an ordinary building with a modern foyer, 
but it seemed very lovely and inviting to me, and I had a sense 
of satisfaction every time I entered. It was the first time we 
had lived in an apartment, actually the first time I had been in 
one. It all seemed extremely practical, living on one floor, and 
it made things easier for everybody because this time we had 
no maids, no nurse, nobody, and I did a lot of the housework. 

One day the truant officer visited us. Father thought this was 
great fun and bellowed that the law had finally caught up with 
little Jean and that they were going to put her in the klink. As 
usual when he teased me, I was indignant. I pointed out that 
it was not my fault but his, but that only made him laugh the 
more and he said now he would have to arrange bail for me 
and find a proper lawyer. I knew he was talking nonsense, but 
I could not stand it. I still cannot bear to be teased, even lov- 
ingly. Father, finding me such an easy victim, teased me at every 
turn. 

I was enrolled at Public School 132 in Washington Heights. 
They had difficulty finding where I would fit in, and finally I 
ended up in the eighth grade. I had a terrible time with math 
and grammar, but I soon became the teachers' pet. I was very 
fond of Miss Stern, our class teacher, with her bright red hair 
and freckled face. Mr. Dennerlein, who taught history, was an- 
other darling and so was Mr. Asher, a dark, little man with 
whom I was madly in love. He was our English teacher and 
he stayed after school to help me with the intricacies of gram- 
mar, showing me how to draw diagrams and all that rigamarole. 
I told him I considered this absolutely unnecessary since I al- 
ready had made several hundred dollars with my writing. He 
was incredulous until I showed him my scrapbook, but he still 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( 21 ) 

Insisted I would need grammar later for the study of foreign 
languages. He was right, and I have always been grateful to 
him. 

On Saturday afternoon my stepmother and I had a standing 
date to go to the Coliseum or the Audubon Theater to "take 
in" the vaudeville show and movie. She always enjoyed the 
acts tremendously while I more or less suffered through them, 
waiting for the movie. It certainly never occurred to me that 
within a very few years I would be part of these vaudeville bills, 
not once but many times. 

One of the few people who came to visit the family now and 
then was a school friend of my stepmother's named May Wright. 
She came often and once she even stayed with us, sleeping in 
the twin bed in Mother's room while Father was away. May 
had been married and divorced and evidently was having a 
hard time of it. I think my stepmother loved her, but she was 
also very scornful of her. She said May had thrown over a 
perfectly good husband to become, of all things, an actress. She 
had gone off on tour with a play and had lost her husband to 
another woman before she returned. 

May fascinated me, and I hung around, drinking in every 
word she had to say to my stepmother. Now and then they 
would remark warningly, "Little pitchers have big ears," and 
would send me out to buy some peach ice cream. I knew then 
that May had come to a deliciously wicked point in her story 
and I was not to hear it. This seemed very unfair because I 
was busily writing a novel about her. 

At that time May was rehearsing for a play in New York, and 
when it opened, Father and my stepmother got all dressed up 
and went to the gala premiere. They both looked perfectly 
wonderful, and I said they should do that more often. It seemed 
such a long time since I had seen them go off for a gay eve- 
ning together. 

They came in very late, and I heard them talking. My step- 



( 22 ) SEPTEMBER CHILD: 

mother said May was awful In the part and the play was even 
worse. Father stuck up for both May and the play, and they 
had an argument. At the breakfast table next morning my step- 
mother triumphantly read the review aloud from The New 
York Times, and it was scathing. Father just laughed and said 
he had enjoyed it anyway and they ought to make it more of a 
habit to go downtown to the theater. 

There was a subtle change in the atmosphere of the house 
after this. My stepmother seemed to have more interest in out- 
side things in general and the theater in particular, and she 
would talk to me at great length about the plays she saw. She 
also subscribed to the Sunday Morning Telegraph which had 
a splendid rotogravure theatrical section. She took Variety, too, 
which I read from cover to cover the moment it came. After a 
while she started to take me downtown to Saturday matinees. 

We did/not have a piano in the apartment, but we did have 
a little harmonium. I always longed to play the piano or the 
harmonium. I was never encouraged, but I had been taught 
sight reading in Sunday School by an advanced young teacher 
who wanted us to sing the hymns properly. I began to pick out 
tunes on the organ. Father showed me where middle C was, 
and that was about all. From then on I was on my own. I knew 
that flats went down and sharps went up, and so I worked out 
the scales. 

After a while I bought exercise books, and since it made no 
sound if I did not pump the organ, I could practice away to my 
heart's content. I developed an absolute passion for music. When 
Father was home, I kept him pumping and playing away all the 
time. I also had him play through my exercise book so that I 
could know how it should sound. 

I graduated from Public School 132 with honors. I wrote the 
lead article in the yearbook and I was president of the Little 
Mothers' League, which was considered a high honor. I was the 
smallest and youngest child in the class or I might even have 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( 23 ) 

been president, but the bigger girls said although I was very 
bright, I was too tiny to be president! 

I had made exciting plans to go to Julia Richman High 
School when one day my stepmother said, "I can't bear the 
idea of your going off to high school. [I never knew why.] If 
you'll stay home with me, 111 pay for music lessons for you. I 
think that's the sort of education you should have anyway." 

It was absolutely beyond me to refuse her anything when she 
appealed to me that way. She needed me, she said. So I never 
went to high school. I never had the music lessons either, but 
it was at this time I was given my Oliver typewriter and the 
correspondence course in motion-picture scenario writing after 
Bill Hart had sent me the fifty dollars. This was the most money 
I had earned in one lump sum up to this time. 



The next big amount I received was when my uncle John, my 
mother's brother, whom I had never met, sent me a crisp hun- 
dred-dollar bill and wrote: Spend this on yourself. Don't buy 
anything for your brother or sister or stepmother or father. It's 
entirely for you. 

He underlined you four or five times. 

For days I wondered how on earth I could spend a hundred 
dollars all on myself. I thought I would like to have a new coat, 
but I liked my old one and, besides, a new one would soon wear 
out. The dresses I made for myself were good enough, too. I 
could get all the books I wanted at the library. What in the 
world was there I could spend a hundred dollars on, just for 
myself? 

One day I was walking along iSist Street when I happened 
to look up and see a sign on the second-story windows across the 
street. It said: COMPLETE BUSINESS COURSE $96. POSITION GUAR- 
ANTEED. 

That, I told myself, would be something for my very self. 



(24) SEPTEMBERCHILD: 

I marched right over and up the stairs. I said to Mrs. Pierce, 
who ran the school, "I'd like to take your business course." 

I can still see her astonishment. "Are you a high school 
graduate?" she asked. 

"Yes/' I lied. 

"How old are you?" she asked. 

"Eighteen," I lied again. 

"You are very small for your age," she said doubtfully. 

I pulled out the hundred-dollar bill and placed it on her desk. 
"My uncle sent me this and told me to spend it on myself," I 
said. "This is the only way I know of doing so. Also," I added, 
"I already can type, but I very much would like to know short- 
hand." 

Without another word she took the hundred dollars and gave 
me the change. When I went home and told my stepmother and 
father what I had done, Father let out his usual roar of laughter. 

"She's on her way," he cried. "Onward and upward. She's 
sure to be a lady J. P. Morgan." 



Going to business school was great fun. Learning shorthand 
fascinated me. In fact, learning anything fascinated me, even 
bookkeeping, although that was a struggle, especially double 
entry. I worked very hard at it, but I have completely forgotten 
it. Anything I enjoy learning stays with me; anything I have to 
wrestle with evaporates. 

Just before the business course came to an end, the school 
had a bazaar for the benefit of the Red Cross. I had the bright 
idea of writing to the various hit shows on Broadway for tickets 
to be raffled off. When I told Mrs. Pierce and the girls I was 
doing this, they said I would never hear from one of them. 
You can imagine my delight and their astonishment when at 
least half a dozen replied, sending me passes, and there was 
even one for a whole box at the old Hippodrome. From that 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( 25 ) 

day to this I always say: // you want something, ask for it. You 
may very well receive it. 

The bazaar was a great success, but it ended in embarrass- 
ment for me as I not only won the box at the Hippodrome but 
three or four other things for which I had bought chances at 
ten cents apiece. Since then I must say I have always felt lucky. 
I can never quite believe it when I take a chance and do not 
win. 

With the course finally completed, Mrs. Pierce called me into 
her private office one day and said, "Jean, I have a lovely posi- 
tion for you. It's in Wall Street, and I think there's a great 
future for you. The stock market is booming, and you will en- 
joy the people/' 

When I proudly told my family I was going to work in Wall 
Street, beginning the next week, Father yelled, "What did I tell 
you? This girl will be a lady J. P. Morgan, maybe even a Hetty 
Green." 

"I wish you wouldn't keep saying that," my stepmother said 
in annoyance, "Jean never will be like either of them. She has 
the nicest, most generous disposition I have ever known, and 
I hope nothing will ever spoil it, because," she added seriously, 
''not being at all attractive, that will be very much in her favor." 

My stepmother and Father always impressed upon me that, 
in spite of being homely and unattractive, I was not to be dis- 
couraged. "You must learn to do things well," my stepmother 
would say. "Dance well, swim well, do everything well, and 
then what you look like won't matter so much." 

I do not know now what I really did look like, but I certainly 
felt very unpretty. I was still terribly thin and freckle-faced. 
My hair-colored hair, which had now grown long, was straight as 
string. I wore it simply pulled away from my face and caught at 
the back of my neck with a hair ribbon. I wore very peculiar 
clothes which I made myself, and the styles at the time were not 



( 26 ) SEPTEMBER CHILD: 

at all becoming, this being the flapper age. I remember a brown 
calico dress trimmed with reddish braid, quite hideous. 

I made stacks of beautiful ruffled dresses for Madge, but I 
preferred severe clothes for myself. My stepmother, of course, 
had something to do with this, since she constantly impressed 
on me that I was not the fussy type. 

My job in Wall Street turned out to be with a firm that was 
a member of the Curb Exchange. I was interviewed by a darling 
old maid who was head of personnel. She put me to work at 
once in the stenographers' pool some twenty girls who took 
letters and did other general work for the many customers' men 
who had no private secretaries. 

I loved working for all of them and they said they loved 
having me, because, they said, I could put their thoughts into 
proper English for them. It was all gloriously exciting, especially 
when I had to telephone home and say I would not be there for 
dinner as I was working overtime and I would get two dollars 
extra for "supper money." I was delighted to work late and 
never thought of spending the two dollars for supper. There 
was plenty to eat when I got home, and adding these extra pay- 
ments to my weekly salary of twelve dollars made me feel very 
rich. 

I had been there only a short time when the boss's secretary 
went off on a vacation. The head of personnel took me into his 
office and said, "This is the young lady I'd like to have substi- 
tute." 

The boss looked at me doubtfully. "Young lady? Why, she's 
only a child." 

"Her looks are deceiving," she said. "Give her a chance. I 
think she will work out fine for you." 

"Well"~~he sighed "sit down and take a letter." He put his 
feet up on his desk, lit a cigar and began a long, rambling letter 
to his wife who was in Florida. He told her all about what he 
had been doing and about all their friends, whom he had been 
seeing, what their children were doing, and so forth. 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( 27 ) 

When he came to the end, he said, "There, get that back to 
me in a week or two/' and went out to lunch. 

I sat down at my typewriter and became fascinated with this 
wonderful letter. It was pages long. When my employer got 
back from lunch, the letter was on his desk. I heard a roar burst 
forth from him when he had finished it. He came striding up to 
the head of personnel's desk with the letter in his hand, crying, 
"You're right! That pip-squeak's a genius. Look at this! She's 
made an author out of me." 

I had put all of the sayings of their children, servants and 
friends in quotation marks and had written the whole letter as 
though it were a short story, 

"Where is she?" he demanded. 

I had gone back to my own desk because I liked that type- 
writer better than the one in his secretary's office. When he 
spotted me, he said, "Don't you ever let me catch you out here 
again. Come sit at my secretary's desk." To the personnel head 
he said, "If you ever let this girl leave me, I will never forgive 
you." 

I could not understand why he was so pleased. I had only 
done my job, and I was sure any of the girls could have done it. 
Now that I have had a dozen different secretaries myself, I 
know how he felt. 

At the end of that week, when I got my pay envelope, there 
were thirty-five dollars in it. I worried about what had hap- 
pened to his poor secretary, but I never did find out. 

I continued to give my stepmother eight dollars a week, but 
instead of only having four dollars, I now had twenty-seven 
dollars for myself. It was a fortune. I did not spend any more 
than I had been spending, and I saved to get one very fine out- 
fit that I could wear anywhere. I dreamed of going to the 
Peacock Alley of the old Waldorf-Astoria for hot chocolate and 
I had to wear something suitable. 

When I had saved enough, I went to the Knox shop which 
was on lower Broadway and bought a beautiful pale-beige 



(28) SEPTEMBER CHILD: 

gabardine suit very expensiveand a black pressed-beaver 
sailor, like an Andalusian caballero's hat, which was then all 
the style. It was shiny like a man's topper. I bought a pair of 
black patent leather pumps, too. Then I set myself to sewing a 
number of blouses of fine linen and some of real lace (from my 
stepmother's cedar chest) for special occasions. The suit had 
a single button at the waist, so that with a dressy blouse it made 
a dressy outfit and with a mannish blouse and a four-in-hand 
tie, which I often wore, it was suitably severe. 

Once I had assembled this elegant wardrobe, I had to tell 
my family about my raise. But not before it had precipitated a 
scene with Father. Having come upon these "glad rags/' as he 
called them, in my closet, he was convinced I was having an 
affair with someone, probably my boss, whom I talked about 
incessantly. It was only because Father threatened to go down 
and punch him in the nose that I decided I had to tell him 
about my raise. 

To prove it, I showed him my pay envelope with the amount 
clearly marked on it. Father laughed then and actually went 
so far as to say I had done very well and deserved my new 
clothes. There was no teasing for a change. 

The first time I came down to my office in my new costume 
I created an absolute sensation. My boss had never seen me in 
anything except my hideous homemade dresses and flat, sensi- 
ble shoes, my hair pulled back primly in a bun. 

For this dramatic appearance I had put a wave in my hair 
with a couple of curlers and piled it high on my head in a 
French twist, I believe it was called. 

He was flabbergasted. "Peewee/' he roared, "who's keeping 
you?" 

I said, "You are, according to Father," and told him the story. 

"Take a letter/' he said and dictated a charming note to 
Father, saying he had daughters of his own and he sympathized 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( 29 ) 

with him but that he had the utmost respect for me. 'In fact," 
he added, "she intimidates me, so have no fear." 

I did not quite know what he meant by this, but I liked It. 

I immediately collected several beaus from among my old 
bosses, the customers' men. They began to take me to lunch. No 
longer was I a habitue of the counter downstairs where, with 
the girls, I had lunched regularly on a baked-bean-and-lettuce 
sandwich on brown bread my favorite. I now went to the 
Men's Grill in Schrafft's, and this was my idea of the height of 
luncheon elegance. I was sure all these men admired my work, 
but I also surmised my fine clothes had had something to do 
with this new popularity. 

One of these luncheon beaus appealed to me because he was 
tall and blond and reminded me of Father when I was a tiny 
girl. His name was Bill. We both worked overtime one night, 
and he was the first man ever to take me home. It was in the 
subway to be sure, but from Wall Street to Washington Heights 
and back to Greenwich Village where he lived was a tiresome 
trip, to say the least, and I was astonished that anyone would 
make it. 

I could not bring Bill into the apartment. I had never had 
anyone in the apartment, not even a girl friend, so we said 
good night in the lobby which I still found lovely. I put out my 
hand to shake his and said, "Thank you." 

All at once he pulled me gently toward him, lifted my chin, 
and very lightly kissed me on the lips, then turned and walked 
swiftly out. I stood there, dumfounded, enjoying the most de- 
lightful sensation I had ever had. I finally went upstairs and 
fell asleep wondering if this was love. 

I soon found out that it was not. 

A week or so later Bill again brought me home. It was rather 
early this time, and we stopped in a restaurant on Washington 
Heights where he had a cup of coffee and I had a dish of ice 
cream. In those days I was trying to gain weight. 



( 3 ) SEPTEMBER CHILD: 

Casually Bill offered me a cigarette. I had never smoked but 
thought, why not? I puffed on not one but two cigarettes, feel- 
ing very worldly. I decided to buy a long holder and take up 
smoking seriously. 

Finally we were in the lobby of the apartment house, and the 
great moment came. Again Bill pulled me toward him and 
kissed me on the mouth. Absolutely nothing happened to me. 

I went to bed very perplexed. I liked Bill. He was not very 
bright, but he was good-looking and jolly, and all of the girls 
at the office swooned over him. I began to analyze why this 
second kiss had been utterly disappointing. Suddenly I knew. 

The first time he kissed me the faint taste of tobacco was 
on his lips and it had been strangely exciting. This time, having 
smoked myself, I could not taste it. I never smoked again. 

I never paid much attention to Bill again either, although 
I let him take me home from time to time. 

One night I went to a party at a girl friend's and she insisted 
on holding me up to the other young people gathered there as 
an example of the successful business girl. She went on and on 
about my various triumphs, but suddenly this delightful mo- 
ment came to a crashing end when one of the young men 
observed: 

"If she's that good, she ought to get out of that bucket shop 
she's working in before they raid it." 

I cried out in indignation that ours was one of the best 
houses on the Street. 

"It's the best bucket shop on the Street, you mean," the 
young man insisted. 

"What's that mean?" my friend broke in. I waited quite 
breathlessly for the answer. 

"A bucket shop is where they take your order to buy stock 
but don't buy it. They just say they do. They put your order 
in a bucket, so to speak. Hence the name." 

"I don't get it," I choked. 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( 31 ) 

He turned to me and smiled wryly. "Most of your customers 
buy on margin, don't they? They put down about ten per cent, 
right?" 

"Yes," I said. 

"If the stock goes down, you send out a 'margin call/ don't 
you, for more money to cover their margin?" 

I nodded. 

"And if they don't send in, or can't send in, the needed 
margin, they're 'sold out/ aren't they?" 

Again I nodded. 

"Well," he said, "a bucket shop never invests the money in 
the first place. When the stock goes down, they just put the 
money in their own pocket." 

I protested vehemently that my office was not such a place. 

The young man laughed and said, "You'll find out soon 
enough. There's going to be a big crackdown on all those 
places, and very soon. ... Do you like the work?" he asked 
abruptly. 

"Yes, very much." 

"Then I suggest you try to get a position with a good firm 
a member of the New York Stock Exchange." 

That night I lay awake brooding about this. In spite of my 
affection for my boss and all of the personnel who were so good 
to me, I had a horrible suspicion that the young man was right. 
Thinking it over, I found it logical. One of the reasons I had 
had to work late so often was to help in sending out those 
"margin calls," and it had sometimes seemed odd to me that 
many of the men appeared in better spirits when the market 
went down than when it went up. In the latter event, when 
and if the client came through with the additional margin, 
then and only then did the firm have to buy the stock. It was 
all suddenly quite clear. The young man was right, and I was 
miserable. 

Riding down in the subway next morning, I looked in the 



( 3 2 ) SEPTEMBER CHILD: 

classified want ads of The New York Times under "Secretaries 
Wanted/' Almost the first one said: "Highly experienced secre- 
tary wanted by Stock Exchange firm. Please write, etc/' 

As soon as I reached the office I wrote. The very next day I 
had a phone call from a pleasant-voiced woman who said she 
was personnel director for Dominick and Dominick. She liked 
my letter and wanted me to come in during my lunch hour. It 
was right around the corner. My present firm was at 30 Broad 
Street, and Dominick and Dominick wasand is at 115 Broad- 
way. 

I liked Miss Kingman at once. In contrast to our roly-poly, 
good-natured, rubber-band-chewing head of personnel, she was 
young and slim and chic. She reminded me of my stepmother 
when I first met her. We had a talk, and she dictated a short 
but complicated letter to me full of Wall Street jargon, which 
was all very familiar. When I came to transcribe it, however, I 
was given an Underwood typewriter, and I had never used 
anything but a Remington, except my old Oliver. I am still 
temperamental about typewriters. I am a whiz on some and 
cannot type accurately at all on others. This was one of the 
others. I had a terrible time, especially since Miss Kingman 
sat there watching me struggle. 

Suddenly she said, "Don't worry about the typing. I'd like 
you to have the job and I'll see you get a Remington. The salary 
is only one hundred and seventy-five dollars a month to start 
[this was more than I was getting, and she was apologizing!] but 
you will soon get more and we give a large bonus at Christmas 
sometimes as much as one hundred per cent of your year's 
salary. I know you'll be very happy with us here and I know 
that everyone will like you, especially the man you're going to 
work for. He's not in right now but I'll tell him about you. He 
trusts my judgment. Can you start next Monday?" 

I did not think I could, this being Thursday, but I said I 
would see. I went directly in to my boss when I got back to the 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( 33 ) 

office and told him what I had done and asked if I could take 
the other job on Monday. I still remember his stunned expres- 
sion. 

After a little silence he said, "Peewee, you've done the right 
thing. That's the best house on the Street, and it's what you 
deserve." 

We looked at each other for a moment and I saw that he 
knew why I was going. 

On Monday I went to work for W. T. Mclntire, a member of 
the firm and the trader for Dominick and Dominick, and a 
whole new kind of life began. 



chapter 

m 



XviLv OLD FIRM had been interesting, but Dorninick and Dom- 
inick was fascinating. Mr. Mclntire handled the accounts of 
Edward Simms of Simms Petroleum, J. Edward Johnston and 
his wife (the widow of R. J. Reynolds of Reynolds Tobacco), 
Edward Doheny of Cities Service, Frank Phillips of Phillips 
Petroleum and various and assorted millionaires whose names 
were familiar and famous. They came and went in the office 
all day, those captains of industry, tycoons and oil magnates, 
and they were casual, jolly and charming. 

My desk was in a small enclosure with Mr. Mclntire's two 
assistants, Don Harris and Bob Slauson. I had a ticker tape at 
my elbow which all those friendly men came in to look at. Some- 
times they would sit on the edge of my desk and pass the time 
of day with me and after a while they began to ask things like, 
"How does Anaconda look to you today, Jeannie?" 

"Well, so far it's been selling steadily and rising, so it prob- 
ably will hold for another day or two," I would answer. Or, 

( 34 ) 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( 35 ) 

"It looks a little wobbly. Might be a good idea to take profits 
before the close of the market." 

How I, at sixteen (I had told Miss Kingman I was twenty-one), 
knew these things, or sensed them, is beyond me, but I had 
nothing much else on my mind in those days. Somehow I was 
more often right than wrong, and thus I became a sort of in- 
nocent adviser to those great men who were casually dabbling 
in millions. 

This was a life I loved. I felt surrounded by my own kind of 
people, the kind of people Miss High would have liked. Every- 
one was well-mannered, pleasant, successful and very good to 
me. Hardly a day went by without one of my new-found friends 
saying, "If this stock is as good as you say it is, Jeannie, I'm go- 
ing to put a few shares aside for you." 

They also brought me flowers, candy and sometimes toys. 
Holland S. Reavis, a Texas oilman, was my particular friend. 
He was tall, good-looking and white-hairedall these men 
seemed terribly old to me and one day he arranged with five or 
six of them to give me a Valentine's Day luncheon party. It was 
held at Ye Olde Choppe House on Cedar Street. This was, of 
course, during prohibition, but Ye Olde Choppe House ap- 
parently had never heard of it. I was delighted by the party but 
shocked by the amount of liquor served. I did not drink at all 
except for my first sip of champagne which was good-naturedly 
forced upon me by J. Edward Johnston. 

"You might as well start now, Jeannie," he said, "because 
you will have plenty of things to celebrate in wine during your 
lifetime." 

"Oh, no," I said, "I shall never drink. My grandmother was 
an officer of the Women's Christian Temperance Union." 

They laughed all of them as though I had brought forth 
the most brilliant sally they had ever heard. They were always 
laughing at things I said in dead earnestness which they thought 



( 36 ) SEPTEMBER CHILD: 

I had meant to be funny! It always was a bit unsettling, but as 
long as they were enjoying themselves, I just laughed too. 



When Grandmother and then my aunt Laura died, there was a 
good deal of indignant talk between my stepmother and father 
about the fact that Aunt Laura, having lived in the house after 
Grandmother died, at her death had willed it to her uncle 
Emory, although she never really owned it. It seems the house 
had been left to my father by his father with the understanding 
that eventually it would be mine, but Father had neglected to 
have the proper papers arranged or something. Also it seemed 
that most of the beautiful silver and linens and the lovely 
things I had admired there had belonged to my mother. Noth- 
ing ever had been done about this, either, and the discussion 
simply went on all around me but not with me. 

When my stepmother's father died, it was almost the same. 
Again there seemed to be a great to-do about what was going 
to become of his estate. He was a rich man, a millionaire in the 
days when a million dollars meant something. There was a 
great deal of angry talk in the house when the terms of his will 
were learned. 

Everything he possessed was to be sold at auction. If his chil- 
dren wanted anything of his, they were to buy it. Then all of 
the money was to be divided among them three daughters and 
one sonand kept in trust until twenty years after the death of 
the last original heir. Then their children, if they lived that 
long, would inherit. 

This is the only estate I ever heard of that has shrunk with 
the passing years, because it was so badly tied up, but Ogden 
and Madge still have a nice piece of change to look forward to, if 
they can hold out. 

The auction was held in Morristown, and my stepmother 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( 37 ) 

went there to stay for several days. One afternoon she tele- 
phoned me at my office from out there. 

'I've bought a great deal of the furniture I liked as a girl/* 
she said, "and I don't know where I'll put it in the apart- 
ment. I think it might be a good idea, now that you are on 
your own, anyway, if you found a place to live in the neighbor- 
hood and then I could use your room for some of the furniture. 
Of course," she added, "you can still have your meals with us 
and everything will be just the same, but you will sleep some- 
where else/' 

I was so upset I asked Mr. Mclntire for the rest of the day 
off. I decided that by the time she returned from Morristown I 
would be out of the apartment and in a place of my own. 

I remembered seeing a sign APARTMENT AVAILABLE on a very 
pleasant-looking private house near where we lived, and I went 
directly there. I was very fortunate. It was a floor through- 
living room, kitchenette, a very nice bathroom, and a lovely 
bedroom overlooking a garden. It was sparsely furnished, but 
there was a bed and a bureau and in the living room a table 
and some chairs. I took it at once and I was rather surprised 
that such a lovely apartment had not been grabbed up before 
since it was very reasonable only forty dollars a month. 

Mrs. Freedman, who owned the building, explained why. "I 
have three daughters and I have to be very careful who lives 
with us. I didn't want a young man or even a young couple. I 
was waiting for someone just like you." She gave me a sweet 
smile. I had felt desperately unhappy until this warmhearted, 
good woman took me into her large and spotless kitchen and 
offered me a glass of tea. This was the first time I had ever 
been given a glass of tea with lemon. We always put milk in our 
tea and drank it from a cup. I liked this better. I sat there feeling 
very much at home and, in an odd way, not just welcome, but 
wanted a sensation I badly needed. 

I met Mrs. Freedman's eldest girl, Elizabeth, that same night 



( g8 ) SEPTEMBER CHILD: 

when I brought some of my things over. Father was away as 
usual and I could not leave Ogden and Madge alone, or I would 
have moved In at once. I brought over most of my clothes and 
my typewriter, and Elizabeth sat and talked with me as I put 
things away and started making the first home of my own. 
Elizabeth worked in the main New York Public Library at 
Forty-second Street and Fifth Avenue, and I had immediate 
respect for her. She was an intellectual. I had read about in- 
tellectual young women but I had never really known one 
before, except perhaps my stepmother when she first came into 
my life. 

Elizabeth and I at once became close friends. She was fas- 
cinated by all I did in Wall Street, and I was fascinated by her 
work in the library. I was also impressed by the fact that on her 
tiny salary she was paying for a grand piano. She took me down- 
stairs and showed it to me a beautiful, huge Mason and 
Hamlin. She could play some, but I knew more about music 
than she did, and oddly enough, I could read it better. She said 
I had music in my head and she had it in her fingers, which was 
true. She told me I could play her piano whenever I wanted to, 
and I wanted to very much and did so often. 

She gave me her books of exercises, and every time she came 
home from taking a lesson after that she passed it along to me. 
(She eventually became, and still is, a fine music teacher.) This 
warm friendship, with the music and the talk of books, theater 
and art, was a joy. 

Elizabeth was appalled that I had not gone to high school 
and shocked that my family had not seen to my "higher" educa- 
tion. She felt I at least should take some night courses, and the 
next thing I knew, I was going with her to Columbia University 
to take the Brander Matthew lecture series on the theater and 
to study French. 

It was in the French class that I accumulated several beaus. 
The one I liked best was a tall, gaunt man who looked like a 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( 39 ) 

young Abraham Lincoln. His name was Emerson Evans, and he 
worked in the theater. Another young man in the class, whose 
name I have forgotten, was a friend of his and also worked in 
the theater. They were not actors, either one of them, but they 
had something to do with writing for the theater not plays, but 
perhaps publicity. It was all too foreign to me then really to 
know. But one night these two young men invited Elizabeth 
and me to a party in Greenwich Village. 

I had read all about Greenwich Village, and the party did 
not disappoint me a bit. All sorts of odd characters were there, 
oddly dressed and oddly behaved. Everyone was drinking bath- 
tub gin mixed with orange juice, and all the talk was of 
theater, music, art. I thought them a shabby lot, however, and 
not very attractive. I knew, somehow, that most of them were 
part of the fringe that never gets much further in the arts than 
talking about them. 

I did meet one interesting young man there, however. He 
was only eighteen, but he had written a book which was some- 
thing of a best seller. This was Charles Beahan, and he paid a 
bit of attention to me. In fact, Emerson Evans became very 
annoyed, and long before I wanted to leave, he abruptly gath- 
ered up Elizabeth and me and the other young man and started 
us all for home. I did not really like Emerson much after that 
as I had been enjoying myself talking with Charles. 

A few days later I was delighted when Charles phoned me at 
the office. I had not told him where I worked and I was im- 
pressed that he had bothered to find out. Anyway, here he was, 
and he was inviting me to an opening night my first premiere. 
I remember the play, although I do not remember the title. The 
first act was lovely and ended with a music box playing sadly 
on an empty stage and with the sound of a foghorn faintly heard 
in the distance. The second act started twenty years later, almost 
like a new play, and I did not like the rest of it at all. The 



( 4 ) SEPTEMBER CHILD: 

next day when I read the reviews, the critics had much the 
same reaction and I felt very pleased with myself. 

I liked Charles a lot. He was sort of pudgy and comfortable 
and he had huge brown eyes. I used to tell him he looked at 
me like a lovesick spaniel. He thought I was funny and he told 
me he loved my ''clown's mouth," turned up at the corners. He 
said I should be an actress and that I'd make a good comedy 
ingenue as I had "a way of saying things/' 

I quite neglected Emerson Evans for Charles. I heard later 
that Emerson went to Charles and had a terrific row and tried 
to beat him up for stealing his girl. This made me angry, and 
I informed Mr. Evans that I was not, and never had been, his 
girl. He became so possessive that I quit the French class and 
finally avoided him completely, refusing even to speak to him 
on the telephone. I did have some little sense of gratitude, some- 
where within me, however, for his having introduced Charles 
to me. 

Not that I cared about Charles in a romantic way either. The 
farthest we ever got was holding hands in a taxi, but I adored 
going to the theater with him and talking about the plays after- 
ward. Also, he took me, from time to time, to other parties of 
young theater folk, all very much like the ones at that first 
party where I had met him. I never cottoned to any of the peo- 
ple I met, but I did enjoy some of their comments and crazy 
conversation. 

One night we went to quite a different kind of occasion with 
older and established theater people. Sometimes we took Eliza- 
beth along, getting a beau for her, but another girl friend of 
mine, Billie Ahearn, was more fun on a party, and it was she 
who was with me this particular evening. 

1 always must have felt the need of a chaperone or something 
when I went to these gatherings because I never remember 
going without one of the girls, although I went to the theater 
alone with Charles. 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( 41 ) 

At this more adult and dressier party there were two ex- 
tremely handsome young men, one of whom looked exactly like 
the man in the Arrow Collar ads. Billie latched on to him at 
once. The other one appealed to me more because he held the 
floor almost all evening telling hilarious stories in various and 
authentic dialects. He was a tall, slim, dark Irishman with 
twinkling blue eyes. Charles told me he was an actor and a very 
good one. I could have guessed that. His name was Dan Jarre tt, 
and I had no idea then how much he was going to mean to me 
and to my life. 

I had almost forgotten about him when Billie, a week or so 
later, invited her Arrow Collar boy up to her house for dinner. 
She informed me he was bringing a friend with him for me. 
The friend turned out to be Dan Jarrett. 

During and after dinner Dan again held forth with more 
stories and anecdotes, and I thought he was the most amusing 
person I had ever met. He was the first person to make me feel 
shy and inadequate, even stupid. I just sat and listened to him 
and hoped that some time during the evening he would speak 
to me. 

As this particular evening wore on, he said he would like to 
phone a friend of his who lived nearby and whom we ought to 
meet. They had been in the Navy together. The Arrow Collar 
boy had, too, and Dan said they had been known as The Three 
Musketeers. 

The young man (his name was Vincent Murray) came over 
at once and turned out to be attractive in a saturnine sort of 
way. I then phoned Elizabeth to come over to even up the pairs. 

It turned out that one of the reasons Dan wanted Vin, the 
new man, to come was because, almost more than anything, he 
enjoyed "harmonizing," and the three of them had an enormous 
repertoire of songs which they sang together very well. Dan said 
it was even better with four and maybe one of us girls could 
sing the lead. It so happened that I knew most of their songs, 



( 4 2 ) SEPTEMBER CHILD: 

and I did sing the lead. From then on, at least once a week, we 
all got together to "harmonize." 

One evening when the boys were about to leave, Dan took 
me aside and asked, "Have you any idea why I come here so 
often? It's quite a trip, you know, from my house in Flatbush 
up here to Washington Heights." (Billie lived not far from 
me, and since the Arrow Collar boy was now her beau, we met 
at her house.) 

I stammered something about thinking he liked to sing. 

Dan took my hand. "I come up here," he said, "because I'm 
in love with you." 

I did not believe him. I thought it was part of his joking. 
But I could not laugh, because it was the first time anyone, ever, 
had said, "I'm in love with you." I just stood there. 

He continued seriously. "You're the oddest mixture I've ever 
met. I don't believe a word Billie says about your being a big 
business tycooness. I don't think you know which way is up. 
Do you?" 

He always talked that way, and I never knew what to answer. 
I did say, "Why don't you come down to visit me at my office 
and see for yourself?" 

"I'd like to," he said. "I've always wanted to see a tycooness at 
work." 

"All right," I said. "Have lunch with me tomorrow." 

The next day at noon Dan came to pick me up. I was bursting 
with pride because I knew, without a doubt, he was the best- 
looking man anyone at Dominick and Dominick had ever seen. 
The girls fell off their typewriter chairs gaping at him, and my 
rich trading friends nudged each other and ribbed me. 

"So that's why we couldn't get anywhere with you! We must 
seem like a bunch of old crocks compared to him," Frank Phil- 
lips chuckled. 

"So that's where Jeannie's heart lies," said another. 

All this while Dan was waiting for me in the railed-off sec- 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( 43 ) 

tion, near the door of the big main room in which there were 
no partitions. The desks of the partners and their secretaries, 
the "trading corner," and the board room were all open to 
view. While I was putting on my hat and getting my purse and 
gloves, Dan was the target of all eyes, although he could not 
hear the comments, I hoped. 

We went across the street to the Savarin Restaurant in the 
Equitable Life Building, and Dan had ham and eggs. "My 
breakfast/' he explained. This seemed romantic to me. 

Then he said seriously, but with his blue eyes twinkling, 
"Tell me about your love life before I go any further/' 

"My love life?" I exclaimed. "Why, I haven't anyl" 

"None?" 

"None," I said truthfully. 

"Absolutely no one at all?" 

"Well, I have some friends ..." I told him then about 
Charles and about Emerson and the ruckus they had had. 

"Ah, a femme fatale," Dan murmured. 

He had a way of making me feel like a silly little girl, and 
I just could not find my tongue when I was with him. 

"I don't think," he said, "that you are very serious about 
Charles, and I believe I've come at just the right moment in 
your life because I want you to be serious about me. I don't 
want you to see Charles or anyone else, ever again. When you 
want to go to the theater, I'll take you. When you want to go 
anywhere, I'll take you. I want you to be my girl, and not for 
just now, but for always." 

And that is the way it was. From then on he saw me often 
at lunch time but always every night. What he loved best was 
to come to my little apartment, which I had now completely 
furnished, and have me cook dinner for him. This was rather 
frustrating as he preferred the same meal over and over ham- 
burger and fried potatoes. He hated vegetables, especially to- 
matoes; he would not eat salad and always insisted on apple 



(44) SEPTEMBER CHILD 

pie for dessert. The only variation he would permit now and 
then was ham and eggs or maybe a steak or lamb chops. No 
soup, no sauces, no dessert except apple pie. Once I made a 
blueberry pie and he would not touch it, preferring an old 
cold piece of bakery apple pie that was in the icebox. This was 
the only dull thing about him, and it annoyed me as long as I 
knew him. 

Sometimes after dinner we had the other boys in and we 
harmonized. Now and then we went to a movie in the neighbor- 
hood, but Dan scorned movies. His father had been a well- 
known actor; his brother Arthur was an actor, and he had 
another brother, Eddie, who was the treasurer of a Broadway 
theater. "The living theater/' Dan called it and he loved it. 

We saw all the current plays. One of them was Lulu Belle. 
He observed that although Lenore Ulric had been given the 
rave notices, it was his friend, Henry Hull, who was giving the 
greater performance. I wanted desperately to have him take me 
backstage and let me meet these fascinating friends of his, but 
instead we went alone to the Blue Ribbon Rathskeller near 
the Belasco Theater on Forty-fourth Street. He had the inevita- 
ble apple pie and coffee. 

Dan did not introduce me to anyone if he could help it. 
This possessiveness baffled me. But I believed his love for me 
was proven by his willingness to make that boring trip all the 
way to Washington Heights and back to his home in Flatbush 
each night. 

Outside of gratitude for his affection, and pleasure in his 
amusing company, I had no deeper feeling for him. I tried; I 
even prayed. Instead of asking God to make somebody love me, 
I now ended my prayers each night with, "Please, God, make 
me love Dan." I felt he deserved it and, besides, I wanted to. 



chapter 

IV 



o, 



'NE NIGHT after Dan had taken me to see a play, instead of 
going uptown to my apartment for his pie and coffee, he took 
me to the National Vaudeville Artists' Club on Forty-sixth 
Street, where he had an appointment to meet two old friends 
of his, Mr. and Mrs. Thomas E. Shea. Mr. Shea was a dramatic 
actor evidently of some fame, although I had never heard of 
him. His wife was a beautiful, white-haired woman with great 
charm and the business ability of the family, as it was she who 
seemed to be arranging things. 

Mr. Shea did a vaudeville act which consisted of excerpts 
from three of his successes, Cardinal Richelieu, The Bells and 
Dr. Jeckyl and Mr. Hyde, and he was eager to have Dan appear 
with him. There was another young woman in the act, they 
said, someone Dan seemed to know and like. Before the evening 
was over, Dan had agreed to play with them. 

I was much more excited than he was as I had been dying to 
see him on the stage. So far he had been very scornful of all the 
parts that had been offered to him. But he was very fond of the 

( 45 ) 



(46) SEPTEMBER CHILD: 

Sheas and liked being with them. He had known them for years 
as friends of his family, and I believe, like the Jarretts, they 
had come from Boston, too, and were, as Dan put it, 'lace-cur- 
tain Irish/' 

Dan went into rehearsal and soon had to leave town with 
the act. The very next day a long letter arrived and the next 
day, another, and on Sunday a special delivery. I never knew a 
day to go by when Dan was away from me that I did not have 
a letter or a phone call or both. He wrote charmingly, just as he 
spoke, with a great warmth and much humor. He described in 
minute detail everything that happened and that was said, so 
that from one letter to another it was like reading a continued 
story. 

The Sheas and Dan finally returned to New York, and I spent 
a great deal of time with them. I loved Mrs. Shea, who was 
jolly and gossipy and knew all sorts of fascinating tidbits about 
famous people in the theater. It was even more interesting to 
listen to her than to read Walter Winchell, who was about the 
only one at that time with a so-called gossip column. 

The Sheas were "laying off" during this period, but suddenly 
a long tour materialized for them. They were to go on the 
Orpheum Circuit, starting in the Middle West, going up to 
Winnipeg, across Canada to Vancouver, down the coast to Los 
Angeles, back through Salt Lake City and Denver and ending 
up in Chicago surely the most interesting trip imaginable. Dan, 
however, did not want to go and decided to leave the act. I 
could not understand this and urged him to reconsider. 

He had had another part offered to him in a play on Broad- 
way, but when it fell through I saw no reason why he should 
disappoint the Sheas who still had not given up hope of his go- 
ing along. Dan told me then that he felt six months was too 
long for us to be separated. He did not believe in separations 
at all, he said, and when we were married, he would never leave 
me even for a day. 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( 47 ) 

It was the first time he had mentioned marriage and it 
brought me up with something of a start. I was not sure I 
wanted to marry him, not forever and ever, which is what mar- 
riage meant to me, even though he was a dear, good man. I 
finally put it out of my mind by saying to myself, "I'm too 
young to consider it right now/' which was true. 

One day Dan phoned me in great excitement and said he had 
to see me at once at my office. I could not imagine what had 
happened, but I told him to come along. He was smiling and 
his eyes were shining when he came in, and he was bursting 
with some good news. He asked if I could come out for a cup of 
coffee, and, of course, I could. 

Seated on opposite sides of the small table, he reached across 
and took both my hands. "The most wonderful thing has hap- 
pened. The girl in the act suddenly has married and can't make 
the trip. The Sheas sent me down to ask if you'd take her place 
and come along on the tour/' 

"To act?" I gasped. I thought they must all be crazy. In spite 
of my love for the theater and theatrical people, I was com- 
pletely un-stage-struck. I wanted to write for the theater, and 
perhaps direct, but it never had entered my mind to become an 
actress. I did not think I was attractive enough, for one thing. 

"Of course to act!" Dan was saying. "You can do it." 

"But I've never done any acting," I said, "unless you count 
the time I played the wicked stepmother in Snow White when 
I was six!" 

"I will teach you," he said, "and think how wonderful it will 
be for us to make that trip together. You've been urging me to 
take it, and I will only if you will come, too." 

"But I can't leave my job." 

"How much do you earn?" 

I answered proudly, "Two hundred and fifty a month" a 
very good salary for a secretary in those days. 



( 4^ ) SEPTEMBER CHILD: 

"You'll get one hundred a week, and all your transportation, 
and you can be sure of it for the next six months." 

We had dinner with the Sheas that night and they, too, 
urged me to come. Mrs. Shea said she was positive 1 would be 
a great success in the part and it would be a wonderful way to 
start my theater career. She took it for granted that every young 
girl wanted to be in the theater. 

The next thing I knew I was standing on the empty stage of 
the Royale Theater in the Bronx, and Dan was directing me. I 
still had not made up my mind to go, but suddenly, when I 
knew the lines, I discovered that I was enjoying what I was do- 
ing, especially my short role of Julie de Mortimer in the Cardi- 
nal Richelieu sketch: "Around her form I draw the awful circle 
of our solemn church!" 

The next day I broke the news to Mr. Mclntire. "You can't 
do a thing like that, Jeannie," he cried. "Work in the theater is 
terribly uncertain, and as you say yourself, you have no experi- 
ence. It seems absolutely foolhardy to me. Don't you like your 
work here? Maybe it's time you had a raise." 

I told him I was to get a hundred dollars a week, and he said 
that would only be for a little time and then what would I do? 

"Well," I said suddenly, "give me a leave of absence for the 
six months. Let me make the trip, and then I'll come back. 
Actually," I added, "I don't care anything about being an ac- 
tress, but I would like to go to California." 

He began to laugh then and said, "Well, I really don't blame 
you, but don't marry that good-looking Irishman, because if you 
do, I know you'll never come back." 

I promised him solemnly, and I promised myself, too, that I 
wouldn't. Directly the tour finished in Chicago, I would come 
back to my desk. I looked at the route sheet I had been given 
and gave him the exact date when he could expect me. 

He put out his hand and said, "Now that I'm sure you're 
coming back, I think it's terrific/ 1 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( 49 ) 

Suddenly great excitement swept the entire office. Everyone 
thought it a marvelous thing I was doing. All the girls said they 
were green with envy, and even the Dominick partners and 
some of my tycoons said they envied me. Only Emilie Hall, my 
special friend, another secretary, and Holland Reavis were un- 
happy about it. Emilie burst into tears and said she could not 
stand having me go away for so long. I was surprised to find 
that I meant that much to her. I was always surprised I still am 
when I found someone so genuinely fond of me. Mr. Reavis 
said he would think it a fine adventure if it did not look to him 
as though I were running off to be with Dan. He did not like 
him, simply because he was an actor and "actors have no sense 
of responsibility." 

My stepmother took exactly the same point of view. She was 
distraught when she heard what I planned to do. She recounted 
all the dire things that had happened to May Wright when she 
went on tour. Poor May was always getting stranded somewhere 
and wiring for money to get back to New York. I could not 
make my stepmother realize that I was going to be with very 
reputable people and very much on the big time; what's more, 
in the headline act. Vaudeville was then at its height, and the 
Orpheum Circuit was two-a-day. The theater in each town had 
just about the same high standing as the old Palace Theater 
had in New York. 

I also explained my little deal with Mr. Mclntire to return 
to Wall Street when the six months were up, but she went right 
on saying it was a disgraceful thing I was doing; I was running 
away with a man; it was a terrible thing for the family and the 
children, and everyone would think me no better than a loose 
woman. 

As usual, Father had nothing much to say and began to tease 
me, prophesying that it would only be a few weeks before I 
would be wiring home for money like May Wright. 

"And I, for one, won't send her any," my stepmother stormed. 



( 5 ) SEPTEMBER CHILD: 

"If she gets into trouble, which I'm sure she will, she can just 
stew in her own juice, and that is my last word/' 

It was, too. She never spoke to me again. 

I was upset by all of this but not terribly so, as I felt it would 
blow over and they would all be proud of me in the end. Be- 
sides, rehearsals were going well, and I was having a wonderful 
time being fitted for my costumes. The Julie de Mortimer one 
was gorgeous. It was dark-green velvet and it had a large, heavy 
white-lace collar studded with varicolored fake jewels. I was to 
wear my long hair hanging down, and I had a little Juliet cap 
of pearls. I began to think I looked quite nice for an unattractive 
girl. 

I decided, however, that something more was needed, and 
suddenly I made up my mind to get a permanent wave. I was 
told the best one at that time was given at the beauty parlor of 
the Albert Hotel in Greenwich Village, and this seemed con- 
venient to me as, following the permanent, I could then go to 
the farewell luncheon Holland Reavis and my tycoons were 
giving me at Mouquin's Restaurant at Twenty-sixth Street and 
Sixth Avenue a very famous and elegant place in those days 
but long since disappeared. 

I left early on a Saturday morning for my permanent as it 
used to take hours and hours, especially since my hair was very 
long and, in spite of it being extremely fine, I had a great deal 
of it. (That "Dutch cut" of my childhood was responsible for it, 
my stepmother always said.) I wore it piled high on my head, 
and when it was straight, all was well; but after the permanent, 
I had ten times as much hair, it seemed, and I could not find 
any way to arrange it. 

As I look back, it was a beautiful permanent, not a bit frizzy, 
but it gave so much extra body to my hair that when I did 
manage to do something with it, I could not get my hat on. I 
was wearing another of my black pressed-beaver sailors and I 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( 51 ) 

pulled it down as well as I could and skewered it fast with two 
hatpins. 

Late for my luncheon, I jumped into a taxi. As the cab jiggled 
along, my hair grew springier and springier. By the time I got 
to Mouquin's, my hat was a good six inches above my forehead. 
I ran upstairs to the private dining room where my tycoons 
and some of the girls from the office, including Miss Kingman 
and Emilie Hall, were already gathered. When I dashed in, 
Emilie gave a shriek. "Your hair! Your beautiful hair! What 
have you done to it?" 

There were mirrors all around the room and I could not help 
but see what a sight I was with my black shiny sailor riding 
tipsily on a great mass of hair. The men roared with laughter, 
but Emilie was inconsolable. I finally explained that I was go- 
ing to wear my hair down my back on the stage and I thought 
it would be prettier with a wave in it, whereupon all the men 
shouted, "Take it down! Take it down!" And I did. Then even 
Emilie was appeased. I pulled it back and tied a handkerchief 
around it to get it out of the way, and we sat down to the 
luncheon, which was mostly caviar and champagne. 

I was supposed to be at rehearsal at three o'clock way up in 
the Bronx at the Royale Theater, but we were all having such 
a wonderful time, I quite forgot. When I did remember, it was 
almost three, and I was still onTwenty-sixth Street. 

They all decided to escort me to the theater. I had a notion 
this would lead to no good, but there was nothing I could do 
about it, and we piled into several cabs and took off. 

Unfortunately Dan was standing out in front of the theater, 
pacing up and down nervously, when we all rolled up and I 
stepped out, quite lit on the champagne and the excitement and 
the fun we had been having. 

It was the first time I had ever seen Dan's face darken with 
anger, and a wave of fear washed over me. I was going off, as 
my family had said, with this man who was suddenly a stranger 



( 5 2 ) SEPTEMBER CHILD 

and who was now looking at me icily. And I was taking leave of 
all my close and warmhearted friends. 

I wanted to present Dan to them, but he rasped, "You're 
late/' turned on his heel and walked into the theater, leaving 
me to say my speedy good-bys alone. We were leaving the next 
day, so this really was good-by. Ernilie clung to me, weeping. 
Suddenly all the joy went out of the day. When I finally walked 
in to start the rehearsal, I found the Sheas were quietly dis- 
appointed in me, too. For the first time in my life I felt a sense 
of panic. I wanted to run, to jump into another cab and try to 
catch up with my friends and never leave them again, but I 
could not do it. I knew it was too late for the Sheas to get anyone 
to replace me now, and I just would have to go through with it. 



K. 




chapter 

i 



F< 



OUR OF THE vaudeville acts which were going to travel to- 
gether to the coast "broke in" at the Orpheum Theater in 
Sioux City, Iowa, for a "split-week" engagement. These theatri- 
cal expressions were as fascinating to me as had been "ex-divi- 
dend/* "bid and asked/' "put and call options/' "short sale" 
and other brokerage jargon when I first went to Wall Street. 

The trip to Iowa was such an adventure for me that it almost 
overshadowed the fact that I was about to make my first appear- 
ance on the professional stage. The Sheas had a drawing room. 
I had an adjoining compartment. With the door between open, 
it was like a little apartment on wheels, and we all spent the 
daylight hours there, the Sheas and Dan playing three-handed 
pinochle, a game I saw was something like whist except that 
you play with a double pack from the nine up. Joe, Mr. Shea's 
dresser (I do not remember his last name), taught me to play 
rummy, but mostly I preferred to "kibitz" at the pinochle 
game. 

Dan and Joe slept off somewhere in "a section/' Dan in the 

( 55 ) 



(56) SEPTEMBER CHILD: 

lower berth and Joe in the upper. Much to my surprise, my 
berth was comfortable, and I slept wonderfully well. I enjoyed 
the gentle rocking of the train. Having our meals in the dining 
car was another pleasure, and the food was very good, too. It 
was a leisurely trip; the train seemed to amble along, and I 
loved every minute of it. It is a pity we have to travel so fast 
these days. 

It was a bright sunny morning in late August when we ar- 
rived in Sioux City. As soon as we had checked in at the hotel, 
I wanted to go to the theater and unpack my trunk. (Dan had 
gone with me to buy a real theatrical wardrobe trunk, and 
when it was delivered it was exciting to see my name lettered on 
it, and under it, in large letters, THEATER.) 

Dan said there was no point in going over to the theater on 
such a lovely morning and that he would give my keys to Joe 
who would unpack for me. I was dying to go to the theater and 
do this myself, and it had not dawned on me that Joe was also 
to be my "dresser." It was not long, of course, before I appreci- 
ated this luxury. 

Suddenly Dan said, 'It's such a beautiful day, let's go out 
and play nine holes of golf before the matinee." I had never 
played golf, but before we left New York Dan had given me a 
bag full of clubs and I had bought a pair of golf shoes. I cer- 
tainly had not planned on golfing this very first day, however. 
I had expected we would rehearse, but Dan explained that the 
Sheas would probably nap all morning and that at the theater 
the stage would be occupied with "setting up the show/' which 
I came to know meant hanging the scenery, arranging the light- 
ing and, for the artists who used music through their acts, re- 
hearsing with the orchestra. We used only "opening and closing 
music," which Dan said Joe would rehearse, and he would also 
supervise our setting. I longed to go to the theater and at least 
watch and get the feel of it all, and I tried to explain this to 
Dan. I even tried to describe the butterflies which were already 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( 57 ) 

flitting around my innards when I realized that that very after- 
noon I was to utter a piercing shriek off-stage and dash on into a 
circle of light surrounding Mr. Shea in his red robes as Cardinal 
Richelieu, where we would play our scene; but Dan bundled 
me into a taxi and off we went to the country club. 

Dan was a good golfer and he wanted me to be one, too. My 
first round was to be played with only a mashie (today I guess it 
is a #6) and a putter, but I wanted a caddie with me and Dan 
indulgently let a bright little boy carry my bagful of clubs. 
Fortunately my very first swipe caught the ball cleanly and 
sent it sailing straight down the fairway. I have been a captive 
of the game ever since. 

When we finally did get to the theater, the performance had 
already started. I was horrified at being so late, but Dan just 
laughed. "We're sixth on the bill," he said. "There are nine 
acts and the first one has just gone on. We have more than an 
hour/' 

He took me to my dressing-room and suddenly I felt relieved 
and almost at home. Joe had taken out my costumes and hung 
them up. Mrs. Shea had given me a sort of cretonne "costume 
protector," as she called it, which fastened by loops to the 
hooks on the dressing-room wall. The costumes were placed on 
it and then the rest of the long piece of cretonne could be looped 
over them when they were not being worn, to keep them from 
gathering dust. There was a sort of runner for the make-up 
shelf of the same cretonne and two chair covers, or rather covers 
for the backs of the customary straight dressing-room chairs. 
Joe had arranged all of these, too, and laid out my make-up 
on a clean white towel. There was a vase of beautiful anemones 
with a card from the Sheas which said: "Break a leg." I soon 
found out it is "bad luck" to wish "good luck" in the theater, so 
you say something like, "Break your neck," or if you are French 
or English or consider yourself a sophisticate, you say, "Merde." 
I do not know where "break a leg," etc., came from, but I 



(58) SEPTEMBER CHILD: 

believe "merde" Is from the famous "mot de Cambronne." 
(General Pierre Jacques Etienne Cambronne commanded a di- 
vision of Napoleon's Imperial Guard at the Battle of Waterloo 
and when asked to surrender is sometimes quoted as saying, 
"The Guard dies but never surrenders," but is more pop- 
ularly known to have replied with the single word, "Merde" 
which might be politely translated as something like the equiva- 
lent of our own American General Anthony M cAuliffe's famous 
"Nuts" during the Battle of Bastogne in World War II.) 

It all looked very homey but glamorous, and I said to Dan, 
"I feel like a star." 

"You are, sort of," he said. "This Is dressing room number 
two. You're the leading lady of the headline act. Shea has num- 
ber one." 

"Where are you dressing?" I asked, and he answered carelessly, 
"Somewhere up in the flies," and walked out. 

I put on my dressing-gown and sat down before the big 
mirror surrounded by light bulbs locked in little wire cages. 
(I learned this was done to keep the actors from making off 
with them!) There was a knock on the door, and Joe stuck his 
head in. "Find everything?" he asked. 

"Oh, yes," I said. "Everything's lovely, Joe." 

"Good. Take your time. I'll let you know fifteen minutes 
before the act," and he disappeared. 

I looked at the array of theatrical make-up Dan had bought 
for me Max Factor's, it all was. I was not used to much make-up 
although I had darkened my blond eyelashes with mascara since 
I was twelve. There was a stick of flesh-colored grease paint ly- 
ing there, and I figured out you must start with that. I rubbed 
a layer of it over my face and neck and then patted on a lot of 
powder with a big puff and carefully swept it off with a soft 
little brush, as Dan had instructed me when buying these 
things. There was blue eye shadow and a black eyebrow pencil 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( 59 ) 

which I applied gingerly, and then came the most fascinating 
part of all. 

There was a stick of something called "Cosmetique," and a 
bit of this was to be melted in a small pan which fit over a little 
apparatus holding a candle. When the "Cosmetique" had 
melted, it was applied to the eyelashes with a little stick. This 
was called "beading" the eyelashes. I thought the effect quite 
ravishing and was so absorbed in my "beading" that I started 
and almost poked the stick into my eye when there came a sud- 
den rap on the door. Thinking it was Joe again, or maybe Dan, 
I called out, "Come in." 

A coal-black face appeared. It was Al Herman, at that time 
a very popular and highly paid black-face comedian. 

"Hello," he said. "Your act and Jack and I are going to be 
together for the whole tour to the coast and we thought we'd 
work up a little afterpiece. The booking office likes that, you 
know, and the audience sort of expects it of us. They don't 
often get two comedians on the same bill and they like to see 
us get together after the regular show." He stopped a moment, 
but I had no idea what to say, so he went on: 

"You're the only girl on the bill who speaks lines, so you're 
elected." 

"To do what?" I finally gasped. 

"To do the afterpiece with us," he said. 

What, I started to ask, is that, but thought better of it, and 
as casually as possible I said, "What am I to do?" 

"Well," he said, "we figured out a little sketch. You come 
on when we are in the middle of an argument. Bring that bunch 
of flowers you have there on the make-up shelf with you and 
ask us to buy them. Of course," he said, "you have to do this 
in French, but that isn't hard for you, is it? You just keep asking 
us to buy the flowers and well ad lib some stuff and kid around, 
and then finally Jack will come over to you and kind of cozy 
up. You keep right on asking him to buy the flowers and when 



(60) SEPTEMBER CHILD: 

finally he does, you thank him and say, ]e t f adore.' That's all 
you have to do. But 'Je t'adore' is the gag, so don't forget it. 
It will be a lot of fun/' he said. "See you later/' and out he 
went. 

For a moment I sat there, stunned. I could not think how to 
say, "Will you buy my flowers?" in French, in spite of those 
lessons at Columbia. Suddenly I could not remember any of the 
lines of my own act. I knew I had lost my mind. As they say in 
murder trials, "I picked up the knife and then everything went 
black/' Everything went black! 

Silence filled the little dressing-room. Way off in the distance 
I could hear the tinkle of music. The show was on and I would 
soon have to get out there on the stage. I knew that after Joe 
dropped a length of chain into an iron pot, to simulate the 
noise of gates closing behind me, I was to let out a scream be- 
fore my entrance. I decided to try that part anyway. I could 
not make a sound. I got up and took a drink of water and 
tried again. Nothing. I opened the door of my dressing-room 
and looked up and down the corridor, hoping to see Dan or 
Joe or almost anyone, but it was empty. But the little candle 
for my "Cosmetique" was burning away on the make-up shelf. 
I had lit a candle. Now I said a prayer. 

Feeling calm and assured almost at once, I put on my beauti- 
ful green velvet costume, took down my long hair and was 
arranging my little pearl Juliet cap when the door opened and 
Dan came in. 

"Stand up and let me look at you/* he said. 

I did. 

"Turn around." 

I turned like a mannequin. 

"Okay/* he said and started to walk away. 

"Dan," I called out. He turned back, but I was ashamed to 
tell him I had been afraid and besides, I did not feel afraid any 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( 61 ) 

longer. I looked at myself In the long mirror and thought I 
looked very nice. I repeated Dan's word, "Okay." 

Joe stuck his head in then and said, "You have plenty of time, 
but come out on stage and I'll show you where you make your 
entrance." 

I followed him and he pulled back the heavy fire door which 
separated the dressing-rooms from the stage. Now I could hear 
the audience screaming with laughter and bursting into de- 
lighted applause. 

"Wonderful audience/' Joe approved. "They're eating it up." 

"Who's out there now?" I whispered. 

"Jack Rose. A very funny fellow." 

So that was the Jack to whom I was to say "Je t'adore" in the 
afterpiece. 

"Al Herman asked me to do something with the two of them 
later on," I told Joe. 

"Good," he nodded and walked away. 

Jack Rose was a funny fellow, but I was too numb to laugh. 
I stood where Joe had placed me, watching Jack and listening 
to the audience laugh. His act was "in one." Back of the "street 
drop" where he worked there was a great deal of quiet bustle 
as the stage hands set up the scenery and placed the furniture 
and "props" for the next act, Thomas E. Shea and Company. I 
saw Joe bringing over the iron pot and the piece of chain 
which would make the "effect" to launch me on my stage career. 

Jack's act was over; the applause died; the lights dimmed. 
When I heard the chain drop into the iron pot, I screamed all 
right. I wanted to. 

When the act was over, Mr. Shea patted me on the head and 
said, "Splendid." Mrs. Shea gave me a big kiss and said, "I wish 
you could see how beautiful you looked with the 'surprise 
pink' lights on you." 

Dan said, "I told you there was nothing to it." He was sitting 
in my dressing-room smoking a cigarette. 



( 62 ) SEPTEMBER CHILD: 

"The worst is yet to come/' I said. 

"Why, what's happened?" 

I explained about the afterpiece. 

"You can't do that!" Dan almost shouted. "Why didn't you 
tell Al you're just a beginner?" 

"Because I'm the only girl on the bill who speaks lines. I've 
got to do it!" I said. 

He gave me a strange look. "Go ahead then," he said and 
walked out. 

I was very provoked. I needed his help, and he had turned 
his back on me. Well, I said to myself, that's a man for you! 

After a bit Jack Rose came in and introduced himself. Then 
he helped me pick out the "street dress" I was to wear. He 
advised me about putting up my hair, too. He sat there smok- 
ing and regarding me critically. 

"Say," he finally asked, "how old are you?" 

"Twenty-two." I was growing older very fast. 

"Humpf," he snorted. "You look like my baby sister. . . . 
But you're good," he said. "I watched you. You project." I did 
not know what that meant. 

Jack Rose was a funny-looking fellow with a long nose, a big 
mouth and small bright eyes, but I loved him at once. He was 
the first person that day to make me feel as though I belonged. 
He went on casually discussing the afterpiece, and by then I 
fortunately had put together a few odds and ends of French 
which I thought would do. I remembered the words of Racquel 
Meller's "Les Violettes" song and decided to use them as my 
base with the word flowers instead of violets. It came out some- 
thing like: "Voulez-vous acheter les fteurs, s'il vous plait?" 

I could feel that time was growing short and I must change 
into my "street dress," but Jack made no move to leave the 
room. I could not bring myself to ask him to go. Suddenly 
I decided there was nothing for it and since I had a good heavy 
slip on anyway, I dropped my dressing gown and started to put 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( 63 ) 

on my dress just as the door opened and Dan walked in. If he 
had caught me in bed with Jack, he could not have looked more 
shocked. I pretended a casualness I did not feel. Jack was ut- 
terly oblivious to the situation and did not even rise or stop 
smoking to acknowledge my stammered introduction. "Hi," was 
his casual greeting to Dan. Again "everything went black/' 

Then I was once more standing in the entrance down "in 
one/' and on cue, as carefully instructed by Jack, I came out 
and said, "Voulez-vous acheter les fteursT' and my part of the 
afterpiece was on. When we got to the point where I was to 
say, "Je t'adore" I quite meant it. I even gave Jack an un- 
scheduled kiss on the cheek, whereupon he went into a comic 
paroxysm, breaking up his new straw hat and throwing it out 
into the audience which was falling in the aisles with laughter. 
(He was known as a "nut comedian/' rather like Jerry Lewis 
today.) Al Herman, still in black-face, of course, stood aside, 
puffing a big cigar and topped the hilarity by yelling, "Don't 
you hear what the mam'selle says?" Jack asked, "What does the 
mam'selle say?" 

I repeated, "]e t' adore." 

Al screamed, "Shut the door, you dam* fool! Shut the door! 
What are you waiting for?" 

The next day I looked eagerly in the paper for the review. 
There was a long laudatory paragraph about Mr. Shea, ending 
up with: "The girl who plays Julie de Mortimer wears a beauti- 
ful wig and has a powerful voice." When it came to the after- 
piece, the critic wrote: "A very pretty young French girl with 
a good sense of timing proved a valuable asset. We couldn't find 
any mention of her in the program. She is probably the wife of 
one of the comedians." 



Our next "stand" was the very big-time Orpheum Theater in 
Omaha, Nebraska. There were ten acts on this bill, and an 



(64) SEPTEMBERCHILD: 

additional two of them were to travel with us to the coast- 
Will and Gladys Aherne, and the Paul Whiteman Band. Mor- 
ton Downey was the soloist. 

The most interesting act to me, however, was Houdini, who 
was a special added attraction. He had a huge tank of water 
on the stage into which he was thrown, handcuffed and trussed 
up in a heavy burlap bag. I watched him from the wings at 
almost every performance as he accomplished this and other 
miraculous escapes. 

Al, Jack and I were still doing our afterpiece, and Houdini 
stood in the wings returning the compliment of watching us 
at almost every performance. As I came off one evening, he 
spoke to me in French. "Oh, 1 don't really speak French," I 
said. "I just pretend." 

He looked surprised. "You have an American accent," he 
said, "but you seem quite at home in the language." 

I explained they were words from Racquel Meller's song, 
and he seemed to think this hilarious. Since I had spoken very 
seriously, he reminded me of my tycoons, laughing at me. 

Houdini was an odd man, short, bushy-haired, with an extraor- 
dinarily powerful physique. He showed me how the basis of 
his escape technique was muscular control. He could inflate his 
chest to forty-four inches and bring it down to thirty-eight at 
will. When he was tied up, he could expand all the muscles in 
his body, and when he relaxed them, no matter how tight the 
rope or chains or whatever he had been fastened with, he could 
practically slither out. He could relax his hands to such an 
extent that he could pull them right through some types of 
handcuffs and thus release the other fastenings. He could open 
any lock with a steel pick (he had an assortment of them) held 
between his teeth. He also told me he had trained himself to 
be able to stay under water for four minutes. Since he did not 
want anyone else to hear these confidences, he would invite me 
into his dressing-room and close the door. This infuriated Dan. 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( 65 ) 

I do not know what he thought we were doing, but he definitely 
did not like it. 

Will and Gladys Aherne were old friends of Dan's and he 
liked to have our meals with them, but I wanted to go with 
Houdini and his entourage who, I thought, were even more 
fascinating. I also loved to be with Jack and Al Herman and 
his wonderful wife, Madge, but Dan wanted to be alone with 
me or with the Sheas or, during this week, with Will and 
Gladys. 

I liked Gladys very much but I could not stand her husband, 
Will, because he was always criticizing and complaining about 
her performance. They dressed together in the room next to 
mine and I could hear them arguing. I never really understood 
what it was all about, but my sympathies were with Gladys. 

One day Gladys was so infuriated with Will (who was billed 
as her brother) that she asked me if she could move into my 
dressing room and dress with me. I told her by all means. .It was 
a distinct relief to have her beside me at my dressing shelf and 
not to have to hear their bickering through the thin walls. 

How lucky I was that Gladys moved in just then! She was 
horrified to see me use grease paint. "You'll ruin your skin," 
she cried, "and you absolutely mustn't use that heavy theatrical 
powder either. You'll have pores and blackheads the size of 
peas. That stuff's only for men or women with bad complexions. 
Just use a little cream base, like this," and she passed over a 
jar of Dorothy Gray's Skin Food. "This is good for your skin," 
she said. "Lots of women leave it on overnight, but with your 
kind of skin, the less you do it, the better." 

I never did use grease paint or heavy theatrical powder after 
that, and I have never had a pore or a blackhead "as big as 
a pea." Gladys suggested that after taking off my make-up with 
cream, I should wash my face with Physicians' and Surgeons* 
Soap, since it lathers in cold and/or hard water. It is very drying, 
however, so it must be followed with a film of oil or cream and 



(66) SEPTEMBER CHILD 

plenty of hand lotion on the hands. Also, I was never to use a 
dirty old towel, as was the custom for removing make-up, but 
was to lay in a supply of soft paper napkins for that purpose. 
Now why didn't we two think up the idea of cleansing tissues 
then and there? 

Will and Gladys were golfers, too, and so were Jack Rose and 
Al Herman. The six of us set out several times that week for 
the golf course. One day after our golf game 1 returned to the 
hotel to discover that my one jewel, a diamond solitaire which 
my grandmother had given me (it had been her engagement 
ring), had been stolen. I had put it in my pocketbook and locked 
the pocketbook in my suitcase, but the suitcase had been broken 
into and the ring was gone. I remembered the Edinburgh motto 
that hung on my nursery wall: Except the Lord keep the city,, 
the watchman waketh but in vain,, and suddenly I realized that 
since that afternoon in Sioux City I had quite forgotten my 
prayers and going to church had never even entered my mind. 



chapter 



I 



N MINNEAPOLIS there was a photograph of me and a little 
story (sent in by the publicity department) in the newspaper 
about the fact that I insisted on using my own name even 
though it was a difficult one. Through this John Dalrymple 
came backstage to see me. I was fascinated to find that he was 
a wheat king and had larger fields of wheat than almost anyone 
else in the world. We tried to figure out our relationship, but 
the best we could do was to make it thirty-second cousins. 

Since mine is an unusual name, I have been looked up by 
other Dalrymples all over the world. The first time I was in 
London, an elderly peer whose mother's maiden name had been 
Lady Jean Dalrymple unexpectedly called on me at the Savoy 
Hotel and took me to luncheon at the Houses of Parliament 
Restaurant. Then he showed me the Magna Charta there with 
"Dalrymple, Earl of Stair," scrawled upon it as one of the 
signators. 

After Minneapolis came Winnipeg, and then a glorious, two- 
day trip across the Canadian Rockies to Vancouver. We were 



( 68 ) SEPTEMBER CHILD: 

fortunate to have the train stop over a few hours at Medicine 
Hat, Banff and Lake Louise, where the scenery is awe-inspiring. 
I sent off dozens of postcards to my unadventurous friends in 
Wall Street, took rolls and rolls of photographs and altogether 
acted, as Dan scornfully put it, "like a tourist/* which I was. 

When we reached Vancouver, I saw the Pacific for the first 
time, but the main thing I remember about Vancouver is the 
size of the geraniums. They grew three and four feet high, and 
many houses had hedges of them. I had never seen geraniums 
except in little pots in my grandmother's conservatory and I 
gaped in awe and wonderment at these giants. 

Seattle, our next stop, was exciting because of its Municipal 
Market. We are used to supermarkets now, but at that time 
Seattle's great market was famous and the prices were positively 
ridiculous: twenty-five cents for a peach basket full of tomatoes, 
great beautiful melons for a nickel apiece and huge Dungeness 
crabs for twenty cents each. I had a little suite at the Washing- 
ton Hotel with oh, joy! a lovely kitchen, and I spent most of 
the week shopping and cooking and entertaining the whole 
troupe. 

The next week we were in Portland, and there roses, roses, 
roses were the center of my attention. When we came across 
Oakland Bay on the ferry, the Golden Gate did not impress me 
half as much as the lovely gulls that swooped down and caught 
bits of bread and other edibles that the passengers, mostly daily 
commuters, threw to them. We were in beautiful San Francisco 
several weeks as, after playing the big-time Orpheum house, we 
too commuted across the bay to the Orpheum in Oakland for 
a week and then came back to play two weeks at the Golden 
Gate Theater which was "small-time/' There I had my first 
taste of "three-a-day." 

Finally we reached Los Angeles. Here we were to remain 
for over a month, for, like San Francisco, after playing the big- 
time Orpheum for two weeks, we were to play the "three-a- 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( 69 ) 

day'* Hill Street Theater for another fortnight Monday-night 
openings at the Orpheum were like the Monday matinees at 
the New York Palace, Movie stars, directors, producers, talent 
scouts and writers worked at the studios all day and so came 
at night. 

Much to my astonishment and delight, Charlie Beahan was 
one of the many movie people who came backstage after the 
show. He was working for the Fox Film Corporation as story 
editor. He at once wanted to arrange a screen test for me, but 
Dan would not hear of it. Charlie also wanted to show me 
through the studio and take me to luncheon at the commissary, 
but even though he cordially invited him, too, Dan refused, and 
I would not go without him. Ah me ... 

Ben Piazza, who was the casting director for R.K.O., also 
came to see me and asked me to take a test, but Dan said it 
would be a waste of time and, after all, what would I do if they 
wanted to put me under contract? He said I'd be a "starlet'* 
with a salary to start of no more than seventy-five dollars or so 
a week, and they'd probably only use me for "cheesecake pic- 
tures" for six months and then not pick up the option. He also 
said the starlets were at the beck and call of what he disdainfully 
referred to as "the management" and he hinted pretty broadly 
at lurid and sinister doings. All of this, however, did not bother 
me a bit as I still had no interest in making acting a career, and 
besides, I had my promise to Mr. Mclntire to keep and already 
I was looking forward to being back with my Wall Street friends 
so I could enchant them with stories o iny travels. I sent them 
postcards, souvenirs and the photographs I took, but I never 
had time to write a proper letter. Anyway, I had better than 
the time of my life in California, although there were many 
things I had to leave undone. I wanted above all to meet my 
old pen pal, as he called himself, William S. Hart, but Dan 
would not hear of it. Dan was very scornful of my beloved Bill. 
He said he'd been a second-rate stage actor who got lucky in 



( 7 ) SEPTEMBER CHILD: 

the films. Dan seemed to hate the idea that I had been writing 
to him since I was a little girl and he insisted that it must have 
been a secretary who answered my fan letters, as Dan called 
them. 

To keep the peace, I gave up the whole idea, and I still re- 
gret it. But there was plenty to do, and there were other in- 
teresting people to meet. One of them was Hugh Herbert, the 
playright, who at that time was writing at one of the studios. 
Dan and he had once written several revue sketches together, 
and this gave me an idea. 

"Dan," I said one day, "you should be doing an act of your 
own instead of playing a small part in somebody else's act/' 

"What kind of an act could I do?" Dan asked. 

"A sketch," I said. 

"There are only a couple of people who write decent ones," 
Dan said. "Hugh doesn't do it any more, and Paul Gerard Smith 
wants about five thousand dollars before he even starts, and 
then you can't be sure it will be any good." 

"You could write a sketch for yourself," I said. 

"I don't have an idea." 

"Well," I chirped, "I do. One of the girls at Dominick's got 
married and would have been perfectly happy except for the 
fact that she loathed her husband's best friend. One day she 
told us a hilarious story about her husband trying to bring this 
man home to dinner. Couldn't this situation be the basis of an 
amusing act?" 

Dan let the idea percolate for a few days and then after the 
show one night, when I was taking off my make-up, he walked 
into my dressing room with some sheets of paper in his hand 
and casually asked, "How does this sound to you?" 

He had written the opening of the sketch, and it was good. 
By the time we got to Salt Lake City, it was well along. We even 
had a title for it: Just a Pal, my title, but one of Dan's favorite 
expressions. By the following week in Denver we were working 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( 71 ) 

on the very end of it, "the closing/' as it was called in vaudeville. 

We decided to read it to the Sheas, and they were enthusiastic. 
Mrs. Shea said, "Of course there's only one girl to play the 
wife." 

"Who's that?" Dan and I asked simultaneously. 

"Why, Jeannie, of course!" Mrs. Shea said. 

"Me?" I gasped. "I can't. I have to go back to Wall Street." 

"Nonsense," Mrs. Shea said. "You'll be bored to tears work- 
ing there from now on. Besides, you owe it to Dan. And think 
of the fun you will have together in your own act DAN JARRETT 
and JEAN DALRYMPLE in a comedy sketch, Just a Pal." 



We spent Christmas in Denver, but it was not a happy time 
for me. Although I had sent off a load of gifts to my family, I 
received not even a card from them. In fact, I had not heard 
from any of them on the entire trip although I had written and 
sent postcards and photographs home from each city. Well, I 
did receive a penny postcard from my father while we were in 
Los Angeles. It said: Don't take any wooden nickels. 

My Wall Street friends and my little Washington Heights 
circle had not forgotten me, however. There were beautiful 
gifts from my tycoons, including a magnificent traveling case 
with lovely silver fittings from my favorite, Holland Reavis, 
who finally had forgiven me for "going off." We had a Christ- 
mas party on the stage after the show, and it was a festive 
occasion for everyone but me. Al Herman and Jack Rose were 
still with us, but we had lost Paul Whiteman and Morton 
Downey in California. In their place we had dancing Tony de- 
Marco and the first of his four Sallys. For Christmas Eve, Al 
and Jack had extended our afterpiece and included Tony, who 
did a whirlwind dance routine with me, much to Dan's an- 
noyance. It was all very gay and amusing, and I must have been 



( 7 2 ) SEPTEMBER CHILD: 

a pretty good actress because no one, not even Dan, knew how 
sad and hurt my family had made me. 

But the worst was yet to come. When we got to Chicago 
and what a wonderful bill that was at the Palace, with Sophie 
Tucker headlining, Smith and Dale rolling them in the aisles 
with the same "Dr. Kronkheit" act, and the Weir Brothers, with 
their tomfoolery I found all the Christmas presents I had 
lovingly sent to my family neatly returned to me, unopened. 
On all the packages, in my stepmother's bold hand, was written 
in black pencil: Return to Sender. 

Miss High had always frowned on "commercializing" Christ- 
mas, and she had taught me to make all my gifts. So stitch by 
stitch I had made the things which were returned fine hem- 
stitched handkerchiefs for my father, a soft knitted muffler for 
Ogden, a blue Angora sweater for Madge and several crocheted 
jackets and caps for her dolls. I had been particularly proud of 
the bed jacket I had painstakingly made for my stepmother, 
which I had not only lined but interlined because she always 
complained of the cold. I gave that to Mrs. Shea. The hand- 
kerchief which I had initialed only with D for Dalrymple I 
gave to Dan. The other things Gladys Aherne sent to her young 
brothers and sisters. 



The great tour came to an end in Chicago. At least that is 
where "the bill" finally broke up, and we took leave even of Al 
and Jack and the Ahernes. It was the end of January by this 
time and bitterly cold. We went on alone to play Milwaukee and 
a "split-week" in Madison, Wisconsin, where the thermometer 
dropped to forty-five degrees below. There Mr. Shea was taken 
with a crippling attack of arthritis. After much discussion we 
decided it was best to cancel the rest of the bookings and send 
Mr. Shea to Mt. Clemens, Michigan, for the soothing hot 
springs baths and treatments. 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( 73 ) 

As we saw him and Mrs. Shea off, I sadly felt It was the end 
of him, and I was right. He never worked again, and a very few 
years later he died. I never saw Mrs. Shea again either, because 
from Mt. Clemens they went back to their home in Ohio, and 
there she remained. 

Dan and I came back to New York and I had a real problem: 
where to live. I had given up my apartment at the Freedmans* 
and my few things were in storage. Dan, of course, went home 
to his family in Brooklyn. I had no place to go. He suggested 
that while I looked for an apartmentI now wanted to be in 
the center of the city since I no longer had any contact with my 
family I stay at the National Vaudeville Artists' Club (N.V.A.). 
That was a wonderfully homelike place, and I loved the idea 
and moved right in. You could not possibly be lonesome there. 
Everyone spoke to everyone else and I was "Jeannie," before 
I had been there a week, to Walter Winchell, Billie Gaxton, 
Bert Lahr, George White, Belle Baker and just about everybody. 
In those days the N.V.A. was "the" meeting place, especially 
after the show, for theater folks. I was the "baby" of the club 
and I also was a curiosity because, true to my word, I had gone 
back to Wall Street and my job with Mr. Mclntire the very day 
I returned to New York. 

I was not a bit bored to be back "on the Street." As I had 
happily anticipated, it took me a week or more to tell about my 
trip. I easily slipped into the humdrum routine again, but 
while I was still the youngest person in the office, I now felt 
much more mature and worldly-wise than any of them. Even 
the Dominicks Mr. Bayard and Mr. Gayercame and sat on 
my desk and had me tell them, as they put it, "all about every- 
thing." I was the delighted center of attention, and my tycoons 
were fascinated with all I had done and at the idea that I was 
living at the N.V.A. Holland Reavis made it a habit to take me 
"home" in his beautiful chauffeur-driven Packard, and once 
when I invited him in for a cup of tea, he seemed as pleased as 



(74) SEPTEMBER CHILD: 

a boy and absolutely awe-struck when Bert Lahr came over and 
joined us. 

For most of my Wall Street friends, going to the theater now 
and then was an event and, far from looking down on my stage 
friends, they plainly found them fascinating. On the other hand, 
the people at the N.V.A. were equally impressed when Frank 
Phillips or Ed Simms at that time, I suppose, two of the biggest 
oilmen in the country dropped into the club with me. I found 
it great fun. 

And all the time I kept after Dan to get his sketch going. One 
evening he brought along to dinner an attractive young redhead 
named Max Tishman, an agent. Max, Dan explained, had read 
the sketch and was eager to help get it on and to book it. This, 
I felt, was real progress. Soon afterward Dan introduced me to a 
good-looking, rather flashy blond girl named Constance Robin- 
son, and the four of us went up to my room to have a "reading." 
I must say the act read even better than I had expected, and 
I found myself laughing at some of my own jokes. Constance 
was very good, in a brassy sort of way, and Max said she was 
well-known to the bookers, although I had never heard of her. 

The next thing I knew, Max actually had booked the act on 
what he called "The Family Time" several theaters in nearby 
New Jersey, Long Island and Connecticut. While I worked in 
Wall Street all day, Dan and Connie and Al Mathers, who had 
been engaged to play the man friend, rehearsed. Connie and 
Dan and Max and I had dinner together every night to talk 
about the act, to discuss the clothes to be worn and then the big 
problem of building the proper scenery. 

It had to be a slightly complicated set for a vaudeville sketch 
inasmuch as the action took place "in one," downstage in front 
of the suburban house, then continued inside the house, and 
finished up once more outside "in one/* ("In one" means in 
front of the drop hung on the number one line.) 

Dan and Max thought the drop with the painted suburban 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( 75 ) 

house on it should be a scrim; in other words, painted net so 
that when the lights went off in front of it and came on in 
back, you would see the interior of the house. This is a good 
effect for certain mood scenes, but I insisted that since this was 
comedy, it would not play behind a scrim. Dan became very 
annoyed with me and eventually said to Max, "She's been in 
show business all of six months and now she knows everything 
better than anybody/' 

I said, "I don't know better and haven't had the experience 
you both have, but I do have strong instincts and imagination 
and I did do comedy with Al Herman and Jack Rose and I feel 
in my bones that you can't play comedy behind a scrim. For 
comedy, it seems to me, you have to have immediate and strong 
contact with the audience. Perhaps you'll be able to amuse 
them from behind a scrim" 

Dan interrupted angrily, "You don't really even know what 
a scrim is!" 

"No, I don't," I admitted, "technically speaking. But if it's 
as you describe it to me, it's definitely going to come between 
you and the audience and all those good lines and situations 
you and I have struggled over are going to get quiet chuckles 
instead of rousing belly laughs." 

Dan was quite red in the face by this time, and Max was 
biting his nails and groaning. I turned to Connie for support, 
but she at once sided with Dan. She wanted the part and knew 
Dan was the boss. He was, too, and the scenery was designed 
and constructed with the scrim. 

Just a Pal opened in Patchogue, Long Island. On that first 
day, as soon as I could get away from Dominick's, I took the 
Long Island Railroad and joggled out to catch the evening 
performance. Dan and Max met me at the station and they 
were in the dumps. The matinee performance had gone 
smoothly, but there had been no laughs. 

"Did you have a full house?" I asked. 



( 7 6 ) SEPTEMBER CHILD! 

"Sold out/* Max said, "and we got a lot of applause at the 
end." 

Dan growled, "Those hicks thought we were doing a dramatic 
act." 

I said nothing. 

When I reached the theater that night I was surprised to see 
the announcement: "DAN JARRETT & Co. in JUST A PAL by Dan 
Jarrett." The last time I had typed up the script, it had read 
"by Dan Jarrett and Jean Dalrymple." However . . . 

The first little "scene in one," where the husband greeted 
the friend as he passed by the house and invited him in for 
dinner, played very nicely, and Dan was given a good laugh on 
his line about the baby: "I can't stand parents who rave about 
their children, but I've got to say our baby is different." 

When he left Al Mathers sitting on the doorstep, the baby 
thrust into his unwilling arms, there was also a big laugh, but 
once inside the house, all the fun seemed to have been left 
outside and the scene between Dan and Connie did indeed 
play like a dramatic act. 

I seethed. That disputed scrim had been terribly expensive, 
and now I knew it would have to be thrown away. A new drop 
must be made with part of it cut out so that a small section 
of it, painted like the rest of the house, could be "flown" up 
into the flies, to leave the actors when playing "inside" the 
house in full view and in vital contact with the audience. 

This, of course, is just what happened but only after "Just 
a Pal" had received such poor reports from the managers of the 
theaters where they were "breaking in" that some of Max's 
bookings had been canceled. Fortunately I did not have to have 
any arguments with Dan about this. We never even mentioned 
it. He and Max just went ahead and had it done. 

The first time they played Just a Pal without the scrim and 
with the new drop was over in Fort Lee, across the river from 
New York in New Jersey. Again I hurried to see it, and this 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( 77 ) 

time I was met by beaming faces all around. The matinee had 
gone like a whizz, Max crowed. The manager of the theater 
had said it was the best comedy sketch he'd ever played. And 
what a difference that night! I sat there and joined in the 
wonderfully warm and hearty laughter of the audience as line 
after line went over with mounting hilarity. It could not have 
been a bigger hit. 

It was such a big hit that Max had no difficulty immediately 
booking Just a Pal for a lucrative ten-week tour. Dan was un- 
happy to leave New York and me, he said but the success of 
his act was a pleasant panacea and off he went. 

Max called me one day and asked if I would meet him at the 
N.V.A. that night for dinner. He had something very important 
to talk over with me. I told him I had made plans to have din- 
ner with Emilie Hall and to see a play, but he said, "You can 
both have dinner with me and go to the play afterward. What 
I want to talk about is no secret and it's something you would 
want to tell Emilie about, anyway." 

As soon as we were settled in the pleasant grillroom of the 
club, Max began. "I could book Dan and the act in the Middle 
West for another ten or twelve weeks, but Dan won't hear of it. 
He insists on coming back to New York and he wants me to 
book him around here, but I can only get the small-time for 
him and that would be a mistake. However, I could get the 
whole Keith circuit the really big-time for him, if' ' He 
stopped. 

"If what?" I prompted. 

"If you did the act with him." 

"Instead of Connie? Why?" 

"Connie's funny," he said, "but the bookers want you." 

I started to laugh. "Well, thank you very much," I said, "but 
what makes them think I could do it?" 

"Oh, don't give me any of that humbug," Max said. "You 



(78) SEPTEMBER CHILD: 

know damn well you can do It. The booking office is still talking 
about that afterpiece you did with Al and Jack on the Orpheum 
time, and do you want to know something else? They Insist on 
youand that's why I know I can get Just a Pal on the big-time 
if you'll do it." 

Emilie squealed with delight. "Of course she'll do it! How 
wonderful! I was praying for this to happen!" 

"But what about Dan?" I asked. "Does he know about this? 
He hasn't written me a thing about it." I was still hearing from 
him every day. 

Max flushed. "You know how Dan is. He wouldn't ask you 
himself because he's afraid you might turn him down for some 
personal reasons. So he put it up to me. . . . And, oh, by the 
way, I can get a lot more money for the act and the billing will 
be changed to DAN JARRETT and JEAN DALRYMPLE in JUST A 
PAL," 

Emilie let out another squeal. "It's divine!" she cried. "It 
makes you a star! Imagine your name up in lights!" 

Max took a route sheet from his pocket. "I've sort of penciled 
in a couple of places where you could break in without anyone 
important seeing you. Then when you feel you're ready, I'll 
book a spot here in town where they'll all cover you, and we're 
set" 

"It all sounds very simple," I said, "but what about my job? 
What about Mr. Mclntire?" I asked Emilie. 

"What about him?" Emilie said impatiently. "He got along 
fine while you were on the coast. The ceiling didn't fall in, or 
the market collapse, or anything. He's fond of you, that's true, 
but they were fond of Annie, too, and what happened to her 
after she worked for them for twenty-five years? They pensioned 
her off. They said they had to have someone younger." 

"When does Dan get back?" I asked Max. 

"A week from Sunday." 

"I'll talk it over with him then," I said. 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( 79 ) 

Max groaned. "I can't waste that much time! Look." He 
showed me the route sheet again. "I've got you penciled in for 
the week after he gets back. The act will only have to lay off 
six days/' 

"No/' I said suddenly. "If I'm going to do it, it needn't lay 
off at all. Book them somewhere nearby so I can watch the per- 
formance every night. That will be better for me than any 
amount of rehearsal. I know the lines." 

"Then you'll do it!" Max cried. 

"I won't say this minute," I said, "but I'm thinking of it." 

The more I thought of it, the better I liked the idea. I 
discussed it with Mr. Mclntire and he was completely under- 
standing. "I knew it would be this way," he said, "but I don't 
blame you a bit, and after all, if things don't work out, you 
can always come back here." 

I never did. 



chapter 



JL wo AND A HALF WEEKS LATER, tucked away in Babylon, Long 
Island, I opened in Just a Pal. We were the headline act. Emilie 
came down to see the night performance and came backstage, 
laughing and crying. "You're a scream!" was her greeting. 

Dan said, "She's got a lot to learn." 

Emilie threw her arms around him. "You know perfectly 
well she was wonderful. Tell her so!" 

"Well," Dan said, smiling, "at least she didn't forget her 
lines." 

Max was jubilant. "Ill get a spot for you in town right 
away." 

The "spot" he got was a pretty big one Loew's State Theater, 
on Broadway at Forty-sixth Street. It was an emergency booking 
and Dan did not want to take it. He said the theater was too 
big for our little sketch and also, he worried, if we didn't go 
over, we'd be done for because "everybody" would see us flop. 

I said, "I like the idea, because if we do go over, 'everybody/ 
as you put it, will see that, too, and why should the audience 
at Loew's State be any different from the others?" 
( 80 ) 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( 81 ) 

"The house is too damn big/' Dan grumbled. 

"Just more people to laugh/' I said. (Oh, the confidence of 
youth!) 

But I was right. They laughed, all of them, even a couple of 
sourpusses I spotted down front. The musicians in the pit 
laughed, too, and when one of them actually applauded a line, 
I felt we were home. Those pit musicians were always the 
toughest audiences. Usually they did not even listen to the 
"talky" acts. 

It was a thrilling experience to play in that huge house. There 
were no microphones in those days, but I still had that "power- 
ful voice" the critics had noticed back in Sioux City and evi- 
dently an unstudied ability to "project." Dan, too. It turned out 
we were the first "little" sketch ever to play Loew's State because 
the management had always feared they would not be heard. 

We played two more of the huge Loew's houses, one in Brook- 
lyn and the other in Newark, and then moved on to the "big- 
time" with a bang (the Loew's theaters played three shows a day 
and therefore were considered "small-time" in spite of their 
size). We opened at Keith's Philadelphia on a ten-act bill with 
several headliners and big "names." Imagine our astonishment 
the next day to discover that the critics of both The Bulletin 
and The Inquirer had devoted almost their entire reviews to 
our little act! They were really and truly raves, and to my 
amazement, the other better-known acts held no resentment 
and crowded in the wings at all our performances, watching us 
and laughing delightedly. 

But what a drop when we moved on to the Maryland Theater, 
in Baltimore! Will and Gladys Aherne were on the bill, and 
we had a joyous reunion. They had heard all about our suc- 
cesses. Someone, knowing Gladys was my friend, had sent her 
the reviews from Philadelphia, and Variety had covered us at 
Loew's State. Gladys was thrilled and hugged and kissed me. 



(82) SEPTEMBER CHILD: 

That is a wonderful thing about theater people. They truly love 
and revel in each other's successes. 

So once again, just about a year later, Gladys and I were 
sharing a dressing room. She was pleased to see that I used her 
recommended light make-up and to hear that I had dutifully 
washed my face with soap and lots of water every day. We had 
a wonderful half hour together, and then she and Will were on 
stage. Our act followed theirs, so I stood in the wings and 
watched. 

They were a tremendous hit, as usual, and an uneasy feeling 
came over me that our "talky" sketch, which started quietly and 
slowly, never would be able to top them. After their brand of 
almost knockabout hilarity, I feared for our comparatively gen- 
tle jibes, and I was so right. It is hard to believe, but we did not 
get one single laugh in the whole fifteen minutes we were on 
stage. Just a Pal played like a dramatic sketch, and I believe the 
audience thought it was one, for they gave us enthusiastic ap- 
plause at the finish and called us back for several bows. That is 
how tender a thing comedy is. 

Dan, and Max who was visiting us, seemed to have no idea 
what had gone wrong, and they were both scornful of my ex- 
planation. But I begged Max to ask if the manager could not 
switch our position on the bill, for I was sure Will and Gladys 
could easily follow us, and finally he tried. But it could not be 
done. We had to follow an act "in one" so our set could be put 
up, and there was only one other spot where we could go which 
would be following Ruth Etting, the singer, who at that time 
was a famous recording star, and that spot was taken up by an- 
other sketch, the headliner Victor Moore and Emma Littlefield 
in Change Your Act or Back to the Woods. 

Just nothing could be done, and we had to finish out the 
whole week in suffering and in silence. Fortunately the booking 
office did not blame us. Someone there with good theater instinct 
said it was just bad programing and, if anything, an apology 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( 83 ) 

was due us. I could not help but feel rather faint when I thought 
of what might have happened had we followed an act like Will 
and Gladys at Loew's State, and my cocky confidence was, as 
Miss High would have put it, taken down a peg. 

After a few more weeks out of town (all, fortunately, success- 
ful) Max brought us back to New York, and I was happy to re- 
turn to the little apartment I had moved into on Lexington 
Avenue while I was still at Dominick's. I had had the great 
good fortune of having fallen heir to the Al Hermans' maid, 
Pinkey Brown. She had been with them for years, but when 
they decided to settle in California, Pinkey stayed in New York, 
and since the Hermans and I had been almost like a family, it 
seemed perfectly natural to Pinkey to go to work for me. The 
Hermans were delighted, too. Pinkey was basically a theater 
maid and particularly loved being my * 'dresser," but she was 
also a fine housekeeper and virtually a secretary, too. She hated 
to cook, however, except for preparing my breakfast. This did 
not bother me any as it still was a pleasure for me, and she had 
no objection to preparing things for me. Helping me in the 
kitchen, she reminded me of my aunt Laura in those old Mor- 
ristown days. 

Pinkey stayed with me for years and years and was one of the 
best friends I ever had. She still is. She only "retired," as she 
called it, when she married "a rich Pullman porter," and she 
has been living happily and leisurely ever after. 

In New York we often played the Riverside Theater at 
Ninety-sixth Street and Broadway which was considered second 
to the Palace in prestige. At least, it was the prestige neighbor- 
hood house and a most delightful place to appear, with a 
wonderful, warm, outgiving audience and, of course, being 
"big-time," only two shows a day. 

One can hardly believe, looking back, that within a radius 
of a comparatively few blocks there were not only this big-time 
vaudeville theater, which played to packed houses matinee and 



(84) SEPTEMBERCHILD: 

evening, but several Loew's houses playing three shows a day 
with four on Saturdays and Sundays, and also the Proctor 
Houses, part of the Keith chain, a very attractive one being the 
Fifth Avenue. Then there was the Lincoln, at Lincoln Square 
where the Lincoln Center is rising, and just below it, on Broad- 
way, the big-time Colonial, now, of course, a TV studio. There 
were dozens of theaters allied with the Keith circuit in and 
around New York, some wonderful ones in Brooklyn the 
Orpheum, the Flatbush and the Bushwick, all week stands, 
two-a-day also the Fordham and the Royale in the Bronx the 
same Royale where we had rehearsed the Shea act (it had been 
closed a few weeks that summer for refurbishing) the Apollo 
on i25th Street and the Coliseum on my own Washington 
Heights. We played them all, almost continuously, and could 
have played them without stop, but I asked Max to let us have 
a week off now and then so we could see what was going on in 
other theaters as I hated to lose touch with the Broadway stage. 
It was while we were playing at Proctor's Fifth Avenue that 
a telegram came from my father. It was the first word I had had 
from my family since I had left New York with the Sheas. After 
the return of the Christmas presents, I had stopped writing, 
and when I returned to New York, I had made no attempt to 
get in touch with them. The telegram said: MADELEINE DIED THIS 

MORNING HER LAST WORDS WERE OF YOU FATHER. 

I immediately telephoned his apartment, but there was no 
answer, so I wired my condolences. I did not know what to do 
next and I waited for some further word, perhaps about the 
funeral, but none came. The following week, however, when 
we were playing Proctor's East Fifty-eighth Street (very con- 
venient for me since my apartment was at East Fifty-first Street), 
there came a knock at my dressing room after the evening per- 
formance. Pinkey opened the door, and my father walked in. 
I had my face covered with cleansing cream, just taking off my 
make-up, and before either of us spoke, I finished wiping it 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( 85 ) 

off. He was standing in back o me, looking at me in the mirror. 

"You look well/' he said finally. "You're filling out, not as 
peaked-looking as you used to be." 

Pinkey was standing there, regarding him curiously. She had 
no idea who he was. 

"This is my father, Pinkey," I said. "This is Pinkey Brown, 
Father/' 

Father began to laugh and suddenly all the years rolled away. 
He now was balding and corpulent, but the handsome, big 
blond man of my childhood was back again and I waited for 
him to tease me. Instead he said, "Nothing like May Wright 
about you, girl. You're good." 

"Oh, did you see the show?" 

"Yes," he said. "To tell you the truth, I've seen you several 
times. I saw you first when you played Loew's State and then I 
saw you at the Riverside, and when you played the Coliseum, 
the whole family saw you. . . ." 

He said he always knew where I was by the route page in 
Variety which used to list the whereabouts of all the vaudeville 
acts. 

"Did my stepmother see the act, too?" I asked. 

"Yes," he said, "she wanted to see you." 

"Really?" 

"Yes, really. She was very fond of you, you know." 

After a silence I asked, "What were her last words which 
you mentioned in your telegram?" I had been terribly curious 
about that sentence. 

"She said, 'Ask Jean to look out for the children/ As a mat- 
ter of fact, she's made you their legal guardian." He started to 
laugh again. "She didn't trust me with them, she said, or with 
their money either. . . . She was an odd duck, wasn't she?" 

"I guess so," I whispered. "What did she think of our act?" 

"We all liked it a lot/' he finally answered. 

I realized then they probably had never discussed it. Just then 



( 86 ) SEPTEMBER CHILD: 

Dan walked in. Father greeted him warmly. Later we all went 
to my apartment where I signed some papers he had brought 
with him, and I had the feeling he might never have got in 
touch with me if it had not been for them, but I hope I was 
wrong. Anyway, from then on he was back in my life, and the 
children, too Ogden very tall for his age and handsome, Madge 
as beautiful as ever, but rolypoly. 

During all this time in and around New York, Dan still stayed 
with his family in Brooklyn, very convenient for him when we 
were playing over there, but quite a haul, it seemed to me, when 
we were playing, say, in Yonkers. 

Since we never had to be in the theater for the matinee per- 
formance until after two o'clock we were always third or fifth 
on the bill which commenced at two-thirty we had plenty of 
time to do other things, and one thing we did was to finish a 
new sketch we were writing called In the Park and get it ready 
for Max to book. 

Al Herman had returned East and was playing on Broadway 
in the Greenwich Village Follies, and during one of our self- 
imposed layoffs we went, of course, to see him. In the men's 
chorus was a short, attractive, redheaded boy who fascinated 
me. I finally said to Dan, "Don't you think that redheaded boy 
in the chorus would be marvelous to play the fresh sailor in 
In the Park?" 

"Oh," Dan said, "he's attractive enough, but he probably 
can't act/' 

"I'm sure he can/' I said. "When we go backstage to see Al, 
let's talk to him." 

Dan grumbled, "He wouldn't want to leave the show/' 

Al, who was one of the stars of the revue, sent for the red- 
head as soon as I told him we would like to meet him. 

The stage manager came back a few minutes later and said, 
"He's gone. These kids get out of here in a hurry/' 

I was terribly disappointed, but I left a note for him, asking 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( 87 ) 

him to come to see us any morning as soon as possible at 
eleven-thirty. 

Two days later he walked into Max's office where Dan and I 
were working. The idea of having an act of his own made the 
young man's eyes shine. He had a wonderful speaking voice 
and a deliciously cocky way about him, and although Dan 
grumped because "he wasn't an actor/' before he left us it had 
been decided he would leave the Follies and do In the Park. 
He did not argue about the money, but he was particular about 
his billing, which was to be: "In the Park, with James Cagney 
and Co." At least it was that in the beginning; later, in order 
to get the girl we wanted, it was changed to: In the Park, with 
James Cagney and Thelma Parker/' 

I had a wonderful time helping to put this little sketch to- 
gether and I made the girl's costumes myself. The act was a 
success from the very first break-in date, and it always was as 
long as Jimmy was in it. It was the first of a number of success- 
ful sketches produced by our little combine. 

Another one was called The Woman Pays, and this starred 
a young man named Jack Janis who has long since been out 
of the business, but "the other man" in the act has become a 
living legend. I never will forget how he came into our lives. 
We had asked the agencies to send us the handsomest man they 
could find, and for several days we interviewed a stream of 
slinky-looking Valentino types whom the agents thought hand- 
some, but none of them suited me, although several times Dan 
and Max wanted to settle for one of them. 

Finally the door opened and exactly the right man came in. 
He had never acted and never even had been on the stage. Dan 
was all for dismissing him at once, but I would not hear of it 
and asked him to wait outside. As soon as the door closed, Dan 
exploded. "Do you know what he's doing right now?" 

"Of course! He's just told us." 

"Well," Dan almost shouted, "what do you think walking on 



(88) SEPTEMBERCHILD: 

stilts at Coney Island has to do with playing a part on the stage? 
And what about that accent of his?" 

"Oh," I said airily, "I think that's charming, and I like the 
way he walks, too, so don't bring that up." Dan always called 
him "Rubber-legs," but in those days his name really was Archi- 
bald Leach. I am sure no one has to be told that almost ever 
since that time he has been known as Gary Grant. Neither one 
of these great actors ever knew the battles I put up with Dan 
and Max to get them into our acts. 

Come spring, we had to take to the road. We started out at 
Keith's in Boston, another glamorous big-time house, and fol- 
lowed that with "the New England time." We lived in Boston 
at the Ritz and commuted by car to the dozen or so nearby 
towns. Dan had wanted to stay at the Tourraine which was, and 
still is, the theatrical hotel, but I felt happier at the Ritz where 
I could look out over the Common and "feel ritzy," as Dan said. 

One evening when we were back from our tour and in the 
N.V.A. grill, an agent, Harry Rome, said I should play on 
Broadway and he'd like to send me for the ingenue part in a new 
production which was just being cast. I knew I would not be 
able to take the part even if they accepted me, because of our 
bookings, but I wanted to see what would happen, and so, al- 
though Dan protested that it was silly and a waste of time, I 
went the next day to the Plymouth Theater to see Arthur Hop- 
kins. 

I thought from what Harry Rome had told me that it was a 
definite appointment and that I would be ushered in to see the 
great man as befitted a Keith vaudeville star, but when I arrived, 
I found about ten or twelve other girls already there, and I took 
my place among them, feeling very let down and disillusioned. 

About an hour passed with the girls all chatting animatedly 
among themselves, and still no Mr. Hopkins appeared. Now and 
then someone would open a door, pop a head out, take a look 
around and disappear. I had a one-o'clock luncheon engagement 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( 89 ) 

with Holland Reavis, at Sardi's, and so when nothing had hap- 
pened by that time, I simply got up and left. 

I felt close to tears and ready to chuck the whole notion of 
show business when I sat listening to Holly and to all of his 
talk about my old friends in Wall Street. All of them had been 
to see Just a Pal at various times when we had played in and 
around New York, especially Holly who, it seems to me, visited 
almost every theater at least once and actually came to the 
Riverside when we played there almost nightly. (He said he 
lived right around the corner on Riverside Drive, so why not?) 

However, once we had left New York and I had picked up 
my old routine of golf in the mornings, my studies with Hugo's 
French Simplified and other subjects in the afternoons between 
shows, and the incidental playing of our act, I realized what a 
delightful way this was to make a living, and as I look back on 
it, I feel I did not appreciate it even half enough. But that ex- 
perience in Arthur Hopkins' outer office had left its mark. I 
decided I must appear on Broadway, but I never again would 
approach it through what Holly Reavis had called "the back 
door/' 

What to do? And then it came to me, in my simple-minded 
fashion. I would write a play, a play with a part for myself in 
it! Forthwith my Hugo's French Simplified and the books from 
the Columbia Reading Course were put aside and out came 
my trusty portable typewriter. 

Again the idea for the play sprang from an experience of one 
of the girls at Dominick's. Helen was married to an extremely 
attractive and very lazy man. He had been a hero in World War 
I, during his teens, and he could not get over the idea that his 
Bronze Star and the several other decorations he had received 
were enough to see him through life. 

From time to time he had jobs, but he had been slightly gassed 
and it was better for him to work outdoors. Most of the time he 
did not work at all. When Helen got back to their apartment 



(9) SEPTEMBERCHILD: 

after working all day at Dominick's, she would find him 
stretched out on the couch reading the sports pages. He would 
languidly accept her greetings and kisses she was madly in love 
with him and continue reading while she prepared dinner. 
After dinner he never made the slightest move to help her with 
the dishes, and if she had not made the bed before she left for 
the office, it would still be unmade when she got home. 

Helen never told about this with any sense of criticism but 
somehow made it all hilariously funny for us, especially when 
she repeated some of the acid remarks her mother would make 
about the situation. Her mother, she said, just couldn't under- 
stand how any daughter of hers could "take it on the chin" this 
way. 

And so I put a nice clean sheet of paper in the typewriter and 
wrote: "ON THE CHIN. ACT i." 

The mother I turned into the girl friend, Hattie. That was 
to be the part for me with all the good comedy lines. I decided 
not to tell Dan a thing about it, but when I had finished the first 
act, I could not resist letting him read it. 

I still remember the look he gave me, as though he had 
suddenly discovered that I had two heads, for it was a stare of 
complete disbelief. After a few minutes we fell to discussing the 
play as we always did our little vaudeville sketches, and his 
wonderful Irish wit soon added many amusing lines. 

At some time during our stay in New York I had made friends 
with Jed Harris' press agent, Tom Van Dyke, and I decided to 
send the first act off to him with an outline of what was to fol- 
low. Fie telephoned me almost immediately with great enthu- 
siasm and said he had taken the liberty of passing the act to 
Frank Leahy of the Century Play Company. Within a few days 
I also heard from Mr. Leahy who said anyone could write a 
first act. It would be the next two that counted. 

By the time we had finished the tour and had returned to 
New York, On the Chin was completed, and Mr. Leahy loved it, 



The Story of Jean Dairy mple ( 91 ) 

although he very much objected to the fact that on the title 
page I had written, "By Dan Jarre tt and Jean Dalrymple." 
But that had been the way all of our acts were billed, and I 
could not bring myself either to leave Dan's name off or to put 
it in second position. 

Suddenly things took a new turn. I met Charles Beahan again 
just ran into him on the street and he introduced me to Ed- 
mund Goulding, the director. Eddie absolutely insisted that 
he must give me a screen test. Talkies, as they called them, had 
come in with a bang, and young actresses who could "talk" 
were in great demand. Vaudeville, both Eddie and Charlie said, 
was definitely on the way out, and so it was. 

I told Dan I was going to take the test, and he was just as 
violently opposed as he had been when we were with the Sheas 
in Los Angeles, but this time, in spite of his protests, I went 
ahead. I longed to have him take the test with me, as I needed 
someone to play with, but he refused. I felt forsaken and forlorn 
when I went to the studio alone, but it was evidently a good test 
because Eddie Goulding was jubilant and Charlie, who was 
head of the story department and a talent scout for Fox at that 
time, offered me a seven-year contract. 

Dan was furious. He said Eddie Goulding was an old fop 
this because of his English accent, I suppose and that he wanted 
me not for any ability I might have but for myself. "He's stuck 
on you/' Dan growled. "That's all." 

For the first time I had a real flicker of anger with Dan. "I 
don't want to go on playing Just a Pal until all the vaudeville 
houses are closed, which will be sooner than you think," I told 
him. 

Dan was angry, too. "Vaudeville will last a lot longer than 
these talkies. Nothing mechanical will ever take the place of 
live entertainment," he said flatly. Well, to keep the peace, I 
gave up the movie contract and went off on tour again with 
Just a Pal. 



( 9 2 ) SEPTEMBER CHILD: 

Not little by little, but all of a sudden, the attendance at the 
theaters we played fell off. Soon, unless there was a "talkie" on 
the same bill, business was very bad. I hated the feeling of 
treading water and getting nowhere, and I envied Jimmy Gag- 
ney and his wife, Billie, who were in New York, living in a 
cold-water flat and waiting for ''the big break/' 

Now that Charlie Beahan was in New York, I liked seeing 
him again, and after his first annoyance with me for not having 
gone to Hollywood, we met frequently, but always at luncheon, 
as Dan despised him and, of course, I always spent my evenings 
with Dan. 

I was terribly sad, too, to find that no matter how I tried, I 
could not get over a rankle of resentment against Dan who, even 
though we were faced with less and less important bookings 
(we were now playing the three-a-day Loew-time around New 
York, which I preferred so that we would not have to tour in 
the Midwest for Keith's), still held on to the notion that this 
was only a temporary phenomenon. 

One day Frank Leahy called me, and while he had not sold 
the play as yet, he said he had a wonderful job for me if I would 
take it. It was to write and produce a series of "talkie shorts 1 ' 
for FitzPatrick Pictures James FitzPatrick of the Traveltalks, 
". . . and now we leave beautiful Bali . . ." 

Unknown to Dan, I went to see Mr. FitzPatrick and I knew 
I would love working with him. But of all things, what he 
wanted me to do was put together a series called "Horoscopes," 
one for each month. I did not know a thing about astrology, 
except what I read in the daily forecasts for Virgo being a 
September child in the newspapers. But I promised Mr. Fitz- 
Patrick I would buy some books on the subject and see if I 
could develop an outline we would both approve. 

A few days later I went back to the FitzPatrick office, not 
only with an outline of the series, but with the first one com- 
pleted. I had hit on a corny formula everyone liked: a perma- 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( 93 ) 

nent central character, the astrologer, and the various people 
who came to him for readings, usually in pairs, say a husband 
and wife, one of them scoffing and the other impressed. This 
led not only to most of the background and meaning of the 
twelve signs of the Zodiac but to considerable comedy. 

Mr. FitzPatrick was delighted with my first effort. Of course 
I had used Virgo as a start. He put the project into immediate 
production and it was great fun for me. I selected the cast from 
my old friends at the N.V.A. Many of them who usually worked 
steadily were now steadily laying off headline acts who had 
always been in real demand. Many had virtually no prospects 
of future bookings, either. 

It all happened so suddenly that many vaudevillians soon 
were in financial difficulties. They had homes they were paying 
on, annuities to keep up, children away at school and the usual 
heavy current expenses of theater people. Since their way of life 
had gone on for so many years with such regularity, it was almost 
as though they had all been working for a large company which 
unexpectedly had gone out of business. Some of the more gifted 
ones did remain in the theater and some went to California to 
eke out a living working as extras or doing "acts" in the films, 
but the great majority eventually just went back to their home 
towns they had come from all over the United States and 
ended up in their families' businesses or even went back to the 
farm. Eventually many were as lost to show business as though 
they had never been in it at all. 

I had, as a consequence, many eager players for my little 
shorts and I was fortunate in being able to cast many of my 
friends in other FitzPatrick Pictures. He also was doing a series 
called "Music Masters 7 ' the lives of Chopin, Beethoven, Wag- 
ner, etc., on which I did some work now and then. 

I wanted Dan to be a part of all this, but he would not hear 
of it. He would have been ideal to play the unbelieving hus- 
band of the Virgo wife in my first "Horoscope," but he utterly 



(94) SEPTEMBERCHILD 

refused to have anything to do with "such claptrap" and 
heatedly insisted I had "fallen for" James FitzPatrick. In a way 
I had. He was a darling man, attractive-looking, soft-spoken 
and with complete faith in my work, but I cannot remember 
that I ever saw him outside of his office. 

As I continued lining up former vaudevillians for parts, Dan 
made some rude allusions to the "casting couch." This led to 
a stormy scene which ended with me in tears and with Dan 
leaving my apartment in such a rage that his final door slam 
shook the building and seemed to bring the whole world I had 
known with him crashing down around my ears. I went to bed 
feeling very sorry for myself. I was not doing anything wrong, 
but Dan had demanded that I "give up" James FitzPatrick and 
not even finish the work I had started on the first of the horo- 
scopes. 

Suddenly, in the middle of the night, the injustice of Dan's 
accusations and the unreasonableness of his demands set me to 
pacing the floor, not in sorrow, but in that blinding anger which 
always overcomes me when I am faced with something I con- 
sider unfair. I started to call Dan on the telephone, but he 
lived with his sister and his brother (I never got to know any 
of his family very well) and I did not want to disturb them. 
Instead I sent him a telegram. I think I said, "I never want to 
see you again," or, "All is over between us," or something as 
banal as that. When I got back into bed and my rage had sub- 
sided, I was horrified at what I had done. Now he surely would 
never forgive me and I really never would see him again. 

I did, of course, but it was never the same. 



chapter 

IV 



FELT GUILTY because I was working and Dan was not, but I 
consoled myself with the knowledge that Max could find only 
isolated bookings for Just a Pal. Had Max or Dan insisted upon 
my doing the act from time to time I had an understanding 
with Mr. FitzPatrick that if a good engagement came up nearby 
I could accept it I would have enjoyed it, but Max hated to 
put us on the real ' 'small-time," which was about all that was 
left, and Dan scorned this, too. There was virtually no place 
to book a sketch any more, and only the outstanding comedians, 
star singers and important personalities found work in the 
"stage shows" of the big picture theaters. Most of the former 
vaudeville houses now had straight programs of "talkies." 

The Virgo horoscope was finished, and I went on to Libra and 
the others. I heard Dan was seeing Dorothy Lord, the girl who 
had played in the act with Jack Janis and Archie Leach, which 
also was laying off permanently. I began to wonder if Dan had 
always been interested in her. It never had entered my mind 
that he would have a thought for anyone but me. Anyway, it 

( 95 ) 



(96) SEPTEMBERCHILD: 

made me feel better and less guilty, and if he had been working, 
I would have been quite tranquil. As it was, I was so busy and 
having such an interesting time that I did not brood over this 
turn of events. I have noticed ever since that an attractive man 
no, any man! does not pine alone, and another woman is 
quickly available and perhaps always has been there, waiting. 

Charlie Beahan once again took me to opening nights and 
to wonderful parties where I met the great and near-great. One 
party where I actually made friends who stayed with me for a 
lifetime was at Conde Nast's where I met Grace Moore, Otto 
Kahn, who had sponsored her opera career, and Frank Crownin- 
shield, then the editor of Vanity Fair. 

I also had a good time with Tom Van Dyke and once in a 
while I would see his boss, the great and fabulously successful 
Jed Harris, who liked to talk to me about vaudeville, his first 
love. He had been the vaudeville critic for The Clipper, a 
theatrical trade paper, just after he left Yale and he knew, and 
still knows, more about vaudeville and remembers more "rou- 
tines" than anyone I ever met. As a matter of fact, he can re- 
member Just a Pal better than I canl He even reminded me 
recently of our opening music "I'm Just Wild About Harry" 
when I myself had completely forgotten it. 

An unusual friend of Tom's was a boxer, Rene Devos, a 
Belgian, and the middleweight champion of Europe. This was 
the era of the Four Hundred Millionaires at Madison Square 
Garden, and Ren< was sponsored by one of them, Anthony 
Drexel Biddle. Gene Tunney had made the prize-fight business 
chic. 

Ren6 was tall and blond and unbattered except for a broken 
nose which only added interest to his face. He spoke excellent 
English. He fascinated me because, besides being a champion 
boxer, he was also a writer and a poet. He was the correspondent 
for several papers in his own country and he also wrote for 
Paris Sports and a chain of papers in France. 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( gy ) 

He told me he originally had planned to be a schoolteacher 
but that before he was fourteen years old, and big for his age, 
he had become the scholastic boxing champion of Antwerp, 
where he was born, and during World War I he had worked in 
the Underground with Edith Cavell and her followers. I was 
shocked at first to learn that Edith Cavell actually had been a 
spy and not the innocent, brave nurse who was unjustly exe- 
cuted. 

Rene was the most unusual man I had ever known. He invited 
me to watch him train at the old St. Nicholas Arena, and I was 
thrilled by his dexterity and elegance in the ring. I had seen 
many prize fights with Dan, and both Dempsey and Tunney 
were my friends, but I had never seen anyone as attractive as 
"The Little Fox'* with his lithe, tawny body clad in the briefest 
brief white trunks and, topping it all, his mop of gold-blond 
hair. 

After training, Rene took me to a charming little French 
restaurant where he was well known, and we sat for a long time 
while he told me more about himself. He was delighted that I 
knew some French and, asking for a piece of paper and pencil, 
he wrote: 

J-'ai toujours voulu 

E-tre entierement 

A-toi, et goulu 

N-aitre ton amant. 

No one had ever before said a word to me about being my 
lover, and besides, I liked the word amant much better. I was 
silent for a long time, reading and rereading the couplet. Finally 
Ren6 began to laugh. "Do you understand it?" he asked. 

"Mai ouij certainement/' 1 answered. 

He looked at me, his toffee-colored eyes twinkling. "Eh bieri?" 

"You don't really mean it, do you?" I asked. 

"But, of course!" he said. "But not till after the fight. I'm in 
strict training now." 



(98) SEPTEMBERCHILD: 

"Oh," I said. "A postponed proposition." 

"If you like." He smiled. 

Rene had left me at my apartment he had to be in bed by 
tenand believe me, I spent a restless night. This was the first 
man, it seemed to me, who regarded me just as a woman and a 
desirable one, and he had opened up a whole new tangle of 
emotions and ideas within me. 

Several mornings I walked around the Central Park reservoir 
with him while he did his "footing." It was all different and 
delightful and so was he, and I loved every minute of it. Rene 
stayed in "strict training," however, as long as I knew him! 



I was working away in the FitzPatrick office one morning when 
I had an unexpected call from Dan. He asked if I would have 
lunch with him, and I immediately agreed. I was so happy with 
my work and with Ren6 that I even felt warm and cozy about 
Dan. 

We went to Child's and he had his bacon and eggs and coffee 
before he began to tell me what was on his mind. Then he 
suddenly blurted out, getting rather red in the face as he did so, 
"I got Frank McCoy to take On the Chin to John Golden, and 
he wants to produce it." 

"How wonderful!" I cried. 

"But" and for the first time I saw Dan in a state of confusion 
"he wants to make some changes in it and" here Dan became 
very flushed "he will only produce the play if he can put his 
name on it." 

"That's perfectly all right," I said, feeling in a very expansive 
mood. "Let him put his name on it!" 

"But . . . that isn't all," Dan stammered. "He only wants two 
names on it, and he wants to take yours off." 

"That's ridiculous," I said* "Why does he want to take my 
name off?" 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( 99 ) 

"Well/' Dan said, "my name comes first, and he just takes it 
for granted that it's my play." 

"Goodness/' I said, 'why didn't you tell him the truth?" 

"I didn't," Dan said, "because I'm afraid to upset the apple- 
cart." 

The first shock over, I suddenly felt relieved. Let him and 
Golden do the play. It would be my gift to Dan, and after all, 
I thought, I could write another play whenever I put my mind 
to it! 

"All right," I said, "go ahead, and good luck." 

That same afternoon Mr. Leahy of the Century Play Com- 
pany called me and shouted at me so I thought he would break 
my eardrum. 

"I won't let Golden get away with this," he yelled. "I've told 
him I know you wrote the play and if he wants to take any 
name off it's got to be Dan Jarrett, but Golden has the fixed 
idea, evidently from something Frank McCoy told him, that all 
you did was type the script for Dan." 

"What difference does it make? From what Dan tells me, 
Golden likes Dan, and I'm too busy to work with him, so let 
Dan do it. I really don't care about the credit, believe me." 

"All right," Mr. Leahy finally groaned, "but I'm going to 
make damn sure you get your share of the royalties." And he did. 



I met John Golden for the first time when I went to his office 
to sign the contracts which Mr. Leahy had insisted upon. 

"Why," he said to Dan, "she's a pretty little thing." He 
turned to me. "You're an actress, aren't you?" 

"Yes," I said boldly, "and I want to play Hattie when you 
produce the play." 

"Really?" And to Dan, "Would she be any good, Dan?" 

I saw Dan now was relieved to be able to do something for 
me, and he smiled. "She'd be terrific!" 



( ioo ) SEPTEMBER CHILD: 

"It's too bad, Mr. Golden, you never saw our act/' I said, "or 
you'd be convinced. I play the same kind of part." 

"I'd like to see the act," Mr. Golden said. "Any chance?" 

Dan looked inquiringly at me. 

"I don't know why not," I said. "See i Max can get a booking 
nearby." 

And so it happened that we played Just a Pal for the last 
time across the river at the Fort Lee Theater. John Golden 
came to "catch us" at the matinee, and there could not have 
been thirty people in the theater that held fifteen hundred. 
Vaudeville really was dead, and it was pathetic to have to go 
through the act to empty seats which, as Dan always said, you 
can't make laugh. The few people there, however, did laugh and 
did enjoy it. 

On the way back to town in Golden's car the Great Man said, 
"Dan's right; you're good. You can play Hattie. I think I ought 
to tell you something though. You're prettier off-stage than on. 
Your features are too small and too delicate to come across the 
way they do close by. And your coloring is lost. You're too 
pastel." 

"I don't care," I said. "I want to be a character comedienne 
anyway." I really thought I was homely and I never believed 
any compliments. 

Mr. Golden took Dan down to Bernard Baruch's island re- 
treat, Hob Cob, off the coast of North Carolina, and there they 
happily worked for several weeks dismembering On the Chin. 
When they returned, Mr. Golden proudly sent me a newly 
typed script entitled Salt Water, by John Golden and Dan 
Jarrett. I took it home and read it the same evening. In the 
morning I returned it to Mr. Golden by messenger with a note 
scrawled on a memo pad, one of those things FROM THE DESK OF 
JEAN DALRYMPLE. I said, / am very happy my name is not on it. 

It was a very short time later that the phone rang and John 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( 101 ) 

Golden bellowed at me, "What do you mean by sending me a 
note like that?" 

"I think what you've done is awful/' I said. "I hate it. That's 
what I mean." 

"How dare you talk to me like that?" he roared. 

"I'm infuriated," I said. 

"And who do you think you are to be infuriated with John 
Golden?" 

"I'm not infuriated with John Golden. I'm infuriated be- 
cause a simple, charming play has been turned into a ludicrous, 
vulgar farce. On the Chin was funny, but it had warmth and 
reality and real people. You've kept the bones of it, but you've 
turned out a caricature. I repeat, I hate it and I'm glad my 
name is not on it." 

There was a long silence and then Mr. Golden said quietly, 
"Would you like to have lunch with me and tell me more about 
it?" 

For a moment I wanted to say no, I never want to see you or 
Dan Jarrett or think of Salt Water again, but then I thought 
of Dan and my sense of responsibility for him returned. 

"All right," I said. 

"My sister, Mrs. Hymes, has an apartment next door to my 
theater. You know where my theater is, don't you?" 

"Yes," I said. "I saw Strange Interlude there the other day." 

"Well, I'll meet you at Mrs. Hymes's apartment at one 
o'clock," he said and hung up. 

It must have been a quiet day for me at the FitzPatrick office 
because that luncheon with Mr. Golden went on all afternoon. 
He had brought two copies of the script with him, and we went 
over it, page by page, starting on page one, as he pinned me 
down to analyze all the horrors and vulgarities of it, as I had 
called them. 

A day or two later he and Dan again took off for Hob Cob. 
This time when they returned, Mr. Golden did not send me 



( 102 ) SEPTEMBER CHILD: 

the script; he phoned me and asked me to come to his office. 
The script, he said, was in bits and pieces and he did not want 
to have it retyped until he had gone over it with me. I found 
out later that he never let Dan know about these conferences. 

That first meeting in Mr. Golden's office was a momentous 
one for me. In Mrs. Hymes's apartment Mr. Golden had been 
just another man, but there in the John Golden Theater, which 
he ushered me through from one end to the other before we 
sat down for our talk, he became the famous Broadway figure 
who not only had produced hit after hit but the one who ac- 
tually had written the words to the favorite tear-jerker song 
of my childhood, "Poor Butterfly." 

He took me backstage, and I was filled with reverence when 
he turned the key and opened Lynn Fontanne's dressing room, 
into which I tiptoed. That wonderful, indescribable back-stage 
odor airless, musty, perfumed by make-up filled me with 
nostalgia. This was the theaterthe real, live, wonderful Broad- 
way theater. I wanted to walk out on the stage and face an 
audience again. I wanted to play Hattie in Salt Water and I 
wanted Salt Water to be good. Suddenly nothing else was im- 
portant to me. 

Before we went back upstairs to the office, Mr. Golden walked 
over to the box office and led me inside. Walter Hyer was busy 
selling tickets. Golden said, "This is the real heart of show 
business, and if you ever get to be a producer, and I have a feel- 
ing that's how you'll end up, the first thing to make sure of is 
that you have an honest treasurer, like Walter here. I know he 
really makes nothing on the ice," he laughed. (The ice, I then 
was told, was the difference between the box-office price and 
the amount the ticket brokersthe "scalpers' 5 pay to the theater 
treasurer for choice seats to a hit.) 

Finally we went upstairs to his office and there he introduced 
me to his general manager, Dixie French, and to Jimmy Lane, 
who was an actor who also worked in Mr. Golden's office; to his 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( 103 ) 

press agent, Martin Mooney; to Buford Armitage, another actor 
and playwright who also read plays and worked in the office, 
and to Helen, his telephone operator, who was a real character. 
His secretary, Mr. Golden said, wasn't in that day because she 
was ill. Buford Armitage had read On the Chin and had recom- 
mended it to Mr. Golden. He is now, and for many years has 
been, our invaluable and dearly loved general manager at the 
New York City Center. 

I found the play enormously improved and I even began to 
like Mr. Golden's basic change, which was that instead of rebel- 
ling at being tied down to owning and running a gas station, 
Mr. Golden's leading man rebelled against owning and running 
a ferryboat when what he wanted was to buy a freighter and 
sail the high seas. Hence the title, Salt Water. 

John Golden himself fascinated me. He had a wonderfully 
big, expansive, warm, jolly personality, and when he put him- 
self out to be charming, he really could get the birds right down 
out of those trees. He had a piano in his office, and when I told 
him how I had loved and cried over his "Poor Butterfly," he sat 
down and played and sang it for me. Very well, too. 

At the end of the afternoon he asked if I would like to spend 
the weekend with him and his wife, May, at his home in Bay- 
side and continue our editing, as he called it, of the script. 

Theodore, his lifetime chauffeur, drove us out to Mr. 
Golden's beautiful home on the water front, and besides doing 
a great deal of tedious work on the script, we had a very good 
time that weekend as it turned out that both John and May 
loved golf. While I had no proper clothes with me, the pro at 
Mr. Golden's club, ''Lakeside/* managed to find me a pair of 
shoes, and we played nine holes. I believe it was the only time 
John Golden ever played with his wife or with any woman, 
but fortunately May and I played a good game that day and he 
was not bored. 

As Golden was putting me in the car Sunday evening to have 



( 104 ) SEPTEMBER CHILD: 

Theodore drive me home, he suddenly said, "I think I'll drive 
in with you. 1 have something on my mind/' 

He hopped in, and when we had driven a short distance, he 
took me by the hand. "I seem to have become very dependent 
upon you, Jeannie," he said. "You were born to be part of the 
theater. Why don't you come and work with me all the time. 
I promise you it will be more fun and more rewarding than all 
the FitzPatrick pictures, or any other pictures, you could make 
in a lifetime. The big companies are always offering me con- 
tracts. You know I sold all my properties for over a million 
dollars recently and they wanted to buy me along with them, 
but film making is a bastard, mechanical form of entertainment, 
it seems to me. There is nothing like doing a play with living 
actors, in front of a living audience. Just nothing like it! And 
there is plenty of money in it, too. Just look at me!" 

With all my heart I agreed with him. I knew I would be 
happy working with John Golden because he reminded me of 
my tycoons. He was a big man, with big ideas, big plans, and in 
a way I felt I would be going home to work with him. So I did. 

At first I worked only on Salt Water, but then when Golden's 
secretary never did return, I found myself typing letters for 
him and generally making myself useful. Strange Interlude 
was still playing at his theater, and it never failed to thrill me 
to be able to walk out through Mr. Golden's "secret door" onto 
the balcony and watch various scenes which were my favorites. 
When all was quiet in the office everyone left early as Mr. 
Golden liked to get to get to Bayside for a nap before dinner, 
and the moment he took off, the place was deserted except for 
me I dimly could hear the wonderful voices of Lynn Fontanne, 
Tom Powers, Earl Larrimore and my favorite, Glenn Anders 
(I had fallen in love with him in They Knew What They 
Wanted). I could not hear the words, but by the intensity of 
sound I knew about where they were in the play and out I 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( 105 ) 

would pop through the little door and into the magic of the 
theater, feeling a very specially privileged person. 

Finally Salt Water actually began to bore both Mr. Golden 
and me. We knew it was not perfect, but it was funny. A lot of 
the charm had gotten back into it and we decided to try it out. 
Spencer Tracy was the leading man, and William Edmunds, a 
famous Italian character comedian from vaudeville (a golfing 
pal of mine), played Dominick, a part I originally had written 
especially for him. Golden directed the play himself with me 
holding the script, although Jimmy Lane was the real stage 
manager. 

Rehearsals were great fun, and before very long we were ready 
for the tryout in Mamaroneck. We had cast Una Merkle in 
"my** role of Hattie, because as when we first did Just a Pal, I 
wanted the advantage of seeing the part played before I took it 
on. But Una Merkle made such a hit in the role that I never had 
the heart to take it away from her and she went on to stardom. I 
never played on the stage again. 

We went from Mamaroneck to the Apollo Theater in Atlantic 
City, where I stayed with my grandmother. This was my 
mother's mother whom I finally had met when I was at business 
school. She told me at that time that she hadn't gotten in touch 
with me before because my father had told her never to do so. 
She felt now I was old enough to hear her story and to make up 
my own mind about her. 

Grandmother Collins was left a widow at twenty-four with 
four children, a house in Sheepshead Bay and a tiny income. 
Her family doctor who had brought all her children into the 
world asked her to become his assistant, especially on obstetrical 
cases, as he said she was very gifted and would have been a 
marvelous doctor. 

When the Memorial Hospital was built in Morristown, no- 
where could there be found a doctor willing to step in and run 
it. Somehow Mrs. Collins was suggested. There was violent 



( 106 ) SEPTEMBER CHILD: 

opposition to appointing a woman, but eventually she was ac- 
cepted. Mrs. Collins sold her house in Sheepshead Bay and 
moved to Morristown. She staffed the hospital, trained the 
nurses and ran it for many years. My mother met Father at 
school, and that is how I happened to be born in Morristown. 

Mrs. Collins eventually shocked everyone by leaving the hos- 
pital and going back to Brooklyn with her old doctor and his in- 
valid wife. Mrs. Collins said she had to do it. The doctor had had 
a stroke, and his wife was bedridden. She felt it was the least she 
could do to repay him for all he had done for her. Father, how- 
ever, and other Morristown people said she had gone back to 
live in sin with this man, and it became a raging scandal. After 
the doctor and his wife died, she had moved to Atlantic City 
where she had a charming house in Chelsea. I once tried to 
bring her and my father together, but he was enraged even at 
the mention of her name. She fascinated me, however, and we 
were good friends. I saw a lot of myself in her. 

When Salt Water was announced for Atlantic City she was 
furious that my name was not on the billboards, for 1 had sent 
her a copy of On the Chin long before John Golden bought it. 
She insisted nothing had been intrinsically changed in the play 
except the locale; as far as she could see, all the original situa- 
tions and characters were the same, and in her peppery way she 
gave Dan a hard time about it. 

Dan was very much back in the picture through all of the 
preparations and tryout time, and I had become fond of him 
again. After all, he was sort of family to me, and then I never 
can hold a grudge. 

My own family Father, Ogden and Madgehad planned 
to come to Atlantic City to see the play, but when Father learned 
I was staying with "that old slut, Mrs. Collins/' as he still called 
her, he said they'd wait until the play came to New York. 

After the opening in Atlantic City, Golden decided that 
Spencer Tracy, as good an actor as he was, and is, was not 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( 107 ) 

comedian enough for the leading role of Jack Horner, the name 
Golden had given the leading character, which I loathed but 
could do nothing about. Mr. Golden said it was good luck for 
him! 

I had said from the very beginning that I thought it was a 
good part for Frank Craven who had starred in one of Golden's 
biggest hits, The First Year, and suddenly Golden agreed and 
asked Frank to come to Atlantic City to see the play. He came 
at once and was delighted with it. 

All of this had taken place in the spring and it was decided 
that we would tackle Broadway with Salt Water, starring Frank 
Craven, in the fall. 



Producing a play was very different in those days. To begin 
with, I do not imagine it cost more than five or six thousand 
dollars to put Salt Water on. For the set I went with Fred Stahl, 
Mr. Golden's stage carpenter, to the storehouse in Fort Lee and 
selected the most likely looking scenery for our purposes which 
Fred himself would alter and paint to our detailed specifications. 
I pawed over, and through, the props in the storehouse to find 
exactly the right sort of atmospheric furniture, including a 
wonderful whatnot which reminded me of one we had had in 
Morristown. I found a mounted fish and a lovely little boat 
model I thought would lend atmosphere, and actually we did 
not have to buy anything except the window curtains and a 
large rag rug, both of which I bought at Macy's for less than 
a hundred dollars. It was as much fun as furnishing a new 
apartment and much less expensive. 

Working with Frank Craven was great fun, too. He had a 
wonderful dry wit and he could do more to convulse an audi- 
ence with a quizzical glance than Jack Rose, Milton Berle and 
Jerry Lewis rolled into one, with all their shenanigans. One of 
the situations in Salt Water, an original one from On the Chin, 



( 108 ) SEPTEMBER CHILD: 

was where the wife, at Hattle's insistence, lied to her husband 
that she was going to have a baby to soften the temper she 
knew he would be in when he discovered she had put her sav- 
ings, not into a schooner to sail the seven seas, but into buying 
the ferryboat which he had been shuttling back and forth for 
years. The first time we rehearsed the scene, Frank's air of 
pride and personal achievement as he regarded his guilty wife 
with a series of adoring, doting and awe-struck glances broke 
the company up to such an extent that it took us a good quarter 
of an hour to get on the keel again, and whenever he played 
that scene in front of an audience, he could keep the laughter 
building and rolling for minutes without a word being spoken. 

I cannot think of anyone in the American theater today who 
could originate and play a comedy scene in just that way. A good 
comedy director (are there any more?) could possibly steer and 
mold an actor into a facsimile of it, but it is surprising and 
discouraging how few young actors today have the spontaneous 
flair and the technical skill to be comedically creative within 
themselves. The "method" is excellent for realistic drama, but 
it overlooks almost completely the art and technique of comedy. 
This cannot be blamed on Stanislavsky, however, for from all 
accounts he could play light comedy with deft skill. 

I had a pleasant personal life, too, while the preparations 
for Salt Water were going on. I even went out with Dan a few 
times, and once we stopped in after the theater to have coffee 
at the N.V.A. What a blight had fallen on it! Hardly anyone 
was there whom we knew, and those we did know were full of 
woe. I never could bring myself to go back again. This was 
probably true of many others, because before long it ceased to 
exist as a club and today is the New York Center of the Seventh- 
day Adventists. 

Charlie Beahan was overjoyed with the work I was doing 
with Golden, although he regretted my decision not to play 
Hattie; and my dear old friend, Holland Reavis, also very 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( 109 ) 

much approved and was especially delighted at what he termed 
my "escape" from Dan. 

This was in the time of the big boom, just before it went 
bang, and I can hear Holly now saying, "Prosperity, prosperity, 
everyone is cackling about prosperity, and the fact is we are 
tottering on the brink of the worst financial disaster in our 
history/' He said he had taken all of his money out of the 
market and he advised me to do the same, which I did. I re- 
peated all of this to Mr. Golden but he laughed at me. John 
Golden lost three million dollars in the crash, but he took it 
gallantly. He still had millions left. 

Madge and Al Herman lost virtually everything they had, for 
they had put their money in Strauss bonds which everyone in 
the theater considered 100 per cent safe because of the slogan, 
"No Loss to an Investor in Over Eighty Years/' Many of my 
tycoons were very hard hit, too, although a few of them quickly 
sold short and made a fortune on the falling prices. Frank 
Craven lost what he called "a bundle," but after a few wry com- 
ments about it, he never mentioned it again. He was happy, he 
said, to be rehearsing in a play he loved, Salt Water, and John 
Golden jauntily assured the company that while he had lost his 
"liver and lights," he still had the theater free and clear and the 
play would go on as scheduled. 

Salt Water opened just one month after the crash on Novem- 
ber 29, 1929. It received "mixed notices." Two women critics 
reviewed it: Alison Smith, second-stringing for Alexander 
Woollcott on the New York World, and Wilella Waldorf for 
the New York Post. Alison dismissed the play as "rather amus- 
ing"; Wilella Waldorf raved about it. The final line of her 
review particularly pleased me. It said: "The setting is so 
authentic, you can smell the salt air." 

I never cottoned to Alison Smith, but Wilella Waldorf be- 
came one of my closest friends, and her death some years ago 
has left a gap in my life which no one else can ever fill. 



( 110 ) SEPTEMBER CHILD: 

Mr. Golden was rather depressed that Salt Water was not a 
smash hit, but I loved to listen to the audience laugh and I 
thought my royalty checks each week were the sweetest income 
I had ever had. And Frank Craven was not a bit upset that the 
play was not selling out. He said he enjoyed the part more than 
any he had had and, anyway, he already had an idea for a new 
play which we could all do together. It was That's Gratitude, 
and I can still see him striding up and down in the Golden 
office, sucking on his pipe, and asking me to jot down bits of 
dialogue and scenes as they popped into his mind. All this in 
the midst of the usual hubbub of a busy theatrical office. 

After he had enough bits and pieces, Frank asked John Golden 
if he could spare me to work on the finished script at his apart- 
ment, and soon I found myself trudging down Fifty-eighth 
Street Frank lived only two blocks away at the Hotel Wynd- 
ham in happy anticipation of a stimulating and amusing few 
hours. I met and loved Mrs. Craven, with her deep, rough voice 
for which she was famous, and their handsome son, John, who 
gave such a tender and touching performance, some years later, 
as George in Our Town. 

Everything was so easily done in those days! There was no 
rush and no tension. Of course, only a few thousand dollars were 
at stake instead of the fortune it now takes to put on the simplest 
play. Salt Water or That's Gratitude today would require a 
budget of about a hundred thousand dollars. Also, the actors' 
careers were not so violently affected. Scores of plays were always 
in preparation so there was plenty of work to go around, or at 
least more work on the stage than there is now. Television 
keeps most actors eating these days. 

Just before That's Gratitude was to open, our press agent, 
Martin Mooney, disappeared. (We heard later he took a job in 
California and did not dare face Golden!) We were all worried 
about getting someone to replace Marty at once as very little 
publicity had been done on the play and the deadline for the 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( 111 ) 

"big week-end breaks" the weekend before the opening was 
fast approaching. 

One day Mr. Golden came roaring out of his private office 
and said, "Dixie, all the press agents who've worked for me are 
busy and you know how I hate strangers around, so" and he 
gave a long, dramatic pause "I have hit on a solution." 

Dixie, Buford Armitage, Jimmy Lane and I all looked at 
him expectantly. "I have decided," he said, "that Jeannie will 
do our publicity." 

"Oh, no," I said, "I don't know how!" 

"Oh, come now," Golden said. "Martin Mooney told me 
you've worked with him and have been a great help to him." 

"But," I babbled, "all I did was write some feature stories 
for him. Honestly, I don't know how to go about the rest of it." 

"Well, I'll tell you," Mr. Golden said. "It's very simple. 
Here's a list of drama editors, critics, feature writers, colum- 
nists, etc. All you have to do is get a 'story' and a picture in 
their papers every day." He dropped the list on my desk and 
left for home. 

Dixie and the other men soon put on their hats and followed 
suit, and I was left alone with my problem. How to begin? Well, 
I thought, first I'll write to everybody on this list and tell them 
that I'm John Golden's new press agent and that, as they already 
know, our next production will be That's Gratitude. I sat 
there in the office until I had written everyone a personal note. 
There were over a hundred of them, and when I finally fell into 
bed that night, I knew I had embarked on a whole new sea of 
adventure. Just writing to so many men and women whose 
printed words I had long admired had been thrilling. The fact 
that it now would be my job to meet and to know them de- 
lighted me. 

I did not have long to wait for results. Almost immediately 
0. O. Mclntyre, probably the most popular columnist at that 
:ime, wrote in the New York American: "John Golden has a 



( 112 ) SEPTEMBER CHILD: 

new press agent with a real pretty name, Jean Dalrymple." 
Bide Dudley, another fine columnist, carried a comment about 
my new "appointment," as he called it. So did Ward Morehouse 
in his "Broadway After Dark" column in the New York Sun, 
one o my favorite papers. 

John Golden's reaction was typical "That's a hell of a fine 
press you got for yourself, girl/' he said. "What about That's 
Gratitude and John Golden?" 

"Oh," I said airily, "now that I have made contact with them 
all, I don't feel timid about going to see them." (I remembered 
Martin Mooney was out of the office a good deal of the time, 
"making the rounds.") 

"You're not to go to see them!" Golden roared. "A girl can't 
go gallivanting around from newspaperman to newspaperman 
like a regular press agent can. You're to get your work done over 
the telephone and by mail." 

I had no idea what a "release," which I was supposed to get 
out every day, meant or was, I remembered that my friend, 
Mark Barren, before he became critic and drama editor of 
the Associated Press, had been the press representative for the 
Theater Guild, so I called him up- he was still at hometo ask 
about it. 

He said, "I don't know how to describe a release to you, but 
I'll tell you what I'll do. Ill stop by on my way to the office and 
write one for you." Which he did, pointing out that each re- 
lease is so called because it should be headed: PLEASE USE or 
RELEASE on such and such a date. (This is to have news stories 
break simultaneously.) The first paragraph should have the 
meat of the news event, including the date and where it is to 
take place. The second paragraph should, as he put it, "eluci- 
date" and give additional information, and the final paragraph 
should be a "wind-up" or reminder of news, if any, already 
"released" 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( 113 ) 

The lesson took all o fifteen or twenty minutes and has 
lasted me all of my life. 

Mr. Golden could not keep the newspapermen from coming 
to see me. Ward Morehouse was one of the first. My impression 
of him was that he looked like a very attractive owl. He was 
short and comfortably plumpish, but far from fat. He had a 
wonderful fresh, fair skin, dazzling white teeth, lovely wavy 
brown hair and huge round blue eyes behind extra-large 
tortoise-shell glasses. He was soft-spoken in a southern way and 
had a touch of wit and imagination in everything he said. I 
liked him immediately. 

He often told me afterward how he came in and found "this 
grave little girl" who very efficiently gave him all the informa- 
tion he needed. He then asked if he could see "the great man" 
for a minute or two, and I was very pleased when Golden came 
to the door and personally ushered Ward into his office with 
all his charm and heartiness. I had been worried for fear Golden 
would object to this newspaperman visiting me but, of course, 
Golden thought that Ward had come only to see him. 

When Ward left, Golden called me into the office. "What's 
going on here?" he asked. 

"I don't know. What's going on?" 

"Why, for God's sake," Golden suddenly roared, "Ward 
didn't come here to interview me! What do you think he 
wanted?" 

"I don't know!" 

"You don't, eh? Then 111 tell you! He walked in here and 
said, 'John, I'm going to marry that press agent of yours and 
I want you to be the first to know it!" 

I laughed. "I'll have something to say about that!" 

"Well," Golden said, "make sure you say the right thing. 
Don't let me catch you marrying one of those newspaper bums." 

About an hour later a special messenger from Carrier's ap- 
peared at the office. He handed me an interesting-looking little 



( U4 ) SEPTEMBER CHILD: 

white package. In it was a beautiful wrist watch and a card 
saying: This is only the beginning. I shall have something for 
you every day. W*M. 

1 took it in and showed it to Mr. Golden, thinking it rather 
funny but very nice. I said I thought I should return it. 

"No, don't do that," Mr. Golden advised. "We can't afford to 
hurt his feelings. Not right now just before an opening! I guess 
you'll have to play along with him until we get That's Grati- 
tude on. But watch out for him! He's from Georgia, and those 
southern boys have a way with them." 

Ward did have a way with him, and in spite of Golden's 
warnings, I saw a great deal of him. I simply could not resist 
going to opening nights with him. Not only because he was 
wonderful company, but because through him I met virtually 
all of the important newspapermen and critics. Ward was very 
popular with them and, as he told me later, he enjoyed showing 
off his "little girl from Morris town" who, he said, was a welcome 
change from his usual string of eager ingenues. 

When That's Gratitude did open, it received unanimously 
favorable notices and was a smash hit. Again my name was 
never mentioned in connection with it, but I did get royalties 
from it. Both John Golden and Frank Craven had reputations 
of being slightly penurious, but as far as I was concerned, I 
found them extremely generous. Golden, of course, went on to 
become a philanthropist in later years. Frank Craven was not 
only generous with money but also with praise, and to the 
end of his life he was a source of great comfort to me. 



Ward used to have a section of his column called "The Passing 
Show," in which he listed the names of the celebrities at each 
opening. He always included my name. O. O. Mclntyre, Bide 
Dudley, Sidney Skolsky, Louis Sobol and F.P.A. also mentioned 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( 115 ) 

me from time to time, usually as having been at an opening 
with Ward. 

One day John Golden called me into his office. It was the 
morning O. O. Mclntyre had written in his column, "My wife, 
Mabel, says John Golden's press agent, Jean Dalrymple, has 
the loveliest complexion of any of the regular first-nighters/* 

Golden had Odd's column in front of him. "So now you're a 
regular first-nighter," he said. 

I had seen the item and knew it would nettle him. "Yes/' I 
admitted, "I'm very fortunate. When I don't go with Ward, one 
of the other boys takes me, and really, since you don't let me 
go to the newspaper offices, I get a lot of work done with them 
all during the intermissions." 

"Well," Golden said a bit grudgingly, "I must say you get 
a lot of space. I have to congratulate you on that Grantland 
Rice golfing column on Frank Craven. It's the first time a show 
of mine got onto the sports page. Did you meet Grannie at an 
opening night?" 

"No, I met him at a cocktail party Ward took me to. I re- 
minded him that Frank Craven is a good golfer and did a 
golfing play for you, The Nineteenth Hole, and so he made a 
story of it for us." 

"Oh, hell," Golden said, "I guess that's the new way of doing 
business. I myself never go to cocktail parties or opening nights." 
I thought to myself, well, you're an old man now and it's too 
late to change. (He was fifty-four!) 

Since Ward was not a critic then and his "Broadway After 
Dark" column in the New York Sun had been written and filed 
before we went to the theater (except for "The Passing Show," 
which he had his assistant, good old Willie Priori, phone in 
for him, unless he took care of it himself), we often went after 
the openings to the company parties or to Tony's on West Fifty- 
second Street. Tony's was the habitual hangout of the drama 



( il6 ) SEPTEMBER CHILD' 

department newspapermen and the young advertising execu- 
tives, as well as theater folk. 

I still did not drink except for an occasional sip of champagne, 
but Ward loved the stuff, or perhaps just the effect of it, as he 
made a terrible face unless he was drinking Cointreau, creine de 
menthe frappe, Alexanders, or other sweet and to me sickening 
concoctions. I would dutifully taste them all, since Ward had a 
persistent hope that one day I would hit on something which 
would be habit-forming. My cokes and lemonades were a source 
of great embarrassment to him. Being a hard drinker in those 
days there was still prohibition seemed to be a mark of dis- 
tinction. Ward was, and is, violently allergic to alcohol, and 
a very little of it has a very bad effect on him. 

Ward was what you might call my steady beau, but I also 
liked another young man named John Rosebrook who was a 
vice-president of Young and Rubicam and most attractive. He 
was what Ward called my "striped-pants beau"~this because 
John was a dressy sort of fellow and on Sunday afternoons when 
he took me to the Philharmonic concerts he was properly at- 
tired, striped pants and all. 

John's seats at Carnegie Hall were right next to Deems 
Taylor's. I did not know Deems then, but I recognized him 
from his picture in the New York American, of which he was 
the music critic, and I also recognized the lady who often ac- 
companied him as Edna St. Vincent Millay, I sat beside them 
on many a Sunday afternoon, longing to know them both, and 
soon the opportunity came. 

A beautiful and gifted colored woman came to the Golden 
office one day and asked if I would help her put on an evening 
of authentic Negro work songs, folk songs and unadulterated 
spirituals. Her name was Zora Hurston, and Otto Kahn, who 
was financing the venture for her, had sent her to me. I loved 
the idea and told her that if Mr. Golden would let us have his 
theater one Sunday night, we'd do it. This was my first effort 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( 117 ) 

at being an impresario, and it was astonishingly successful. The 
house was not only sold out, but we actually turned crowds 
away, and the next morning Deems Taylor had a banner head- 
line straight across the page over his review which read, "Jean 
Dalrymple's Sunday Night a Big Hit." 

The following Sunday afternoon I again sat next to Mr. 
Taylor at Carnegie Hall. When I had sent him his tickets for 
the Sunday night concert, I had written him that I often sat 
next to him at the Philharmonic concerts. As the concert was 
going along, Deems suddenly took a pencil and wrote on his 
program, Are you Jean Dalrymple? I nodded yes, and we have 
been friends ever since. 



chapter 

v 



i 



HAD MOVED to a larger apartment so that Ogden and Madge 
could be with me. It was on East Fifty-third Street, right about 
where the Stork Club now is. Pinkey looked out for all of us 
and also for Hercules, our big black tomcat. Madge said 
Hercules was in love with me because he liked to sleep in bed 
with me under the covers with "his arms around me," as Madge 
put it. Our apartment was on the top floor, and Madge said 
long before I rang the bell, Herky knew I was coming and 
would sit in the hall under the button we pressed to release the 
catch on the downstairs door. The moment I did ring, he would 
spring into the air and try to push the button himself. Then, 
as I climbed the stairs, he would dash madly about the entire 
apartment in "a state of ecstasy" again quoting Madge only to 
sit calmly and casually at the door when I finally arrived and to 
greet me with a casual rub on my shin and a nonchalant 
"prrp." 

If we were having dinner at home, which was rather rare as 
both Madge and I usually were invited out and Ogden was 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( 119 ) 

away at school (and Pinkey still hated to cook), Herky would 
sit on the arm of my chair and supervise my every mouthful. 
Rene Devos had given me Hercules, and we had named him 
that because he was the tiniest, weakest, most miserable-looking 
little kitten we had ever seen when he first arrived. But now 
he was big and fat, a shiny coal-black, with huge green eyes, a 
real beauty. I believe he was what is called a coon cat. Anyway, 
he was a darling, and we were all devoted to him. 

Rene had returned to Europe after losing his fight with 
Mickey Walker and his chance to gain the middleweight cham- 
pionship of the world. The decision had been so close it could 
have gone either way, and there were many boos and outcries 
at Madison Square Garden that night when the results were 
announced. Ogden and Tom Van Dyke were incensed at the 
decision and were among those standing on their chairs, booing 
and yelling, "Unfair! Unfair!" I felt that Walker had retained 
his championship by sheer aggression, and as the fight pro- 
gressed, and Ren out-pointed him, I had had the sinking feeling 
all along that Rene with all his cleverness and skill would lose 
out to Mickey's wild and almost uncontrolled onslaughts. 

Ward was very happy to see Ren6 leave for Europe, never to 
return. It did not matter to him how many other beaus I had, 
but Rene and John Rosebrook always rankled him and with 
good cause. I loved them both very much, especially Ren. 

Dan had completely disappeared from my life, and I had 
heard a vague report that he had married Dorothy Lord and 
had gone to live in California. I discovered later that this was 
true and that he was working as a writer with Sol Lesser, who 
produced the Tarzan pictures, among others. 

Through John Rosebrook my old longing to play the piano 
came back with a rush, and I decided at long last to take lessons. 
The only time I had to practice was at seven-thirty or eight 
o'clock in the morning, but this was no hardship for me as I 
was always an early riser and still am. I think those vaudeville 



( 120 ) SEPTEMBER CHILD: 

days of getting up to play eighteen holes of golf before the 
matinee conditioned me. Sleeping, it seems to me, is a matter of 
habit I never can understand why people who have "insomnia" 
do not appreciate the extra time they have to read or study or 
work in the quiet of the night. 

When I started to work with Rachel Crothers on her play 
As Husbands Go, which was to be Mr. Golden's next production, 
I had been warned that she was an "impossible" woman, but I 
found her stimulating and charming. She loved music, too, and 
one night early in rehearsals we went together to hear Rach- 
maninoff at Carnegie Hall. She said she had always wanted to 
play the piano and had tried to study it; when I told her I had 
decided to do something about it, she found it unbelievable 
that I would work at it in the early morning hours. I reminded 
her that she had told me she wrote best the moment she woke 
up (she wrote rapidly in pencil on sheets of yellow paper which 
she brought to the office for me to decipher), and she said I 
would be better off if I, too, used those early hours to write. 
She believed I, too, could be a playwright "on my own/' as she 
put it. I told her I had to wait for "inspiration," and she said, 
"That's nonsense. I don't believe in inspiration. Just concen- 
trate on something to write about, and the ideas will come to 
you/' 

"That's inspiration/' I cried. 

"No, it's not/' she said flatly. "That's plain hard work/' 



I had my usual job of putting together the scenery from the 
storehouse for As Husbands Go. Miss Crothers was delighted 
with the results, especially with the handy archway between 
the main set and the entrance hall at the back of the stage, and 
I can still remember how she laughed when I told her it had 
originally been what we called in vaudeville a "center door 
fancy." She also was delighted when I overrode Mr. Golden's 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( 121 ) 

instructions to have Myna Tally Wightman make all of the 
clothes. The point o the play was that the wife had just re- 
turned from her first trip to Paris, and a very important scene 
between her and her typical American businessman husband, a 
fellow on the dull side, was played with her wearing a negligee 
which simply had to look "bought in France." 

Surreptitiously I went to Hattie Carnegie's and ordered a 
ravishing pink lace peignoir which exactly suited Lily CahilFs 
blond beauty and, as she said, made her "feel" the part of the 
wife. Golden had a fit when he saw the bill. I had talked Hattie 
into giving me a special price, but it still was a hundred and 
nineteen dollars. Years later when I worked on One Touch of 
Venus, Mary Martin wore an almost identical replica of that 
pink lace negligee from Mainbocher. It cost fourteen hundred 
dollars. That was in 1943. I suppose today well, we can't even 
budget the cost! 

I had done a bit of research on Miss Crothers and had dis- 
covered that she had written twenty-six hits since 1906 more 
than one a year! I based my publicity campaign for As Husbands 
Go on this remarkable record, and I was pleased that the news- 
papers played it up and made her the real star of her new play. 
The front page of the drama sections of both The New York 
Times and the New York Herald Tribune published large 
photographs of her as well as stories about her unique career 
on that all-important Sunday before the opening, and the very 
next Monday she sent me a magnificent fitted traveling case 
from Saks Fifth Avenue with a card I still have and treasure, 
saying: "To the greatest press-woman in the world." 

As Husbands Go was one of John Golden's and Miss Croth- 
ers' biggest hits, and we were all handsomely rewarded. John 
told me years later he netted over half a million dollars on it, 
and that was in the age of virtually no taxes. 

When the weather turned balmy, Rachel invited me to the 
country for golf. She had a beautiful old colonial house on 



( 122 ) SEPTEMBER CHILD; 

Long Ridge Road in West Redding, Connecticut, which she 
had named "Roadside." Like all authentic "colonial" houses 
(two hundred years old or more), it was close to the road, be- 
cause those bygone winters must have been lulus and there 
were no plows to dig you out. She told me she had bought it 
with her royalties from Let Us Be Gay, another of her comedies 
which John Golden had successfully produced. Before that, she 
said, she had gone stony-broke trying to be a producer as well 
as a playwright and a director (she always directed her own 
plays, and masterfully, but had no talent, she admitted, for pro- 
ducing). 

We played golf at the Ridgewood Country Club in nearby 
Danbury where the professional, George Ferrier, a wonderful 
Scot, remembered me from my vaudeville golfing days and al- 
ways played around with us. This was the first of many wonder- 
ful weekends I spent with Rachel, who already was hard at 
work in the early hours covering sheet after sheet of yellow 
paper with the words of a new play called All Wet. I loathed 
the title and told her so. I said I had a feeling that no matter 
how well she wrote the play, the title would kill it. 

"A title can't kill a good play." She laughed. "But if I think 
of a better one, I'll change it, just to make you happy." 

She never did, though, and the play was an awful flop. The 
morning after the opening, I went over to her apartment and 
found her surrounded by bad notices and in tears. I tried to 
comfort her by saying she soon would be at work on another 
play which would be a hit, but she cried out, "When you write 
plays, each one is like a child. You birth it, labor pains and all, 
and you love it whether it is beautiful or deformed. This one, 
damn it, was born with two club feet!" 



John Rosebrook or Ward usually drove up to Miss Crothers* 
on Sunday afternoons to pick me up and take me back to New 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( 123 ) 

York. They had settled into a pattern in my life, a very agree- 
able one: Ward and theater opening nights, theater people and 
amusing newspapermen; John and the opera, concerts and horse- 
back riding. 

I had not ridden a horse since my pony on the Haineses' 
farm in Bernardsville, except for the few times I had week- 
ended with my tycoons and their families during my Dominick 
days, so when John suggested I take it up again, as it was a sort 
of ritual with him to trot around the bridle path in Central 
Park, I thought, why not? 

This "riding nonsense" of mine annoyed Ward. He was 
waiting for me at my apartment one Sunday when I returned 
in my riding clothes and he went into a fit of temper which 
ended with him grabbing Hercules and rushing out with the 
poor cat, shouting that he would hold Herky for ransom until I 
stopped all my damn foolishness. 

Madge and I both dashed downstairs after him, but he was 
too quick for us. He and Herky disappeared in a passing taxi. 
I was furious, but Madge was more so. Both of us, however, had 
no time just then to take off in pursuit. I had to change my 
clothes and meet John again for luncheon and a concert, and 
Madge, too, had a luncheon date. 

That night, however, Ward phoned and said rather plain- 
tively, "Aren't you coming for your cat?" I was so mad, I just 
hung up the phone. He called back a moment later and shrieked, 
"You don't ever have to come for him. Your damn cat is very, 
very happy here. I've been feeding him all day on cream, caviar 
and smoked salmon." And he banged up. 

Madge said, "He just wants to get you over there, but don't 
you go. I'll go!" And she strode out into the night like an aveng- 
ing Amazon. She was back in a very short time with Herky in 
her arms, no worse for his adventure. She said when Ward dis- 
covered her instead of me at the door he had simply thrown the 



( 124 ) SEPTEMBER CHILD: 

cat at her and disappeared into his bedroom, screaming insults 
at her as he slammed the door. 

She commented coolly, and with a pleased smile, "He's 
scared o me/' 



It was shortly after this that Ward telephoned and said he would 
like to see me at the office "on business/ 1 Since I saw him almost 
every day or so and always talked "business" with him, giving 
him items for his column and so forth, I was surprised and told 
him to come right up. When he arrived, he sat down beside my 
desk very formally and said, "I'd like to start working on that 
play I told you about, New York Town." 

"Fine!" I approved. "Go ahead!" 

"I can't," he said. "I can't write it unless I get paid for it." 

"Paid in advance?" I asked. 

"Yes, that's it," he said. "I have to be paid in advance, or I 
can't write a thing. So I want you to ask your Mr. Golden to 
give me the advance, and then I'll be able to get at it." 

I went right in to Mr. Golden's office and told him about it. 
When I came out, I had a check with me. I handed it to Ward 
and said, "Mr. Golden would like to see the first act as soon as 
possible and if he likes it, he'll have another check for you 
then/' 

Golden did like the first act when Ward brought it in and 
did give him another check. And so, little by little, New York 
Town was written. It was about a young man from a 
southern town (Ward, of course, who is from Savannah, Geor- 
gia) and about his adventures in the big city. Most of the play 
took place in Tony's and involved characters we had met there, 
including especially Franchot Tone's mother, Gertrude, whom 
Ward called "the Woman Who Went Over Niagara Falls Every 
Morning in a Barrel" (the Tones come from Niagara Falls); 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( 125 ) 

Tony himself and his classically beautiful wife, Angelica, and 
Andy, our favorite waiter. (Andy now waits on me at "21.") 

When the play was finished, Mr. Golden, as usual, wanted 
to rewrite it and, as usual, have it all happen in one set Tony's. 

Ward was furious. He shrieked at me (he was always very 
mild and pleasant with Mr. Golden), "That damn boss of yours 
has a one-set mind. Tell him I won't change a word unless he 
gives me another check. And I won't let him rewrite it or even 
touch it, ever." 

I dutifully reported this to Mr. Golden who, In his turn, 
shrieked at me, "Who does that damned pip-squeak friend of 
yours think he is? The play's no good anyway, but I could at 
least try to make something out of it for him/' 

Ward was so enraged that he actually jumped up and down. 
"Who does Golden think he is? He's just a damned song writer 
who got lucky. If it hadn't been for Winchell Smith, he'd still 
be writing lousy lyrics. [Winchell Smith was Golden's partner 
for many years.] You tell him if Winchell Smith were alive, I'd 
let him rewrite it, but Golden, never!" 

The next thing I knew, Ward was having his play submitted 
to other producers. His agent at that time was Leah Salisbury, 
an eager, ambitious, black-haired girl with eyes as big and green 
as Herky's. I loved her the moment I met her and I knew she 
was good for Ward. She believed in him and she was not afraid 
of him. Neither was I, but neither of us ever let him know this. 

Mr. Golden was annoyed with me about this whole episode, 
Dixie French told me. But Golden himself kept a dignified 
silence on the subject. There was nothing at all I could do 
about it, but I was willing to admit that Golden was right about 
the play. It was amusing, but it was rambling and diffuse. For 
the stage it might very well have been improved by confining 
it to one set. 

Several other producers turned it down. Ward was never 
downcast or discouraged; he was enraged. Then one day Leah 



( 126 ) SEPTEMBER CHILD: 

called me in great excitement. 'I've got to reach Ward right 
away/' she said. "Warner Brothers wants to buy his play for a 
movie and wants an immediate answer. I cannot find him and 
don't know what to do." 

''Sell it!" I said. "It will make a much better movie than a 
play." 

"But will Ward be hurt at not having it on the stage first?" 

"Not if Warner Brothers will pay him enough money for it," 
I said. 

Later that very same day Ward came dashing into the Golden 
office, waving a check for twenty thousand dollars at me. "Take 
that in and show it to your damned boss," he yelled gleefully, 
"and tell him it's only a down payment." 

Fortunately Mr. Golden had already left for home. He read 
about it in the newspapers next day and commented on it to 
me wryly. I told him if he had bought the play, part of the 
money Ward was getting would be his, but he said, "No, you 
have to run a play three weeks on Broadway before the pro- 
ducer shares in the movie money, and that play of Ward's 
would have run maybe three days," and that closed the subject. 

But not for Ward. Leah, wonderful agent that she was and is, 
wangled a contract for him at Warner Brothers at a thousand 
dollars a week to turn the play into a film script, and off he 
went to California. But not before he had moved from the 
Plaza to a magnificent suite at the Essex House, on the thirty- 
eighth floor. He had taken a long lease on apartment 3802 be- 
fore he knew he would be in California for ten or twelve weeks, 
so he generously told me to make use of it. I was perfectly happy 
in my own Fifty-third Street apartment, but the Essex House's 
Fifty-eighth Street entrance was diagonally across the street, you 
might say, from the John Golden Theater, and it was a wonder- 
fully luxurious feeling to be able to traipse over there in the 
late afternoon and entertain Ward's and my friends for cock- 
tails. 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( 127 ) 

Ward yelled at me over the long-distance phone, "You can 
have Dick Watts and Howard Barnes, Howard Benedict and 
Mark Barron and Willard Keefe and Rene DeVos, if you can 
get him back from Europe, up there, but don't you dare let 
John Rosebrook put his foot in my apartment!" It so happened 
that John Rosebrook was sitting right there in Ward's big chair 
when this conversation came reverberating over the wire. John 
decided that this was the moment to propose to me, I told this 
to Ward at once, and it was greeted by a stunned silence. 

Finally Ward said very sweetly, "I think that's real nice, 
honey, but don't do anything about it for a day or two because 
you've got to help me about these damn story conferences. I 
don't even know what a story conference is, do you?" 

Darryl Zanuck was producing Ward's picture, and Mervyn 
LeRoy was directing it. The two of them completely baffled 
Ward. "They have movie minds," he used to groan. "I can't 
follow them. Pan in; pan out; fade in; fade out. What the hell 
are they talking about?" 

Ward was not fooling either. I, from my old William S. Hart 
scenario-writing days, knew these terms and had something of 
a movie mind myself. So Ward called me every night to be 
"briefed," and we talked and talked over the long-distance 
wires. 

Then one night Ward did not call, and I fell off to sleep 
thinking he probably had had a bit too much to drink. But 
not at all; when he did phone next noon, he sounded weak and 
pathetic, and I knew he was not hung-over but ill, and by the 
way my throat tightened, I realized I cared about this funny 
little man. 

He said, 'I've told them at the studio I'm too sick to work 
for a while, and if I don't feel better today, I've decided to 
come home for a few days." 

I went out to meet him at the Newark Airport next day and 
was shocked to find him very pale and quiet. I got him back 



( 128 ) SEPTEMBER CHILD: 

to the Essex House and put him to bed. Then I myself diagnosed 
what was the matter with him. He had had a sunstroke. It's odd 
that I knew this about him, but it was not until seven years 
later that I discovered the sun was an enemy of mine, too. 

Just to be on the safe side, however, I called up Ward's doctor, 
Henry Rafsky, who said that Ward not only had had too much 
sun but that also he had a severe stomach ulcer. 

"In fact," Dr. Rafsky said to me, "he must give up drinking 
completely and take very good care of himself or he won't live 
a year." 

I was terribly upset about this, but Ward just laughed. "I 
can't possibly stop drinking," he said. "I'd be too bored, and 
I'll outlive Dr. Rafsky." He did, too. The good doctor died 
about ten years ago, and Ward is still going strong, ulcer and 
all. 

As soon as Ward felt better, he knew he had to go back and 
finish out his contract at Warner Brothers, much as he loathed 
the idea. He loved doing his column for the New York Sun, 
"Broadway After Dark," and continued it from the coast 
("Hollywood After Dark") even while working on the film. In 
spite of the good money he was making, he longed to give up 
the Warner's job, but Leah would not let him. 

When he finally realized he had to go, he said to me, "I think 
I could stand it if you'd come back with me." 

"That would do the telephone company out of a lot of 
money," I laughed. 

"But we could get the damn film finished between us, and I 
could forget the whole business." 

I had enjoyed California enormously when I had been there 
with Dan and the Sheas and suddenly I had a great longing to 
go back, but I had to say, "I'd love to go, but Mr. Golden would 
never let me." 

Ward roared, "The hell with Mr. Golden. He's a damn ty- 
rant. And he's stuck on you. That's his trouble. You leave there 
and come with me!" 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( 129 ) 

"I can't do it," I sighed. 

"You've got to," he shouted. "Damn it, I'll even marry you." 



If two men are asking you to marry them at the same time, you 
are apt to develop a frame of mind in which a choice seems 
imperative. Such was my case with Ward and John Rosebrook. 
It somehow never occurred to me that I could choose to marry 
neither of them. 

I had never had conventional marriage husband, home and 
children as a goal. As a matter of fact, ever since Dan first 
mentioned it, 1 think I had tried to avoid the subject. The idea 
of someone supporting me or "taking care of me" never ap- 
pealed to me- While I had never realized it, my stepmother's 
flight from what she called "small-town provincialism and the 
bonds of conventional society" had had a deep effect on me, 
and a house in the suburbs with security, children, dogs and 
horses was not something to long for but something to be 
avoided carefully. 

Subconsciously, I suppose, John Rosebrook and his way of 
life represented these very things, while Ward, a nonconformist 
in every conceivable way, represented little change in the pat- 
tern of life I enjoyed. 

Ward wanted Mayor Walker to perform the ceremony at City 
Hall. When they learned we were to be married, Keats Speed, 
managing editor of the New York Sun, and his wife, Fawkie, 
who were good friends of Ward's and mine, insisted that we be 
married in their apartment by their minister, Dr. Ralph Sock- 
man of the Park Avenue Methodist Church. (Ward is a Method- 
ist.) 

Vinton Freedley was best man, and since my father was off 
traveling somewhere, Mr. Speed "gave me away." Mrs. Speed 
was matron of honor, and my sister, Madge, was my bridesmaid. 
I asked her recently if she remembered who else was at the 
wedding and she answered tartly, "All I remember is you left 



( 130 ) SEPTEMBER CHILD: 

a note for me saying that I was to be at the wedding at the 
Speeds' at four o'clock. I didn't have a proper dress or a hat or 
anything. It certainly was all very sudden." 

It certainly was. And so was the change in my life which 
began with the fantastic reception Ward gave at the Essex 
House apartment that afternoon which was jammed with every 
celebrity of the era you could possibly name, including of 
course, Jimmy Walker. John Rosebrook was there, too, and 
he was very, very sad. Ward had no pity for him. 

"You just didn't work fast enough," he needled him glee- 
fully. 

All my old friends were there. Dan's brother, Arthur Jarrett, 
represented that part of my family. Bert Lahr, Lillian Boardman 
and others from my vaudeville days were there, too. But there 
was no Mr. Golden. 

I tried to make the same sort of arrangement with him I had 
made with Mr. Mclntire a leave of absence but Golden re- 
fused even to speak to me after his first icy reception of my 
news. I was instructed to communicate with him through Dixie 
French. But it was all too exciting for me really to care very 
much. But I did a little. 

Some of my tycoons, including beloved Holland Reavis, were 
at the reception, also Emilie Hall, who was still trying to marry 
Frank McCoy, Elizabeth Freedman and Natalie Schafer, the 
actress. Natalie and I had become close friends when I cast her 
in one of Mr. Golden 's lesser comedies, Ada Beats the Drum, 
with Mary Boland. Natalie put a definite chill on my exuber- 
ance at the reception when she remarked, lightly, "It's all right 
for a little while, I guess." 

That, too, was the tenor of those times. 



Ward and I left for California the next day on the Twentieth 
Century. 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( 131 ) 

We got off at Pasadena, which was the chic thing to do, 
and Miriam Hopkins, with car and chauffeur, was there to meet 
us. Miriam, also from Georgia, had been Ward's close friend 
all the time he had been working at Warner's (and for years 
before in New York), but she was being very gallant about the 
marriage. She not only came personally but also had been kind 
enough to make all arrangements for our social life before our 
arrival. Also, she had rented a beach house for us to "honey- 
moon" in Carmel Myers* beautiful little cottage at Santa 
Monica. 

When we reached the beach house gloom settled on me. It 
was just dusk. The electricity had not been turned on, and we 
felt rather than saw our way around. 

Miriam chatted to me gaily all the time, pointing out the 
unseen beauties of the place and its many disadvantages, such 
as no linens, no blankets, no silver, no dishes or cooking utensils 
and water, electricity and gas still to be turned on. Also, 
there would be servants to find and such minor gems as a gar- 
dener and a "watchman" for the young bride to locate. 

But thank goodness Ward had kept his bungalow at the 
Garden of Allah, and there eventually we went to leave our 
bags and to change into dinner clothes for my first Hollywood 
party-the Richard Rodgers' wedding anniversary do. 

The moment I walked into bungalow 8, happiness returned. 
Mrs. Ross, the woman manager of the Garden, had filled the 
little apartment with flowers, many of which had been sent by 
welcoming friends, and also she had strewn rice about in every 
room in circles around the flowers and she had put little mounds 
of it on all flat surfaces, including the bed. 

The place and atmosphere enchanted me, as well as the 
names on the cards that had come with the flowers. "Jimmy 
Cagney," said one card; "Gary (Archie Leach) Grant," said an- 
other; "Bill Edmunds," said still another, and "Fred Astaire," 
said an especially jolly one. 



( 132 ) SEPTEMBER CHILD 

In the wonderfully equipped little kitchen Miriam and I 
made coffee for all of us. Ward wanted to write a "Holly- 
wood After Dark" column about the Rodgers' party, and he 
went to work the moment we arrived. Of course everyone who 
was anyone was there. I met Ward's producer, Darryl Zanuck, 
and his beautiful wife, Virginia, for the first time, and also our 
director, Mervyn LeRoy, who was escorting Ginger Rogers. 

Within the first half hour after our arrival we had ten or 
twelve invitations for dinner and just as many for cocktail par- 
ties. One of the invitations came from I almost went into a 
Victorian swoon when I was introduced to him! John Gilbert. 
I could not believe it when he singled me out and actually 
steered me to a corner of the room where we could sit and talk 
about of all things golf. Jimmy Cagney had told him I was 
a golfer, and it seemed that this had become a veritable passion 
with John. We made a date to go out and play the very next 
morning, and when Ward finally came to gather me up to go 
home, he found me still gabbing with John, flanked by Jimmy 
Cagney on one side and Gary Grant on the other. 

He seemed almost annoyed by this and, bowing, said, "Queen, 
if it suits your majesty, the chariot awaits/* We all thought this 
very funny; even I did then. When we finally were back in our 
bungalow not late, as Hollywood parties broke up early in 
those days, and still dowe piled into our nice big double bed. 



chapter 

VI 



N< 



o MATTER HOW LATE we went to sleep, Ward always was at 
work on his column for the New York Sun by six-thirty or seven, 
before taking off for the studio. He is a hunt-and-peck typist, 
very fast and very noisy, and he would bang furiously away 
while I made breakfast for him, the only meal I ever had a 
chance to prepare in our beautiful little kitchen. We had de- 
cided to live at the Garden of Allah, but since the beach house 
was already paid for, we had weekends at Santa Monica. It was 
a delightfully luxurious arrangement. In fact, everything was 
delightfully luxurious. 

Miriam Hopkins finished a film and took off for New York 
and Europe, leaving us her two servants, Tell, her chauffeur- 
butler, and Mary, his wife, a marvelous cook. Like Ward and 
Miriam, they were from Georgia, and magnificent-looking, 
with their flashing white teeth lighting up their handsome coal- 
black faces in ever-ready winning smiles. I loved them, and 
they were wonderful to me, both of them babying me and 
"making over" me, as Ward put it, in a way which took me 

( 133 ) 



( 134 ) SEPTEMBER CHILD: 

back to the days with the Murphy family and Miss High in 
Morristown. They soon had the Santa Monica house slicked up 
and open, and we decided to give a housewarming on Sunday. 

Usually one sits around the first half hour or so of a party 
and begins to feel like Charlie Chaplin in The Gold Rush, but 
for our first "big" party the guests began arriving before noon, 
and for the next twelve hours everyone who was anyone piled 
in there for swimming, games and lots and lots of eating and 
drinking. 

Recently I found a shopping list 1 had made out for that 
party. It started: "Forty frying chickens, ten pounds of black- 
eyed peas . , ." Prohibition was supposed to be in force, but I 
never saw any sign of it, ever, as long as I was with Ward. 
I still did not like more than a sip or two of wine. If only I had 
taken up serious drinking in those days, my life with Ward 
would have been an easier one. I guess I really was a little 
on the prissy side, and Ward was half right when he would 
roar at me, "You're a damned Sunday-school teacher, that's what 
you are!" 

Soon Ward said that he could not possibly sleep in the same 
bed with anyone, and forthwith our nice double bed was ex- 
changed for twin beds. Then a few weeks after that we left our 
darling little cottage for a large rambling one on the other side 
of the pool, with two bedrooms, one for each of us. Natalie 
Schafer, who visited us from New York, remarked acidly, 
"That's a quick disintegration of a love match, even for Holly- 
wood." 

Ward said I was, and always would be, "a little girl from 
Morristown/' and he absolutely could not stand my "insane 
desire" to cook for him. Once, however, he did give in and let 
me fuss over a special dinner, for just the two of us. I had spent 
the whole afternoon preparing the things I knew he liked best. 
He picked at them for a while in forlorn silence and then sud- 
denly he burst into tears. 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( 135 ) 

I was terrified. "What on earth is the matter?" I cried. 

"I can't bear it," he sobbed. "That's all! I just can't bear it! 
We're in the most glamorous town in the world where we could 
be out having a glamorous time, and instead here we sit alone 
like a goddamned couple in the Bronx!" 



But this distaff half of the g.d. couple was having a lovely and 
busy time. If I did not golf in the morning, I worked away at 
the piano. This was something else which irritated Ward. 

"If you'd play something like 'The Darktown Strutters' Ball' 
or 'Alexander's Ragtime Band/ I wouldn't mind," he'd yell, 
"but I can't stand that damned classical music!" 

When Ward was at the studio, however, I could indulge 
myself, plowing my careful way through Chopin, Brahms, 
Schumann, Shubert to say nothing of Mozart, Clementi and 
Scarlatti. It was not very good, but I liked it. 

I also had a terrific correspondence to keep up. A letter from 
John Rosebrook arrived each day, still bemoaning the fact that 
he had not "acted quickly enough," and I heard regularly from 
friends in New York and even from Rene Devos. 

But I had a letter from Madge with really upsetting news. 
Hercules was dead. Madge often had written that from the 
time I left he moped, wouldn't eat, and lay on my bed and just 
meowed. Then one night, to quote Madge's letter, "he couldn't 
seem to stand it any longer, got up with great determination, 
stalked to the window, and just jumped out." She added, 
"Cats always can land on their feet when they want to, you 
know. He landed on his head which proves he did it on pur- 
pose." 

There still was no word at all from John Golden who had 
not so much as sent me a telegram for my wedding. But then 
came a letter from Dixie French. He wanted to know if and 
when I would be coming back to New York and what my plans 



( ig6 ) SEPTEMBER CHILD: 

were, because Mr. Golden was producing a new play by Rachel 
Crothers and Rachel insisted upon having me do the publicity. 
I at once happily replied that it wouldn't be long before we'd 
be back at the Essex House and that I'd like nothing better than 
to have my old job back. Ward was not at all pleased by this, 
however. He said he wouldn't stand for Golden having me 
"under his thumb" again, but I told him we'd manage that 
part of it when we got to it. 

When the time came we decided to fly back to New York. 
Flying was an adventure in those days, nicely informal, too, 
and casual. There were only a few daring passengers on our 
plane, and the pilot went off the course several times to take 
us sight-seeingover the Grand Canyon for one thing and 
once he swooped down and chased a herd of antelope for Ward's 
benefit. We flew (one hundred twenty miles an hour) only by 
daylight, since there were no beacons or beams, and spent the 
night in Kansas City, finishing up the trip the following day. 

Apartment 3802 at the Essex House, when we reached there, 
was filled with flowers and, of course, people, but I went directly 
to the John Golden office. 

Rachel Crothers' new play, When Ladies Meet, would be 
produced in New York in the fall and was to be tried out in 
Dennis, Cape Cod, that summer. 1 asked anxiously for Mr. 
Golden and Dixie said, "He's still sore at you, but he's getting 
over it. Hell call you himself one of these days, you'll see, and 
say, 'Come home, all is forgiven.' " 

And that is the way it was. One day Golden called me, and 
we had a long luncheon at Mrs. Hymes's. All was forgiven, but 
I never went back to him completely. Ward would not permit 
it. I could be John Golden's press representative, he declared, 
"but not his office slave." I spent a few hours each morning with 
Golden, however, because I really loved working with him, 
and then there was the tryout of When Ladies Meet to be pre- 
pared and other interesting projects. 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( 137 ) 

About this time my old friends Angela and John Krimsky 
returned from Europe with the news that they and Gifford 
Cochran had bought the American rights to a wonderful Ger- 
man film, Mddchen in Uniform, and they hoped I'd come in 
with them and handle the exploitation. So now I had two jobs 
working in the Golden office before luncheon and at John 
Krimsky's Play Choice office on Mddchen in the afternoon. 

The try-out of When Ladies Meet at Dennis was a hit. In 
Miss Crothers' little speech to the audience after the opening, 
she said, "This is an ideal way to do a play. I am delighted 
with your reception of When Ladies Meet, but I see several 
spots where it can be improved, and now before we start on 
the final New York production, I have plenty of time to do the 
necessary work without being under the usual pressure." 

"The usual pressure/' Rachel spoke of, is all too often the 
cause of disaster in the theater. How many times I have heard 
theatergoers say, "How can a group of highly experienced and 
talented people producer, director, author and star become 
involved in such a failure? Couldn't they see from the beginning 
that the whole thing was hopeless?" 

Of course the answer is that it was far from hopeless in the 
beginning. The play, written by an established, perhaps even 
famous author, merited a production and appealed to a well- 
known producer, director, and a star. But as the play was cast 
and rehearsals started, the weaknesses in the script became ap- 
parent. 

Then the pressure began. There was the deadline of the 
out-of-town opening to be met and after a brief two or three 
weeks, the inflexible New York opening to be faced. 

Out-of-town, in spite of some work by the author during the 
rehearsals, the weaknesses still remained and were pointed out 
by the critics and the reception by the public. Frantic rewriting 
began. Whole scenes were rewritten, rehearsed and tried. 
Sometimes a whole new act was written by the playwright who 



( isj8 ) SEPTEMBER CHILD: 

had taken over a year originally to write the play. The pressure 
on him and the exhausted company built up but everyone 
remained optimistic. 

This eternal optimism is what brings so many failures to 
Broadway. 

No matter how badly a production has fared out-of-town, a 
miracle on opening night on Broadway is hoped for, even ex- 
pected. The New York critics will find values the out-of-town 
critics overlooked and will appreciate the work that has gone 
into it; the beautiful setting; the authentic properties, the 
Mainbocher clothes. 

But no! All is disaster and the play closes after one or two 
performances unless the producer has booked enough theater 
parties on the combined reputations involved to keep it stag- 
gering along for a few weeks of playing before disgruntled 
audiences who ask that eternal question: "Couldn't they see it 
was no good before they started?" 

Miss Crothers did the necessary work, and When Ladies Meet 
made another fortune for her and Mr. Golden. It also gave 
Walter Abel his first important personal success and made a 
star of him. 

In the meantime, we had opened Mddchen in Uniform at 
the Criterion Theater on Broadway, It was the first foreign 
film ever to be given big-time, two-a-day treatment, and it was 
a sensation. I use the word "sensation" purposely, as actually 
there always was a touch of the sensational about the film be- 
cause many people read a Lesbian motif into it, although I 
must say this completely escaped me. To me it was a beautiful 
work of art, and for the first time I loved the sound of spoken 
Deutsch. I still remember how Herta Thiele sighed her 
final "Auf Wiedersehen, Fraulein von Bernberg," to Dorothea 
Wiecke. 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( 139 ) 

Much to my chagrin, and over my dead body, Ward had 
switched agents. I loved and admired Leah Salisbury and felt 
a passionate gratitude to her for her faith in Ward's ability, but 
Ward wanted to be handled by Leland Hayward because Leland 
had a private airplane! "I must have an agent with a private 
airplane," Ward cried as his only explanation or defense. I told 
this to Leah over a luncheon and she laughed. "That," she said, 
"is just as good a reason as any, I suppose, for changing agents, 
especially for someone like Ward." She loved him, too, and still 
does. 

It soon developed that Leland was involved with Archie 
Selwyn in putting on a play which was to return Tallulah 
Bankhead to Broadway after a long absence in London, where 
she was the first American girl ever to become a fabulously 
successful star. 

It seemed very unfair to me that this beautiful American 
actress, who had risen to such unprecedented heights in London 
and made several successful films in Hollywood, was being dis- 
counted by Ward's newspaper and theater friends who gathered 
at Tony's or "21" or 3802 as having to make a "comeback." I 
defended her so hotly on all occasions that finally Ward said, 
"You ought to do her publicity." And I did. 

Most of the people who cried out loudest against Tallulah 
because of her so-called temperament had never met her, never 
seen her on the stage and, in many cases, never even had seen 
her in films. Certainly they had never worked with her. 

She is an exceptionally gifted actress and a real pro. I have 
worked, I suppose, with hundreds of stars and world-famous 
artists and very few of them can match her when it comes to 
hard, gruelling work and complete concentration. And I have 
never known her to be "difficult" when she feels what is being 
done to and around her is right. That, by the way, is true of all 
the so-called temperamental people I have known. 

"Temperamental outbursts" usually come about because of 



( 140 ) SEPTEMBER CHILD: 

frustration in being unable to communicate unexplainable in- 
stincts of what is right for the artists and right for the protection 
of their God-given gifts. 

For instance, one time when I was in Cleveland with Grace 
Moore who was considered extremely difficult and tempera- 
mental, we arrived a bit late at the Civic Auditorium, which 
was completely sold out. When the lights dimmed, the house 
stilled, and Grace was ready to walk out onto the stage, she 
suddenly cried out, "Where is the canvas?" I rushed to look. 
The boards of the stage were bare. It was in all of Grace's con- 
tracts that there was to be a strip of canvas from the wings to 
the spot in front of the piano where she was to stand for her 
recital. 

"I can't go on without it," she said, mildly at first. 

"But you must!" the local manager cried. "You're late now!" 

"I'm not going out until the canvas is there," she said and 
majestically strode back to her dressing-room. 

"But I haven't got a canvas," the manager groaned, and he 
turned to me. "What shall we do?" 

"Send someone over to the hotel for a couple of bed sheets 
and tack them down," I said. 

"That's ridiculous!" he cried. 

"Well, if you want Miss Moore to go on tonight, I'd advise 
you to do it at once." 

"She's childish and temperamental," he cried. "Here she has 
a packed house and everything ready. . . . You get her to go on/' 
he pleaded. 

"She won't," I said, "Why don't you be sensible and do as I 
suggest?" 

He finally did, and after a ten minute delay during which 
the vastly amused audience watched as the stage hands tacked 
down the bedsheets, Grace sailed out over them and gave a 
magnificent performance. 

I knew without being told the reason for her "temperament." 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( 141 ) 

She was wearing a gorgeous white satin gown with a slight 
train, especially made for her in Paris by Molyneux. If she had 
dragged her lovely gown over the dirty stage on the way to the 
piano, her mind would have been cluttered with such thoughts 
as now this damn gown will have to go to the cleaners! Or, why 
can't people do as I ask? instead of her usual untroubled 
clarity of concentration on the program she was about to give. 
I do not think Grace even realized this herself. I did, but I 
could not have explained it to the manager. He would have 
said, "Let her pick her damn train up!" I hope you see what 
I mean. People who placidly accept direction or management 
or compromise in situations which might be damaging to them, 
either do not know or do not care, or just do not have "the 
spark." 



Forsaking All Others was the play Tallulah chose to make her 
"comeback/' and I heard later she had put up all the financing 
for it. After my strict theatrical training with John Golden, I 
could not make head or tail of the way Archie Selwyn, 
Tallulah and the others went about its production. At the 
Golden office things were simple and straightforward. Here 
everything was terribly complicated and everyone seemed 
to take two steps forward only immediately to take three steps 
back. No one, however, interfered with my press department, 
and that was a blessing. 

In spite of a faulty script, the confusion and the nightly 
hilarity in Tallulah's suite at the Ritz in Boston, where I felt 
very much at home with all the same clerks, bellboys and 
waiters who remembered me from my vaudeville days, a great 
deal of work did get done. 

This background of mine was something Ward could never 
believe. He had it fixed in his mind that "the little girl from 
Morristown" had come to the big city looking for a job and had 



( 142 ) SEPTEMBER CHILD: 

luckily landed in the John Golden office just two or three days 
before he met me. It was not until World War II when he was 
in England to cover the American Army bases for the New 
York Sun that he ran into Will and Gladys Aherne, who were 
entertaining for the U.S.O., and they finally convinced him, as 
he put it, that my acting career was not a myth! 

When Forsaking All Others finally opened at the Times 
Square Theater, it had a generally favorable reception and ran 
all season. 



John Krimsky had given me a large office of my own in his 
luxurious Play Choice setup, and this had become my head- 
quarters. We shared a secretary, Gertrude Tonkonogy, whom 
we called Miss Teck. Soon I had several personal publicity ac- 
counts, too, including Burgess Meredith, who was appearing in 
Eva Le Gallienne's Alice in Wonderland as the Dormouse. 

I was doing wonderfully well, but the country was in the 
depth of the depression by this time and one of those badly 
affected was my father. His specialty all his life had been hard- 
woods which, like his father before him, he knew and loved. 
Beautiful wood for parquet floors was his stock in trade, but 
during this sad period building ceased almost altogether, and 
although Father traveled the length and breadth of the land, 
he told me one day he hadn't been able to sell even one carload. 
He said the worst part of the depression was not the lack of 
money but the lack of something to do and the boredom and 
"depression" that went with idleness. He had been active and 
busy all his life and now he sat in Central Park on pleasant 
days, feeding the squirrels and the pigeons. When it rained, 
he went up to apartment 3802 and whiled away some of the 
time visiting with Pinkey. 

One morning as I was leaving for the office Pinkey said, 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( 143 ) 

"Miss Jean, you ought to do something about your father/' 

"I'd like to/' I said, "but what can I do? Does he need 
money?" 

"Oh, no, it isn't that. He wants to work for you/' Pinkey 
said. 

I could not believe my ears. "My father wants to work for 
me?" 

"Yes," Pinkey replied. "He's told me a dozen times that he 
envies you and that he'd love to work in your office." 

"But I couldn't possibly offer my father a job!" I cried. 

Pinkey said, "Well, I just thought you ought to know. Of 
course he would never say anything to you about it himself." 

I brooded about this all the way to the office. When I reached 
there and looked on my calendar, I found I was to take Burgess 
Meredith to Bronxville that afternoon to speak at the Women's 
Club, an appearance which had been arranged by my old friend 
Billie Ahearn, who was now Mrs. James Bergen of Westchester. 
Miss Teck had marked down several other important engage- 
ments, too, for the afternoon, including a five-o'clock appoint- 
ment with Radie Harris, whom I was to introduce to Tallulah 
(it was the only time Tallulah said she could see her). 

Radie had come into my office a few days before with a rather 
nice story about Tallulah which I knew I could place for her, 
but she needed, she said, a personal interview to fill it out. I 
believe this was the first professional interview Radie ever had. 
In those days she was what Ward called "a star-gazer." The very 
thought of meeting a star made her face light up and her eyes 
shine. Right now she probably knows and has known intimately 
more stars than anyone else in the world. As Ward says, "She 
collects them." 

I knew Billie would have a fit if I did not show up with 
Burgess in Bronxville and at the same time Tallulah would 
have a fit if I personally did not bring Radie over to the 



( 1^4 ) SEPTEMBER CHILD: 

Elysee Hotel What to do? Very simple! I would ask Father to 
take Burgess to Bronxville. Billie and he were old friends, and 
Burgess knew Father and liked him. 

Father was delighted to do me the favor of driving Burgess 
up to the meeting, and while Billie said she was disappointed 
not to see me, she reported that Father had made as big a hit 
with the ladies as Burgess had. 

The next day Father came into the office with his expense 
account (I told him "the office" would pay for the gasoline, etc.). 
While I made out a check, he asked if he could sit down at one 
of the desks and use the typewriter as he had some letters to 
write. After that he came in almost every day "with some letters 
to write," and soon he was a fixture there and a great help, too. 
He had an innate flair for publicity and show business in gen- 
eral, and it was not long before he even had some clients of his 
own. Young musicians and singers always adored him. From 
the very beginning he had an unusual understanding of their 
problems and he had enormous sympathy for them. He never 
went back to lumber. At the time of his death, at eighty-one, 
he was a veteran concert artists* representative, and no one 
remembered that he ever had been in any other business. 

Often people have said to me, "Of course it was easy for you 
to get into show business since your father was such a famous 
concert manager!" 



When I returned to apartment 3802 from my office in the eve- 
nings, there was always a party going on, I never knew whom to 
expect, but it was almost always someone fascinating. Dorothy 
Parker, for instance, might be there, exchanging "cracks" with 
Ward. Those were the days of the so-called "amusing insult," 
originated by Alexander Woollcott, I guess, and definitely car- 
ried on by Ward, who fancied himself as sort of Woollcott's 
understudy. I never appreciated this form of "wit." To me it 




Lovely Elizabeth, who died short- 
ly after this picture was taken, 
with baby J.D. 



Father on his second honeymoon 



Father, J.D.'s first blond beau 





The first year 




J.D.-Golden days 



J.D. at sixteen 




In front of Trinity Church. 
Dominick days 





Just a P0/-J.D. 









,,J;,;;.^^:*;!K5&lgg^iMK;^^:G!S:si s 'l ? ^^^^B'!l 



Dan Jarrett and John Golden on the 
boardwalk at Atlantic City during 
Salt Water tryout 




With Ward Morehouse at Boston opening of Early to Bed 



Peggy Ashcroft, Eve Arden, Sophie Tucker, Tallulah Bank- 
head, Peggy Wood, Gertrude Lawrence, Ed Wynne, Vin- 
cent Price, Clifton Webb, Danny Kaye, Boris Karloff, Eddie 
Cantor, in the double Floro Dora Sextette, first American 
Theater Wing party 





Ralph Morgan Newspictun 
Pilot Iturbi with his plane El Tuna 



Amparo Iturbi with J.D. at Lewisohn Sta- 
dium concert, Jose conducting 





Grace Moore and J.D. in Puerto Rico at 
the start of the Latin-American tour 





A. F.Sozio 

City Center Board of Directors meeting, 1943, in 
office of Chairman, then President of the City 
Council, Newbold Morris. At his right; Claire Reis, 
Mayor Fiorello LaGuardia, Commissioner Paul 
Moss, Gerald Warburg, Judge Hubert Delaney, 
Howard Cullman, Mrs. Lytle Hull and J.D.'s 
white hat. 



With Fiorello LaGuardia, early days at City Center 





Sidney Kingsley as Lafayette, J.D. as Camille, Jules Glaenzer as the 
King of Siam and Bert Lahr as Wellington at a Dorothy Kilgallen 
party. 

Gwen Verdon and Robert Bowling at a City Center Showcase party 

Bela Cseh 





Franchot Tone and Jos< Iturbi 



Stan Lee, Graphic House Inc. 

With Jed Harris during 
rehearsal of Red Gloves 





Outdoor cooking at Pinafore Farm, Connecticut 



Jimbi and Sukoshi, the Korean Palace dogs presented to Philip 
by Syngman Rhee 




Belgian Ambassador, Louis Scheyven 
before portrait of King Baudouin 
after presenting J.D. with the Bel- 
gian Order of the Crown 




Mayor Robert F. Wagner at Sardi's restaurant 
Jay Seymour, Gary Wagner Associates 





Newbold Morris, J.D. and Jose Ferrer, New York City Center tenth 
anniversary party 



Franchot Tone, Jesse Royce Landis, Betsy von Furstenberg and 
visiting foreign dignitary at Philip's retirement party, Governor's 
Island 





Sister Madge Graves with her sons, David and Bradford 



Ogden with his sculp 
ture of Father 




Last photo of Father, Hollywood 





Actor's Equity Golden Anniversary Show, produced by J.D. at the 
Majestic Theatre, May 5, 1963. Seated in front of jeep, David 
Wayne; on chairs, J.D. and Cyril Ritchard; on couch, Sally Ann 
Howes, Marc Connelly, Lillian Gish and Walter Abel; on floor in 
front, Melinda Dillon. Standing between J.D. and Cyril, Helen 
Hayes and Beatrice Lillie. Seated on jeep, John Forsythe and Rich- 
ard France; standing, Paul Ford, Vivian Elaine, John Fearnley, Bar- 
bara Cooke, Betty Garde, William Warfield, Leesa Foster, Doro 
Merande, Alexander Clark and Jerry Strickler, Carol Channing 
waving 'way on top, Robert Preston in front of her; Honi Coles of 
"The Copacetics" in the corner at left and Swen Swenson with 
arms outstretched. 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( 145 ) 

was just rude, and I did not approve of it. Miss High would 
have hated it! 

In those days Ward was very amusing and well-organized. He 
usually got up about seven o'clock, went down to his office and 
pounded out his column. Sometimes he stayed at home and had 
what he called "a day of genius," during which he would call 
Noel Coward in London, Miriam Hopkins and three or four 
other stars on the West coast, order flowers sent by telegram to 
friends all over the world, and in other glamorous ways manage 
to spend a couple of thousand dollars. He once sent Dorothy 
Hall, for her opening in the Preston Sturges play, Child of Man- 
hattan, four hundred dollars' worth of orchids! When I took 
mild exception to this particular extravagance, he phoned down 
to the florist in the lobby of the Essex House and had them 
send up to me every single flower in the place. 

"There/' Ward said as they arrived by the bucketful, "that 
ought to satisfy you, you jealous little small-town wench!' 1 And 
I had come home on the bus to save taxi fare! Of course I never 
let him know about this or my other economies as they only 
would have confirmed his opinion of me as a little girl who just 
never would catch on to big city ways. The fact that Miriam 
Hopkins always referred to me as "little Joan" she only started 
to call me Jean a few years ago did not help matters any for 
me, either. 

But all of this is no complaint! Ward had, and has, the saving 
grace of humor, and virtually everything he did or said amused 
me. Some days I would come home from the office and find him 
entertaining not only, say, Tallulah Bankhead, Gertrude Law- 
rence and Leland Hayward but "a bevy of beauties," as Ward 
put it, unknown to me and even sometimes to Ward. This 
caused me considerable consternation only because it upset 
Pinkey, who had moved up from the Fifty-third Street apart- 
ment and was now bartender at apartment 3802. 

"Miss Jean," she would say, "that girl in the pink dress has 



( 146 ) SEPTEMBER CHILD: 

two pairs of your stockings and a bottle of your perfume in her 
handbag." Or, "That pretty dark one over there took all of your 
lace handkerchiefs/' 

I would say aghast, "You mean, stole them?" 

She would sigh. "I don't think you can call it that because Mr. 
Ward told them to help themselves." 

Pinkey loved Ward, too, and nothing he ever did or said 
shook her affection for him. Of course she was much more in her 
element with these goings on than she had been looking out for 
Madge and Herky and me on Fifty-third Street, since she had 
spent most of her life as a theater maid or dresser and she loved 
show folk. She would have stayed on with Madge, however, as I 
had asked her to, except that Madge suddenly up and got mar- 
ried and went to live near her husband's business on Long Is- 
land. 

Several times Ward complained that he couldn't work in 
3802, so I took an unfurnished apartment down on the ninth 
floor of the Essex Houseapartment 96 it was and had a fine 
time fixing it up with furniture from John Golden's storehouse 
at Fort Lee. The living-room rug was the one from Salt Water. 
Ward never found this apartment glamorous enough but he 
did like to hole up in it now and then to do his column. 



About this time Ward and I decided we needed more money to 
support us in the style to which we had become accustomed, and 
I suggested, "Let's write that movie about the taxi driver and 
film star we told to Junior Laemmle," 

"How many times do I have to tell you/' he hollered, "that I 
can't write anything unless I'm paid in advance?" 

"Well," I said, "111 tell the story in detail [I now had it very 
clearly in mind] to Charlie Beahan and ask for an advance. 
Then will you write it with me?" 

"Get the money first, and then we'll talk/' he said. So I did. 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( 147 ) 

Charlie Beahan by this time had an office in New York at 
Universal Pictures at Fifty-seventh Street and Fifth Avenue, and 
I sat there one afternoon with Ward and told the story. If there 
had been a tape recorder in those days, a great deal of the work 
already would have been done, but in any case, a check from 
Universal Pictures was soon forthcoming, and Ward and I set 
to work on Bagdad on the Hudson, which I hoped would be 
a vehicle for Tallulah Bankhead. (It was released as It Hap- 
pened in New York.) Charlie Beahan was enthusiastic about the 
script when it was finished, and it was accepted at once. A check 
for twenty thousand dollars, drawn on the Manufacturers Trust 
Company, soon arrived, on the very day that the banks closed 
and the depression was at its nadir. Ward was apoplectic with 
rage, and I had to have Charlie Beahan send a "good" check to 
him by messenger. 

Charlie wanted the two of us to go to the coast to work on 
the screenplay, but by this time I had a flourishing publicity 
business with John Golden's When Ladies Meet, Tallulab/s 
Forsaking All Others, the film, Mddchen in Uniform, and a 
number of personal accounts. Also John Krimsky and Gifford 
Cochran had decided to branch out and make a movie of The 
Emperor Jones, starring Paul Robeson, and they had plans to 
present Kurt Weill's Die Dreigroschenoper (The Three Penny 
Opera) on Broadway. 

Besides all this, our secretary, Gertrude Tonkonogy, had 
written a play which I wanted to produce. It was a hilarious 
account of her family life called Love Butters No Parsnips, and 
it was one of the most adorable and funny plays I ever read. I 
thought I would like to do it with Mr. Golden at his theater 
when Rachel Crothers' play closed, and I just could not believe 
it when he returned the script to me as "nothing but a bunch 
of unrelated nonsense/' and he bellowed at me over the phone 
for having made him waste a perfectly good weekend reading 
it. It did not shake my belief in it, however. I just loved it. 



( 148 ) SEPTEMBER CHILD 

(Alfred de Liagre, Jr., produced It as Three-Cornered Moon, 
and it was a big hit.) Anyway, I was terribly busy and involved 
with my own work, and finally it was decided that Ward would 
go to California alone. 



chapter 

VII 



T 

JLHERE WAS surprisingly little difference in my life with Ward 
away. Our friends had made such a habit of dropping in at 3802 
for a late-afternoon drink that I still came home from the office 
to find Pinkey tending bar. I went to openings with Dick Watts 
or Howard Barnes or dear Wilella Waldorf, all of them critics, 
and I went to concerts and operas with John Rosebrook or 
Deems Taylor. 

One Sunday John Rosebrook and I went to Carnegie Hall 
to hear a piano recital by Jose Iturbi. We had heard him play 
before with the New York Philharmonic and we were both 
crazy about him. So was everybody else, for since his American 
debut in 1929, he had become the New York music world's 
reigning lion. No one topped him socially or in the concert halls, 
and John had had to pay a stiff premium for our seats to his 
recital. His personality as well as his playing enthralled us, and 
we stayed for the very last of his generous encores, which was 
the Brahm's Waltz in A Flat Major. 

Dick Watts and I lunched every Monday at "21" at our favor- 



( 150 ) SEPTEMBER CHILD: 

ite corner table in the bar and the very next day, while Dick 
was sipping Irish whiskey and I was going along on tomato 
juice, Tullio Carminati came toward us bringing with him, of 
all people, Jose Iturbi himself. Tullio was starring in Music in 
the Air and was a good friend of mine, 

"Jeannie," he said, "I have someone here who wants to meet 
you. He saw you coming in as we drove up in his car and I have 
been answering questions about you ever since. . . . Mrs. More- 
house, may I present Jose Iturbi/' 

"And this/' I said quickly, since both men seemed to be ig- 
noring him, "is Richard Watts of The Herald-Tribune/' 

Iturbi bent over my extended hand and mumbled something 
in French. 

Tullio said, "He doesn't speak much English/' 

With an absolutely ravishing smile I had never seen such 
beautiful teeth, such twinkling, mischievous eyeshe turned to 
Tullio and spoke rapidly in Italian. Tullio said to us, "Mr. 
Iturbi begs you and Mr. Watts to join us for luncheon." 

Dick politely but firmly declined the invitation and to my 
disappointment Tullio and Iturbi went on to their table. 

I had forgotten the incident by the time I returned to the 
apartment that evening but Pinkey said with a broad smile, 
"You have some beautiful flowers/' and pointed to a mass of 
the longest-stemmed and reddest roses I had ever seen which 
she had arranged in a large vase. She handed me the card which 
had come with them. ITURBI in the bold hand I later came to 
know so well completely covered it. 

The phone rang then and to my amazement and delight it 
was Iturbi himself. He wanted to have dinner with me but alas 
I had promised Dick Watts to go to an opening that night. 
Iturbi seemed very unhappy. 

"I have to leave for Chicago where I am playing with the 
Symphony," he said in French, "and I won't be back until Sat- 
urday." 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( 151 ) 

"And Saturday," I sighed, "I have to be in Philadelphia for 
the opening of The Three Penny Opera' 9 

"Then I will meet you there/* he said. 

My publicist's mind clicked quickly. The Three Penny 
Opera was famous in Europe for Kurt Weill's lovely music and 
having the great Iturbi at the opening could do no harm. I did 
not actually think he would make it, but I did not discourage 
him. I said I would meet him at the theater at curtain-time. 

The Three Penny Opera was considered avant-garde in those 
days and it brought out a brilliant opening night audience in 
Philadelphia. Iturbi arrived just as the curtain was going up. 

The opera went well with that particular audience although 
I had to agree with Iturbi that several times the orchestra and 
the singers did not seem able to get together. At the party after 
the show, Iturbi became the center of attention, and his com- 
ments on the play (which he made in quite good English, it 
seemed to me) were eagerly accepted. 

It was a very late party, and I was not surprised when Iturbi 
said he had decided to stay over and drive back to New York the 
next morning. 

I had planned to work on the train to New York as I was 
terribly busy and I tried to back out of the promise I had made 
to go with him but Iturbi would not hear of it. The next day 
we were on the way in his beautiful gray Lincoln, driven by 
Francisco, his handsome Spanish chauffeur. 

Instead of delivering me to the Essex House, he drove directly 
to "21" (it used to be open on Sundays) where Margaret and 
Bernard Fineman had been awaiting him for luncheon. Bernie 
was a film producer, and Maggie is Agnes de Mille's beautiful 
sister. I knew them both and although I felt I really should get 
at my work, it was not difficult for Iturbi to persuade me to 
join them. 

Luncheon over, we drove Maggie and Bernie to their hotel. 
They lived in California but were visiting New York to see the 



( 1^2 ) SEPTEMBER CHILD: 

plays and for Margaret to visit her mother, the daughter of 
Henry George, whose Single Tax Plan still seems an eminently 
sensible one to me. 

We then drove to the Essex House and as I had expected, and 
vaguely feared, Iturbi had no intention of "dropping me," as 
most of my other cavaliers did, but gallantly escorted me right 
into my apartment. I was relieved to find Pinkey there. She was 
usually off on Sundays but had come in to unpack my bag 
which Francisco already had delivered while we were lunching. 
I did not know that Iturbi had had this done, and I had a 
pleasant sense of being taken care of. 

There were more red roses a mass of them on the piano 
and Iturbi's card beside them. I picked it up and started to 
thank him. 

He said, "I never want you to be without them again. But 
you mustn't put them on the piano. Nothing should be placed 
on a piano. You can't imagine how annoying it is to be asked 
to play a piano covered with bric-a-brac, framed photographs, 
and a huge vase of flowers loading it down and ruining its tone/' 

He sat down at my piano as Pinkey hastily removed the 
roses fortunately we had nothing else on it and ran his fingers 
quickly up and down the keys. "Beautiful," he said. "Good 
action, too. Play something for me." 

"I wouldn't think of it," I said. "I couldn't! I'm not very 
good. In fact," I admitted, "I'm terrible! I just like to tinkle 
around when I'm alone." 

"Let me see your hands," he said. 

I held them out, and he took them. It was the first time he 
had touched me except casually to take my arm. But now he 
simply said briskly, "Excellent hands. I will teach you," and 
with that, he turned back to the keyboard and played the 
Brahm's Waltz. In the car coming back from Philadelphia, I 
had told him how much I had enjoyed his concert just a week 
ago and how his final encore, the Brahm's Waltz in A Flat 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( 153 ) 

Major, had touched me more than anything else he had played 
that day. (He still plays it "by request" when I am in the audi- 
ence.) 

"What else would you like to hear?" he asked when he came 
to the end of it. 

"Anything! Anything at all!" I said, enraptured, and drawing 
up a chair I sat down close to the piano. I had no idea then 
of how many times I would sit just that way in the years to 
come. 

When Ward called that night, I wanted to give him a detailed 
account of what I considered a lovely and perhaps even danger- 
ous adventure, but he was not interested and merely commented 
that "if he's a friend of Carminati's, he must be an Italian." 

"No," I said, laughing, "he's a Spaniard." 

"A what?" 

Telephone communications between New York and Holly- 
wood were not as clear then as they are now. 

I yelled. "He's Spanish." 

"Same thing," was Ward's only comment. "By the way," he 
went on, "if I ever get out of this cricket-infested cesspool, I'll 
be back in New York only long enough to pass through on my 
way to Africa. I've decided to go on a safari. I've already spoken 
to Keats Speed about it, and he knows I'll send him some 
fascinating columns." 

"That's for sure," I said and let it go at that. 

Iturbi was playing concerts in nearby towns and cities two or 
three times a week, and whenever he possibly could, he com- 
muted, as he put it. When he had to stay out of town, he tele- 
phoned me several times a day and in between sent me 
telegrams. When he was in New York we were hardly separated. 
He even came for breakfast after a horseback ride around Cen- 
tral Park or at the riding club where his daughter, Maria, rode 
daily. He was a widower and Maria, he said, was his whole life. 
"Maria and my music. They're all I have." 



( I ) SEPTEMBER CHILD: 

Maria enchanted me. She was fifteen but so sophisticated, 
erudite and worldly that I felt like a real country bumpkin 
beside her and realized that Ward was right I was still a little 
girl from Morristown, N. J. She spoke a rippling French ("Why 
not? I was brought up in Paris"), her native Spanish, of course, 
and English with a lovely Mayfair accent ("I had a very elegant 
English nanny"). She always looked perfectly beautiful, whether 
it was in her riding clothes when she came along with her 
father for breakfast or in a simple evening dress when he took 
us to concerts. 

I soon felt as though I had known these delightful people all 
my life. She in turn told me over and over again how happy she 
was that her father had me for a friend. "You're different. You 
are the first one I have liked since my mother died/' she would 
say and give me a hug and a kiss. 

I could not help but ask, "Have there been many women 
friends?" 

"Oh, Zeus!" She laughed. "One a week!" All this in front of 
her father whom she loved to tease. 

All of my friends liked the Iturbis, too. Dick Watts was par- 
ticularly impressed by Jos. "He's so regular," Dick decided. 
"Nothing long-hair about him." But Ward, on the other side 
of the continent, was certain my "Italian friends" would bore 
him. 

One night they were both in 3802 along with several of our 
other friends when Ward called, and I tried to get him to say 
hello to Jose over the telephone. But Ward refused to talk to 
him ("I don't like people with accents") and then casually an- 
nounced, "When I get back to New York, I want 3802 to my- 
self. You can move down to gB. It just fits your small-town 
personality. 3802 is mine." 

The next day Iturbi wanted Maria and me to drive with 
him to Albany where he was to give a concert. I was longing 
to go, but on this particular day I just could not get away. 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( 155 ) 

"I'm neglecting my work as it is, Jose/' I said. "I can't count 
the number of appointments I've broken in order to be with 
you, and this afternoon I simply must stick to my work." 

"You work too hard/' Iturbi cried. "You work all the time. 
It's all you think of. A woman like you should not have to work. 
Not ever! She should be taken care of. If you would let me, I 
would carry you through the rest of your life on a white satin 
pillow/' 

I laughed but what an attractive notion that was! I was bone- 
tired. I was also terribly unhappy about Ward. Not only were 
our nightly phone conversations now larded with unpleasant 
remarks from him, but he was spending money madly. Almost 
every dollar from Bagdad on the Hudson was gone (we had a 
joint account). Our future looked dismal. 

After some particularly upsetting tirade, however, I usually 
would receive a charming letter from him and then all my 
hopes would be revived. When finally he told me the script 
was finished ("Thank Christ and thank Jesus") and he soon 
would be returning to New York, the thought of seeing him 
again and being with him filled me with pleasure and affection 
for him, in spite of our difficulties. 

Iturbi, on the other hand, was very disturbed by the news. 
"Ill never see you again," he sighed. 

"We can all be friends," I suggested hopefully. 

"No." Iturbi shook his head. "Fortunately I will be going to 
Mexico soon after he arrives. It is probably just as well." 

Ward returned on a Sunday morning, and Dick Watts and I 
drove out to the Newark Airport to meet him. 

I was truly delighted to see Ward. He looked tanned and fit, 
and his wonderful smile was as heart-warming as ever. I forgot 
all of our troubles, or at least mine (I am an eternal optimist), 
and the three of us had a delightful ride back to New York. 

Ward was not hungry because he had eaten on the plane. 
"They stuff you like Salzburg geese," he said. "I've done noth- 



( 156 ) SEPTEMBER CHILD! 

ing but eat since I left Los Angeles." But Dick and I, not having 
had breakfast, were famished. Ward said he was badly in need 
of a drink so we headed for "21." I longed to sit right down 
and plunge into some bacon and eggs, but the boys wanted to 
stand at the bar for a while and so I stood with them, gaining 
at least a bit of nourishment from my usual tomato juice. 

Unconsciously, too, I kept nibbling on the peanuts set out on 
the bar, completely unconscious of the fact that Ward could 
not stand to see a woman nibble on anything. Even when he 
gave me several hard looks, I remained oblivious and kept right 
on popping peanuts into my mouth. Ward finally could not 
bear it any longer. He had had three or four drinks by this 
time. Suddenly he picked up a handful of peanuts and threw 
them at me. 

"There," he shouted, "since you like them so much!" 

Everyone at the bar turned and stared. Even Dick looked 
shocked. 

"Well," I said, brushing some salt off my face, "I guess I'd 
better go powder my nose." I stood in the ladies' room for quite 
a while, staring at myself in the glass. Suddenly I dashed out 
of the place and into a taxi. 

Again, although it was a Sunday, Pinkey had come to work 
because of Ward's return. The moment I entered she cried out, 
"What's happened?" I must have had a very bleak face. 

"I'm leaving," I said. 

"Oh, no," she cried and ran to me and put her arms around 
me. "Don't be hasty." 

I told her about the peanut episode at the bar. 

"You haven't even had breakfast," she said. "No wonder 
you're upset. Sit down and let me make you a nice cup of tea." 
(Pinkey, like Miss High, thought anything could be resolved 
over a "nice cup of tea.") 

As I drank the tea, I made up my mind. 

"Pinkey," I said, "take my things down to 96." 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( 157 ) 

Pinkey was miserable. "Mr. Ward wouldn't want you to do 
that," she said. "He'll be terribly upset i you move down 
there. And what will everybody think?" 

"What does everybody think anyway? Even his best friends 
ask how long I can go on this way. You know that." 

"But they don't understand him, and you do," Pinkey 
pleaded. "You know he loves you. I don't think he could live 
without you." 

"Well," I said, "let him try. We'll see." And Pinkey and I 
moved down to gB. 

It was a gloomy place after the airiness and sunlight of 3802. 
It opened onto a small dark courtyard. Even with all the lights 
on we could not make it cheerful. "It's like living at the bottom 
of a well," I said to Pinkey. "I didn't realize; no wonder Ward 
didn't like it. But I'll make the best of it until I know what to 
do next." 

I truly did not know what to do next. I really wanted Ward 
to come and get me, but there was no sign of him. I sat there 
all afternoon, disconsolately trying to read the Sunday papers. 
When Pinkey finally had to leave me, I had not felt so alone and 
abandoned since my baby days in the back yard on Early Street. 
Of course, emotionally I was a baby and I was young in years, 
too. 

Later I found out that Ward had come home late in the after- 
noon, thrown himself on the bed and gone to sleep. He did 
not see the note I had left on his dressing-table until morning. 

As the dreary evening dragged by, I longed for something, 
anything, to happen. Nothing did. I could not believe it. Had 
everyone forgotten me so quickly? I had told the operator where 
I was, and now I asked her if she was sure there had been no 
calls for me. 

"None at all," she said. "Several for Mr. Morehouse," she 
added. 

"Does he answer?" I asked. 



( jtjg ) SEPTEMBER CHILD: 

"No," she said, "1 guess he hasn't come in yet." 

She sounded sweet and sympathetic and that made me feel 
further humiliated. Everyone, even she, knew I was unloved and 
unwanted. 

Ward had a private phone in gB and suddenly I picked it up. 
Iturbi was out of town, giving a concert, but perhaps Maria was 
home. When I heard her gentle voice, I felt suddenly soothed. 
I asked, "When are you leaving for Mexico?" 

"Wednesday," she said. 

On an absolutely crazy impulse I blurted out, "I'm going 
with you. I need a vacation." 

"Oh," she said casually, "how nice. Father will be so pleased." 



Compared to the busy, modern, traffic-choked metropolis Mex- 
ico City is today, in April 1933 it was a lazy, backward, beauti- 
ful Latin paradise. It still is beautiful, and fascinating, but at 
that time you could see burros laden with maguey leaves from 
which pulque and tequila are made led by barefooted, som- 
breroed peasants right on the Avenida Madera where the Hotel 
Ritz was and still is. From my window I looked out with de- 
lighted amazement on a fascinating pattern of people and a 
way of life completely unknown to mesmall, bent men carry- 
ing huge loads on their backs, women nursing their babies 
slung casually inside their rebozos, charros on their elegant shiny 
horses and only now and then an an old automobile carefully 
honking its way through the crowded narrow streets. 

Spring, they say, is the loveliest time in Mexico City but ac- 
tually I do not know when it is not lovely there. A tropical 
city it is, but upon that mile-high plateau, the days are warm, 
never hot; the nights are cool, never cold. Some people find 
the altitude enervating; I found it stimulating. But then every- 
thing enchanted me. The people I met were delightful even 
though I could not understand what they were saying. Their 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( 159 ) 

smiles were enough. When we had arrived at the railroad 
station Iturbi would not fly that year, although he had been 
one of the first to commute by plane between Paris and London 
in the go's thirty or forty people were waiting for him, each 
with flowers or fruit or some lovely gift. 

I had met Iturbi's manager, Ernesto de Quesada, in New 
York when they were planning his Mexican concerts and I had 
liked him very much, but in Mexico I came to admire and to 
love him. He is a quiet little man his soft, Latin voice hardly 
ever rises above a murmur who smiled easily, never hurried, 
appeared to have no one to help him, yet everything was done, 
and well done. He was, and is, a magnificent impresario, born 
with that rare gift of recognizing talent and knowing what to 
do with it. 

Quesada had organized things very well in Mexico City where 
Iturbi was almost completely unknown, and among the folks 
who had greeted him at the train were most of Mexico's im- 
portant music lovers. I remember particularly white-maned 
Manuel Ponce, who wrote the famous Estrellita, popularized as 
Now or Never. But alas, at the first concert they were almost 
the only ones present. This is an exaggeration, of course, but 
actually not more than a few hundred people were scattered 
around the large old Teatro Arbeu, and many of them were 
Quesada's personal guests. I was shocked and upset when we 
arrived at the almost empty concert hall, but not so Iturbi. 

At the intermission Quesada came back-stage and said to 
Jose, "let me have your next program" and Iturbi with a laugh 
said, "the next program you will play yourself!" 

But Iturbi played the next program on a Sunday morning at 
eleven o'clock and the house was sold out as Quesada had pre- 
dicted. Even before that second concert had ended, it was clear 
that the third one just could not be the last. 

Quesada then took the Teatro Hidalgo (at that time it was 
the largest hall he could find; the Palacio de Belles Artes was not 



/ 1 g 



SEPTEMBER CHILD: 



yet completed) and it, also, was sold out as soon as the special 
"despedida" was announced. I found myself as excited by all 
this as the Mexicans and I felt there was a news story in it. I 
sat down and wrote a long letter to Dorle Jarmel who was head 
of publicity for Columbia Artists, Iturbi's United States manage- 
ment. Dorle was one of Iturbi's best friends and admirers and 
I knew she would spread the word. She did. 

Eduardo Pallaras was not only one of the leading musicolo- 
gists who had written and published columns of praise for 
Iturbi in Excelsior, Mexico's leading newspaper, but he also 
was an outstanding and important lawyer. He spoke English, 
too, so it was to him I went with my problem. To my astonish- 
ment, he told me a six months 1 residence in Mexico City is nec- 
essary for a divorce. Only in the State of Chihuahua (where the 
little dogs come from) is what he contemptuously termed "a 
quickie" possible. Juarez, that State's capitol city, is just across 
the river from our own El Paso which is why, he said, the 
Americans find it so convenient. 

I told Iturbi all of this and said I would make the journey 
to Juarez, two days by trainno airline then alone, but he 
would not hear of it. As things turned out, I did not get to 
Juarez until much later on. 

Of course the "despedida" at the Teatro Hidalgo was not 
the farewell. In fact, it was only the beginning for from then 
until August, Iturbi gave two concerts a week nineteen piano 
recitals and ten with his own orchestrawhich he often con- 
ducted from the piano twenty-nine concerts in all, undoubtedly 
a feat never before or since equalled. It meant, of course, that 
most of his time was spent at the piano for he never repeated 
a number except for requested encores. Each program was 
completely new. For once I had my fill of piano music, but I 
never tired of it. It was a fascinating musical education for me 
and my youthful ability to sight-read came in handy. Iturbi 
said I was the best page-turner he ever had had. 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( 161 ) 

But we were never alone. Musicians, students, newspaper 
men and friends came and went, or came and stayed, at all hours 
of the day and night. Candido Cacheiro, Iturbi's piano-tuner 
and general helper (still with him from time to time although 
now he is head of the Concert Artists' Pianos Department for 
Baldwin) was on the phone with room service every time I 
looked for him. "Servicio de cuarto" was one of the first 
Spanish phrases I learned. 

To learn a few more words and phrases and to feel not so 
completely out of things when Spanish surrounded me on all 
sides, I turned again to Mr. Hugo and his Simplified System 
of Language Study and whenever I could manage a few quiet 
minutes alone, I applied myself to his lessons just as I had in 
my vaudeville days with Mr. Hugo's "French Simplified/' But 
my moments alone were few and far between. From the day of 
our arrival, I had found myself hard at work on the whirling 
periphery of a successful artist's life. My training in publicity 
and personal management made it impossible for me to stand 
by or to loll about on that white satin pillow Iturbi had men- 
tioned. 

"If you can, you do," the Spaniards say, and I did. 

From morning 'til night, there seemed to be a thousand de- 
tails to handle, one of them to protect Iturbi from his over- 
zealous and often wild-eyed admirers, both male and female. I 
found the males more difficult to deal with than the females 
for to the Mexican men I was merely 'la secretaria" and of not 
much importance. They would ride over me on a flood of Span- 
ish, smiles and gestures, and time and again I had to turn to 
Cacheiro for help. But it was all great fun for me, new, different 
and challenging. I enjoyed every minute of it and then too each 
concert was soul-satisfying in its perfection of performance, 
acclaim and success. One concert followed another so rapidly, 
and the days in between were so filled with preparation, that it 
was a dazzling and dizzying experience. 



( iQz ) SEPTEMBER CHILD: 

I would have completely forgotten myself if it had not been 
for the telephone calls from New York. Whenever Ward had 
had a few too many, he would call Mexico City just as he used 
to call London, Paris and Rome during his "days of genius" 
with me. Sometimes he was badtempered and berated me; more 
often he was sweet and would ask, "Why don't you take the 
next train back?" or "Shall I come and get you?" 

Then Father would call me, too, to report on how things 
were going at the office. Being a September child "a place for 
everything and everything in its place" I had not just gone 
off and left things up in the air, but had asked Anne Ayres, who 
had worked with me at the John Golden office and later in my 
own office as one of my assistants, to take charge of my accounts 
and since she was a charter member of our press agents' union 
(ATP AM) as am I, and a brilliant publicist, no one objected too 
strenuously. (They all thought I would return after a "vacation" 
o two weeks or so.) Anne handled the plays and Father the per- 
sonal accounts and from his reports, things continued smoothly, 
although "everyone misses you." 

It all came to an end in a great blaze of glory in the old 
Teatro Politeama, the largest theater in Mexico over four 
thousand seats which had not been used for many years. 
Quesada, however, had it scrubbed, disinfected and painted 
and instantly sold every seat for what turned out to be the most 
exciting program of them all: The Beethoven Leonora Over- 
ture No. i, The Emperor Concerto, and for the first time in 
Mexico, the Ninth Symphony with the combined Mexican and 
German choral groups of about three hundred voices. 

Some thousand or more music-lovers took up every inch of 
standing room and several thousand more milled outside the 
theater. I had never seen anything like it and probably never 
shall again, nor will Mexico. Iturbi had held twenty-one careful 
rehearsals of the Ninth Symphony, and it was the most glorious 
performance I have ever heard. 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( 163 ) 

The audience went wild. They stood waving their handker- 
chiefs as they do at a particularly great bull-fight, shouting oles, 
stamping their feet and some weeping from emotion. The or- 
chestra played "Dianas" (The symphony players* own form of 
accolade) each time Iturbi came out for a bow and I lost count 
of them after twenty. The ovation lasted a good half hour. 

One of my particular friends in Mexico City I had been 
fortunate enough to make many of them was Salomon Kahan, 
Mexico's leading music critic. He speaks English (and half a 
dozen other languages) and was one of Iturbi's most ardent 
champions. Before the Beethoven concert at the Politeama, I 
had asked if he would write a criticism and reportage of the 
event immediately following it which I could wire over his 
signature to The New York Times, and to London, Paris, 
Madrid and Buenos Aires. 

The results were spectacular. Minnie Guggenheimer called 
from New York insisting that Iturbi conduct and play at the 
Lewisohn Stadium and cables poured in from all over the world. 
Iturbi had planned a fairly long vacation for us all at his huerto 
in Spain but it began to look as though some of the offers sim- 
ply could not be refused. Finally Iturbi decided he only would 
appear at the Lewisohn Stadium at their final concert in August 
and then would open the musical season in Madrid in Septem- 
ber before returning to the United States to begin his American 
tour in October. 

As soon as we were back in New York I at once telephoned 
Ward as I had promised. He was giving a party that afternoon 
and he said, "All our friends will be there and would want to 
see you/' so I went. Nothing had changed. Dick Watts, Howard 
Barnes, Mark Barron, Willard Keefe and the usual "beauties 
of stage and screen" were present. Willie Priori, Ward's wonder- 
ful assistant in the drama department of The New York Sun 
and Pinkey were serving drinks; the hotel waiter was passing 
canapes; Ward was feeling no pain; and for a moment I felt as 



( '64 ) 



SEPTEMBER CHILD 



though I had just come in from my office and would soon go 
on into the bedroom to start dressing for the night's opening. 
Everyone greeted me as casually as though the four months in 
Mexico had never been. 

Suddenly Ward took me by the hand and pulled me into the 
bedroom. "This is terrible," he said, and burst into tears. 

"What's terrible?" I asked. 

"Well, now you're back," he sobbed, "and I'm going away. 
This is my farewell party. I'm sailing tonight on the Bremen" 

"Oh, that's all right/* I said. "I'm sailing myself next week 
on the lie de France. We can meet in Paris." 

"But you don't understand," he said. *Tm not going alone/' 

Coinciden tally enough, Maria Iturbi's Russian governess, 
Madame Mirimanova, was sailing on the Bremen j too, and that 
evening when Maria and I drove down to see her off, we stood 
on the dock as the big ship slowly pulled out and suddenly I 
saw, at the rail, standing apart and alone, none other than 
Ward; but he did not see me. Then the great ship slipped 
silently away, carrying another big chunk o my life with it. 



Ill 




chapter 

i 



' E DID NOT sail on the He de France but on the Champlaine, 
and it was a leisurely crossing the only unhurried one I have 
made in over thirty trips abroad. It was restful, which we 
needed, but it was also great fun. We had asked Dorle Jarmel 
to go with us and she was, as she always is, a witty, wonderful 
companion. Maria had her little Scottie, Horace (given to her 
by publisher, Horace Liveright, who was the first person to 
urge Iturbi, when they met in Europe, to come to America, 
and who predicted Iturbi would have his greatest success here) 
with her and down in the hold was Iturbi's big, sleek Lincoln, 
to be unloaded at Le Havre and readied to carry us off south- 
ward through Europe. 

That summer must have been a particularly sunny, idyllic 
one for the weather was glorious, not only when we arrived in 
France, but throughout our entire stay. We drove from Le 
Havre to Rouen for luncheon and sat at the sidewalk cafe over- 
looking the square where poor Joan of Arc was burned. 

We reached Paris that evening, and since I had never been 
there before, Iturbi drove us around for a bit of sight-seeing 



( 168 ) SEPTEMBER CHIL0: 

before pulling up at the Prince de Galles where Dorle was to 
stay. Maria and I were to go to Iturbi's apartment on the Ave- 
nue du Roule in Neuilly, and he himself would stay nearby 
at his sister Amparo's apartment although she, her daughter 
Amparin and Madre Iturbi were already in Spain preparing 
the finca for our arrival. Ward I learned later, was right next 
door to the Prince de Galles at the Hotel George V, but I 
never saw him. I saw plenty of other old friends, however, 
that night at Maxims where we dined and later at the 
Tour d } Argent where we went for coffee and the view the Seine 
and Notre Dame in the moonlight. 

The next day we headed for the south and Spain. Between 
Poitier and Bordeaux, we drove through Les Landes where I 
remembered that Rene Devos had his villa. I wanted to stop 
and seek him out, but it was getting late and Iturbi was not 
overly pleased with the idea of looking up my old boy friend. 

The Palace Hotel in Madrid, diagonally across the street 
from the elegant Ritz where we stayed, and under the same 
management, was the lively one and still is. The glass-domed 
lounge, which reminded me of my grandmother's conservatory 
with all the potted palms around, was the gathering place where 
everyone met for cocktails or tea. As soon as we were settled in 
our beautiful rooms at the Ritz, Iturbi led us over there. It 
seemed to Dorle and to me as though half the people rushed 
to greet him when we entered, and a great babble of Spanish 
cut us off and left us standing alone. But not for long. Two 
young men, obviously Americans, jumped up to greet us. They 
were good old newspaper friends from New York Rex Smith, 
head of the Madrid Bureau of the Associated Press and Lester 
Ziffren, his vis-a-vis for United Press. In those days they were 
two of the gayest blades in Madrid, and Dorle and I were over- 
joyed to see them. We could not resist, of course, doing a bit of 
publicity for Iturbi and soon had them arranging a press party 
for him. 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( 169 ) 

It was a good thing we had a hearty high tea for we did not 
dine until eleven and it was after three when we literally fell 
into bed. Iturbi and Maria had had a siesta, but Dorle and I 
had spent the time sight-seeing. I never did pick up the siesta 
habit. 

The next day Iturbi and Maria went to a luncheon to which, 
for some Spanish reason, Dorle and I were not invited. Dorle 
decided to spend the day at the Prado, but Lester Ziffren and 
I went to have luncheon and a fascinating afternoon with 
Ernest Hemingway. We discussed bullfighting, of course, 
and Papa was delighted to find I had become an aficionado, 
while in Mexico. When the talk turned from a discussion of 
Death in the Afternoon to comments on writing and writers in 
general, I suddenly said, "Why don't you write a play? Your 
dialogue is superb.' 1 

"I have often thought about it," he said, "and I'd very much 
like to, but to tell you the truth, I don't know how." 

"Oh, it's easy!" I said. "Read a lot of plays and you'll fall 
right into the knack of it." 

Before I went back to the hotel, I sought out the American 
Book Shop and bought every contemporary play they had and 
sent them to Papa. I wrote on the card: "If you can read your 
way through all of these, you will end up writing a better play 
than most of them." 

He did, too. It was The Fifth Column in which Franchot 
Tone starred, and I have always felt that if it had been produced 
just as it was originally written by Hemingway and never 
"adapted for the New York stage" by someone else, it could 
have been a smash. Even so, it was fascinating and had many 
remarkably powerful theatrical moments. 

Awaking from his siesta that evening, Iturbi suddenly an- 
nounced that we should take off immediately for Valencia and 



( ijo ) SEPTEMBER CHILD: 

the finca. He had Maria order sandwiches, wine and a thermos 
of coffee. "We will dine en route/' he said. He loves to picnic, 
especially in the middle of the night, and soon we were driving 
through Cervantes' La Mancha by the light of a great golden 

moon. 

All night we drove over the mountains and through the 
valleys, Iturbi cursing the narrow, twisting road. "The only 
decent road in Spain," he growled, "is between Madrid and 
San Sebastian and Alphonso XIII had that put in for his own 
convenience to get to his summer palace." 

At dawn we came down out of the mountains and onto the 
fertile Valencian plain, not the bread-basket but surely the 
orange-basket of Europe, With the city of Valencia only a few 
kilometers away, Iturbi abruptly turned off the main road into 
the little town of Torrente. By then the sun was rising, but the 
town was still asleep except for a score or so of black-clad women 
lining the banks of a small stream beside the road. 

"What are they doing?" I asked. 

"Doing their washing!" Iturbi spat out. 

There they were, pounding clothes on the rocks and swishing 
them about in the icy cold running water. 

I shivered. I had not slept all night and suddenly I was afraid. 
Perhaps I would soon be washing clothes by the side of the 
road like these black-clad women, and living their lives of 
quiet desperation. It was only a second, but it was very real to 
me. I sighed with relief when the car stopped before a hand- 
some, polished wooden gate. 

Without a word Iturbi jumped out of the car and started to 
bang on the gate with the beautiful brass knocker. After a few 
minutes of this and the knocking seemed so loud in the quiet 
street I thought it would disturb the entire neighborhood but it 
did not even awaken Doric and Maria and Horacethe gate 
was slowly opened and a night-capped head appeared. 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( 171 ) 

Without a backward glance Iturbi slipped inside, and the 
great gate closed behind him. He was gone for what seemed a 
long time to me, sitting there feeling very awake and very 
alone, but suddenly the gate opened again and the old man in 
the nightcap came running toward the car calling out, "Ma- 
rujin! Marujin!" 

Maria woke up and sleepily looked at the old man; then with 
a glad cry she jumped out of the car and into his arms almost 
sobbing, "Abuelo! Abuelito!" They stood there in the street 
hugging and kissing each other while Dorle, who had gotten 
one eye open, and I looked on with some puzzlement. Then 
Horace woke up too and jumping out of the car began barking 
furiously at the old man. Finally without a word to us the 
three of them disappeared behind the great wooden gate. 

"Where are we?" Dorle asked, 

"The sign on the main road said Torrente," I answered. 
"That's all I know/' 

"Oh," Dorle said, "that rings a bell. That must have been 
Maria's grandfather." 

And so it was and after a while Iturbi himself came out and 
said cheerfully, "Come along, chicas, they are making us a 
lovely breakfast." 

Inside the charming little house, very Valencian in style, 
with its tiled walls and floor and heavily carved furniture, we 
were introduced to Maria's grandparents, Senor and Senora 
Giner. Senora Giner was weeping happily, tears rolling down 
her cheeks as she laughed and kissed Maria over and over, 
hardly stopping long enough to notice Dorle or me. 

Two sleepy-eyed servant girls soon had breakfast ready, and 
it was, as Iturbi had promised, lovely. Of course there was a 
huge pitcher of fresh Valencia orange juice on the table but 
the delicious flat "tortillas," which in Mexico are those wafer- 
thin corn meal cakes, are omelettes in Spain and usually made 



/ It j2 ) 



SEPTEMBER CHILD: 



with eggs and potatoes which is the true "Spanish omelette" 
with nary a hint of tomato, green pepper or however we make 

them. 

Breakfast over, Sefiora Giner led us all out into her beautiful 
garden where roses of every description grew in tumbling pro- 
fusion. She had brought a basket and a pair of shears and as we 
walked about admiring the gorgeous blooms, she snipped away 
until the basket was full. When finally we took our leave she 
stunned me by thrusting a huge bouquet of them into my arms 
with a smile and a rapid little speech in Spanish of which only 
the words, "for you" came through to me. 

I felt rather embarrassed to be the only one with an armload 
of roses and I murmured, "Gracias, mil gracias," several times 
before I realized that her eyes were full of tears and that she 
wanted to kiss me goodbye. 

When we were back in the car my curiosity got the better of 
me. "What did she say when she gave me these gorgeous roses?" 
I asked Iturbi. 

He did not answer but looked at me and to my astonishment 
his eyes, too, were full of tears. Suddenly Maria piped up 
briskly, "She said you look exactly like my mother when she 
was your age," 

"La Cotorra," as Iturbi's finca or huerto is called, seemed 
at the end of nowhere and still does. It is a huge orange and 
tangerine grove on the Mediterranean Sea near the little town 
of Burriana, half-way between Valencia and Castellon-de-la- 
Plana, several miles off the Valencia-Barcelona main road, and 
I have often wondered how he ever found it. But once there, 
it was and is beautiful. The perfume of orange blossoms fills 
the air and that is not only true of "La Cotorra" but of that 
entire orange-growing region. 

After bumping over the narrow dirt roads and even driving 
through two small dry creeks over which there were no bridges, 
it was a relief to turn into the rose-lined path of "La Cotorra," 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( 173 ) 

which by the way means "the parrot." It has always been called 
just that because perhaps several hundred years ago the people 
who then lived there had a parrot. 

Iturbi's wonderful, always jolly, round, white-haired, little 
mother stood smiling there to greet us. Beside her was Iturbi's 
sister, Amparo, slim and beautiful, like a Spanish painting with 
her sleek black hair decorated with small colored combs and 
in an enormously flattering blouse and skirt which could have 
been right out of the wardrobe for "Carmen." In her arms 
she held her infant daughter, Amparin, and alongside them 
were lined up all the smiling and picturesque "Iturbi workers." 
I have never heard him use the word "servant." To him, the 
people who "work with him" are always "our workers," or 
"our helpful friends." 

Although we had traveled only fifty or so miles from break- 
fast in Torrente, it was well into the afternoon when we arrived 
at La Cotorra. As soon as Iturbi had had a bath and a cat-nap, 
we were all to have "una paella," especilly prepared for us by 
Madre Iturbi and, in the true Valencian fashion, cooked out of 
doors, over a fire of orange wood. Iturbi insisted that I should 
have a nap, too, but I was much too interested and excited by 
all these new surroundings and besides, I simply had to see the 
paella being made. I had heard about it for years, and here was 
my opportunity to watch this great Valencian specialty actually 
being put together. How many times have I made it since! 



chapter 



JO>ACK IN NEW YORK, I settled at the old St. Hubert Hotel 
with Pinkey who had come back with me to stay. 

Emilie Hall, who by this time said she had "succeeded in 
grabbing off" Frank McCoy, after pursuing him for almost a 
dozen years, was one of my first visitors, but the news she 
brought me was awful. Our very dear and beloved Holland 
Reavis was dead, and that was not the worst of it. What shocked 
and horrified me was that, having been told he had cancer, he 
had hanged himself. It seemed an incredibly tragic and unbe- 
lievable end for such a poised, mature, civilized and intelligent 
human being. 



If I had gone to a conservatory, I could not possibly have learned 
more about music than I did at this time. I was surrounded by 
it morning, noon and night. I had developed into Iturbi's per- 
sonal manager and publicist, and being completely in the music 

( 174 ) 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( 175 ) 

world, I was almost always in the company of people speaking 
Spanish or French and these useful and lovely languages be- 
came colloquially familiar to me. 

I traveled a great deal with Iturbi and the capitols of Latin- 
America became as familiar to me as Manhattan. 

Before the Perons took over, Buenos Aires was my favorite 
city and I loved visiting there. It was on one of our trips to 
that then glamorous city that I gained my appreciation of life. 
Our flying boat a Martin Clipper crashed on the take-off in 
the Bay of TrinidadSharks' Bay at Port-of-Spain, and it was a 
miracle that any of us escaped death. 

When I left New York for this trip, which was to be down 
the East Coast, I had a premonition of disaster and I even men- 
tioned it to my father on the way to the Newark airport. We 
had made so many uneventful trips before this that I said to 
him, "I feel our luck's run out." Father said the shades of 
Katie Murphy were getting the better of me and laughed his 
big laugh, but from the beginning, it was rough going. 

On the plane to Miami, one of the two engines failed 
and we landed in a field, and when we finally did reach Miami, 
we had missed our scheduled connection with the Pan American 
plane. 

I was writing a series of articles about this particular trip for 
The New York Herald Tribune and in Trinidad, after a visit 
to a night spot to hear Calypso singing for the first time, I re- 
turned to the hotel, opened up my portable typewriter (for- 
tunately a very quiet one) and started to write my first article. 
I became so absorbed that the next thing I knew there was a rap 
on the door and I was told it was time to "get up" and have 
breakfast as our pilot had decided to get an especially early 
start at quarter to five that morning. 

Again I had an ominous presentiment as we made the long 
drive from the lovely Queen's Park Hotel through the heavy, 
hot, tropical pitch-blackness, not a star shining or a breath of 



( 1^6 ) SEPTEMBER CHILD: 

air stirring, to the seaplane port at the Bay. I knew the Pan 
American port manager and when he came over to me I sud- 
denly said, "Don't send the plane out in this pitch-black dark. 
Wait for a ray of light. It will be only a matter of minutes now 
and it will make so much difference/' 

He laughed. "You aren't nervous, are you? An old, pioneer 
air-traveler like you?" 

"Yes," I said, "I am. If I were the pilot, I'd be afraid to go 
shooting across this pitch-black bay unable to see what lay 
ahead of me." 

"Oh," he laughed, "you know we clear a runway through 
the water. You can see the launches out there now with their 
floodlights making sure that not even a twig will be in your 
way." 

"Nevertheless," I said, "I wish we would wait for a bit of 
light." 

But we did not and all of us piled down through the hatch 
into the cabin of the flying boat where Iturbi and I were given 
seats in the rear compartment. 

I was familiar with every maneuver of the take-off and with 
no wind to head into, I was sure our skipper would have a heavy 
job on his hands to get this great flying boat "on the step" 
and out of the water. 

Five times he gunned it, partly got it "on the step," only to 
have the heavily laden ship bang back again into the water. I 
turned to Iturbi and said, "We must be almost out of the 
Bay and into the open sea by now. If he doesn't make it this 
time, I hope he turns around and starts all over again." At 
that very moment, gathering speed to get "on the step," we 
crashed. 

No one ever knew exactly what happened. The window be- 
side me was broken, and the water was rushing in. For a split 
second I had the desire to slither out through that small open- 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( 177 ) 

ing but I knew Iturbi's broad shoulders could never go through 
and I could not leave him. By this time the few rays of daylight 
which I had prayed for were all we had to go by as the lights in 
the plane were out. I could hear the Pan American launch, its 
motor screaming, coming full speed toward us and I felt all 
would be well. 

Soon Iturbi and I and three others were standing at the foot 
of the ladder which led up through the hatch. One of the pas- 
sengers, a woman who was already outside, kept screaming in 
Spanish, "Tiburones!" "Sharks! Don't push me off!" And since 
there was very little space on the tiny deck of the plane and no 
one did push her off, the passengers ahead of us stood unmov- 
able on the ladder and the five of us were trapped at its foot. I 
cannot possibly forget the other three: A Mr. Brough who was 
from the Royal Society of Music in London, making his annual 
trip to meet and audition young musicians; Mr. Martinez, a 
Mexican who was an executive of the Eagle Pencil Co., and 
Pedro, our purser, a charming boy from Spain. 

The water in the cabin was rising rapidly. Suddenly I felt 
that if we did not get out in the next few instants, the plane 
would sink like a stone carrying all of us down with it. Iturbi 
pushed me and I literally climbed up on the back of the sturdy, 
broad-shouldered man standing in front of me on the ladder. 
Somehow I hoisted myself through the narrow opening of the 
hatch. 

The launch was alongside and the passengers who had gotten 
out ahead of me were scrambling aboard. One of them, a big 
blond man with a gash across his forehead, leaned over and 
helped to pull me aboard. I landed on all fours on the deck of 
the launch and when I pulled myself together, I was relieved 
to find Iturbi clinging to the railing. (Someone stepped on 
his left hand and he had difficulty playing for many months 
afterwards.) 



( 178 ) SEPTEMBER CHILD! 

I tried to help him up and could not manage it alone, but 
then the same big blond man came over and between the two 
of us we got Iturbi aboard. 

It takes a long time to tell this but it all happened in less than 
three minutes. By this time several other launches had joined 
ours and soon we were taken back to shore. A sorry sight we 
were. I was covered with blood, and Iturbi became faint when 
he saw me but I assured him I was not badly hurt. Most of 
the blood had come from the bad gash on the head of the man 
who had pulled me aboard the launch. 

It was some time before we learned that Mr. Brough, Mr. 
Martinez and Pedro were dead. Several other passengers were 
injured and, of course, all of our belongings were lost. I had 
kicked off my shoes and now possessed only a tweed skirt, a 
badly torn blouse and ripped stockings. Iturbi had thrown off 
his jacket and was in a torn shirt and trousers. 

I had gathered up a particularly glamorous wardrobe for 
this Buenos Aires season but I finally arrived there in a man's 
shirt, my stained tweed skirt, a pair of bedroom slippers and a 
blanket. It had been impossible to buy anything more on the 
way down as in those days we flew only from sun-up to sun- 
down and usually arrived when all the shops had already closed, 
but I was happy to be alive although I was rather badly 
banged-up, I later discovered. As I said in the beginning, I have 
appreciated being alive ever since. 

My father had been called by the Associated Press on the 
morning of the crash and told that all aboard the plane were 
lost. He was pretty happily astonished some hours later to re- 
ceive a cable from me saying Iturbi and I were safe. His relief 
was so great, he went out and bought all the late afternoon 
papers which carried eight column headlines about the crash 
with photographs of Iturbi on the first pages. These he sent 
me to Buenos Aires with a note saying: "Wonderful publicity! 
Do it again on the way home!*' 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( 179 ) 

This was the most disastrous trip we ever made, but it was 
not the most hair-raising. Iturbi took up flying seriously on our 
return to the United States and soon he was an expert pilot. It 
was great fun whizzing around with him in an Aeronca or a 
Piper Cub, just the two of us, and I got the flying bug, too. I 
had my own log book and came to consider myself something 
of an Amelia Earhart, but Iturbi always said I had to aim to 
the left to keep going straight ahead as the plane insisted upon 
veering to the right when I was at the controls* 

One day Iturbi decided he had to have a "real plane" and 
bought himself a Benny Howard D.G.A. (D.G.A. stood for 
"damn good airplane" and it was.) This was a powerful single 
motor four-seater, and Iturbi flew it from town to town in the 
United States on his concert tours. But that was not enough 
for him. He decided he would make a concert tour of South 
America with it, and did. His sister, Amparo, who loathes fly- 
ing, had to come along as she was to play with him. Iturbi took 
along a professional pilot so dear red-headed Horton Hale 
joined us and off we flew. 

I helped with the "navigating" by looking out of the window 
and saying: "At the next mountain, I think we go to the left!" 
Or "I remember this town with the red tile roofs. We go 
straight ahead from here." We were often lost, of course. Once 
we lost our way in the Upsalata Pass through the Andes and 
just pulled the nose up and let that "D.G.A." climb to twenty 
thousand feet and sail right over the top! At that time I believe 
it was higher than any other single motor plane had ever flown. 
We had oxygen with us but were too excited to bother using 
it. It is a wonder we did not all "black out," but we were only 
up that high for a few minutes, going over the peaks. 

When we reached Buenos Aires a delightful surprise awaited 
me. There at the airport, besides the dozens of reporters and 
cameramen on hand to record our miraculous arrival, waving 
his hat in the air, a broad smile on his still-handsome face and 



( l8o ) SEPTEMBER CHILD: 

a big chrysanthemum In his buttonhole, stood my father. He 
was managing a concert pianist, Winifred Christie, at the time, 
and had booked a series of concerts for her in the Argentine. 

I was, by the way, known from one end of Latin America to 
the other not as Miss Dalrymple but as Senora Jean Dalrymple 
was too much for them and when Father arrived he was 
promptly dubbed "Senor Jean." 

Father gave a wonderful arrival party for us in Buenos Aires 
and when he was called upon to make a speech, he said, "Since 
all of you speak Spanish, I'd like to talk to you in that language 
but so far I have only two words: I know 'mafiana' means to- 
morrow and I think 'pajamas' means tonight." 

It was during this trip that the notion came to me that our 
government should do something in the way of cultural ex- 
change. The Nazis and the Fascists were wooing all of South 
America with performances by the Berlin Staatsoper and several 
famous German orchestras. Italy was touring La Scala and 
lesser opera companies, and there were countless German and 
Italian artists appearing as emissaries of good-will. Everywhere 
we went the German and Italian embassies were holding great 
gala parties for these visiting companies and artists, who were 
enchanting the Latins. Americans from the United States, on 
the other hand, were being termed "Yanquipteros"- barbarians 
who excelled only in building skyscrapers and manufacturing 
automobiles and typewriters. 

The Spanish-language theater down there seemed fifty years 
behind our Broadway standards, and so it occurred to me that 
an American company doing a repertory of fine plays would 
be an excellent thing for our country to sponsor and send on 
a tour. I went to Washington to see Ben Charrington who was 
then head of the Cultural Department of the State Department, 
and he arranged a luncheon at which I put forth my views and 
findings. I was given what they called "the green light" to go 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( 181 ) 

ahead and see what I could do, while they worked on the Idea 
from their end. 

I went at once to see Alfred Lunt and Lynn Fontanne who 
were appearing in Robert Sherwood's great play, "There Shall 
Be No Night/' They, too, were enthusiastic about the idea, and 
we decided that a repertory consisting of their current play, 
with "Idiot's Delight," and "Reunion in Vienna/* would be the 
most practical and attractive. 

Ernest de Quesada and his Conciertos Danial organization 
went about arranging a route for the company; William Paley 
of C.B.S. thought radio pick-ups could be arranged from the 
various capitol cities to give it even more scope, and the entire 
project was virtually set and about to take off when word came 
from our State Department that the theater was not considered 
"culture" in Latin America, and the tour could not officially 
be sponsored by the U. S. Government. 

However, I ding-donged on this idea of cultural exchange 
and good- will tours and eventually, in 1941, made one of the 
very first of them with Grace Moore. 



chapter 



I 



LT WAS GRACE MOORE who put me back into my own business. 
She, and one day of miracles. Grace always insisted that I had 
a talent which should be expressed. Iturbi said this talent was 
writing, which I could do while I remained with him, but Grace 
declared my talent was, as she put it, "people." 

"Jean knows how to get along with them," Grace would say. 
And then to Iturbi, "My Lord, she even gets along with youl 
And she knows what to do with talent, but then why shouldn't 
she? After all, she learned that from her father!" 

Periodically I would leave Jose to his travels and settle down 
for a spell, one time in California where I worked with Grace 
for some pleasant months; one time in New York where I de- 
cided to learn the agenting business with my old friend, Leah 
Salisbury; and one time with Walter Wanger who made me his 
New York representative, talent scout, publicist and story 
editor. I never quite got to do much about that job, however, 
as some weeks went by while he installed a rather magnificent 
New York suite of offices for me. Iturbi was planning another 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( 183 ) 

tour of South America which he insisted he could not make 
without me with him. I kept warning Walter that if he did not 
put me to work at once, I might fly off again, and one day he 
received a cable from me from Lima, Peru, saying, "I told you 
so!" Fortunately he always thought this amusing, and we have 
remained close friends to this day. 

It was at the end of this particular South American tour, 
however, that things changed. We returned by way of Dallas 
as my sister, Madge, was there, having just given birth to my 
second nephew, Bradford, and I wanted to visit with them. 
Iturbi was going on to California. I drove out to Love Field in 
Dallas around noon the day after our arrival to see him off. 

It was violently hot and I was careful to keep out of the 
broiling sun, but in order to wave to Iturbi as his plane took 
off, I had to step into the sun for a few minutes. It was just long 
enough to give me a violent sunstroke, but after four delirious 
days it left me as quickly as it came. I lost twelve pounds and 
the doctor wanted me to stay put for a while, but as miserable 
as I felt, I longed to get to New York and into my own bed in 
my nice apartment on East Fifty-fourth Street. I sent a wire to 
my good maid, Mary Johnson, who had taken Pinkey's place, 
and took the flight to New York. 

I was bewildered not to find faithful Mary at the airport 
when I arrived and I sat around for some time, feeling very 
wan and disconsolate, believing she had been delayed. Finally 
I realized it was hopeless and I piled into a taxi for the then 
long ride from Newark Airport to Manhattan. It took my last 
twelve dollars to pay for the cab, and I emptied my change 
purse into the palm of the elevator man who brought my lug- 
gage up to the apartment. He was a new man and he eyed me 
suspiciously as I put the key in the lock. It was so early that the 
doorman had not yet come on duty. 

With my bags piled in the middle of the living-room, I groped 
my way into the bedroom and fell weakly onto the bed. When 



( !84 ) SEPTEMBER CHILD: 

I awoke, or came to, or whatever, it was night. The room, which 
was on a court in the back away from the traffic noises, was in 
almost total darkness. I found the lamp and turned the switch, 
but there was no light. Then I picked up the telephone but 
there was no sound. The telephone service had not been turned 
on, nor had the electricity. I started to get up to go out to 
speak to the elevator man, but when I tried to stand, I was so 
dizzy I fell back again. Rather to my amazement, I found I 
could barely move at all. I lay on the bed staring into the dark- 
ness until once more I drifted into oblivion. 

The sun was pouring into the room the next time I opened 
my eyes, and I realized I had been lying there for twenty-four 
hours. It was still impossible for me to move. I could hardly 
lift my hand, let alone my head. An hour or so went by, and 
I thought, how ironic an end to just lie there helpless, not a 
soul aware of my presence except the night elevator man who 
couldn't care less, and Iturbi off in California, undoubtedly 
muttering colorful curses in Spanish because he couldn't get 
through to me on the disconnected phone. This little bit 
amused me, and I even smiled. What a good joke on me, and 
on him, too! Oh, well, I thought, this is very comfortable and 
much better than being eaten by sharks in the Bay of Trinidad. 
I closed my eyes and gave up. 

At that very moment a voice loud and very clear shouted: 
Get up! Get up this minute! You have work to do! This is not 
the end. This is the beginning! 

I suddenly sat up with ease. Then I got up. I did not feel 
ill at all, not even particularly weak. I walked determinedly 
into the bathroom, ran a tubful of cool water it was hot in 
New York, too and quickly stripped off my crumpled clothes. 
I eased myself into the tub which I had had the foresight not to 
fill too full so that if I passed out again, I would not drown. I 
lay there in the cool water for a while, trying to think what to 
do next. 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( 185 ) 

This was the beginning of what, I asked? That same voice 
answered, loud and clear: A new way of life. 

"Fine/* I answered, "but where do I start?" 

No answer. So I knew there would be a sign. 

Right around the corner from me, at Fifty-fifth Street and 
Madison Avenue, lived one of my closest friends, Natalie 
Schafer, who I always claimed had put the blight on my mar- 
riage with her airy, "I guess it will do for a little while!" I 
decided to go around and have breakfast with her. Unpacking 
my bags, even going into the living-room where they lay, was 
too great an effort for me, so I climbed back into all my weary 
duds which I had left in a messy pile on the bathroom floor. 
Combing and arranging my long hair was about the hardest 
work I had ever done. Finding lipstick and powder was too 
much of an effort and so, with my face shining and without 
even a touch of mascara on my blond eyelashes, without which 
I always feel like a white rabbit, I headed toward Madison 
Avenue. And right there on the corner of Fifty-fourth Street 
I literally ran smack into Ben Washer, a dear friend and fellow 
publicist. He hugged and kissed me and then, holding me off, 
stared at me with some amazement. 

"You look so young and little," he said, "but I'm glad you're 
home. You have no idea how many people have been waiting 
for you." 

"Waiting for me?" 

"Why, yes," he said. "You're going to open a public relations 
office, aren't you?" 

I knew this was the sign. I said, "Yes, I am." 

"Wonderful," he said, "and I have an account for you. As a 
matter of fact, let's go and settle it now. It's just around the 
corner on Fifty-fifth Street." 

"What is?" I asked. 

"The Seven-Eleven Restaurant," he answered. 'It's run by 
Susan Palmer, who's a client of ours I'm with Donahue and 



(186) SEPTEMBER CHILD: 

Coe, doing her advertising and she desperately needs some- 
one to put this new place of hers over. Her restaurant in Radio 
City does very well, but this new place, which she wants to 
make very chic, hasn't caught on. I've been telling her what she 
needs is a top-flight publicist. In fact, when I heard you were 
coming back into the business, I told her to wait for you." 

By this time we had reached the Seven-Eleven Restaurant, 
so called because it was in the 711 Fifth Avenue Building, but 
its entrance was on Fifty-fifth Street where the Cote Basque 
now is and where Henri Soule's Le Pavilion used to be. We 
went in and Susan Palmer herself was sitting there in the 
deserted but attractive room. We took to each other at once. 
Almost immediately she asked when I was born. When I told 
her, she hugged me. "I'm a Virgo, too," she said. "Ben is right. 
You're the girl for me. How much are you going to charge me?" 

"I haven't the faintest idea," I said. "I've never publicized 
a restaurant before." 

Ben said hastily, "That makes no difference, Susan. Jean can 
publicize anything she puts her mind to, and I think you should 
pay her five hundred dollars a month to start." 

"No sooner said than done," Susan replied, opening her 
pocketbook and pulling out a checkbook. "Here you are," she 
said as she handed me the check with a flourish. "Go to work 
at once!" 

In the meantime she had ordered me some tea and her spe- 
cial orange rolls. I will never forget how good those rolls tasted, 
and the tea, as Miss High would have said, did the trick. I sud- 
denly felt just fine. 

A little later Ben took me in a taxi and dropped me off at 
my bank, for I did not have a penny in my pocketbook. As I 
went through the revolving doors of the bank, someone was 
on the other side coming outa woman. Instead of continuing 
out onto the street, she followed me around and into the bank 
and, coming up to me, put her arm around me. 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( 187 ) 

"Miss Dalrymple!" she cried. "How wonderful that you're 
back. Is it true that you're going to have a publicity office?" 

I said, "Yes." 

"Oh, then, please," she said, looking at me imploringly, "do 
some work for me. I need it so badly!" She was Kemp Sailings, 
whom I had seen only a few weeks before in Buenos Aires. 
She was a well-known violin teacher, and I knew her through 
her pupil, Stefan Hero, who had recently married Iturbi's 
daughter, Maria. 

For a moment I wanted to say, "I don't know what I could 
do for you how does one publicize a violin teacher?" But this 
was another sign and so I said, "I will be glad to do what I 
can." 

Kempy looked overjoyed and kissed me soundly on both 
cheeks. Then she stood back and said, "I don't know what you 
publicity people charge, or whether it's by the week or by the 
month, or what, but I have decided I can afford just five hun- 
dred dollars' worth. So do what you can for that, and," she 
added, "come over here to the desk and I'll give you a check for 
it right now." And she did. 

I took my thousand dollars over to my good friend, Mac- 
Donald Warner, who had handled my account at the National 
City Bank for so many years, and he, too, seemed overjoyed to 
see me. 

"I've heard," he said, "you are finally going to settle down 
and go back to work in our town." 

I told him about my first two accounts as I handed him the 
checks and he said, "Fast work!" and shook my hand. "Good 
luck." 

I went immediately to the telephone company. Fortunately 
I knew the manager of the branch, and he agreed to have the 
service restored at once. It took only a phone call to accomplish 
the same for the electricity. Then I went back to my apartment 
to go to work. 



( i88 ) SEPTEMBER CHILD: 

The first call I made was to Ward. It is incredible that he, 
too, said, "Thank God you're back. We need you here, but 
don't for goodness sake work out of your apartment. That's 
small-time stuff. Go down and see Henry Chanin at the Chanin 
Building. He's not more than fifty per cent rented and he 
ought to give you a nice office for very little, I'll phone and 
tell him you're coming. He lets me use an office there for free, 
but don't expect that, of course!" 

So down I went to the Chanin Building. I did not see Henry 
Chanin, but I saw his wonderful assistant, Elbert Severence, 
who took me to the fourth floor and showed me a charming 
little suite, all furnished, carpeted and curtained. A delightful 
place to work, and it was serviced by a central switchboard. It 
was so luxurious I said, "I'm only starting and I'm sure I can't 
afford this." 

"Yes, you can." Elbert grinned. "Mr. Chanin said it would 
be ten dollars a month until you get going." 

So now I had two accounts and an office! 

I sat there wondering what would happen to me next when 
the telephone rang. It was Ward. "I wanted to be the first to 
wish you good luck in your new office. I hear they've given you 
a swell layout. How about meeting me and Dick Watts for 
luncheon at '21* to celebrate?" 

I accepted with delight and then made my first business call. 
There was an opening of a play that night, and I decided to 
invite all of the columnists who would be going to stop in for 
dinner at the Seven-Eleven (Susan had given me carte blanche 
as far as a guest list went), so I called Louis Sobol. 

"Oh, hello, Jean," he said in a matter-of-fact way. "What 
can I do for you?" It was as though I had never been away at 
alL He accepted my invitation, saying he had heard very good 
things of the Seven-Eleven and would be delighted to try it out. 
I had very good luck with all the columnists and I decided to 
invite a few of the people in the music departments and also 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( 189 ) 

Kemp Stillings. Before I was off the phone I had quite a party 
arranged, but by this time I was feeling very weak and shaky 
and I thought, I'll go downstairs to Longchamps and get me a 
champagne cocktail; it will pick me up and be a celebration, too. 

Again, as I went through the revolving door from the Chanin 
lobby into the restaurant, a woman was coming out and the 
same pattern was repeated; she followed me around and came 
in after me, calling out, "Miss Dalrymple! It is you, isn't it? 1 * It 
was Rhoda Smith, a "fan" of mine who had corresponded with 
me for years, always asking if she could work for me. I looked 
at her now with no surprise. It seemed perfectly natural. Just 
another miracle! 

"Rhoda/' I asked, "do you still want to work for me?" 

"Oh, Miss Dalrymple/' she cried, "if I only could/' 

I said, "You just got yourself a job! I don't know how much 
I can pay you" 

"Oh," she broke in, "I'll work for nothing!" 

"No," I said, "I can't let you do that, but I can give you thirty 
dollars a week to start/' 

There I was not even lunch time of this same day which I 
had thought would be my last in an office of my own, with a 
secretary, two accounts, money in the bank and a champagne 
cocktail in my hand. 

And it didn't end there! When I got to "21" everyone greeted 
me with hugs and kisses; even the bus boys and bread boys 
came and shook my hand. When I found Dick and Ward, in 
the bar, of course, they had Gregory LaCava, the film director, 
with them. I had barely been seated before Greg, whom I 
knew very well, said, "Ward tells me you're going back in the 
publicity business." 

"Yes," I said, "I'm well under way." 

Greg said, "If you're not too busy, I wish you'd do a little 
something for me. I have a hit picture over at the Capitol 
Theater, but because I am no longer with the company, they 



( 1QO ) SEPTEMBER CHILD 

are keeping it a secret that I directed it. How about your 
spreading the word a little for me? It won't be easy," he said, 
"because I am leaving the day after tomorrow." 

"Oh, that's all right/' I said. "Well give a press party for 
you tomorrow afternoon [he had already told me he had a 
beautiful suite at the Waldorf-Astoria], and I know Ward and 
Dick will help me to get everybody there." 

"How much is a job like that worth?" he asked. 

Before I could answer, Ward piped up, "Five hundred dol- 
lars." 

"Okay by me," Greg said, pulling out his checkbook. "It 
really seems pretty cheap." 

And still that wasn't all! 

The opening that night was June Walker in a revival of 
They Knew What They Wanted at the Empire Theater. I went 
with Ward, and after the curtain fell we went backstage to see 
June who was an old friend of ours. 

Almost her first words were, "I hear you're going to do public- 
ity again." I was curious to know where this rumor came from. 
I thought there might have been something in a column, per- 
haps, but no one remembered reading about it. They all just 
said they had heard about it somewhere. 

June continued, "This show's press agent doesn't seem to 
know who I am. I'm poor as usual, but could you do about five 
hundred dollars' worth for me, like a good girl?" 

When I finally got home that night, Mary had been there. She 
had unpacked; my bed was freshly made and turned down. A 
note on the dresser read: So happy you're home. Sorry I missed 
meeting you. I was in Long Beach. 

When the phone rang very late, I knew it was Iturbi. "Where 
the devil have you been?" he cried. 

"In heaven, I think," I said. "I'll tell you all about it when 
you get back." 



chapter 

IV 



'HEN JTURBI did get to New York a few days later, he was 
astonished. There I was, very much in business, with an office, 
a secretary and several accounts. He was very disparaging about 
the accounts; he said they were all beneath me. I told him I had 
made up my mind to work for anyone who felt I could be of 
help and that I would turn no one away. He said he would pay 
me as much as all of them put together if I would work for him 
exclusively, and I said that couldn't be done but that I'd love 
it if he would be one of my clients. 

We had considerable fireworks for a time, but in the end he 
accepted and was most gracious and helpful, which is his true 
nature. Difficult he can be but warmhearted and generous, too, 
and enormously amusing when he wants to be. He could always 
undo me in my stiff est or angriest moments by some comic turn 
of phrase or acidly humorous comment. Many times when I 
felt my dignity required an Olympian stand, he'd find a way to 
start me laughing at myself or at him or at both of us, and it is 
an absolute impossibility to be dignified when you are laughing. 



( ig2 ) SEPTEMBER CHILD: 

It was, and is, a great trick of his, and I wish to goodness more 
people had it 

Grace Moore had it, too, come to think of it. As a matter of 
fact, she and Iturbi were very much alike and so were their 
reputations for temperament and unpredictability* Both of them 
always fascinated me, and they could get away with about any- 
thing with me when they put their minds to it. 

As soon as Grace discovered that I actually had an office and 
definitely intended to settle down, as she put it, she became one 
of my clients. Constance Hope had always been her publicist 
(she originally was Grace's secretary, many years ago) and I felt 
rather uneasy about Grace making the switch from Connie's 
office to mine, so I called Connie up about it. I still remember 
exactly what she said: "I think a change would be good for 
Grace and then, too, she will give your new office prestige. Just 
starting out as you are, that is important." 

Connie and I were always supposed to be rivals, as we both 
did publicity in the world of the performing arts and we were, 
at that time, the only two "big" offices in the field. But we were 
always close friends, and when an artist threatened either one 
of us about switching connections, little did he or she know that 
we were immediately on the telephone, or over the luncheon 
table together, giving him or her a good going over. 

When Grace Moore sang The Love of Three Kings at the 
Metropolitan for the first time, what was said to be a "virtuoso 
job" of publicizing the event brought half a dozen more top 
artists to us, and my new assistant, Bill Fairchild, Rhoda and I 
could not possibly handle all the work. By still another stroke 
of good fortune a second assistant came to us. Leah Salisbury 
had sent a young author to me a newspapermanwho had 
written several plays which Leah dubbed "almost good." What 
he needed, she told me, was a collaborator who knew the theater, 
and what I needed was someone to write with, as she said she 
knew I'd never sit down and write something alone. And so 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( 193 ) 

Phillip Bloom and I collaborated on a comedy which, little by 
little, became so similar to the story of Iturbi and me that I 
was self-conscious about submitting it for production. Actually 
we never did very much about it, for during this collaboration 
Phillip started just helping out around our office and soon he 
was so busy and fascinated by the work that it became his full- 
time job. I probably did him a disfavor for he gave up play- 
writing and has been a publicist ever since and a good one, 
too! 

When summer came around we had plenty of publicity work 
and plenty of accounts, but I had a deep longing to be back in 
the theater. Oddly enough, after a few weeks of publicizing June 
Walker (the revival of They Knew What They Wanted was not 
a success), I had not had a single theater account. Then one day 
Ward called me and asked if I'd like to drive out to Maplewood, 
New Jersey, to a new summer theater which had recently been 
opened by Cheryl Crawford and Jack Wildberg. I knew Jack 
because he was Natalie Schafer's lawyer and semi-beau, but I 
had never met Cheryl Crawford except briefly after the opening 
of one of her most beautiful productions, Family Portrait, writ- 
ten by my very good friends Lenore Coffee and William Joyce 
Cowen. 

Florence Reed was playing at the Maplewood Theater in one 
of Ward's favorite plays, The Shanghai Gesture, and I, too, was 
eager to see it again for I remembered it well, particularly the 
brilliant performance in it not only by Miss Reed but by Mary 
Duncan who is now Mrs. Stephen (Laddie) Sanford. 

Ward and I were distressed to find only a handful of people 
in the Maplewood Theater, and during intermission Jack, 
Cheryl, Ward and I gathered in the manager's office to lament. 

"What you need/' Ward said, "is better publicity. If Jack 
hadn't called me up, I never would have heard of this place/' 

"But we have the best publicity man in New Jersey," Cheryl 
said. 



( 194 ) SEPTEMBER CHILD! 

Ward said, "These people over here read the New York pa- 
pers. You should have a New York publicist." 

Jack declared, "I wish we could afford Jean, but we're dead 
broke. In fact, we don't know how we can go on unless we raise 
some more money/' 

I suddenly said, 'This is a splendid theater, in a perfect spot, 
right in the midst of a real theater-going public. I was born in 
Morristown, only a few miles from here, and I have the 'feel' of 
what these people want and I don't think it's a revival of The 
Shanghai Gesture. First of all, it's a metropolitan audience, dis- 
criminating and a bit on the blase side, and in the summer they 
like to laugh. I think you'd have better luck with comedies, but 
you need stars in them." 

"Like who?" Jack asked. 

"Well," I answered, "like Tallulah Bankhead in, say, Her 
Cardboard Lover!' 

"That would be wonderful!" Cheryl said. "But we don't know 
Miss Bankhead or even know how to reach her." 

"I do," I said. "I saw her at '21' only the other day and she 
said she's not working. I bet she'd like to do it. I'll call her for 
you." 

"Now wait a minute," Ward said to Jack and Cheryl. "Before 
Jean makes any calls, is she working for you or not?" 

Jack and Cheryl looked at one another and Jack said, "She's 
working for us. We'll dig up the money somehow." 

And so I called Tallulah; she played Maplewood, and I was 
back in the theater. 

Along the way I had picked up the lovely old Brevoort Hotel 
as an account, and in their grillroom, which had been turned 
into a sort of night club run by violinist Norbert Facconi, was 
a little show featuring an extraordinary young comedienne, 
Paula Laurence. I based my publicity campaign for the Brevoort 
on Paula who was wonderfully co-operative and creatively help- 
ful, and we soon became close friends. We still are. I was 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( 195 ) 

fascinated to hear that before becoming a night-club entertainer 
she had worked with Orson Welles and his Mercury Theater 
group and that basically she was an actress (although she added 
that at the Mercury she also ran errands, painted scenery and 
was relief operator at the switchboard). I was also fascinated by 
the fact that Al Hirschfeld, who draws those magnificent carica- 
tures on the front page of The New York Times Sunday drama 
section, was a close friend. This gave me a nice publicity notion. 

I said to Paula, "Do you think you could get Al to do a draw- 
ing for The Times of The Man Who Came to Dinner when it 
plays the Maplewood Theater?" 

She looked doubtful. "He's never made a drawing for a sum- 
mer theater that I know of," she answered. 

"But don't you think/' I said, "that if I got them to let you 
play 'Miss Bed Pan' in it, that might be an inducement?" 

Well, Paula played "Miss Bed Pan" with hilarious results and 
the drawing did appear on the front page of the drama section 
of Sunday's The New York Times. 

The Maplewood Theater recouped all of its early losses and 
ended the summer with a fat profit. 

I believe it was at the opening of Junior Miss, in which Paula 
had an amusing part, that my dear friend, Alfred de Liagre, Jr. 
casually said, "Jeannie, I have several productions planned for 
this season and I'd love you to do the publicity for them." Of 
course I accepted with joy, for while Maplewood was theater 
and fun, it was not Broadway. De Liagre's productions would 
be. The first one was Richard and Frances Lockridge's play, 
Mr. and Mrs. North, with Peggy Conklin and Albert Hackett. 
Richard Lockridge was the drama critic of the New York Sun, 
and this was a dramatization by Owen Davis of the first of the 
many Mr. and Mrs. North detective books which he and his 
wife have written. It treated the grim subject of murder with 
humor and it was both charming and hilarious, but just as we 



( !g6 ) SEPTEMBER CHILD! 

started rehearsals, we discovered that at virtually the same mo- 
ment Howard Lindsay and Russel Grouse had come up with 
Arsenic and Old Lace, which also deals humorously with homi- 
cide. It, too, was in rehearsal. 

It became a race to see which comedy would open first, for 
everyone involved realized that one could not help but take the 
edge off the other. Arsenic's original opening had been sched- 
uled for the week following our premiere, which was to be on a 
Wednesday. Much to our chagrin, however, they changed their 
plans and announced that they were opening the Monday ahead 
of us. What to do? 

"Open on Sunday/' I said. (A new law allowing Sunday per- 
formances had recently gone into effect.) A Sunday opening was 
unprecedented, but we settled for it, feeling, now, then, try to 
beat us in! But they did! They canceled still more of their out- 
of-town bookings and came in on Friday, two days ahead of us! 

We all went to their opening night which turned out to be 
one of the most excitingly successful I have ever attended. The 
laughter and applause rocked the theater. The excitement at 
Sardi's after the show was intense. There was no doubt about it, 
Arsenic and Old Lace was a smasheroo. Both Delly and I real- 
ized that the comedy of Mr. and Mrs. North would seem gentle 
and mild by comparison. 

The critics were all aware of the problem both companies 
had been facing and we hoped they would be sympathetic, par- 
ticularly since our play was by one of their colleagues. They 
were. They all had something nice to say about Mr. and Mrs. 
North, but the notices, though good, were far from the ecstatic 
raves Arsenic and Old Lace had received. Nevertheless we felt 
there was an audience for Mr. and Mrs. North, too, and since 
M.G.M. had a large financial interest in it, we called J. Robert 
Rubin and asked if we could have an additional seventy-five 
hundred dollars (we had a tight budget to begin with) for a 
special advertising campaign. 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( 197 ) 

It was Immediately forthcoming, and with the help of great 
adman Clifford Strohl we put together a pretty fabulous "quote" 
ad. To get the proper punch in the quotes, I telephoned almost 
every critic, asking permission in some cases since they all gen- 
uinely had liked the play to put a little more oomph in the lines 
we had selected. For instance, where Dick Watts had said some- 
thing like, "It has its hilarious moments/' I asked if I could use 
one word, "Hilarious!" with an exclamation point. He worried 
over this for a few moments, as he said it would give the im- 
pression that the entire play was hilarious, but when I pointed 
out that so it might have seemed if he hadn't seen Arsenic and 
Old Lace first, he agreed. The ad appeared, and to my delight 
I soon found people saying, "You've got a big hit on your hands, 
haven't you? Wonderful notices!" 

Of course these "edited" quotes are commonplace now and 
there are often violent protests from the critics, but at least I 
had gotten in contact with them all for permission. Even so, I 
may have set a bad precedent. 



It was while I was coping with my "difficult" star, Grace 
Moore (although personally I never found her difficult), that I 
made my first trip through that little door which separates us 
from the chosen few backstage at the Metropolitan Opera House 
the little door I had looked at so longingly on those magical 
Saturday afternoons with Miss High. It was shortly after I had 
started officially to work for Grace and she was singing La Bo- 
heme. I sat in the box with her husband, Valentin Parera, and 
wept when she sang "Mi chiamano Mimi>" not because it was 
sad, but because it was so beautiful. Her rich, golden voice 
always touched me, and I am still saddened that the New York 
critics took little recognition of this great gift and carped cattily 
on her lack of musicianship and, in the case of La Boheme, her 
healthy and robust appearance as the consumptive Mimi. 



( 198 ) SEPTEMBER CHILD: 

At intermission, as she had bade me, I went backstage to re- 
port on how I thought "it was going." When I reached the little 
closed door which I once only had dreamed of entering, I stood 
there suddenly timid, not knowing whether to knock or to turn 
the handle; but as though sensing my presence, a kindly-faced 
man suddenly opened the door and with a warm smile said, 
"Come along in, Miss Dalrymple. The dressing-rooms, as you 
know, are over on the Fortieth Street side. Be careful crossing 
the back of the stage. There isn't too much light there." And 
that was all. 

I had not known where the dressing-rooms were, but I soon 
found Grace's, loaded with flowers and looking exactly as an 
opera star's dressing-room should. Grace was changing into her 
second-act costume with the help of Theresa, her dresser, and 
Pop Senz, the old wig man and hairdresser, while she sipped at 
a glass of champagne. She always finished a split between each 
act. "Relaxes my throat, you know," she would whisper. 

Later, when the war came and Phillip Bloom enlisted, I was 
left with no one on my staff of twenty-two who did not go into 
a state of shock at the very thought of having to "deal" with 
Grace, as they put it. The result was that I singlehandedly had 
to do the "dealing," and even if it were only that she had de- 
cided to cook dinner herself and wanted a particularly prime 
steak, it would be me who had to see that it was prime and was 
delivered to her at once. 

One night when Grace was singing at the Met, and I had come 
backstage as usual after the performance, the doorman said to 
me, "There's a young lady at the stage door who wants to see 
Miss Moore. She says she's the president of her fan club." 

"Not Helen Ruth Matthews!" I exclaimed. 

"Yes," he said, "that sounds like her name." 

I rushed to the door, and there she was. I could not have been 
more astonished. She looked about twelve years old and she 
was dressed like a typical bobby-soxer of the era. 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( 199 ) 

"Excuse the way I look/' she said after our first greeting. "I 
came directly from the office because I knew I'd have to stand 
and I wanted to be early/' 

"From the office?" I said. "Are you working in New York?" 

"Yes/' she said, "I decided to move here a few weeks ago. 
Grace so seldom sings in Chicago"- that was the period when 
Chicago had no opera company of its own "and she is so often 
here at the Met." 

"Where are you working?" I asked. 

"I'm a secretary at the Metropolitan Life Insurance Com- 
pany/' she said. 

An absolute thrill of joy went through me. "Isn't that rather 
a dull job," I asked, "for a girl with your interests? Why don't 
you come and work with me?" 

She looked startled for an instant and then almost immedi- 
ately was radiant. "Could I?" 

"Of course!" I said. "If you had let me know you were making 
this change, you could have come to me directly. I can use an- 
other secretary [I already had two] and 111 call you my 'secre- 
tary in charge of Grace Moore/ How soon can you start?" 

"I suppose I have to give notice," she said, "but if you really 
want me, I'll come as soon as I can." She did, and what a treasure 
she was! Nine-tenths of the things Grace called about now 
could be handled by Helen Ruth, and the best part of it all was 
that Grace was delighted. 

In spite of all my work, I still saw a great deal of Iturbi who 
now had an apartment in New York with his mother, Amparo 
and her daughter, Amparin. Several years before, on one of our 
quick trips to Europe, Amparo and I had discussed the immi- 
nence of war and what it might mean to be in Paris during it. 
I suggested that perhaps it would be wise to go back to Spain 
where they could always stay at "La Cotorra," but she said, "I 



( aoo ) SEPTEMBERCHILD: 

can't make a living there and I don't want to be a burden to 
Jose, generous as he is to all of us.'* 

"Well, then," I had said brightly, "come to New York! You 
can give concerts there, and Jose has dozens of appeals for les- 
sons which he has no time to give and which I am sure could 
be switched to you." (She had a fine studio and many pupils 
at that time in Paris.) 

So, just before the war broke out, the three of them came to 
New York, along with Minette, Amparin's beloved alley cat. 

Amparo did very well with her concerts from the very begin- 
ning. As soon as she arrived, I had her play for Davidson Taylor 
who was then in charge of musical programs for the Columbia 
Broadcasting System network, and as luck would have it, he 
needed someone immediately to play a Haydn concerto, which 
was one of Amparo's show pieces; so she had been in this coun- 
try a bare two weeks when she was heard the length and breadth 
of the land, and most successfully. 

Through my many artist clients, I personally knew just about 
every concert manager in the country. I had written them all to 
listen in to the broadcast of my new Spanish pianist-client, Am- 
paro Navarro, for she would not, as she put it, "climb on my 
brother's back," using the Iturbi name. After they had heard 
her, a few telephone calls arranged a number of bookings, even 
including one with the New York Philharmonic. 

The name Amparo Navarro did not serve her very long, 
however, because wherever she played, the newspapers carefully 
added, "J os ^ Iturbi's sister," and it seems a pity how often they 
said she was great "but of course not like her brother." When 
they were in their teens, Jose and Amparo made quite a career 
for themselves playing two-piano concerts, and many managers 
knew about this (my publicity!) and asked if such a treat 
couldn't be arranged again. Jose, who would and will do any- 
thing for Amparo, at once agreed, and so began what has become 
their world-famous brother-sister combination. 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( 201 ) 

Once when Ernesto de Quesada was in town arranging for 
their concerts in Mexico, he said to me, "I wish you could get 
Grace Moore to give a series of concerts for me in Mexico. She 
has a tremendous popularity down there because of her films 
and records." 

I added, "And she'd enjoy it!" 

But there was one great drawback: her husband did not want 
her to fly (how right his fears were!), and the trip by train or 
boat was just too long. Grace, however, became interested in 
the notion of giving concerts in Mexico, and after a few meet- 
ings with Quesada, whom she liked at once, it was settled, and 
she soon talked Val into letting her make the trip by air. 

Between us we had many friends in Mexico. She even found 
an old beau, Chato Aguilar, whom she had almost married 
when she was a student in Italy. And we had the good fortune 
to find visiting there four of the nicest men in the world: Ber- 
nard Gimbel, Stanton Griffis, Reed Kilpatrick and Dallas' own 
Bob O'Donnell. Grace also made a new and ardent admirer, 
the then Foreign Minister of Mexico, Exequiel Padilla, still one 
of my good Mexican friends. 

On the very first day we were there, as Grace and I prepared 
for a gala luncheon with Padilla and what the newspapers re- 
ferred to later as our "four North- American multimillionaires," 
the Hotel Reforma, where we were staying, suddenly began to 
rock and sway, and I thought to myself, the altitude finally has 
got me! It was only when I staggered into the hall and found 
Grace dashing out of her room that I knew the truth, for she 
was calling to me, "Earthquake! Quick, let's get out of here!" 

I never saw anyone go down a flight of stairs as fast as Grace 
did (we were on the second floor). By the time I had made my 
way out to the street, I saw a fascinating sight: Grace was stand- 
ing there looking curiously about her as the city trembled and 
shook, and every Mexican in view, crossing himself, was falling 
to his knees. 



( 2O2 ) SEPTEMBER CHILD 

I had arranged for an American photographer from the Acme 
News Service to be with us virtually at all times, and now I 
found him happily snapping away. He told me later that his 
pictures of the earthquake were used all over the world and the 
one of Grace, surrounded by the kneeling Mexicans, made many 
a front page. 

Grace was so happy with her success in Mexico that she wel- 
comed Quesada's idea of a complete Latin-American tour. 
Valentin was ill at this time and Grace hated to leave him, but 
his doctor convinced her that Val needed absolute rest and 
quiet something impossible to achieve within her dynamic 
radius and arranged that while Grace toured South America, 
Val would attempt to regain his health at Saranac. 

My old dreams of a "good-will tour" for the government re- 
turned to me, and Grace was delighted. I brought the subject 
once more to the State Department, but it was Grace herself who 
cinched it by a personal call on her old friend and fellow Ten- 
nessean, Cordell Hull, then our Secretary of State. I believe it 
was Grace who made the first good-will tour for our country 
and who was one of the pioneers of the present Cultural Ex- 
change Program of our State Department. 



chapter 

v 



JLHE VIEW OF RIO 0E JANEIRO when you arrive by air is too 
beautiful to be real. It is a scenic designer's dream. It has been 
photographed and painted so many times and from so many 
angles that I suppose everyone is familiar with it. Surely Grace 
was, but as our pilot circled the bay to give us a better view of 
it, Grace, her face pressed to the windowpane, exclaimed over 
and over, "Unbelievable! Unbelievable!" It was a familiar sight 
to me, but I was doubly thrilled by her appreciation of it. 

Grace always was as careful to look her very best on our ar- 
rivals as she would have been for a stage appearance. During 
the flight she would have her hair up in pin curls under a 
colorful bandana fastened in the front with a huge sunburst of 
diamonds. Just before the landing, she would retire with her 
make-up kit to the ladies' lounge and come out as soignee as 
though she had just stepped from Elizabeth Arden's. She had a 
great sense of responsibility to her reputation and she often 
spoke as objectively about "Grace Moore" as though that young 
lady were another person completely a protegee of hers, per- 

( 203 ) 



/ 20 4 ) SEPTEMBER CHILD! 

haps. "Grace Moore wouldn't like that/' she would say, or, 
"That would be nice for Grace Moore." Once before her first 
appearance in Mexico City she was unusually nervous. Just as 
the curtain rose she turned to me and said, "Why should Grace 
Moore be nervous? Ridiculous!" And she strode confidantly 
onto the stage to a frenetic ovation. 

Oswaldo Aranha was Foreign Minister of Brazil at this time, 
and he and his lifelong friend, Yolanda Norris, gave a luncheon 
for Grace and me which turned out to be one of the most im- 
portant and enjoyable moments of the entire tour. 

Alas, Grace was not with us. At the very last moment she 
had had one of her inexplicable stuffy spells and would not 
come because a friend at the British Embassy had told her, 
"Mrs. Norris is not Mrs. Aranha, you know." 

But I went and found virtually President Vargas* entire cabi- 
net assembled around Mrs. Norris' table the Ministers of 
Commerce, of Agriculture, of Finance, and of "Press and Propa- 
ganda," all of them with their wives; also Madame Vargas herself 
and one of her sons. There were also music lovers, art patrons 
and just plain millionaires, and a very good time was had by 
all, especially when they discovered that somehow I could un- 
derstand their Portuguese (a few hours with Hugo's Simplified 
Portuguese on the plane came in handy). All of them could 
understand my Spanish. 

I had quite a story to tell Miss Moore. She cried, "I could 
spitl" one of her favorite expressions when annoyed. "I had a 
perfectly boring time vocalizing with Vanny (Isaac Van Grove, 
her accompanist and orchestra director) and washing my hair/' 
She continued, "You have no right to let me be a damn fool! 
Make sure to invite all these people you met to Tosca" 

"Oh," I said, "they already have their boxes and I have in- 
vited Mrs. Norris to come with me. She's a singer herself and 
very beautiful and charming. You'll love her!" 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( 205 ) 

I was right. She and Grace became close friends, and Yolanda 
helped to make our days in Rio immensely enjoyable. 

Grace sang not only Tosca but Manon with great success and 
wide acclaim, although several of the critics took exception to 
her playing "La Bruna Tosca" with her own golden blond hair 
unhidden by the traditional "bruna" wig. 

All of our sight-seeing jaunts and even shopping tours were 
accompanied by my trusty photographer (I always engaged one 
to stick right with us in each city, just as I had done in Mexico) 
and so Grace's photographs appeared almost daily on the front 
pages of all of the important newspapers. This particularly irked 
Walt Disney who was in Rio at the same time for the premiere 
of his film, Fantasia. He stopped me one morning in the lobby 
of the Hotel Gloria where he too was staying to say, plaintively, 
"I am here with an entourage of forty and all the resources of 
R.K.O. in Latin America gathered here to publicize me and 
my film, yet you and Grace are here alone and I see her picture 
every time I pick up a damn newspaper. Why is that?" 

I said, "She's prettier I" 

We really hated to leave Rio, but all too soon the time had 
come. The day before we were to depart, Madame Vargas her- 
self called me and said she wanted to express her gratitude to 
Grace for the wonderful success of the concert Grace had given 
for a Brazilian charity and would like my advice as to whether 
Grace would prefer an antique silver tea service which had 
belonged to the Emperor Dom Pedro or an unusually beautiful 
aquamarine. 

I said, "Either would give Grace great joy, but if you give 
her the tea service, I will have to carry it with me personally 
and unwrap it and show it at every stop we make, and we already 
have seventeen pieces of luggage to keep track of. Then, if you 
give her the aquamarine, it will be only another bauble to her. 
As it is, I am now carrying a jewel case with me with about 
half a million dollars' worth of gimcracks in it." 



/ go6 ) SEPTEMBER CHILD: 

"So . . ." Madame Vargas said, with a touch of acid in her 
voice. 

"So," I said, "I think it would be wonderful, since Miss Moore 
is making a good-will tour for the United States Government, 
if you could see to it that she received just a little piece of rib- 
bon." 

There was a moment of silence, and then Madame Vargas said, 
"Splendid! I don't believe we ever have decorated an American 
woman for artistic achievement. I will speak to the minister 
at once." But I had him on the telephone first and told him 
what I had suggested. 

That same afternoon at four o'clock Grace was at Guanabara 
Palace to receive the Order of the Southern Cross while flash 
bulbs popped, newsreel cameras ground, and she posed prettily 
for the dozens of pictures which soon went around the world. 

After the ceremony Grace drove me to Mappin and Webb, 
the Carrier's of Rio, saying she wanted to get something for her 
niece, "little Grace Moore/' and we poured over several trays 
of beautiful aquamarine and diamond rings with earrings to 
match until we both agreed on the loveliest, although I said it 
seemed a rather lavish gift for a little girl of six or seven. "Shell 
wear them when she grows up," Grace said, as the clerk went 
off to have them boxed. When he returned, he handed the 
package to Grace who in turn handed it to me. 

"Here/' she said. "I hate to carry packages. Besides/' she 
added as she walked away, "it's for you/' 



Buenos Aires was dull after Rio, and added to this, Grace had 
word that Val had taken a turn for the worse. She wanted to 
cancel out the rest of the tour at once and return to Connecticut, 
but our ambassador, Norman Armour, and his beautiful Rus- 
sian-born wife pleaded with Grace at least to give the charity 
concert which they had planned. (Grace already had given two 



The Story of Jean Dairy mple ( 207 ) 

very successful commercial concerts at the Teatro Colon.) She 
agreed, and the Armours gave a tremendously successful affair 
in the spacious embassy residence. Grace, however, definitely 
wanted to skip Santiago de Chile, Lima, Peru, and the other 
West Coast cities where she had been booked. 

The State Department and the American embassies in those 
countries were in a lather. So many preparations had been made 
that the idea of canceling the concerts was appalling. But Grace 
was adamant. She even refused to discuss it with me, although 
when I spoke with Val on the telephone, I found him in no 
imminent danger and I surmised it was just a bit of loneliness 
for Grace which had caused the setback. Also there were no 
reservations available from Buenos Aires to New York for the 
next week or so. The war was on in Europe (this was August 
1941) and priorities were already in effect on all airlines, a fact 
Grace could not and would not believe. Quesada and I strove 
mightily to convince her she would be home just as soon if she 
at least made her scheduled appearances in Chile and Peru. 

It was Stanton Griffis who saved the day. He evidently had 
just the right approach, because soon after his talk with her we 
were, as scheduled, on the plane for Santiago de Chile. Stanton 
later became ambassador to Spain and several other countries, 
but this was probably his first and most diplomatic mission. 

The only outstanding thing about Santiago, which was a 
replica of the crowds, the flowers and the successes, was that we 
never did get to meet Ambassador Claude Bowers. He sent a 
small basket of flowers to the concert with his card, and that 
was all. I met him some years later and he explained that he 
couldn't see us because he was in the middle of writing a book 
and his feet hurt! 

Lima was much more fun because my good friend, Rafael 
Larco Herrera, was still Vice-President, and Grace was met by 
his honor guard and treated like visiting royalty all through 
our three-day stay. 



( go8 ) SEPTEMBER CHILD: 

In Lima, Grace bought a vicuna rug or bed cover which I 
told her looked like an old dog. I said she should have let me 
find a good one for her, but she said she liked the old dog. 
When we were leaving, the Vice-President and the many friends 
we had made in our short stay showered Grace with gifts of 
antique silver, Inca carvings and other lovely things, but to 
me Larco gave the most beautiful vicuna rug 1 have ever seen, 
all white and beige squares and as light as eider down. Several 
of my newspaper friends had gotten together and they also gave 
me a vicuna rug, a most unusual one, put together from only 
the topknots of the vicunas. Grace and I rolled all three of our 
vicunas together and sent them ahead of us by air freight. 

After Lima, Grace begged off the remainder of her tour, and 
our flight was to take us directly back to Miami with the usual 
stops for refueling, etc. In Quito, Ecuador, which was our first 
fueling stop, bad news awaited us. A junket of congressmen 
needed to get on the plane in a hurry, and Grace and I were 
bumped off, the accepted expression for such a catastrophe. 

I really thought Grace would burn the airport terminal down 
in her articulate and sulphurous fury. Finally, rather than be 
faced with spending seventy-two hours with my raging tigress 
(there was not another plane leaving for three days), I begged 
and pleaded and somehow wangled one seat for her, but I and 
our mound of baggage had to be left behind. At the last mo- 
ment Grace burst into tears and said she wouldn't go without 
me and couldn't bear the idea of leaving me alone in this bar- 
baric place. (The airfield really was in the wilds.) Just then the 
American ambassador, having heard of the ruckus, arrived, 
and with him was Jo Davidson, the sculptor, who was touring 
Latin America and making busts of all the presidents. When the 
two of them promised to take personal care of me, Grace 
blithely mounted the steps to the plane and was off. 

I loved Grace, but I must admit, and later I told her, that it 
was a great relief to see her go. I had three beautiful days of 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( 209 ) 

vacation, including a trip to the equator with Jo and entourage, 
where we all took pictures of each other standing with one foot 
in the Northern Hemisphere and the other foot in the Southern. 

I had cabled Bill Van Dusen, Pan American's publicity direc- 
tor and an old friend of Ward's, from Quito about our transpor- 
tation disaster, and he personally met Grace in Miami and 
escorted her all the way home. By the time I reached New York, 
she was in Connecticut with Val and all was well. 

But what was that in my apartment? It looked like Grace's old 
dog of a vicuna, and so it was! I called her secretary, Marian 
Graham, and said a mistake had been made. Marian said, "I 
cleared them through the customs myself for Miss Moore, and 
she told me those two belonged to you. [The topknot rug was 
there with the old dog.] She took the other one up to the coun- 
try with her." 

I at once called Grace and asked if she had my beautiful vi- 
cuna. 

"Yes, I have," she said. "You were right. When I saw them 
all together, I realized the one I bought looked like an old dog." 

"But the pretty one's mine," I cried. "The Vice-President 
gave it to me." 

"Yes, I know," she said coolly. "But what are you going to 
do about it?" and she burst out laughing. 

I could only laugh, too. (Years later, after her death, among 
the many things of Grace's her husband gave me was my own 
vicuna which I still have and treasure. She had had Hattie 
Carnegie line it beautifully in pale-peach velvet, and it is 
majestically embroidered with her own monogram.) 

Phil Bloom and Bill Fairchild had run the office with great 
efficiency while I was away, and there had been no complaints 
about my six weeks' absence. The one thing that gratified me, 
although it also rather surprised me, was that Cheryl and Jack 
had taken a suggestion I had made just before leaving, and 



( 210 ) SEPTEMBER CHILD: 

Porgy and Bess was in rehearsal to open at the Maplewood 
Theater as the final and special attraction of the season. Cheryl 
had feared it would be too costly an undertaking, but to her 
astonishment it did not lose money. The reviews were magnifi- 
cent, and every seat was sold for all performances, 

Cheryl and Jack decided to bring Porgy and Bess to Broad- 
way. I was to do their publicity, but my original suggestion had 
been that the three of us produce it in partnership. That 
seemed to have been forgotten. I said nothing about it. I was 
much too busy with the season starting up, and our office had 
many other plays to publicize besides our score or so of personal 
accounts. Then, too, Grace was preparing for her debut in 
Tosca at the Metropolitan, which needed my personal attention. 
I had almost forgotten about Porgy and Bess when Jack Wild- 
berg came to see me one day and asked if 1 would help them 
raise the money to put it on Broadway. 

I could not understand why they should have any difficulty 
after those wonderful notices which had appeared in the New 
York papers, but Jack said no one believed in it for Broadway. 

"Well," I said, "I do, and I will help get the money." I did, 
and once more Porgy and Bess was put in into rehearsal with the 
same cast, conductor and director we had had at Maplewood, 
also the same sets and costumes. As I remember it, that whole 
wonderful production cost less than $20,000 to produce! 

It opened in Boston, and I went to the first night with the 
late Helen Eager, then critic of the Boston Traveller. At the 
end of the overture there was an absolutely wild burst of ap- 
plause, and when Ruby Elzy sang "Summertime/* which comes 
almost at once in the first act, and good Helen Eager burst into 
tears, I knew Porgy and Bess was the sensational success it de- 
served to be. 

My work for the American Theatre Wing put me very much 
in the theatrical swim. This was among my first accounts, but 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple (211) 

it was purely altruistic on my part and always a labor of love. 
The organization was originally called the American Theatre 
Wing of the British War Relief Fund thus the "Wing" in the 
title and it was started by my old friend Rachel Crothers who 
said, "We of the theater might as well get organized (this was 
in December 1939) as the United States soon will be in the 
war, too." 

When the war did come, the Wing had been organized and 
was well-prepared. Almost immediately its famous Stage-Door 
Canteen was opened in the huge downstairs lounge of the 
Forty-fourth Street Theater, which was generously donated by 
the Shuberts. The Forty-fourth Street Theater has long since 
been demolished and ex-servicemen who nostalgically return to 
Forty-fourth Street looking for the building where so many 
of them thousands and thousandswere entertained, usually 
on the eve of their departure for combat, find there an annex 
of The New York Times where their great trucks unload huge 
rolls of newsprint or carry off for delivery the printed pages 
of that extraordinary newspaper. 

The Stage-Door Canteen could not help being a success. Not 
only did the greatest entertainers perform there, but the G.I.s 
were served good food, too, it was by lovely young ingenues, 
as well as by Katharine Cornell, Helen Hayes, Tallulah Bank- 
head, Helen Menken, her sister, Grace Lytell, and all the famous 
movie stars who came to town. Most of the organizing of the 
array of talent and glamour which regularly appeared was done 
by Radie Harris, whose habit of "collecting stars/' as Ward put 
it, paid off handsomely for the Canteen, 

But this was the light side of the war as it affected me. On 
the other side, all of the men in my office joined up almost at 
once. The first to go was Willard Fairchild, darling Bill, who 
was so imaginative, creative and industrious. 

My only complaint about Bill always had been his picturesque 
carelessness. His office was always knee-deep in newspapers. I 



) 



SEPTEMBER CHILD: 



believe he read each and every edition of every one of them. 
When I came into the office, there he would be with his feet 
up on his overloaded desk, a cigar in his mouth dribbling 
ashes all over himself, amid an amazing clutter. 

He joined the Air Force and went to Texas for his training. 
One morning I received a letter from him saying, "I wish you 
could catch me nowl I don't have a desk so I put rny feet up on 
the instrument board and you ought to see me there in the 
cockpit, with a cigar dribbling ashes all over my beautiful uni- 
form." 

As I was smiling over this part of his letter, the telephone 
rang, and Phil Bloom, who was still to be with me a few more 
months, spoke to me in a voice so choked with emotion I could 
hardly recognize it. "Did you . . ." he finally managed to say, 
"did you hear about Bill?" 

My heart literally stopped. "Not that!" I cried. 

"Yes," he sobbed, "he was killed this morning in a routine 
training flight" 

My brother Ogden had joined the military services a day or 
two after Pearl Harbor. He started in camouflage, being an 
artist, but he was more famous as a swimmer (on the University 
of Michigan's record-breaking team) and ended up as a "frog- 
man." 

Before long Phil Bloom joined up, too, in Intelligence, and 
with all the boys gone from the office, I replaced them with 
some brilliant girls. There was Marian Graham, Grace Moore's 
secretary for many years, who had always wanted to be a publi- 
cist. Then there was Nathan Milstein's friend, Gloria Carr, now 
the Countess de Veyrac, head of publicity for Lord and Taylor's; 
Margaret Hartigan, whom I imported from Camden where she 
was one of the head publicists for R.C.A.-Victor, Helen Gum- 
ming, now the wealthy Mrs. Joseph Ziegler, and many many 
others. We all worked like blazes, not only for our accounts but 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( 213 ) 

In war work, too arranging and publicizing countless benefits 
for the many relief funds of those days. All of us, except one of 
our numerous secretaries, enjoyed it very much. One day, as 
I dashed out, late for a luncheon appointment, I called back, 
on the run, "Don't bother me unless it's important, but if you 
really need me, I'll be at '21.' " 

Shortly after I reached my favorite restaurant, the telephone 
was brought to my table. 

"I guess," one of my assistants sighed, "we need a new 
secretary/' 

"What happened?" I asked. 

"Well, as soon as you went down in the elevator she went 
into a fit. She threw everything off your desk onto the floor, 
jumped up and down and screamed, 'We sit here and slave like 
dogs, and all she does is go to "21" for lunch/ Then she put on 
her hat and quit." 

Ah me. . . . 



chapter 

VI 



T 

JLH: 



SEASON OF 1943-44 brought forth nineteen Broadway hits, 
but not one of them topped the two which our office publicized, 
One Touch of Venus, and The Voice of the Turtle. This was 
particularly gratifying to me because One Touch of Venus was 
produced by my long-time partners and companions, Cheryl 
Crawford and Jack Wildberg, and The Voice of the Turtle was 
brought forth by my beloved friend, Alfred de Liagre, Jr. (That 
season also marked the beginning of the New York City Center 
which was to play such an important part in my life.) 

It was late in the winter of 1945 that work on both Broadway 
productions started. Kurt Weill had become a good friend of 
Cheryl's and one day he brought her a book of short stories by 
F. Anstey, one of which was called The Tinted Venus. Kurt 
said it would make a lovely musical and that the perfect score 
for it was already running through his mind but that he longed 
for an especially gifted writer for the book and lyrics. Cheryl 
read the little story and sent it along to me to ask my opinion. 
I loved it. I also loved Kurt Weill's music, and the project im- 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( 215 ) 

mediately had a good "feel" to me. I was about to take off on 
one of my jaunts to California about this time and I suggested 
that I show the story to Ira Gershwin. Both Cheryl and Kurt 
were delighted with this idea, but, alas, in spite of my wheed- 
ling, Ira could not see it or, as his darling wife Lee put it, 
"didn't want to see it," and when I returned to New York we 
were just about where we had started. 

One day when Jack and Cheryl and I were beginning to think 
we would never find someone who could do the job, I said, 
"Why don't we turn to a poet someone who has never written 
the lyrics for a show? Someone like, for instance, the clever 
contributors to the New Yorker magazine, one of whom, Mar- 
garet Fishback, I particularly admire." 

This chain of thought eventually led not to Miss Fishback but 
to Ogden Nash who, it turned out, was an enormous admirer of 
Kurt Weill and who was delighted at the prospect of working 
with him. Some of the loveliest and most literate lyrics were 
soon forthcoming: "Speak Low When You Speak Love," "My 
Foolish Heart," "The Trouble with Women" and "That's 
Him." (When Ogden Nash first read this last-named lyric to 
me and asked if I had any criticism of it, I said it should be 
"That's He" and I was nearly thrown out of the office.) S. J. 
Perelman, another New Yorker writer, worked with Nash on the 
book. 

Agnes De Mille had for the first time just incorporated ballet 
into a Broadway musical in Oklahoma! One Touch of Venus 
cried out for ballet. Agnes was enrolled. 

Cheryl turned to her old friend and co-worker from their 
Group Theater days, Elia "Gadj" Kazan, for director. (He 
had never staged a musical but had already gained considerable 
distinction by his direction of Thornton Wilder's The Skin of 
Our Teeth.) Howard Bay (already famous) would do the sets, 
and Maurice Abravanel, now the conductor of the Salt Lake 
City Symphony, would be musical director. He had been a 



( 2 l6 ) SEPTEMBER CHILD: 

well-known conductor in Europe and was an old friend of 
Kurt's. 

Then the casting began. The leading men, John Boles and 
Kenny Baker, were no problem at all; Agnes knew exactly whom 
she wanted for her dancers, headed by Sono Osato; I had already 
cast Paula Laurence, of course, in the important role of the 
secretary. But who would play Venus? She had some beautiful 
songs to sing, and Cheryl thought perhaps someone from the 
Metropolitan would be a good idea. There was no point in ask- 
ing Grace as she had for many years refused all Broadway 
offers, but there was some slight chance that Jarmila Novotna 
might do it. I was the one to approach her, but I failed. 

I do not remember how many important singing stars we 
tried to entice into this lovely role. 

Gloom was settling over "the Brain Trust/* There seemed 
absolutely no one to turn to, so we all went off to the country 
for the weekend to gather new energy and the courage to go 
on. I went to visit Leah Salisbury, at her charming brookside 
cottage in Stamford, and since these were the war days and 
gasoline was virtually impossible to come by, we all traveled by 
train. 

On Monday morning as I waited on the Stamford Station 
platform, I saw at some distance my old friend Richard Halli- 
day with his bride, Mary Martin. Mary had not been back on 
Broadway since she zoomed to fame with "My Heart Belongs 
to Daddy" in Vinton Freedley's Leave It to Me. The two musi- 
cals she had attempted after that both had closed out of town 
before reaching Broadway. It had been a long, long time since 
she had been seen in our town, but I remembered her talent 
vividly, particularly so because Ward, like all the other news- 
papermen I knew, had fallen violently in love with her when 
she sang her famous ' 'strip" song. 

As soon as I reached New York that morning, I called Cheryl 
and told her I had found our Venus, but when I mentioned 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( 217 ) 

Mary Martin, she growled, "That skinny thing with a Texas 
accent for Venus?" and almost hung up on me. But when I 
mentioned Mary to Jack Wildberg, he was enthusiastic, and 
before the day was over, so, too, was our ''Brain Trust/' 

So finally we had Venus. Still nothing happened, and I was 
impatient because, one, I loved the show and wanted to see it 
on, and, two, I wanted Paula Laurence to get working again. 
She had left Mike Todd's Something for the Boys some time 
before. As usual, it was Jack Wildberg who told me the real 
reason for the delay: lack of money. 

The first person I called was Howard Cullman, and luckily 
he was free to have luncheon with me that very same day. 1 
told him the whole setup "the Brain Trust/' and the stars we 
had, and he said in his usual direct manner, "I like it. How 
much do you need?" 

I said one hundred fifteen thousand dollars was the budget 
and I really didn't know how much of it already was in, but I 
didn't think a great deal. 

"Well, I'll take a good hunk," he said, "and my syndicate will 
come along with me. I should say," he added after a moment's 
thought, "you can count on us for at least seventy-five thousand 
dollars." (It actually added up to ninety-six thousand.) 

I was so delighted I could hardly finish my delicious luncheon 
at the Voisin, with the canaries singing merrily in that Park 
Avenue basement we used to enjoy so much. But as we were 
finishing our coffee, Howard suddenly said, "I've done some- 
thing for you; now I want you to do something for me. Let me 
pick your brains a minute/' 

He then went into a long account of what had been done 
about forming a board of directors and raising money for Mayor 
LaGuardia's proposed "Center of Performing Arts for New York 
City" at the old Mecca Temple. 

I told him I had read all about it in the newspapers and that 
I had been particularly interested in the project because during 



( 2l8 ) SEPTEMBER CHIL0: 

the past winter I had helped to present a series of concerts for 
the Treasury Department in that great barn of a place, Mecca 
Temple, which had been taken over by the city from the 
Shriners for nonpayment of taxes during the depression. Local 
802 of the Musicians 7 Union had furnished the orchestra, and 
I had prevailed upon my gifted clients to appear gratis and we 
sold the public Treasury stamps and bonds. 

We gave six concerts, and Iturbi, who was then at the height 
of his popularity as a film star and as a concert artist, conducted 
the Tchaikovsky Pathetique No. 6 Symphony in B Minor 
and, for the second half of the concert, played Tchaikovsky's 
great Concerto No. i in G Minor, conducting the orchestra 
from the piano. 

I always like to believe that it was these Treasury Department 
concerts that convinced not only LaGuardia but also Newbold 
Morris that Mecca Temple should be saved from the usual fate 
in store of this sort of old building- to be razed and used as a 
parking lot, 

I told Cullman I had asked Iturbi to let his old friend La- 
Guardia know that I would like to be of help with his "Per- 
forming Arts Center/* but I had never heard further about 
it and I often had wondered what was happening. 

"Nothing is happening/' Howard Cullman said. "That's just 
the trouble! Newbold's done a great job raising money; we al- 
ready have sixty-five thousand dollars and a wonderful board of 
directors, but all we do is hold meetings. Now you tell me; how 
do we get started?" 

"Very simple/' I said* "Hire somebody to run it! The mayor's 
busy running the city; he can't do it* You are in the tobacco 
business; you can't do it. Everyone on that board has his own 
work to do, so somebody's got to be paid to do it and to make it 
his life work." 

"Do you want to do it?" he asked me suspiciously. 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( 219 ) 

"Heavens, no! 5 ' I said. "You couldn't possibly afford me [I 
had an astronomical gross income at this time], and I, too, have 
my own work to do. But I know a man who could do it for you. 
It so happens he came into my office the other day and said, 'I 
have gone as far as I can in Newark. I'd like to work in New 
York.' He's the director of the Griffith Music Foundation which 
does just about what you want this new Center of Performing 
Arts to do. He puts on opera, concerts, plays and ballet in New- 
ark at their old Mosque Theater." 

Mayor LaGuardia and the board agreed with my suggestion 
when Howard invited me to present it to them at their next 
meeting, and LaGuardia was so pleased with the notion of get- 
ting under way that he at once telephoned Harry Friedgut, 
was favorably impressed with him when he appeared at City 
Hall the next day (Friedgut is a stunning man, white-haired, 
tall and dignified) and hired him on the spot. Thus began the 
now famous New York City Center of Music and Drama, Inc. 

When One Touch of Venus opened, Mary Martin received 
rave notices, some critics even saying, "Her performance saved 
the show/' and one would imagine this would have brought 
peace and harmony. But it did not. I have always said there is 
only one thing worse than a dead flop, and that's a smash hit. 
You infuriate your friends because you cannot get seats for it 
when they want them; everyone connected with the show 
thinks he, or she, is solely responsible for the success and is not 
getting enough credit or money or both, and I have almost never 
seen it to fail: all hell breaks loose. Nobody gets anything out 
of it in the end but fame and money, poor souls! So much for 
One Touch of Venus. 

It was a very different story, however, with The Voice of the 
Turtle. There were only three congenial players, Margaret Sul- 
lavan, Elliott Nugent and Audrey Christie; John Van Druten 



( 220 ) SEPTEMBER CHILD! 

directed his own work, and "Delly" and I made up the whole 

family. 

This was the most enjoyable smasheroo I have ever been con- 
nected with, but Delly had his headaches with dear Maggie 
Sullavan who, from almost the moment she opened in New York, 
was in a ferment to leave. No one, not even she herself, could 
figure out why, but she seemed really and truly to dislike being 
in the theater. I particularly remember that when she was doing 
Sabrina Fair she showed me a large calendar on her dressing 
table with the days marked off in red pencil as they passed and 
said, "Look," turning over the pages of the months to come, 
"I have all of them to go through before the end of my contract. 
How can I live through it?" 

I said, "But it's a lovely play, and you're lovely in it." 

"I know" she sighed 'but I hate doing it over and over and 
over. Really, I hate doing it at all! It's only for the money!" 

I loved Maggie Sullavan and always wish I had seen more of 
her. Her death saddened me terribly. It seemed such a waste. 



Iturbi had moved to California, not only because its climate and 
orange groves reminded him of his own Levant Coast, but to 
make a change for his daughter, Maria, whose marriage had 
turned out unhappily. His droll, wonderful mother had died, 
and he and his sister, Amparo, with Maria and her two beauti- 
ful little girls all had settled down to a new life in Beverly Hills. 
Some years before, when I handled publicity for Stokowski at 
the time he made One Hundred Men and a Girl at Universal 
Pictures, I had become friendly with the producer of that film, 
Joe Pasternak. After Stokowski's great success on the screen I 
remarked to Joe, "The next time you have a film like that, if 
you would like to make a change, use Iturbi/' At that moment 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( 221 ) 

he did not know whether Iturbi was a hair tonic or a soft drink, 
as he later put it, but after that, whenever I read in the papers 
or elsewhere that besides being a great musician, Iturbi had "a 
magnetic personality," "tremendous showmanship," "unparal- 
leled audience appeal/' etc., I would clip it out and send it to 
Joe, who had moved on to Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer, as a re- 
minder. 

One day the telephone rang, and it was Joe Pasternak calling 
me from California. "Well, Jean," he said, "I finally have a 
wonderful part for that protege of yours, but he won't come to 
see me about it." 

"And I can very well understand that, Joe/' I said. "Several 
other producers vaguely have had the thought of using him in 
a film and he's had some peculiar experiences." 

"But/' said Joe, "I am very serious about this and I'm sure 
it's a part which fits him and which he'd enjoy." 

"Do you have the script completed?" I asked. 

"Oh, yes," he said, "I'm holding it right here in my hot little 
hand." 

"Then I'll tell you what to do," I said. "I'll phone Iturbi 
and make an appointment for you to go to his house and bring 
the script to him. I can tell you right now if you wait for him 
to come to your office at the studio, you will wait forever." 

"Okay," Joe agreed. "Just give me the word." 

Iturbi was all graciousness itself when Joe arrived with the 
script, and he took a liking to Joe which has lasted from that 
day to this. 

Anyway, it was not long before Thousands Cheer was com- 
pleted. It opened with wonderful success, and Iturbi became 
the teen-ager's idol, possibly because he accompanied Judy Gar- 
land on the piano when she sang "The Joint Is Really Jumpin' 
Up at Carnegie Hall" a boogie-woogie number. Mobbed for 
autographs wherever he went, Iturbi sighed, "I've played Mo- 



( 222 ) SEPTEMBER CHILD: 

zart, Beethoven, Brahms all my life, but with one little boogie- 
woogie, I'm a national hero!" 

Iturbi went on to make seven more films following Thousands 
Cheer, including Music for Millions, Anchors Aweigh, Holiday 
in Mexico and Three Daring Daughters. 

It was during the filming of Three Daring Daughters that the 
second great tragedy of his life struck him. His lovely daughter, 
Maria, killed herself. Why, no one ever knew. She was living 
with Iturbi in the magnificent new home in Beverly Hills he 
had recently bought from Countess Dorothy di Frasso. Maria 
had scores of friends; she was exceptionally gifted not only in 
music but in languages; she had become an expert diver and 
swimmer; she was lovely to look at and dressed with quiet chic. 
Apparently she had everything in the world to live for; even her 
relationship with her estranged husband was a friendly and 
pleasant one. But some unknown misery continually gnawed 
at her. The last time I saw her, which was only a week or so 
before her death, we had a long talk about her life, and the only 
clue I ever had was her expressed longing "to do something 
useful." 

I had protested that everything she did was useful. Her two 
children were beautifully brought up, and having them and 
her in her father's house was a useful thing for Iturbi's peace of 
mind and happiness. Also she helped many people, worked 
hard for many causes and was, I assured her, in every way, a 
useful citizen. But she had just shaken her head and repeated 
over and over again, "I can't explain it." 

How Iturbi ever finished the filming of Three Daring Daugh- 
ters I just do not know. I went out on the set with him several 
times, and it was extraordinary to see him become, for a brief 
moment, his usual gay, warm, charming self. Off the set, the 
life had gone out of him. I have never seen anyone suffer so or 
change so much. Years have gone by, but he never has com- 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( 223 ) 

pletely recovered and he never has made another film. It is a 
great credit to his indomitable will and his self -discipline in the 
shaping and use of his great musical gifts that he has been able 
to continue his career at all. 



chapter 

vn 



'NE AFTERNOON a young man from P.M. appeared at our 
office and introduced himself as William McCleery, the editor 
of the Sunday magazine section of the then popular Marshall 
Field newspaper. I tried very hard to sell him on the idea of 
doing a story about any one of our clients, but he had come, 
for goodness* sake, to do a story about me. He said he wanted 
to use my photograph as the cover of his Sunday magazine, 
besides doing a two- or three-page "profile/* as he called it. I 
shuddered. All of our clients wanted that full treatment from 
PM., but so far we had succeeded only with Grace Moore. 

"Give me a rain check on it," I pleaded, "and do it when I'm 
a producer. I'll need publicity then." 

"You want to be a producer?" Bill asked. 

"Yes," I said. "I feel I've been a producer right alonga 
silent one but one of these days 111 go it on my own." 

"What's stopping you now?" he asked. 

"I haven't found the play I want to go all out for." 

"Well," he said, "I'll write you one." 

( 224 ) 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( 225 ) 

"Oh," I said, "you want to be a playwright?'* 

"I am a playwright/' He laughed. "I had three of my plays 
produced at the University of Nebraska when I was a student 
there. None of them would be good enough for you, but I 
could write you one that would be." 

Having gotten him safely off the subject of interviewing me, 
I proceeded to interview him, and soon it became apparent that 
he really could write a play and we went downstairs to Long- 
champs to talk about it over a cocktail, We were still sitting 
there at midnight, and Hope for the Best was well under way. 

A year later I actually did produce it under my own aegis, 
with Franchot Tone and Jane Wyatt starred. It was an odd 
play never got very good notices anywhere, but always played 
to standing room only. Of course Franchot's and Jane's popu- 
larity had a lot to do with this, but people liked the play, too, 
and many told me so, including those super-critics, the ushers. 
It could have been a real hit with the press as well as the public, 
I think, except for a disaster on the opening night in New York. 
In the very first scene the character comedian, who carried the 
bulk of McCleery's most amusing lines and comments, drew a 
complete blank. The entire first act virtually was improvised 
by poor Jane, Franchot and Doro Merande who never once, I 
do believe, received a proper cue. No wonder some of the 
critics said it was "talky." 

In the meantime City Center was flourishing. As a matter of 
fact, you might consider its very first season 1943-44 as its 
most successful, since we actually showed a profit of eight dol- 
lars! This was entirely without "passing the hat/ 1 as LaGuardia 
phrased it, and without using the sixty-five thousand dollars 
Newbold Morris had raised to start us off. 

Once again my clients played an important role in the history 
of that comfortable old temple. John Golden, who was one of 
City Center's original underwriters and a member of the Board 



( 26 ) SEPTEMBER CHILD! 

of Directors, gave us our first play, his production of Rachel 
Crothers' Susan and God, starring Gertrude Lawrence. This 
followed the "official" opening on December 11, which was 
arranged by Mrs. Lytle Hull, originally vice-president and now 
vice-chairman of the board of City Center. 

It was a concert given by the New York Philharmonic 
Orchestra, conducted by Artur Rodzinski with Lawrence Tib- 
bett and my client, Bidu Sayao, as soloists. Sergei Denham's 
Ballet Russe de Monte Carlo, which our office publicized for 
many years, became not only a tenant of the office part of the 
building, on the West Fifty-sixth Street side, but our resident 
dance company. 

Leopold Stokowski had told me on several occasions that he 
was "only interested in doing something different" say along 
the lines of his Youth Orchestra of the late thirtiesand he was 
enrolled to organize the City Center Symphony and give con- 
certs on Mondays at eight-thirty and on Tuesdays at six o'clock. 
This latter idea Mayor LaGuardia heartily approved, although 
these "twilight concerts," as Stokowski called them, which were 
supposed to be for the particular benefit of "the workers" who 
could come directly from their jobs, never were very well at- 
tended. 

Stokowski, however, conducted his concert series for several 
years, and it was none other than Leonard Bernstein who then 
took over and did the "five finger exercises" as artistic director 
and conductor at City Center which helped him to his present 
eminence. 

We had booked in a musical to follow the ballet season, but 
it collapsed while on tour and left us with a gaping hole in our 
program. Because it has no scenery and could be put together 
inexpensively, and also because it is one of my favorite plays, I 
turned to Jed Harris to stage Thornton Wilder's glorious Our 
Town^ starring, of course, my wonderful old friend, Frank Cra- 
ven. Jed agreed at once and immediately recruited most of the 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( 227 ) 

original cast, including Martha Scott, Curtis Cooksey, Evelyn 
Varden, Doro Merande, Jay Velie, Eileen Heckart, Parker 
Fennelly and Vera Fuller Mellish. Frank had immediately 
agreed to come on from California where he was then living, 
but just as we were about to go into rehearsal, Mrs. Craven 
called to say he had been taken ill and couldn't possibly make 
it. We were in despair. Jed wanted Thornton Wilder himself 
to play the stage manager, but he was too involved with his work 
at Harvard, and then I had what Jed at first called a crazy idea. 
I was seeing a great deal of Pulitzer prize winner (for The 
Green Pastures) Marc Connelly, who always delighted me with 
his wonderful gift as a raconteur and his easy manner on the 
lecture platform, and it suddenly seemed to me that he could be 
an ideal "Stage Manager." Unlike Jed, Marc thought it would 
be a wonderful idea and immediately jumped into rehearsals 
which by that time were already under way. Fortunately Jed 
soon was delighted with Marc's dry, down-East interpretation 
of the role, and Our Town opened to become City Center's 
first unanimously acclaimed artistic triumph. The replacement 
for Frank Craven's son, John, playing the role of George, made 
a particular success; he was Montgomery Clift. Marc was ac- 
cepted as an accomplished actor and has so remained, going 
on to play the "Stage Manager" in the London production of 
Our Town. 

"But," shouted the Little Flower at our next board meeting, 
"this is all well and good, but where is our opera? The people 
must have inexpensive opera!" 

Several members of the board vociferously declared that an 
opera company was just too unheard-of an extravagance even to 
consider as a part of City Center. 

"There must be a way!" the mayor shouted, banging his desk. 
And there was. 

Just a few days before that meeting Laszlo HaMsz, who had 
been the musical director and conductor of the St. Louis Opera 



( 228 ) SEPTEMBER CHILD: 

Company when Grace Moore and others of my clients sang with 
him, had come to my office with the proposal of putting together 
an opera company of young American singers to tour and play 
in the smaller cities that the Metropolitan Opera Company did 
not reach. Halasz wanted to call it the "Jean Dalrymple Ameri- 
can Opera Company," which amused me, but he was very much 
in earnest and he had tried hard to prove to me that such an 
opera company could be organized with very little capital. 

"You see/' he had said, "the St. Louis Opera Company has 
had to close because most of the men who backed it have gone 
off to the war, but they are all very friendly toward me out 
there and more than willing to help me. They have said I can 
use all of their scenery and costumes which, of course, would be 
a great saving/' 

All of this conversation with Halasz ran through my mind as 
I sat there listening to the argument rage between the mayor 
and the board members. When there came a lull, I mentioned 
Halasz. Another storm broke loose. Halasz had only recently 
been responsible for a Broadway production, unforgivably en- 
titled Once Over Lightly, based on Rossini's Barber of Seville, 
and it had been soundly trounced by the critics. Half a dozen 
board members brought this up and threw it at me scornfully. 

"But/' I said, "he did have a good opera company in St. Louis 
and he is an expert organizer." 

"Are you sure we can get the scenery and costumes?" the 
mayor asked. 

"I have Mr. Halasz's word," I said. 

"Well, I'll make sure right now/' the mayor said. "What was 
the name of that fellow in St. Louis?" 

"Mr. Rich is all I remember/' I said. "I believe he was the 
president of the St. Louis Opera Company." 

Mr. Rich miraculously was located, and, yes, St. Louis would 
be delighted to lend scenery and costumes to New York for the 
start of a new opera company. 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( 229 ) 

Dusolina Giannini, a client of ours, o course, sang Tosca 
without a fee for the opening bill. George Czatlicki was a won- 
derful Scarpia, and Mario Berini was Cavaradossi Personally 
I thought the opening performance extremely ragged and I 
squirmed uneasily through many parts of it because the critical 
ears of Maestro Iturbi were next to me that night and from time 
to time he put his head in his hands in dismay. But the excellent 
singing and acting of the three principals and the eager passion 
of the orchestra under Halasz's baton swept the performance 
along to a triumphant finale which was greeted with wild ap- 
plause, cheers and a standing ovation. Our audiences remain 
intensely partisan to this day! Fortunately the press also over- 
looked any shortcomings, and the birth of New York's new 
opera company was unanimously hailed. 



After Hope for the Best I was accepted as an independent pro- 
ducer and for a while I became engulfed in scripts. So many 
came my way I had to engage two play readers, although actu- 
ally I consider this a great waste of timetheirs and mine. Un- 
less a script comes personally from a well-known author or 
highly recommended by a play broker, it is almost certain not 
to be worth the reading. Every producer will tell you that find- 
ing a hit among a batch of randomly submitted manuscripts is 
like finding a fine pearl in a restaurant oyster. Probably even 
rarer I But sometimes an author gets the idea that you are just 
the person to produce his play, and such was the case with John 
Cecil Holm, who had written the highly successful Three Men 
on a Horse. He brought me a charming, slightly wacky comedy 
called Brighten the Corner with a perfect part a perennial 
pennant-waving undergraduate of M.I.T. who, like my brother 
Ogden, kept finding new courses to take and never could get 
out of college for Victor Moore. 

I accepted it at once and immediately tried to lure Mr. Moore 



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SEPTEMBERCHILD: 



into It, but he was interested in a musical called Nellie Ely and, 
saying he was much more comfortable in musicals anyway, he 
decided to do that. When I get an idee fixe about casting, I find 
it impossible to turn my mind toward other actors for the role 
until I have exhausted every means of persuading the one I 
want. Such was the case when we could not get Victor Moore. 
For days I could not think of anyone else to play the part, and 
none of Cecil's suggestions seemed just right to either one of 
us. But finally I thought of darling Frank Craven and sent the 
script out to him in California. 

Frank wrote me immediately, saying that he liked the script 
very much and would play the part when his health improved, 
which he felt would be in plenty of time to get the play into 
rehearsal by late summer. This was in June. He said he wished 
he could have one of our old-time script sessions as he believed 
he had some notions which would be helpful. I at once flew out 
to see him, delighted at the prospect of working with him again, 

Mrs. Craven met me at the door of their Beverly Hills home. 
Almost immediately she said, "Frank wants you to go upstairs 
to his room. Try not to look shocked when you see him." 

If I did not look shocked, it was only because of this warning. 
I saw at once that he was in the last stages of cancer, so wasted 
away as to be hardly recognizable, yet his voice and his smile 
were the same, and he plunged immediately into a vivacious 
discussion of the play. If I had closed my eyes, I could have 
imagined him striding up and down my office at the John 
Golden Theater, smoking his pipe, and casually putting to- 
gether That's Gratitude. Everything he said about the play was 
refreshingly right. I almost burst into tears when he asked me 
to bring him a calendar and, after studying it a bit, set a time 
for his arrival in New York, a time for working on the script 
with Cecil, a time for casting the play (he said he also wanted to 
direct it), the exact time for going into rehearsal and the exact 
date of our opening. 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( 231 ) 

He did not want any pre-Broadway tour, did not believe in 
them. He said a preview or two would suffice. "They have long 
pre-Broadway tours/' he remarked, "so the author and director 
can do the work they should have done before they went into 
rehearsal. I don't see how they ever hew a hit out of the poor, 
bewildered actors who are forced to learn new lines, new scenes, 
even new acts day after day. The secret of a comedy success is 
not only your basic material but the sense of absolute security 
in your company down to the least important member of the 
cast. Everything is timing. Even an almost unfunny line will 
bring a laugh if it's properly timed, but" he chuckled "I 
don't have to tell you that, you old vaudeville trouper, you!" 

When I was back downstairs I had a cup of tea with Mary. 

"It was a cruel thing to do to you," she said, "but I couldn't 
bring myself to tell you not to come, he wanted so much to see 
you. He wants so much to do the play, and who knows" she 
sighed "maybe de Lawd will pass a miracle, as Marc Connelly 
would say." 

But de Lawd didn't. On the very day he had marked on the 
little calendar to leave for New York, Frank Craven died. The 
last words I had from him, dictated to Mary just a few days be- 
fore that, were: 

"I don't seem to be improving as rapidly as I had expected, but 
please wait for me a little longer. 

P.S.: "A final word! If anything should happen to me and it 
won't! don't be discouraged and give up the play. It's a good one 
and we both know they are hard to come by." 

So I did not give it up although I truly wanted to. I half hoped 
we would never find someone right for the role, as after my talk 
with Frank I could not imagine anyone else playing it, and even 
more than that, I could not imagine anyone else directing it. 

But one day Robert Benchley called me up and said he wanted 
to have luncheon with me. We met at "2 1," and he immediately 
came to the point. 



) 



SEPTEMBER CHILD! 



"John Cecil Holm let me read that comedy you're going to 
do, Brighten the Comer. It's damn good, but he tells me you're 
stymied and may not go ahead with it. Well, I want you to do 
me a personal favor. Give Charlie Butterworth that part. He 
needs it. He hasn't done anything on Broadway in too long and 
he's had a rough time in Hollywood. He doesn't need the money 
he's disgracefully richbut he needs the work. His morale is 
low; his ego's been bruised. I know he's not the type you have 
in mind, but I promise hell play the hell out of that part. I'll 
personally make sure that he does!" He let out his big laugh. 
"And I personally guarantee you'll have a hit. Did you hear me 
laugh then? Well, all my brother critics wait to hear that laugh 
on opening nights, and when they hear it, they know the play's 
funny, and when Charlie Butterworth opens in Brighten the 
Corner, I'm going to laugh like that all night. Why am I doing 
this? Jeannie, it's because I love that sonofabitch." 

And so Charlie Butterworth got the part. 

By the way, it was at that same luncheon that Carson Kanin 
came over to our table and said, "Jean, you're good at casting. 
Whom can I get for our new play who'd make you think of 
Paul Douglas?' 1 

Bob Benchley laughed. "Why don't you get Paul Douglas 
himself? He's right over there at the bar." 

He did get Paul, and the play, of course, was Born Yesterday, 
which not only made a star of Paul Douglas but also of Judy 
Holliday who stepped in at the very end of the tryout tour to 
replace the ailing Jean Arthur. 

Fate surely takes a hand in the destiny of plays just as it does 
in the lives of people. No wonder we in the theater are super- 
stitious and fatalistic. Arthur O'Connell, who since has given us 
many amusing characterizations on the stage and the screen, 
notably in both versions of Picnic and as Jimmy Stewart's 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( 233 ) 

wobbly old partner in Anatomy of a Murder, directed Brighten 
the Corner. Lenore Lonergan, who had been so amusing as 
Fuffy in Junior Miss, was hilarious in the featured role opposite 
Charlie, and all was going well. Benchley was sitting in at re- 
hearsals to laugh at and encourage Charlie who never seemed 
at all sure that he could carry off the role. 

"I'm no Victor Moore or Frank Craven/' he would sigh and 
we would all have to pet and reassure him. 

Benchley, of course, came to our final run-through before 
the company departed for its tryout in Philadelphia and was 
well satisfied. He hugged and kissed us all and said he'd see us 
in the City of Brotherly Love on opening night. But he didn't. 
The very next day he collapsed in the lounge at "si/* was 
rushed to the hospital and died. 

We could not believe it. Charlie rushed back to New York 
from Philadelphia, and only the shell of him returned to the 
play. I had had a bad cold which now psychosomatically, I sup- 
pose, developed into pneumonia. I had a fever of one hundred 
five degrees before I realized it, and then with the first dose of 
sulfa I developed a violent sulfa poisoning to add to the general 
chaos. As a matter of fact, I came very close to joining Frank 
Craven and Bob. I might very well have gone with them if I 
had not opened my eyes one morning to find a solid, reassuring 
figure sitting beside my bed holding my hand. It was IturbL 
He had flown on from California the moment he had been told 
how ill I was. 

It was wonderful to have him there. He took charge of every- 
thing, including the New York opening of Brighten the Corner. 
When my company manager told him business was only fair in 
Philadelphia and funds were running low, Iturbi gave him a 
check for twenty thousand dollars and told him, on pain of evil 
events to his mother, never to let me know about it. 

He asked our wonderful doctor, Arnold Hutschnecker, who 



( 234 ) SEPTEMBER CHILD: 

wrote that inspiring book, The Will to Live, to look after 
Charlie who was almost as badly off as I was "like a corpse 
walking/' Iturbi told me later. 

When the play finally opened at the Lyceum Theater, Jose 
reported on its progress every fifteen or twenty minutes and at 
intermissions corralled many of my friends to talk to me over 
the telephone and give me good news. Alas for all his efforts! 
The critics, unassured by the Benchley laugh, did not like it. I 
cannot say whether they were right or wrong. Although the play 
ran on for a time, I never saw it. 

As soon as I could wobble to my feet, Jose bundled me off and 
flew me out of midwinter New York's slush to balmy California. 
Charlie Butterworth followed soon after the play closed. One 
night, driving home, his small foreign sports car swerved and 
crashed headlong into a tree. Charlie was killed instantly. No 
one ever knew whether it was an accident or whether he had 
taken the way out, like Irish March in The Green Hat> to join 
Benchley. 

I had left New York just before Christmas, and it was Wash- 
ington's Birthday by the time I returned. This was the longest 
vacation I can remember ever having in my grown-up years, 
and when I picked up my usual New York routine, I found it 
had quite spoiled me. I had never before objected to my clients 
calling me at eight A.M. or at midnight, but before I returned, 
I had decided to change all that. I often wore myself out argu- 
ing and struggling with clients for their own good when I felt 
in my bones I was right about a move they should make, or 
should not make, in their careers. 

Then there were the ones who enjoyed complaining, no 
matter how much was done for them, and the one very, very 
successful instrumentalist who actually complained because too 
much was done for him! "Jeannie," he said, "you are making 
me too popular. I do not want to be so popular." (This was 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( 235 ) 

just after, for the first time In his career, he had sold out Car- 
negie Hall.) "I do not/' he continued, "enjoy my concert, 
knowing so many have come not for my music but because they 
have read your publicity about me!" 

I had been too busy to notice much of this before my de- 
lightful hiatus in California, but when it all started up again, 
once I had gotten back into the grind, I was positively astounded 
at what I had been able to do and to take. I resolved to change, 
to do less and to "take" less, but I did not. There were twenty- 
two people in the office to keep working. Nothing could be 
changed not right then. 

Father was always very popular with the girls in the office 
and he never lacked a companion at the many concerts and 
recitals he attended. Little by little it appeared that Helen 
Ruth Matthews was getting to be his favorite, and I heard con- 
siderable grumbling on the part of the other young ladies who 
formerly had been enjoying his company. Nevertheless it came 
as a great surprise to me when one morning Big Mary, after 
giving me my breakfast tray, stood first on one foot and then 
the other, twisting her apron, clearing her throat and giving all 
evidences of having an important announcement to make. 

She probably wants more money, I thought to myself, and I'll 
give it to her, but still she didn't speak. I answered the phone 
once or twice while she wandered around the room, flicking 
imaginary specks of dust away with her apron. But finally she 
had come to the point. 

"Miss Jean," she said, "your father wants to marry Miss 
Matthews, and he's afraid to tell you himself/' 

It is a good thing I was lying in bed, or I surely would have 
been knocked off my feet. After a few gasps I managed to blurt 
out, "There's nothing to be afraid of! I think it's wonderful. 
Tell him when I'm sixty-seven I'll consider myself lucky if 
someone thirty wants to marry me, and so should he!" 



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SEPTEMBER CHILD: 



Mary burst out laughing. "I told him you'd feel like that/' she 

chuckled, "but he kept saying, 'She'll think I'm an old fool!' " 

I did not think so at all, but the office was in an uproar over 

it. 

"Boss's secretary marries boss's father that's a switch!" one of 
the girls sighed, but married they were in the Lutheran Church 
at the corner of our street, and only Mary and I were allowed 
to attend. That same day they went off for a honeymoon in 
Mexico, leaving a big gap in my life. It is not often you lose 
your father and a good secretary all in one day. 

Summertime was not idle time for me and my associates. We 
had the Lewisohn Stadium Concerts to publicize and several 
summer theaters to work with in addition to our usual chores. 
One of them was Gus Schinner's company in Greenwich. Gus 
is a good showman and always had imaginative productions. 
One of these was my old friend, Bert Lahr, playing his first 
dramatic role in a revival of Arthur Hopkins and George 
Manker Walters' straight play, Burlesque, which had been such 
a success years before, starring Hal Skelly and Barbara Stanwyck. 
I thought Bert's performance enchanting. It was touching as 
well as hilarious. The play is about a comedian and it is full of 
allusions to his success in making the audiences laugh, but 
Hal Skelly was a dancer and played it like a dancer. I felt Bert 
Lahr was really the character, and I determined he should be 
seen in the role on Broadway. 

Burlesque finally opened at the Belasco Theater on Christ- 
mas night and was a hit. Bert's notices were fabulous, and 
everybody enjoyed the little capsule burlesque show which 
ended the play. 

About a month after Burlesque opened, Grace called me from 
Europe where she had been on a tour of military posts, "singing 
for the boys." Now, she reported, she was about to embark on 
a concert tour of Scandinavia and wanted me to go along. 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( 237 ) 

"It will probably be the last really glamorous tour I'll ever 
make," she chuckled. "They still consider me a big movie queen 
as well as an opera star in those countries." 

I told her I couldn't possibly get away, and she urged, "Oh, 
come along! The whole thing will take only ten days. Why, 
well be entertained by royalty wherever we go! Well live at 
the palace with the King of Sweden. He's even sending the 
crown prince down to Copenhagen to meet me. These are won- 
derful people, and I want you to know them. You need the 
contacts!" She laughed. "Meet me in London on Friday for my 
Albert Hall concert; then well fly to Copenhagen where I 
sing Saturday night, and Sunday well take off for Sweden avec 
the handsome crown prince." 

She quite sold me on the idea, but I told her I had a problem 
with my king of worriers, Bert Lahr, and I'd have to talk it over 
with him before I could give her a definite answer. 

I told Bert about it that night after the show in his dressing 
room. He nearly burst into tears. "You can't leave us! You can't 
leave the country," he cried, "We need your mother's milk every 
day to keep this show going. If you leave, something terrible 
will happen! The theater will burn down! Or 111 break my leg! 
I know it! I feel it in my bones. You mustn't go!" 

I was disappointed, but I knew he was right. When I called 
Grace to tell her so, she chortled, "Ah, go on! You've just lost 
your sense of adventure! But anyway, you must spend the sum- 
mer with me at Villa Lauretta in Cannes. It's more beautiful 
than ever. Some Nazi general occupied it during the war and 
was an extremely good housekeeper. He left it in perfect con- 
dition. Promise 111 see you in the spring." 

I promised. 

The following Sunday I came home from church and was 
greeted at the door by Big Mary, in tears. 

"What's wrong?" I asked. 

She wiped her eyes and shook her head and said nothing. The 



( 2$}8 ) SEPTEMBER CHILD: 

phone was ringing. I automatically picked it up. The voice on 
the other end said, 'This is the Associated Press again. We 
know you must be very upset, but we would appreciate it if 
you would give us a few more details." 

"About what?" I faltered, overcome with a terrible premoni- 
tion. 

"Why, about Miss Moore, of course/' 

I sat down very hard. "I'm sorry," I said. "I just came in. 
You must have been talking to my maid. What happened?" 

"Oh," the poor man said, "this is dreadful. I thought it was 
you I spoke to before. Miss Moore was killed this morning in 
an airplane crash at the airport in Copenhagen." 

"Oh, no!" I cried. "There must be some mistake! It can't be 
true!" 

But it was true. It had all happened in a few seconds right 
before the horrified eyes of the crowds who had come to see 
Grace and the crown prince take off. It was never quite clear 
what went wrong. Some say the wooden "brakes" on the ailerons 
had been forgotten. In any case the plane started off, nosed al- 
most straight up, stalled, fell and burst into flames. No one 
escaped. 

It was Iturbi who rescued me from my state of shock later 
that day, calling from California. He read me the headlines in 
the Los Angeles paper and said, "If she had to go, it was a spec- 
tacular way to do it. I have the feeling she's somewhere right 
now enjoying these headlines. She'd love this one straight across 
the front page: GRACE MOORE KILLED IN AIR CRASH, and then in 
comparatively minute type it says down below, 'Grown Prince 
of Sweden another victim/ She'd like that billing! She'd proba- 
bly give you all the credit for it, too." 

During the next few days I was completely occupied with my 
final job for Grace working with Jane Tibbett on a memorial 
service at the Riverside Church and tending to the many details 
that went with it* 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( 239 ) 

My father, like Iturbi, took a professional view and remarked 
as hundreds were turned away and left milling about outside 
the church, "A splendid turnout. I'm sure she's pleased/' 

Until that night I had always thought that a wake, which I 
knew about only from Irish plays and hearsay, was a barbarity, 
but that night our little band of Grace's closest friends and 
family surely held one. We went to a private room at "21" and 
drank champagne until four in the morning, Dorothy Kirsten 
and Lawrence Tibbett singing Grace's favorite opera arias and 
songs and everyone telling anecdotes and episodes of her life 
and career. Her youngest brother, Jimmy, told his memories of 
her as a young girl in Tennessee. It was as though she were with 
us the whole night through, everyone said. When we finally 
broke up, we all felt better and as though life after all could 
go on. 

But it never went on for me in just the same way. Old sayings 
become trite because they are so true. When I say I no longer 
could put my heart in my work of management and publicity, 
this is exactly true. I simply had no heart for it. I just did not 
give a damn any longer about the careers of any of my "chil- 
dren," as I always thought of them all. The passionate sense of 
duty and responsibility I had toward them left me completely. 
I felt like a fraud leaving most of the work in the hands of my 
associates. As soon as I returned to New York with Valentin, 
Senator Kefauver and Emily Coleman, after leaving Grace's 
beautiful bronze casket on Lookout Mountain in her home 
state of Tennessee, I once more ran for refuge in California with 
Jose. 

I never did go back to my office in the Chanin Building again. 



BOOK 
IV 




chapter 

I 



I 



TURBI HAD ALWAYS been very popular with concertgoers, but 
at this time, because of his success in the films, the general public 
and especially the teen-agers flocked to hear him, too. Book- 
ing a concert tour for him became a matter of choosing a com- 
fortable itinerary from among the cities with large auditoriums 
where he could set record-breaking grosses, since all the local 
managers were clamoring for him. I enjoyed doing this work 
and tending to the myriad of details that goes with it: arranging 
the transportation, making sure there were practice pianos in 
his hotel as well as concert grands on the stages, seeing that 
publicity material and photographs were supplied to the man- 
agement, etc. 

I did not consider Jos a client. He and his sister, Amparo, 
whom I often booked with him in two-piano concerts, were and 
are "family." It was lucrative work for me, too, as the Iturbi 
concerts he played three or four times a week almost all 
brought in upward of ten thousand dollars each, of which in 
some cases he received as much as 70 per cent, and since we 



(244) SEPTEMBER CHILD: 

had long since put our relationship on a strict business basis, my 
commissions were delightfully rewarding. 

Then, too, Burlesque was still flourishing at the Belasco 
Theater, and the varied and continuous activities at City Center 
needed constant attention. I handled all these things with a 
small staff from an office I had installed in my new house on 
East Fifty-fifth Street, and all in all I found my work greatly 
simplified and my life considerably more enjoyable. 

Burlesque was scheduled to go on tour after it completed its 
year's run at the Belasco, and I was eager to have another pro- 
duction to take its place. As Freddie Finkelhoff once said: "To 
have a play you have written or directed or produced running 
successfully on Broadway is one of the most completely satisfy- 
ing experiences of a lifetime. And once you have had it, you're 
lost until you make it happen again/ 1 

But to have this happen again, or to keep it happening, be- 
comes more and more difficult as production costs rise, stars 
with real drawing power grow scarcer or cling to television and 
films, and only a handful of playwrights supply the entire 
world's market. 

Anyway, in my own case, I had a difficult time in my search 
for a play to follow Burlesque. Quite naturally my mind turned 
to the possibility of other revivals of past successes, but Broad- 
way is not a particularly flourishing market for the average 
revival. It was only the gimmick of our capsule burlesque show 
and Bert Lahr's artistry which had kept that play running, but 
it occurred to me that there would be a good market for short- 
run revivals at City Center. 

Up to then we had contented ourselves with booking in 
plays as they finished their country-wide tours, and we had been 
successful with Helen Hayes in Harriet, Judith Anderson in 
Medea and very particularly so with Paul Robeson, Jos6 Ferrer 
and Uta Hagen in Othello & real blockbuster. 

During the run of Othello at City Center I renewed an old 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( 245 ) 

friendship with Jose Ferrer which had started years before when 
he played Charley's Aunt and when my friend and client, Nedda 
Harrigan, played "the real aunt," Donna Lucia D'Alvadorez 
from Brazil "where the nuts come from!" Nedda, by the way, 
met her future and present husband, Joshua Logan, during her 
engagement in that perennial comedy, for he was its gifted 
director. 

When the notion of forming a resident drama company to pro- 
duce our own revivals at City Center came up for the steenth 
time at a board meeting, I suggested that it was important to 
find the proper person to head it. Oddly enough, John Golden 
and Richard Aldrich, the only other two professional theater 
people at these meetings, had never been in favor of a resident 
company, and it was Mrs. Henry Morgenthau, Jr., who intro- 
duced and reintroduced the subject. John Golden had always 
pointed out the possibility of financial disaster, and at one par- 
ticular meeting when he took off on this favorite tangent of his, 
Mrs. Morgenthau said she would personally contribute several 
thousands of dollars toward underwriting such a venture, and 
much to our astonishment, Richard Aldrich immediately joined 
her and pledged five thousand dollars, whereupon I added my 
two cents' worth by suggesting that we try to get Jose Ferrer as 
our guiding genius. 

This met no opposition as Joe was accredited equally with 
Paul Robeson for the land-office business they had done for 
City Center with their Othello, and I was instructed by the 
board to see what success I might have with Joe. 

I located him without difficulty at the Suffern, N. Y., Summer 
Theater where he was starring in Molnar's The Play's the 
Thing. The juvenile lead in the play impressed me enormously, 
and I sought him out after the performance to tell him so. He 
was very shy and very pleased when I said, "You just can't miss 
becoming a star." He said he had a contract to make a film, and 
I thought that was a pity as I felt he needed more stage experi- 



( 346 ) SEPTEMBER CHILD: 

ence, but I was wrong. His first film did make a star of Gregory 
Peck! 

As for Joe, he liked the idea of having his own company at 
City Center, but he was all booked up for some time to come. 
I told him there was no particular hurry and that I was delighted 
to be able to report to the board that he was interested. The 
board, with the exception of Mrs. Morgenthau, seemed vastly 
relieved at this postponement of going out on a limb as John 
Golden put itwith our own drama company, but Mrs. Mor- 
genthau never let the matter rest or me either, and one day 
after a long conversation with her on the telephone I decided to 
make a second approach to Ferrer, who was then playing in 
San Francisco. 

We sparred around over the long-distance telephone for a 
few minutes, and then in his wonderfully typical and direct 
way he came to the point. "I'll do it under one condition. Uta 
is superb in Angel Street, and I'd like her to be seen in it in 
New York. I that can be one of my productions, my answer is 
yes." (Joe was already divorced from Uta Hagen at this time 
but still, as was proved, devoted to her as an artist.) I took it 
upon myself to assure him that City Center would adore to have 
him present Uta as Mrs. Manningham, and without further ado 
the deal was made. He and Richard Whorf soon offered a bril- 
liantly stylized and hilarious Volpone^ and the City Center 
Drama Company was no longer Mrs. Morgenthau's dream but 
a successful reality. 

About this time my old friend, Alexander Ince, financed by 
Gilbert Miller, bought Theater Arts Magazine and came in 
great excitement to Fifty-fifth Street to tell me the news. He 
needed, he said, a gifted editor and he was sure I could recom- 
mend one to him. I immediately suggested Charles MacArthur, 
and as luck would have it, he was in the neighborhood and 
soon joined us and accepted the post. Out of this came an invita- 
tion from them to interview George Bernard Shaw for their 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( 247 ) 

first issue of the revised magazine* Shaw had not given an inter- 
view for years, but Ince knew of my long friendship with 
Gabriel Pascal, Shaw's "adopted son" and the only motion- 
picture man Shaw trusted to produce his works on film. His 
Pygmalion, for which Shaw himself had written the screenplay, 
was, as everyone knows, a landmark in the film business, and 
Shaw was awarded an "Oscar" for his scenario. This had been 
followed by the almost equally successful Major Barbara and 
the spectacular, but less successful, Caesar and Cleopatra. Ince 
knew that Pascal would arrange for me to meet with Shaw, and 
not much later I was sitting in the great man's drawing-room in 
Ayot St. Lawrence, England. 

I waited there alone while Gabby went out into the garden to 
fetch Shaw from his "writing shack/' happy to have the time to 
engrave on my mind a minute picture of this setting for our 
talk. I had promised to take no notes, and even though he was 
not there, I stuck to the bargain. When finally I heard their 
voices and footsteps approaching, a great wave of excitement 
rolled over me. In a moment or two I would be in the presence 
of England's greatest playwright since Shakespeare. 

When he entered the room, his sharp blue eyes youthful and 
twinkling beneath his famous Mephistophelean white eyebrows, 
and took one of my hands in both of his and gave me a warm 
smile, I felt I had known him all my life. 

A maid brought in a large silver tray with the tea things, 
including what appeared to be delicious hot crumpets. Shaw 
poured tea for me and passed the crumpets, but I did not take 
any. 

"Oh, come now," he said, "don't tell me a skinny thing like 
you is afraid of getting fat." 

"I am taking on weight," I admitted. 

"Of course! You've reached the age where water and lettuce 
will make you fat. Have a crumpet!" 

I did. 



f 248 ) SEPTEMBERCHILD: 

We began to discuss Maurice Evans' production of Man and 
Superman which was then running successfully on Broadway. 
As I praised it, Shaw broke in, "Think of that tremendous hit 
of mine! Perhaps the greatest one in twenty years and never to 
come again in my lifetime. And my You Never Can Tell run- 
ning to packed houses in the West End here all that money 
pouring in and I am getting from it only six pence in the pound 
because of the damn taxes. Even without the income from my 
major plays when they are done professionally, the amateur 
companies in your country and the British Isles-over one hun- 
dred thousand of them use my one-act plays so continuously 
that I have decided to let them all go free. The money does me 
no good and just puts me in an impossible tax bracket." His 
eyes twinkled. "It's a major tragedy for me." 

I told Mr. Shaw that the New York City Center Theater Com- 
pany would like to add to his tax problems by presenting Arms 
and the Man, but we were afraid of his usual 15 per cent royalty 
because at that time our top price was only two dollars. 

Shaw said, "What do you want to do that old chestnut for? 
Why don't you do a musical version of The Chocolate Soldierf 
It's much more fun/' 

"Why, Mr. Shaw/' I said, "I always have heard that you'd 
never go to see it and didn't like the idea of your plays being 
turned into musicals." 

"Nonsense," he said. "I only wish I had another play someone 
could turn into an operetta or a musical." 

"Major Barbara!" Gabby cried. 

"The Belle of New York took care of the Salvation Army," 
he snorted. 

"Pygmalion would be lovely," I said. 

Shaw thought a moment and then said, "It doesn't have a 
very good ending/' 

"I don't mean the play," I said. "I'm thinking of the scenario 
you wrote for Cabby's Pygmalion" 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( 249 ) 



s/* Shaw said, "it's quite a Cinderella story in the film. I 
never particularly liked it in spite of the 'Oscar' they gave me 
for it, but it did make a lot of money for us, didn't it, Gabe! 
Yes, that's a possibility." 

After I had explained the aims and purposes of City Center, 
he said we could do any of his short plays free! "They never 
make any money for anybody anyway," he added. But there 
was no point, he said, even discussing production of one of his 
major works as long as Man and Superman was running. (Later 
on, when Maurice Evans did The Devil's Disciple for us, he 
said we could have it at the "cut rate" of 10 per cent also 
Captain Brassbound's Conversion.") 

Gabby and I spent some three hours with him, and we dis- 
cussed current American plays, although he said he never read 
the plays sent to him. "I think it a very bad idea for a play- 
wright to read plays. If the play is good, he's bound to be in- 
fluenced by it and sometimes to steal something from it." 

He had never read or seen any of their works, but he said we 
were lucky to have Tennessee Williams and Arthur Miller. 
"Playwriting," he said, "is the most difficult form of writing 
man has invented. That is why there are so many more novel- 
ists." 

He had a great deal to say about politics, particularly women 
in politics, and what a shame it is that there are so few women 
in it. "I think it seems too dull for them to be bothered with. 
I think they say to themselves, 'Let the men control all that and 
we will control the men/ Personally I think there should be a 
universal law that for every man elected, a woman must also 
be elected to the same post. . . . Now go along," he said, "and 
put that into effect and save the world. I must go and listen 
to the six o'clock news." 

The interview duly appeared in the revised Theater Arts first 
issue, but unfortunately it had to be chopped up to fit into the 
two pages Ince and Charley had held out for it, and my care- 



( 250 ) SEPTEMBER CHILD: 

fully remembered description of Shaw's drawing-room and 
many other details I had lovingly dwelt upon were lost. 

Gabriel and his beautiful bride, Valerie, wanted me to go with 
them to Paris, but Iturbi and Amparo were in London and 
they wanted me to go to Spain. Amparo was excited about going 
back to their home town of Valencia and she told me we should 
be just in time for Las Fallas-The Flames which is a celebra- 
tion on Jose's own saint's day. San Jose is the patron saint of 
carpenters, and on that day in the past the carpenters cleaned 
out their shops and burned the refuse in the streets. Little by 
little it had grown into a Christian-Moorish celebration, and 
instead of burning piles of shavings and pieces of wood from 
the shops, great contraptions now are built and burned, usually 
as either a protest or as an honor. 

Jose was to be honored in the plaza of the neighborhood 
where he was born, and Amparo said that in another plaza a 
great wooden streetcar would go up in flames as a protest for 
the miserable transportation system of Valencia. She said there 
would be tremendous f alias all over the city. What decided me 
not to miss it was that everyone men and women would dress 
in the beautiful costumes of the Valencia region. Amparo had 
already ordered hers and could cable for one for me, too. 

Las Fallas were everything Amparo had promised and more. 
Dressed in our lovely costumes and with our hair authentically 
arranged (great "buns" studded with long gold pins over each 
ear), Amparo and I sat on a balcony overlooking a plaza and 
watched Jose put a torch to a string of firecrackers which led to 
a great edifice in wood which appeared to be a piano and a lyre 
surmounted by violins, trumpets, trombones and as many in- 
struments of the orchestra skillful Valencian carpenters could 
turn out. This great pile burst into beautiful flames as the band 
played, and the crowds in the plaza and on all the balconies 
chanted, "Iturbi! Iturbi! Viva Iturbi!" As the flames mounted 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( 251 ) 

higher and higher, the intense heat drove us indoors where we 
cooled off with plenty of well-iced champagne. I could not un- 
derstand why the entire city did not burn down in spite of the 
fact that the fire-fighting equipment was everywhere in evidence. 
"Oh," Amparo said, "only Las Fallas burn. Nothing else catches 
fire. San Jos sees to that!" 

The next day we drove out to "La Cotorra" and found it 
unchanged and untouched although en route we passed scores 
of bombed-out and burned-out fincas. Nothing seemed to have 
been repaired or even put in order since their civil war. Even 
the main road the one between Valencia and Barcelona was 
still full of shell holes carelessy filled in with dirt and gravel. 
At no point had new macadam been applied. Iturbi cursed all 
the responsible imponentes with great Spanish oaths rolling 
forth in both Castillian and Valencian. 

It was a very depressing ride, but at "La Cotorra" our spirits 
rose. A great paella had been prepared for us; the orange groves 
were in bloom; and the friends who had gathered to welcome 
us were smiling and merry although the stories they had to tell 
later on were far from pleasant. I had never realized what a 
frightful holocaust they had been through, and even today few 
Americans can believe that over three million Spaniards per- 
ished in that "War before the War" 1 936-39. 

After a few pleasant days rusticating at "La Cotorra," we all 
drove back to Madrid where we separated, Jose to give concerts 
in Portugal, Amparo to play a series in southern Spain, and I 
to see the plays in Paris. Pascal was waiting for me at the airport, 
sans bride. "I left her home/' he said, "so you and I could bum 
around for a couple of days." 

We "bummed around" at Maxime's, the Tour d' Argent and 
at various glamorous dinner parties. We also went to see all the 
new hits. One in which I was particularly interested was Jean- 
Paul Sartre's Les Mains Sales. I had seen his Respectful Prosti- 
tute in New York, and while I did not like it or approve of it, 



) 



SEPTEMBER CHILD: 



I was impressed by his talent and I looked forward to seeing 
his new work, which was the outstanding success of the Paris 
season. When I was leaving for Europe my assistant Marian 
Graham's parting words were, "Bring back one of those successes 
from England or France. That new Sartre play sounds interest- 
ing. I have a hunch you'll like it." 

Marian was right. Gabriel and I both liked it very much, and 
even before the end of it, during the second intermission, in fact, 
we made up our minds to buy it. Sartre was not at the theater 
that night, but as luck would have it, his agent and publisher, 
Louis Nagel, was there and, thank goodness, he was a Hungarian 
and very much impressed by his countryman, Pascal. 

It seems that Sartre had received offers for Les Mains Sales 
from many American producers, including the Theater Guild, 
but Nagel liked Pascal's charm and my money best, and when I 
left for New York a few days later, I had with me a signed con- 
tract and several manuscripts of the play. It was quite a coup, 
and the newspapers spoke of it as such when I reached New 
York. 

One of the main reasons why I liked Les Mains Sales and was 
willing to outbid the other American producers was that I saw 
it as a vehicle for Charles Boyer, and even though he had never 
appeared on the stage in the United States, I had a hunch he 
would like to if the right play and the right part came along. 
I could not imagine him not liking the role of Hoederer, the 
Communist leader, in Les Mains Sales, and I was unprepared 
and distinctly chagrined when, after reading the script, he tele- 
phoned me from California to say, "I'm sorry, but I think it's 
a terrible bore, and I don't agree with you at all that Hoederer 
is the main character. That silly boy the Communists use runs 
away with the play." 

"If you see it on the stage," I said, "you'll change your mind. 
Jump on a plane and I'll take you over to Paris to have a look 
at it." 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( 253 ) 

He laughed. "Pas si vite! Pas si vite! I don't like to fly and 
I'll be in Paris later this spring. If you haven't found someone 
you like better by that time, 111 see the play then, although I 
can tell you now I'm pretty sure it won't make any difference 
in my opinion/' It didn't either. When he went to the play 
some time later, it put him to sleep. 

But he had always wanted to work with Jed Harris who was 
going to direct the play for me. Jed had just passed something 
of a miracle on Broadway. He had picked up a flop, Washington 
Square, which had closed in Boston, had recast and restaged it 
and opened it on Broadway as a major success, The Heiress. It 
was one of his more spectacular triumphs, and at this moment 
he was just about the "hottest" director around. And so I sent 
for him to come over and use his persuasive ways with my fa- 
vorite though unwilling actor. But even Jed failed to swerve 
him, and Pascal, who by this time had arrived with his bride, 
did no better. 

The cause lost, the four of us decided just to stay awhile and 
enjoy La Grande Semaine in Paris, and in spite of our disap- 
pointment, we managed to have a glorious time. 

I did not know Jed very well before this, but he turned out to 
be an absolutely delightful companion, and before the week 
was over, I was astonished to find that I was quite taken with 
him. I think I am the only woman in the world who was ever 
involved with Jed Harris who enjoyed every minute of it. (He 
denies this!) I had heard and read so many horrendous tales 
about Jed that I was quite unprepared to find him gentle and 
easygoing and, above all, vastly amusing. 

When we returned to New York, Jed brought Daniel Tara- 
dash in to make the adaptation in English of Les Mains Sales, 
and he and Jed really slaved away at it as the summer wore on. 

One day the phone rang, and it was lovely Madeleine Carroll. 
She asked if I'd lunch with her as she wanted to discuss Sartre's 



\ 



SEPTEMBER CHILD: 



play. Of course I would lunch with her, but I could not for the 
life of me imagine what interest she had in Les Mains Sales. 
The part of the flighty young wife, barely more than a child, 
surely would not attract her, and the only other woman in the 
play, the Communist worker, Olga, is far from a leading role. 

It was the role of Hoederer she wanted to talk about. <f l 
know/* she said, "you wanted Charles Boyer for that part and 
you are absolutely right. He would be wonderful for it and it 
for him. You must try again. Perhaps when you have your Amer- 
ican adaptation ready, hell like it better than the original 
French. Please go after him again, and I'll speak to him about it, 
too." 

I could not wait to tell Jed of this development, and he could 
not wait to ship me off to California with the first two acts of 
the adaptation. Before I left, I telephoned Iturbi and asked him 
to invite Charles and his wife, Pat, for dinner the next night 
they are old friends-and I explained why. He rather doubted 
whether he could get the Boyers on such short notice, but for- 
tunately they were free and we all dined together, I had decided 
to say nothing about the play until we were having coffee, and 
much to my delight, it was Boyer himself who brought the mat- 
ter up at that time. 

"How are you making out/' he asked, "with the adaptation 
of the Sartre play?" 

"Very well/' I answered, "and I have brought the first two 
acts out with me. Would you like to read them?" 

"Yes/' he answered, "I would." 

"Fine," I said. "I'll get them for you, and please remember 
the part of Hoederer is still open." 

The next morning he called me. 'Til play it/' he said. 

We opened out of town to packed houses, good notices and 
raves for Charles's performance. Then an absolutely inexplica- 
ble thing happened. Jean-Paul Sartre began a legal process 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( 255 ) 

against his agent, Louis Nagel, for having allowed us to "change 
his play from a work of art into an anti-Communist propaganda 
piece." 

We were given no warning of this; we first read about it in 
the newspapers. Louis Nagel, when at last \ reached him on the 
transatlantic telephone, professed to be as bewildered as we were 
and said Sartre wanted to return the seventy-five hundred dol- 
lars' advance and have me call the whole production off. Nagel 
said he knew as well as I did that this couldn't be done, and as 
for Sartre himself, he had gone to Africa, leaving his "case" in 
the hands of his lawyer, Madame Suzanne Blum, who would 
not reason with us either, and the case continued with resultant 
front-page publicity in the American press. 

Some foolish people chuckled and said, "Jean's up to her old 
publicity tricks again," but I knew it was very bad for the play 
as it kept attacking our adaptation and insisting that we were 
presenting not a play but a propaganda piece. It developed into 
a terrific furore. 

I was sick at heart, particularly for Boyer and Jed, as I felt 
the critics would review the controversy and not our production. 
And I was right. Their consensus seemed to be: What's all the 
shooting for? Anti-Communist or pro-Communist, Mr. Sartre 
hasn't written that great a play. 

We were sunk. They all raved about Charles's performance, 
however, and with our heavy advance and a pretty good window 
sale we kept going for a while. The business never was disas- 
trous, but the production was an expensive one, geared for 
smash-hit proportions, and it needed sold-out houses to turn a 
profit. It did make Charles Boyer a Broadway star, however, and 
so he has remained. 

At this time Jed and Gabriel Pascal were sharing my little 
office on Fifty-fifth Street, and sometimes we would sit down 
to a three-handed game of pinochle which they both claimed 



/ 2 K6 ) 



SEPTEMBER CHILD: 



I didn't know how to play, especially when I won. "The trouble 
with us, Jed/' Pascal would roar, "is that you and I are geniuses 
and this Scotch-Dutch girl takes advantage of that!" 

Most of my attention was now centering on the work of what 
Gabby and Jed called my other genius, Iturbi. 

During one of my visits to see him in California, Franchot 
Tone said he had decided he would like to spend the coming 
summer on the straw-hat circuit in the East and he'd found 
the play he wanted to do. It was an old favorite of mine, too, 
The Second Man by S. N. Behrman. "Sort of the story of my 
life/' Franchot chuckled. "I ought to be able to play myself with- 
out difficulty/' 

He wanted me not only to produce the play but to direct it, 
as he had very much liked what I did the few times I took over 
during the tryout of Hope for the Best. If he had asked me only 
to produce the play for summer theater, I undoubtedly would 
have turned it down, but the invitation to direct was too entic- 
ing to ignore. 

I returned to New York, and by the time Franchot arrived 
from California, I had a cast assembled for his approval and 
the play booked solid for the summer. We opened the season 
at the Westport Country Playhouse because it was convenient 
to my farm in nearby Danbury. 

I can hardly remember a more pleasant experience. Margaret 
Lindsay, Cloris Leachman and Walter Brooke were the delight- 
ful members of the cast with Franchot, and each one gave, in my 
opinion, a flawless performance. Cloris and Walter in their 
scenes together were hilarious, for they are both gifted comedi- 
ans, and The Second Man was such a success breaking records 
everywhere that, in spite of my apprehension about the fate of 
revivals on Broadway, we decided to bring it in. But dear Berrie 
said he was afraid we had made his play "too funny/' and I 
decided not to pursue it, especially since we were losing Cloris 
to a Broadway production, and with my single-mindedness 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( 257 ) 

about casting, I could think of no one to replace her inimitable 
gifts. 

The Second Man was not the only "package" I had out that 
summer. Franchot's good friend, and my old client, Burgess 
Meredith, thought he'd like to take a swing around, too. I came 
up with Harvey for him and I believe his characterization was 
the most delightful of all the Elmer Dowds I have seen. 

I also put out Ella Raines in The Voice of the Turtle, that 
play I knew so well from my long association with it. Her leading 
man was George Englund, who later surprised me by marry- 
ing Cloris Leachman. He is now Marlon Brando's producer- 
manager, and at this writing he has just directed and produced 
their excellent The Ugly American. We lost a remarkably fine 
actor and a wonderful-looking one, too, when George decided 
the business end of theater and films was more to his liking. 

Both Jed and Iturbi saw all three productions and their re- 
actions were typical. Jed was scornful of the whole notion of 
summer theater and of my working in it. Iturbi was enthusiastic 
and insisted I finally had found my true metierdirecting. 

"I can appreciate it," he said, "because it is not dissimilar 
from conducting an orchestra." (Rachel Crothers had said the 
same thing to me years before.) 

"Actually," I told him, "I learned a great deal watching you 
rehearse an orchestra." And so I had. For not only movement 
but sound must be directed, and nothing is more boring to me 
than a performance which is not "orchestrated," where one actor 
picks up a line in the same key and the same tone as the others 
around him. This can make the best-written scene monotonous, 
and it is an absolutely sure way to kill any comedy possibilities 
the lines may hold. 

Iturbi was right, and I found real satisfaction in directing, 
but it was to be several years before I had the time^ or the 
opportunity, to enjoy it again. 



chapter 

ii 



JLou GROW OLD very fast In New York/* one o rny colleagues 
once grumbled. "Here it is Christmas again, and I still have a 
list o friends who sent me cards last year whom I should see or 
at least telephone. Now 1*11 just send them cards and try to fol- 
low through next year." 

I know that feeling well, but it is not all New York. It is the 
exciting "small town*' within New York where we fortunate 
ones who do the work we enjoy constantly are caught up in the 
whirl of exciting events and people. There is never time enough 
to do everything. It is no wonder the out-of-towners have been 
saying as long as I can remember, "New York is a wonderful 
place to visit, but I'd never live there. The pace would kill me." 

I adore New York and could not dream of living anywhere 
else, but toward Christmas, 1951, the whirl was too much for 
me and I decided to spend the holidays with the Pascals in 
England. 

Gabriel and Valerie lived at their beautiful Mumfords Farm 
in Gerrards Cross at this time, but I preferred to stay in the 
( 258 ) 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( 259 ) 

center of things at my beloved Savoy where I always feel so 
completely at home. Some people like to stay at hotels which 
are "off the beaten track." In Paris they search out small attrac- 
tive places only the French know about, and in London they 
like a "colorful" hostel the visiting gentry from the North 
Country frequent. But I enjoy walking into a hotel lobby thou- 
sands of miles from home and meeting people I know. I have 
never been at the Savoy when I have not found at least half a 
dozen old friends there, and even if they are not in the lobby, 
the men at the reception desk always are quick to tell me who 
is staying there at the time. 

I suppose it is an outgrowth of a thought I had in my teens 
before I even went to work in Wall Street. "What do I want to 
be in my lifetime?" I asked myself, and the answer was not that 
I would like to be rich, or famous, or outstanding in any par- 
ticular work, but simply that I would like to be at home in the 
world. So if arriving at what you started out to be is a sign of 
success, then I am successful, for heaven knows I am at home 
in the world. It is not only the old friends I meet in the far-off 
places where I have been that make me so, but the new friends 
I make, and I am grateful that most of my journeys have been 
on business because my work has made it necessary for me to 
be in contact with many people in many places. 

In London I made new friends and renewed acquaintance 
with old ones at Sir Louis and Lady Sterling's Sunday evenings 
when they had gay and gala open house for their friends in the 
theater and the arts. They are both gone now and Baron, the 
Court photographer who taught Lord Snowden, Anthony Arm- 
strong-Jones, his profession and introduced him into the royal 
circle, is gone, too. On Sunday evenings when I did not go to 
Sir Louis's, he would arrange a fascinating poker party for me, 
and his beautiful studio was another meeting place not only for 
artists but for dukes and duchesses, too, and I must say it was 



/ 2 5o ) 



SEPTEMBER CHILD: 



great fun to bluff an earl out of a big pot with a pair of aces 
when he had three kings. 

I had but one Sunday evening to spend in London on this 
particular trip as I had made up my mind to be back in New 
York for New Year's Eve, and I decided to forego both Sir 
Louis's and Baron's hospitality and instead dine with Pascal and 
his beautiful Valerie, for Gabby and I were about to embark 
on an exciting new production the musical version of Pyg- 
malion. Just before Shaw's death in the fall of 1950, Gabby 
finally had gotten around to acquiring the rights, but his old 
friend's death so shattered himalthough Shaw was at the won- 
derful age of ninety-four that he had been unable to carry on, 
as he put it. With me in London, however, he said he was enjoy- 
ing a new spurt of enthusiasm for the project. 

I had suggested months before that Cole Porter would be 
ideal to join his wit to that of Shaw's and to develop it all with 
his lilting music, but neither of us had approached him. When 
we did, he turned us down. 

Gabby came to New York shortly after I arrived home, and 
we made a serious effort to get our musical under way. Think- 
ing back, it is astonishing how many people refused to under- 
take it. I do not remember all of them, but I do know that my 
good friends Betty Comden, Adolph Green and Leonard Bern- 
stein, a combination I thought perfect for the project, after 
much soul-searching decided it was far too great a play to 
"chop up" for a musical! Rodgers and Hammerstein liked the 
idea very much, but they were so involved with their own works 
that they said it would be several years before they could get to 
it. Besides, they said, if they did it they also would want to 
produce it. I can vividly recall Pascal plaintively saying, "Of 
course they would make a wonderful job of it, but where would 
you and I come in, even as their associates? No, we must produce 
the musical Pygmalion ourselves. It will be our annuity/' 

Frederick Loewe was a good friend of mine, and I knew his 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( 261 ) 

partner, Alan Jay Lerner, slightly, but when I suggested them 
to Gabby he said I was scraping the bottom of the barrel. "They 
write flops and semi-flops/ 1 he said scornfully. 

I was indignant. "You call Brigadoon a semi-flop?" 

"Almost/* he said. "It was bor-ing." 

I jumped up in spirited defense, for it is one of my favorites. 

Gabby laughed. "You like it because it's all about Jeannie. 
1 love you, Jeannie/ 'Come to me, Jeannie/ 'Over the Hill to 
Jeannie/ " 

We both started to laugh. "If you want to go further on that 
track/' I said, "Jeannie MacPherson marries Charley Dalrymple 
so actually it's all about Jeannie Dalrymple/' That took care of 
Lerner and Loewe for the time being. 

One day I came back to this idea and insisted that Gabby 
sit down and listen to the recording of Brigadoon. At the end 
of it he was surprised to find himself convinced. "I had no idea/' 
he admitted, "that it was so good. I must have slept through 
most of it at the theater." But alas, we found that Mr. Lerner 
and Mr. Loewe had had a falling out and at that time were 
no longer working together. 

There was also the problem of casting. Gertrude Lawrence 
loved the idea and very much wanted to play Eliza, but she 
was involved with The King and I which she said "will run 
forever in New York and then I want to do it in London." 

About the only thing we both definitely had decided was 
that we'd like Cecil Beaton to do the sets and costumes and 
that we'd like Stanley Holloway to play Mr. Doolittle, Eliza's 
father. We also thought Moss Hart would be the perfect director. 

Pygmalion was Gabby's only interest, but I had many others 
and all my routine work. One project which was suddenly 
dropped in my lap was the production of the 1951 Anta Album. 
It seems Moss Hart and Alfred de Liagre, Jr., and, I believe, 
several other famous theater people, had tackled it but for one 
reason or another had had to abandon it, leaving only a few 



( 62 ) SEPTEMBER CHILD: 

acts and artists committed to it. This was a real challenge for 
me, because only four weeks remained before the date an- 
nounced for the performance and a considerable number of 
tickets already had been sold. 

My first reaction was to say a definite no, but this was an ap- 
peal for help, and I knew my conscience would be uneasy if 1 
turned it down, so I accepted and plunged in. 

Routining the show was great fun for me because it was like 
putting together a vaudeville bill. I had a run-in with both our 
production-stage manager, Ben Kranz, and our general manager, 
Robert Schnitzer, when I switched Bert Lahr and his "Cop Act," 
right out of my Burlesque, from the second act to next to closing 
in the first act, because I knew it would play better there and 
we needed some comedy before intermission. I could not con- 
vince either one of these good friends of mineBen Kranz had 
been my stage manager for Hope for the Bestthat it "made no 
difference," and it took me back a thousand years to my experi- 
ence in Baltimore when our vaudeville act, Just a Pal., was a 
flop because of its position on the program. In fact, Ben became 
so annoyed with what he considered sheer arbitrariness on my 
part that he took off for St. Louis to work on their Municipal 
Opera season, and Bob Schnitzer gave me a good chewing out 
when this happened. But Herman Shapiro, who had been Jed's 
stage manager for years and years and who came into my life with 
Red Gloves and has been with me ever since, took over; Bert 
Lahr went next to closing in the first act, and all went well. 

The high point in that remarkable program was, in my opin- 
ion, Lawrence Tibbett singing the great aria from Louis Gruen- 
berg's opera version of The Emperor Jones. I had heard Larry 
when he introduced this work at the Metropolitan in the thir- 
ties, and I had always wanted to hear him in it again as it was 
one of his greatest roles. For years I had implored our Opera 
Company folks at City Center to revive it with Tibbett, but to 
no avail Now it is too late, and it is a pity. But Larry did have 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( 263 ) 

the satisfaction of being the outstanding hit of that star-studded 
Album. 

Producing the Anta Album of 1951 turned out to be a real 
pleasure and a turning point in my life. Bob Schnitzer, delighted 
with its success, recommended me to the State Department to 
work on the United States Performing Arts Program at the 
Berlin Arts Festival the first major festival of its kind in which 
our government participated. I had no desire to go to Berlin, 
especially for the month of September which is so crucial in 
the preparation of Broadway productions. I was involved with 
Jule Styne in a Broadway revival of Pal Joey and I also had 
promised Jed to work with him on Joseph Kramm's The Shrike, 
in which he wanted Jose Ferrer to star. However, Bob Schnitzer 
convinced me that the American participation in the Berlin Arts 
Festival was the most important step our country had ever made 
toward an eventual cultural exchange program and that as I was 
someone who had been advocating such a development since 
1939, it was my duty to help toward its success. So, on my birth- 
day, September 2, Paula Laurence and Marian Graham drove 
me to the airport, and after bidding them a pretty woebegone 
farewell, I took off for Berlin. 

My good friend, Dr. Frank Corrigan, had written his son, 
Robert, to drop everything in Heidelberg where he was political 
adviser to General Thomas Handy and to be in Berlin to ex- 
pedite matters for me there, for Dr. Corrigan, like Bob Schnit- 
zer, felt this first step toward cultural exchange was the most 
important one our State Department ever had taken in this direc- 
tion. But no Robert Corrigan awaited me at Tempelhof, and 
trusty Bob Schnitzer, who already was in Berlin, said no word 
had been received from him, either. 

When Bob Corrigan finally caught up with me by telephone, 
full of apologies and explanations, he said that General Handy 
was in the midst of a series of conferences which demanded 
Bob's constant attendance and there was no possibility of an 



/ 2(5^ ) SEPTEMBER CHILD: 

escape from Heidelberg for a week or so. "However/' Bob said, 
"I have asked one of my best friends, who is a much bigger shot 
in Berlin than I could ever hope to be, to look out for you. He 
is Colonel Philip DeWitt Cinder. Father told me to cut the 
red tape for you, but this fellow is better at that than I am. He 
doesn't even admit it exists! He is the Commanding Officer of 
the Sixth Infantry Regiment and a hero of World War II, with 
so many medals he walks lopsided when he wears them all. He's 
a hell of a guy, but look out for him/' 

The recommendation did not appeal to me one bit, and I 
mentally crossed Colonel Cinder, and any help he might give 
me, off my list. I had a picture of a big, loud, swaggering lady- 
killer and I was much too busy to pay any mind to the likes of 
him. 



Saturday afternoon at the end of the first week, the Cecil Lyonses 
of the State Department gave a get-together for the American 
artists who had already arrived for the Festival, including Astrid 
Varnay, who was to appear with the Berlin Opera Company, 
Angna enters, who was to do her one-woman show, and Judith 
Anderson and her Medea company. As usual I had to work very 
late and was the last person to arrive at the party. Mrs. Lyons 
threw her arms around me when she saw me and laughed at my 
apologies. 

"I was so afraid you wouldn't come at all/' she said. "I know 
how busy you are, but I have four or five young men here who 
are simply demanding to meet you and I wouldn't have known 
what to tell them if you hadn't arrived/' 

Whereupon she called over several attractive men and pre- 
sented them. Only one made any impression on me and that was 
surprising. Colonel Cinder was the one and he was not at all 
as I had pictured him. He was rather slight, soft-spoken and 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( 265 ) 

seemed almost shy until we were left alone and then, although 
he was smiling, he took me rather smartly to task for not having 
returned his many phone calls after, he said, Bob Corrigan had 
made such a point about making sure that I would be taken 
care of and looked after. "I realize now," he said, "that he 
doesn't know you. When can I take you to luncheon or dinner?" 

I told him truthfully that I was completely booked up the 
following week, but I promised to call him when I was at my 
office and could have a good look at my calendar. 

Some other people came up to speak to me, and we drifted 
apart. It was after supper when I saw him again. I was listening 
with great interest to Hannah Reuter and to her husband, the 
mayor, when the colonel joined our little group. As soon as 
Hannah paused for breath, he said, "Excuse me. I have some- 
thing important to ask Miss Dalrymple." Then he turned to 
me and said, "Tomorrow is Sunday. Have luncheon with me." 

I had decided to rest and deliberately had made no engage- 
ments before five o'clock on Sunday, and somehow I felt the 
colonel knew this. I could not refuse without seeming de- 
liberately rude, I feared, so I said all right. 

"Twelve-thirty," he said. "I'll pick you up at the hotel." And 
he left. 

The next morning I was very provoked with myself for having 
accepted so quickly, for I longed just to stay quietly in my room 
and gather my wits about me, but promptly at twelve-thirty the 
colonel was announced and I dutifully went down to the lobby 
to meet him. Again he surprised me for he was not in uniform 
but in smart country tweeds, and again I thought how different 
he is from the booming bore I had imagined. 

A lovely drive out into the English sector brought us to an 
old Schloss which had been turned into an inn. We were escorted 
by the headwaiter through the building and out into the garden 
overlooking a lovely lake with much bowing and scraping and 



/ 2 Q5 ) 



SEPTEMBER CHILD: 



murmurs of "Herrober." The colonel was evidently quite a 
habitue of the place, and I found myself wondering how many 
other women he had brought here. 

I was pleased, though, to find that our table was shaded and 
that a bottle of fine Riesling was already in its ice bucket await- 
ing us. At least he knew how to do things nicely, and I began to 
soften toward him. In fact, before the excellent luncheon was 
over, I had decided to let him cut some red tape for me. I ex- 
pected two military transport planes in that evening with Celeste 
Holm and the Oklahoma! company, and I knew the arrival at 
Tempelhof would be a shambles of confusion unless I could get 
permission to have buses for the people and trucks for the bag- 
gage right on the field, for porters were scarce or non-existent 
and it is a long trek from the planes to the street. It was verboten 
for anything but military equipment to enter the field, so I 
now told my problem to Colonel Ginder. 

"One phone call will take care of that," he said. "The airport 
is under my command/' He disappeared and a few minutes 
later returned with a little smile and a brief, "Okay. What 
else?" 

I could have kissed him, but I didn't not for several days. 
When I did, it was at this same Schloss and in front of the 
joint Oklahoma! and Medea companies and most of the other 
American artists whom I had taken on a tour of the eastern 
sector and then brought out to the Schloss for a party. It had 
started to rain very hard before we reached there, and I had had 
visions of the company out at the lawn tables under dripping 
umbrellas, but not at all. The colonel, who had supplied the 
transportation for the trip and had made the arrangements for 
the party at the Schloss, was there in person and had had all of 
the tables moved onto a protected terrace. Also he had supplied 
his own little "combo" to greet us with gay music for dancing. 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( 267 ) 

Thanks entirely to him, it was about the best party we had in 
Berlin, and I, of course, came to rely upon him completely. He 
not only did things as well as I hoped for but better! 

Then, too, it turned out we were rather alike, and why not? 
We were both Virgos, I born September second and he the 
nineteenth, in New Jersey; I in Morristown and he seven miles 
away in Plainfield; we were both Presbyterians, Republicans, 
and we drank tea for breakfast. 

"That's enough," he remarked, "for us to get married on, 
don't you think?" 

At the moment I did not, but what had started out to be a 
dreary month passed gaily and all too quickly. The Festival was 
a great success; our State Department was delighted with the 
results. 

Colonel Ginder tried to arrange a week-end leave so he might 
accompany me as far as London on my return trip to New York, 
but there was a crisis in Berlin, as usual, which demanded his 
presence. So rather sadly he saw me off at Tempelhof, quite 
provoked when I parried his protests of undying devotion with, 
"Oh, yes. I will be like the girl who met a new beau on her 
vacation in the Catskills but who never heard from him again 
when she was back on her job in New York." 

I heard from Colonel Ginder again all right at Frankfurt, at 
Amsterdam and in London. He must have spent all his time on 
the telephone to get those calls to me at the exact moment of 
my arrival. He was about four hours late getting through to me 
when I reached New York and he was apologetic about it. There 
was only one telephone line out of Berlin and someone, he ex- 
plained crossly, had tied it up. 

Again in New York, I settled back happily into my old rou- 
tine and fully expected the long-distance attack from Berlin to 
diminish as I was too busy to do much to encourage it. About 
three weeks later I was genuinely flabbergasted when the colonel 



/ ggg ) 



SEPTEMBER CHILD: 



announced that he had finally been able to arrange for a two 
weeks' leave and he was taking off at once for New York. 

My friends were agog. Word of the colonelalways a pleasant 
word-had been liberally spread about by the many artists who 
had met him or seen us together in Berlin, and I was astonished 
at the amount of interest and vicarious excitement which had 
been generated. When I mentioned that he was arriving the 
word seemed to spread from one end of town to the other and 
everyone seemed to take it for granted that he was coming over 
to marry me. I pooh-poohed this idea and said that he was com- 
ing only for a much needed change of scene and some fun. This 
I tried to make myself believe, but I had an uneasy feeling that 
my friends were right, and the truth of the matter is, I was 
rather appalled by it. I began to wonder how I could have 
encouraged the colonel to such an extent "led him on," as Miss 
High would have said-and as I rode out to the airport to meet 
him, I was very mixed up by feelings of guilt, pleasure and even 
a touch of annoyance. All but the pleasure vanished, however, 
two minutes after I saw him. His very first words were, "I didn't 
come to put you on the spot. If you don't want to marry me, 
just give me a good time and I'll go back and almost be able 
to stand Berlin, which is a damn dreary town since you left/' 

I was both touched and relieved, and from that moment on I 
set about giving him a whirl in which my friends abetted me. He 
was enormously popular with them all. And that is unusual, 
for in our particular little world few "outsiders" are immedi- 
ately accepted. But Philip, as I now was calling him, handsome 
and lighthearted, was a romantic figure in or out of uniform to 
the many who met him, and even my old beaus were vastly 
taken with him. 

Just when all was going gaily and well, something happened. 
The next thing I knew, we were making plans for a wedding. 
It was a very nice wedding, quite different from my first one 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( 269 ) 

to Ward so many years before. Once I had made up my mind, 
Philip and 1 were very serious about it. There was to be no "It 
will be all right for a little while" about this one. It had to be 
all right because we both wanted to be married by a minister 
from my own Madison Avenue Presbyterian Church and, both 
having been divorced, we had to visit good Dr. Hood in his 
office and convince him of our serious intentions before he 
would, or could, officiate. It seems to me this would be a good 
procedure for couples marrying for the first time or any time. 
I know the talk we had that day with Dr. Hood made our mar- 
riage a sacred and serious undertaking, and when we took the 
vows, standing before the stone fireplace in our old Connecticut 
farmhouse, they meant a good deal to me, and when it came 
time for me to say, "I do," I found myself adding, "I really do," 
which caused several of our attendants to burst into tears! 

Gladys Swarthout was my matron of honor, Paula Laurence, 
Gertrude Astor and Marian Graham, my bridesmaids. Philip's 
best man was dear old Joe Baldwin, once our congressman from 
the silk-stocking Seventeenth District, always a bon vivant, long 
a friend of mine and, to my astonishment, Philip's closest friend 
since the days when, fresh out of West Point, Philip had been 
stationed at Fort Jay and had lived a gay bachelor's life in 
Greenwich Village. 

Philip's other attendant was Richard Ernst, who had been 
his Aide through some of the toughest fighting in World War 
II, and Dick, in endorsing my choice, said, "P.D.'s a remarkable 
fellow and absolutely fearless. He should have had the Medal 
of Honor instead of the Distinguished Service Cross just for 
what he did the day he captured the town of Hiirtgen and 
turned the tide." 

Dick was the first one to tell me anything about my husband's 
war record, and I longed to know more, but I have found regu- 
lar army men strangely loath to discuss their own or even their 



( 270 ) SEPTEMBER CHILD: 

comrades' military experiences. I was to learn a great deal about 
army men and their women between then and now, and all of 
it I have liked very much. 

My life "in the Army" officially started at 37 Auf dem Grat 
in Dahlem, Berlin, in a house I had innocently visited during 
my first trip, to help Philip pick out the color scheme for walls, 
rugs, draperies and upholstery. It all had turned out even more 
beautifully than I had dreamed, and when we walked in, after 
something of a whirlwind honeymoon in Paris (where I had to 
see Julius Fleischmann to resign as publicist for his Paris Art 
Centennial) and London, where we made a special trip to visit 
Jessie Royce Landis in her success, And So to Bed, it was really 
like coming home to another home, of course, but to my home, 
our home. 

The Army and State Department folks welcomed me back 
like a favorite sister with a series of wonderful parties, noon, 
teatime and evening, and there was also a great military recep- 
tion, very gala indeed, with a wedding cake to be cut by a saber. 
I could have danced all night and just about did, every night. 
It was the gayest, most carefree period of my life, for despite 
masses of mail arriving from New York, and Marian Graham's 
almost daily telephone communications, I gave little thought to 
my work in the theater and felt a responsibility only to my new 
career of army wife, which I adored. 

Just after the beginning of the new year we heard that Philip 
would be transferred back to the United States, and it was soon 
decided between us that I should go home first as things were 
not going well at my office. There was a great state of confusion 
at City Center over the discharge of Ldszlo Halasz as head of our 
Opera Company with a resultant barrage of bad publicity, and 
my old friend, Lester Cowan, was preparing a film Main Street 
to Broadway,, which, he said, needed my assistance. 

As much as I had enjoyed Berlin, I found my return to work 



( 268 ) SEPTEMBER CHILD: 

announced that he had finally been able to arrange for a two 
weeks' leave and he was taking off at once for New York. 

My friends were agog. Word of the colonelalways a pleasant 
word had been liberally spread about by the many artists who 
had met him or seen us together in Berlin, and I was astonished 
at the amount of interest and vicarious excitement which had 
been generated. When I mentioned that he was arriving the 
word seemed to spread from one end of town to the other and 
everyone seemed to take it for granted that he was coming over 
to marry me. I pooh-poohed this idea and said that he was com- 
ing only for a much needed change of scene and some fun. This 
I tried to make myself believe, but I had an uneasy feeling that 
my friends were right, and the truth of the matter is, I was 
rather appalled by it. I began to wonder how I could have 
encouraged the colonel to such an extent "led him on," as Miss 
High would have said and as I rode out to the airport to meet 
him, I was very mixed up by feelings of guilt, pleasure and even 
a touch of annoyance. All but the pleasure vanished, however, 
two minutes after I saw him. His very first words were, "I didn't 
come to put you on the spot. If you don't want to marry me, 
just give me a good time and I'll go back and almost be able 
to stand Berlin, which is a damn dreary town since you left." 

I was both touched and relieved, and from that moment on I 
set about giving him a whirl in which my friends abetted me. He 
was enormously popular with them all. And that is unusual, 
for in our particular little world few "outsiders" are immedi- 
ately accepted. But Philip, as I now was calling him, handsome 
and lighthearted, was a romantic figure in or out of uniform to 
the many who met him, and even my old beaus were vastly 
taken with him. 

Just when all was going gaily and well, something happened. 
The next thing I knew, we were making plans for a wedding. 
It was a very nice wedding, quite different from my first one 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( 269 ) 

to Ward so many years before. Once I had made up my mind, 
Philip and I were very serious about it. There was to be no "It 
will be all right for a little while" about this one. It had to be 
all right because we both wanted to be married by a minister 
from my own Madison Avenue Presbyterian Church and, both 
having been divorced, we had to visit good Dr. Hood in his 
office and convince him of our serious intentions before he 
would, or could, officiate. It seems to me this would be a good 
procedure for couples marrying for the first time or any time. 
I know the talk we had that day with Dr. Hood made our mar- 
riage a sacred and serious undertaking, and when we took the 
vows, standing before the stone fireplace in our old Connecticut 
farmhouse, they meant a good deal to me, and when it came 
time for me to say, "I do/' I found myself adding, "I really do," 
which caused several of our attendants to burst into tears! 

Gladys Swarthout was my matron of honor, Paula Laurence, 
Gertrude Astor and Marian Graham, my bridesmaids. Philip's 
best man was dear old Joe Baldwin, once our congressman from 
the silk-stocking Seventeenth District, always a bon vivant, long 
a friend of mine and, to my astonishment, Philip's closest friend 
since the days when, fresh out of West Point, Philip had been 
stationed at Fort Jay and had lived a gay bachelor's life in 
Greenwich Village. 

Philip's other attendant was Richard Ernst, who had been 
his Aide through some of the toughest fighting in World War 
II, and Dick, in endorsing my choice, said, "P.D.'s a remarkable 
fellow and absolutely fearless. He should have had the Medal 
of Honor instead of the Distinguished Service Cross just for 
what he did the day he captured the town of Hiirtgen and 
turned the tide." 

Dick was the first one to tell me anything about my husband's 
war record, and I longed to know more, but I have found regu- 
lar army men strangely loath to discuss their own or even their 



/ 270 ) SEPTEMBER CHILD: 

comrades' military experiences. I was to learn a great deal about 
army men and their women between then and now, and all of 
it I have liked very much. 

My life "in the Army" officially started at 37 Auf dem Grat 
in Dahlem, Berlin, in a house I had innocently visited during 
my first trip, to help Philip pick out the color scheme for walls, 
rugs, draperies and upholstery. It all had turned out even more 
beautifully than I had dreamed, and when we walked in, after 
something of a whirlwind honeymoon in Paris (where I had to 
see Julius Fleischmann to resign as publicist for his Paris Art 
Centennial) and London, where we made a special trip to visit 
Jessie Royce Landis in her success, And So to Bed, it was really 
like coming home to another home, of course, but to my home, 
our home. 

The Army and State Department folks welcomed me back 
like a favorite sister with a series of wonderful parties, noon, 
teatime and evening, and there was also a great military recep- 
tion, very gala indeed, with a wedding cake to be cut by a saber. 
I could have danced all night and just about did, every night. 
It was the gayest, most carefree period of my life, for despite 
masses of mail arriving from New York, and Marian Graham's 
almost daily telephone communications, I gave little thought to 
my work in the theater and felt a responsibility only to my new 
career of army wife, which I adored. 

Just after the beginning of the new year we heard that Philip 
would be transferred back to the United States, and it was soon 
decided between us that I should go home first as things were 
not going well at my office. There was a great state of confusion 
at City Center over the discharge of Laszlo Haldsz as head of our 
Opera Company with a resultant barrage of bad publicity, and 
my old friend, Lester Cowan, was preparing a film Main Street 
to Broadway ; which, he said, needed my assistance. 

As much as I had enjoyed Berlin, I found my return to work 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( 271 ) 

In New York exhilarating, and it was good to hear that I had 
been missed and was needed. 

While in Berlin I had had some thoughts of retiring and de- 
voting myself to army life with my husband. A few days back 
in my old milieu convinced me that such a step, attractive as it 
often seemed and still does, would leave me with a never-ending 
sense of betrayal to the very things which had made my won- 
derfully complete and rewarding life possible. It would be dif- 
ficult, I knew, but the two lives somehow had to be reconciled. 



chapter 



JLHE WAR, or police action, was on in Korea, and a very short 
time after Philip returned to the United States, where he was 
stationed at Fort Monroe, Virginia, under the command o his 
old friend General Mark Wayne Clark, General Clark was sent 
to the Pacific as commander-in-chief and Philip elected to go 
with him. (Philip had served in Europe several years and was 
not obliged to leave the United States at that time.) He and 
Mark or Wayne, as his wife and close friends call himtele- 
phoned me from Tokyo a few days after Philip's arrival there 
with the news that I was now the wife of Brigadier General 
Ginder and that my husband was being sent up front, north of 
the gSth Parallel, as deputy commander of the famous Thunder- 
birds the Forty-fifth Division. 

I could not help but think how fortunate I was to have clung 
to my old life, even though Philip did not like the idea of hav- 
ing what he called a "week-end wife" (either I flew down to 
Fort Monroe for weekends or he flew up to Danbury, and I 
felt this a lovely arrangement), because Philip had taken off on 
two days* notice and was to be gone for almost two years. 

( 272 ) 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( 273 ) 

The time, however, passed with amazing swiftness. Lester 
Cowan's Main Street to Broadway was slow in developing as 
Samson Raphaelson, who was writing the scenario, put together 
several versions which never completely satisfied either him or 
Lester. I did not have much to do with the Main Street part of 
it, but the Broadway bit was all mine and great fun for me. 

Lester had had the idea of using real stars and celebrities in 
this story about a young playwright's trials and tribulations in 
having his first opus produced on Broadway and about the 
aspiring young actress from Main Street with whom he fell in 
love. 

It was my job to line up the stars and celebrities, and I had 
a wonderful time doing so. Tallulah Bankhead was the baseball- 
fan star of the hero's play and had an amusing sequence with 
Leo Durocher; Mary Martin was seen rehearsing a song with 
Richard Rodgers and Oscar Hammerstein II; Gertrude Berg 
played the warmhearted landlady of the rooming house where 
the playwright lived; Herb Shriner was the Main Street hard- 
ware merchant also in love with the heroine, and darling Ger- 
trude Lawrence was supposed to start the whole film off with a 
scene in her drama classroom at Columbia University where 
she actually was teaching. She was in poor health, however, and 
said she would only be able to manage this outside work she 
was then starring in The King and I with Yul Brynner if she 
had a good rest during the summer at her Cape Cod home with 
her husband, Richard Aldrich. Alas, although Rodgers and 
Hammerstein did let her off for most of the summer, when she 
returned to play that wonderful role of Mrs. Anna she felt no 
better and soon took such a turn for the worse that she moved 
into the hospital, leaving there only to do her show. 

Her devoted friend and lawyer, Fanny Holtzmann, was with 
her a great part of these unhappy days and kept me informed 
of her progress, or lack of progress. It was finally decided by her 
doctors that Gee, as her family and close friends called her 



SEPTEMBER CHILD; 



not Gertie, as the columns had it was suffering from acute 
hepatitis and again would have to give up her work in The 

King and /. 

One Friday night Fanny called me and said in a voice full of 
pleasure and relief, "This was the best day Gee has had in 
months. She said she felt absolutely no pain and she was so well 
that she sat up and had dinner with Dick and me. If you'd like 
to speak to her about Main Street to Broadway, I think it might 
do her good. Give her a ring and I'll see you are put through/' 

But when I did call, the nurse said Miss Lawrence had sud- 
denly dropped off to sleep. She never awoke. In the morning 
Fanny called me, choking with sobs and bewildered unhappi- 
ness, to tell me the terrible and unexpected news. As everyone 
came to know, it was not hepatitis but cancer that killed her. 

Lester had held up production of the film awaiting Gee's 
expected recovery, and without her it was difficult and depress- 
ing to start putting it together again. Since so many of the stars 
and celebrities were appearing as themselves, I proposed to 
Lester that the opening night of the boy's play, which was the 
climax of the story, should be "for real," with all the critics in 
their usual aisle seats and all the well-known first-nighters pres- 
ent, including Mr. and Mrs. Ira Katzenberg who have been sit- 
ting in the first row at every opening I can remember since my 
John Golden days. When the scene was shot at the Martin Beck 
Theater, we turned it into a party with the downstairs lobby a 
sort of canteen, and everyone had a good time and got paid for 
it, even the critics. 

Unfortunately Rafe's basic girl-boy story never did quite jell 
and Main Street to Broadway did not light up the sky. But I 
must say this was one of the most enjoyable jobs I ever had. 

In the meantime, City Center was getting itself into desperate 
financial straits, and a public drive for funds had to be started. 
As much as we all hated to "pass the hat" as LaGuardia had 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( 275 ) 

scornfully called It pass the hat we did, and with enough suc- 
cess to keep the doors open and most of the bills paid. I was 
shameless in my begging and happily collected anything from 
ten dollars to ten thousand or more. 

One day I met Jose Ferrer on the street, and I said, "I hear 
you are rolling in money from your share of Moulin Rouge, so 
how about a sizable donation to your old Alma Mater, City 
Center?" 

He immediately said, "You can count on me for a thousand, 
but maybe I could do something for you which would bring in 
a lot more. I might play Cyrano de Bergerac for you in the Fall." 

"That would be wonderful!" I exclaimed. "But why don't 
you do a series, just as you and Dickie Whorf did when you 
started our Drama Company? Say three of your own successes. 
Besides Cyrano you could do The Shrike and Charley's Aunt.'' 

"It's an interesting idea," he said. "Let me think about it." 

I let him think about it and I did not let him forget it either. 
A comparatively short time later he said if I would produce, he 
would direct and star in the three plays we mentioned and I 
could announce it in the newspapers. 

A special meeting of the Board of Directors of City Center 
was called. I gave them my news, which was accepted with de- 
light, and it was John Golden who sprang up and said, "I move 
that Jean be made the permanent director of the City Center 
Drama Company." 

It was "so moved, seconded and carried," almost before I 
realized it. For a moment, I was not at all certain I wanted to 
be the "permanent" director, but I said nothing, and I am glad 
today that I didn't. 

The war in Korea came to its so-called end, and General 
Mark Clark returned to the United States. His wonderful wife, 
Renie (Maureen), invited me to have dinner with them at "21" 
when they arrived in New York, and I spent an enthralling eve- 
ning listening to the great General expound on Philip's gifts and 



( 2?6 ) SEPTEMBER CHILD: 

ability as a military man ("One of the finest young military 
leaders I have ever known," he said). He had been put in com- 
mand of the Thunderbirds soon after his arrival in Korea and 
was now a major general. 

It was Renie who, toward the end of the evening, said, "Fly 
back out with us to Japan when we go and Wayne will have 
P.D. in Tokyo to meet you. Won't you, Wayne?" 

I think the general looked slightly taken aback by this, but 
he gallantly said, "Certainly," and seconded the invitation. 

I wrote Philip at once and asked what he thought of this no- 
tion, and he replied that it was a fine idea as long as I came out 
"independently"; that is, by commercial airline and not in the 
general's plane, as he felt Renie's enthusiasm had carried her 
too far. 

I was a trifle disappointed but at the same time I admired, as 
I always have, Philip's uncompromising respect for the rules, 
regulations and protocol of the United States Army. 

Renie had planted a lively seed of an idea, and since I had to 
fly as far as California anyway to confer with what Ferrer calls 
my "two Joss"~- Ferrer and Iturbi I figured I might as well 
keep going west. And so, after a fascinating trip on Northwest 
Airlines, which took me back to Seattle for the first time since 
my vaudeville days, and to Anchorage, Alaska, where I was fas- 
cinated by the signs in the airport coffee shop which read: 
Tomato juice $s>. One egg 75^. Coffee 50^, we arrived in Tokyo. 
It was late at night, but Philip was waiting at the airport and 
so was his aide, Garry Cowen, son of my friends Lenore Coffee 
and William Joyce Cowen. 

We all had a splendid reunion, but I found Philip greatly 
changed, and Garry confirmed my impression when I mentioned 
it to him. 

Philip himself said, bitterly for him, "What do you expect? 
We held the line; that is all we were permitted to do. The Chi- 
nese attacked ten to one and our men hated to mow them down. 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( 277 ) 

The hardest job we had over here was to convince our boys they 
must kill or be killed. But every time they were attacked, our 
men did get killed many o them or worse still, horribly 
wounded or maimed or blinded, and what could we do? Hold 
the line. They relieved General MacArthur because he wanted 
to do what all of us wanted to do: push the bastards right back 
into China and keep them there. We had them 'on-the-run' 
many a time, but there was always that goddamn line." 

I was pretty let down when on top of this he told me he could 
spend only six days with me in Tokyo the same as any G.I. on 
regular R. and R. (rest and recreation) leave. When I protested 
that General Clark had promised to get him at least two weeks' 
leave, Philip said, "Yes, I suppose he could do it, but I wouldn't 
want him to. He went to bat to get me my second star and that's 
enough." 

When at the end of six days Philip flew back to his mountain- 
side headquarters near Yangu, I contented myself for the next 
few days with long visits to the Kabuki and other Tokyo 
theaters and with pleasant visits with the Clarks who were 
indignant about the turn of events and other friends. 

Back in California, my two Joses each had a new idea for me. 
Iturbi proposed a jaunt to Mexico where he and Amparo were 
soon to play, and Ferrer said he'd like to add a fourth play to 
his scries Richard the Third, which he had done with consider- 
able success in Toronto, but never in New York. 

The idea of a Ferrer season of four plays was so exciting that 
I passed up Mexico and returned directly to New York to get 
things started. 

Working with Jose Ferrer is almost no work at all. Besides 
being gifted, he is exceptionally well-organized and efficient. 
Then, too, between us we were able to assemble just about the 
finest technical staff in show business, many of whom are still 
with me. Buford Armitage, our general manager, was and is an 
indispensable factor in the over-all success of two of City Cen- 



( 278 ) 



SEPTEMBER CHILD! 



ter's producing companies, the drama and light opera, and is, of 
course, the same Buford Armitage who selected my play, On the 
Chin, for production when he was John Golden's play reader, 

Richard Whorf had worked hand in hand with Ferrer in 
organizing City Center's first dramatic company and now he 
returned to design a new and dazzlingly beautiful Cyrano de 
Bergerac set. In the cast were many of that first company's 
alumni: Paula Laurence, Ralph Clanton, Albert Whitley, Rob- 
inson Stone, Vincent Donahue and others. Arlene Dahl played 
Roxanne beautifully. She had come on from California and 
had never appeared on Broadway before in a legitimate play and 
was a last-minute coup for us. I personally had cast an almost 
unknown young beauty in the part whose lovely voice, cultured 
speech and ladylike qualities delighted me, and I had had Mel 
Ferrer, who had directed Jose Ferrer's original Broadway pro- 
duction of Cyrano, coach her in the role before Jose arrived. 
Alas, when the day came for her to "audition" for Joe, she had a 
bad cold, a touch of laryngitis and I think a dollop of stage 
fright. Anyway, she was quite inaudible to Joe and even to me, 
sitting beside him in the fifth or sixth row of the auditorium. 
Joe was polite but nonplused by my selection of Grace Kelly. 
She went back to Hollywood shortly after this she had already 
made Macombo with much successand her rise to stardom 
started then. Mel Ferrer's coaching had done Grace Kelly no 
harm. 

The Ferrer season, as those eight historic weeks at City Cen- 
ter became known, was overwhelmingly successful both artisti- 
cally and financially. Joe's personal triumphs were unequaled 
both as star and director. All the plays, except Richard the 
Third, which was directed by Margaret Webster, were staged 
by him. 

I should have been perfectly happy except for one thing. 
Philip was coming home from Korea at long last and had 
dreamed of my meeting him in his favorite city, San Francisco, 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( 279 ) 

but his arrival there was on the very same day as the dress re- 
hearsal of Richard the Third> the play most important to Ferrer 
since it was the only one in which he never had appeared in 
New York. 

No soap-opera heroine ever had a worse moment in a "career 
versus marriage'* situation. It seemed to me, however, that I had 
no choice, and Philip flew directly into New York in time for 
opening night. 

The net profit on those eight "Ferrer weeks" was over eighty 
thousand dollars. Joe received only the Actors' Equity mini- 
mum salary, which was then eighty-five dollars a week, but he 
did not forget his promise of the thousand-dollar donation, 
and so even that bit of payment was returned to City Center. 
It was undoubtedly the most generous contribution ever made 
by an artist to any institution, and it was definitely decisive in 
pulling City Center out of the doldrums and setting it on the 
upward path it has since followed. 

With the Ferrer assignment behind me, I was able to devote a 
few weeks to getting Philip settled, domestically speaking, in 
his first U.S. command post at Camp Polk, Louisiana. This great 
sprawling tract of scrub-pine country was, and probably still is, 
a sort of rough-and-ready training spot, and although it was later 
called Fort Polk, at the time we arrived there it was a camp, 
indeed. I liked it very much. We lived in a sort of large cabin, 
with a great open fireplace in the living-room where we kept a 
roaring fire going on the usually chilly nights, and there was a 
huge old-fashioned screened-in porch which we enjoyed when 
the days grew wanner. 

Philip's mess sergeant from Korea, Master-Sergeant Carpen- 
ter, was in charge of the kitchen and a very fine cook he was, 
although he did his best for groups over a hundred. Joe Svedo- 
nik, Philip's driver who had been with him in Czechoslovakia 
and throughout his Korean tour, soon came to us, bringing with 



( 2 80 ) SEPTEMBER CHILD: 

him the two beautiful Korean Palace dogs, Sukoshi and Jimbi, 
given to Philip by Syngman Rhee. Many of his officers from 
Korea also joined Philip, and I began to feel truly "in the 
Army/' 

One Sunday we were making the long drive from the Camp 
to Shreveport where I could get a plane to New York. When 
we came to the town o Mansfield, the young driver who was 
substituting for Joe (who had a week-end leave) spoke up for 
the first time, saying, "General, I think Mrs. Ginder would 
like to know that this is the town where Joshua Logan was 
born/' 

"I'm so glad you mentioned it," I exclaimed. "Let's stop and 
see if we can find a postcard to send to the Logans." Nedda had 
often told me about Josh and his deep-South family, and he 
wrote The Wisteria Trees from his boyhood memories of this 
very place, 

I asked how the driver happened to know about Josh Logan 
and why he thought that I would be interested in his birthplace. 

"I'm an actor, ma'am," Robert Kahn said. "I played in The 
Sun Looks Down, and I almost got the part of Bomber in 
Picnic." 

"Well, be sure to call me when you get out/' I said. 

He did and worked with me at City Center for a while. Back 
in Morristown, our cook, Mrs. Murphy, used to say, "We live in 
a teacup." The Spaniards say, "The world is a handkerchief," 
and so it often seems to me. Robert Kahn is a case in point, for 
the next thing I knew, he was married to the daughter of Himan 
Brown, with whom Jed Harris was then making a film, and now 
I often tape my television shows in the Himan Brown studios 
on West Twenty-sixth Street. 

Morton Baum is the chairman of the Finance Committee of 
City Center, and if the directors of the producing companies- 
ballet, opera and my two, light opera and drama have any boss, 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( 281 ) 

it is Morty, for he controls the purse strings. He was originally 
appointed by Mayor LaGuardia who said at the time, "If Baum 
looks out for City Center's money matters, hell know every 
dollar that conies in and every cent that goes out and hell do 
his best to keep all you artistic souls from reversing that order." 

After the great success of the Ferrer season, Morty looked to 
the drama company to help pay the bills, and so, not long after 
Ferrer had returned to California, and I had settled into my 
week-end army-wife routine, Morty wanted to know what my 
drama company would come up with in the next season. I had 
many ideas, but one of them excited us both, and we decided 
to make a try for it. That was to have Sir Laurence Olivier do 
the same sort of a series for us. I corresponded with Sir Larry 
for a time with rather vague results. 

One day Morty said, "Get on a plane and go pin him down. 
Either he will or he won't. At least find out so we can get on." 

Sir Laurence was playing in Terence Rattigan's charming 
comedy, The Sleeping Prince, and I went immediately to see 
it and to see him upon my arrival in London. I believe the idea 
of a City Center series appealed to him, but he was, as he put it, 
"pretty embroiled in film commitments." Nevertheless he did 
not say yes or no to me for some time, and while I awaited his 
final word, I thoroughly enjoyed myself. By the time Sir Lau- 
rence finally turned me down, I had an exciting new thought for 
a City Center drama series: Helen Hayes. 

Ever since Helen broke our house record in Harriet, I had 
been trying to lure her back. The coming season might be just 
the time for it as her husband, Charles MacArthur, said she had 
no new play she wanted to do and he thought the series idea an 
excellent one. 

Gilbert Miller had long been interested in a play my then- 
secretary, Michael Shurtleff, now a gifted casting director, 
had deviled me into writing, The Quiet Room. Back in New 
York, over a pleasant luncheon, Gilbert and I came to the 



( 282 ) SEPTEMBER CHILD! 

conclusion we should put the play on in London that very 
spring. 

Almost before I realized it, I was back over there again at 
work in Gilbert's office in the St. James Theater. I had a lovely 
time, but we never did get the play on. The weather was 
beautiful and no one came back to London from long country 
weekends until Monday afternoon or Tuesday morning. 
Wednesday was about the only day you could do business. 

It is a difficult play to cast and needs three women stars to 
be exactly right. Gilbert and I aimed for this and had a number 
of scripts made up they were lovely to look at in pretty blue 
covers with red ribbons but the ladies took their time about 
reading them during those long weekends at their country 
houses. I finally had to agree with Philip, who was then com- 
manding general at Fort Riley, Kansas, that I really wasn't get- 
ting anywhere, and since Gilbert was already beginning to 
suggest that it might be just as well to do the play in the fall, 
I said I'd come home. 

Feeling a bit defeated, I was packing for my return when a 
cable arrived. Thinking it was from Philip, I opened it. It read: 

HAVE ARRANGED TO DO CITY CENTER FOR YOU IN THE FALL LOVE 
HELEN HAYES. 

Philip had taken leave and was waiting for me at the airport, 
and we drove directly to Connecticut for the weekend. As soon 
as I could catch my breath, I telephoned the New York Athletic 
Club where Gabriel Pascal made his headquarters, for I had 
not heard from him for some time and the last letter I had re- 
ceived had sounded a bit less than his usual optimistic and 
exuberant self. In fact, for him it was gloomy. He wrote that 
he was making no progress with our musical Pygmalion, al- 
though it did look as though eventually Lerner and Loewe 
would work together again and they might do it for us. He was 
lonely for Valerie whom he had foolishly, he wrote, allowed to 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( 283 ) 

divorce him in California. Fortunately, he added, the decree 
really wouldn't be legal for almost a year. 

When I telephoned, they told me at the Athletic Club that 
Mr. Pascal was away, and I hoped that perhaps Valerie had 
arrived and they had gone off together for the reconciliation 
weekend. Alas, when Dr. Hutschnecker came for dinner with 
us Sunday night, he said Valerie had arrived but they had not 
gone away. Gabby was in Roosevelt Hospital very ill. 

It was too late to call him then, but early Monday morning 
the first call I made was to the hospital. After some delay a low 
voice said to me, "You were calling Gabriel Pascal?'* 

"Yes," I said. 

"Will you please get in touch with his family?" 

A cold chill shook me. "He hasn't died, has he?" I cried. 

"Yes/* the voice said. "I am sorry to tell you. Twenty minutes 
ago." 

No one seemed to know where Valerie was staying, and so it 
was only at the funeral that I saw her as she walked down the 
center aisle side by side with Gabby's first wife, Pauline Gallico. 
It was a Catholic high mass, but this added just the oriental 
note Gabby would have liked. After the service Milton Dia- 
mond, in whose home I originally had met Gabby, drove me 
home. 

"And so," he said sadly, "it's all over. The shouting and the 
struggle, the madness and the goodness that was Gabby. It 
seems impossible." 

A few days later Valerie told me Gabby's last words were: 
"Can it be possible Pascal is dying?" 

Her story of their reconciliation was touching. He had not 
really wanted the divorce, he said, but had forced her to apply 
for it; he thought she would be better off free of him. I could 
not tell her, but she was soon to find out that the real reason 
was that he had become hopelessly involved with "that Chinese 
woman," as he always called her. 



/ 384 ) SEPTEMBER GHIL0: 

The day after the funeral, feeling slightly ghoulish, but 
urged by Milton, who was my lawyer, I called Gabby's lawyer 
and said, "You know Pascal and I never had a written contract, 
but we were partners in many projects. Please protect my in- 
terest in the musical Pygmalion and advise me when the proper 
time comes about how I may go about having the rights trans- 
ferred to my name/* 

"His estate," the lawyer said, "is in a dreadful muddle. There 
is no money at all, just great debts. And to complicate matters, 
that Chinese woman friend of his says she is his only heir and 
has a last will and testament to prove it" 

It was not long before all this came out in lurid stories on 
page three of the tabloids. The "will," it turned out, was a 
scrap of paper on which Gabby had scribbled, "If I die on this, 
my trip to India, you are my heir." It was obvious that she had 
advanced the money for the trip and he wanted to protect her 
interest, but the trip (he was planning to film the life of Gandhi) 
was never made as he suddenly became too ill. The "will" was 
judged invalid. 

It certainly is an understatement to say I was surprised to 
pick up the paper one morning and read that Herman Levin 
was producing Pygmalion in a musical version by Lerner and 
Loewe! I immediately phoned the lawyer and was told he would 
call me back. He never has from that day to this. 

Anyway, Gabby's estate gets i per cent of the gross of My 
Fair Lady> for it was based not on Shaw's play but, as I had sug- 
gested, on Gabby's film. By the time Gabby's debts were paid 
and the My Fair Lady money started coming to Valerie, how- 
ever, she no longer needed it, for she had married my friend 
millionaire George T. Delacorte whom she had met through me. 



I had wanted Helen Hayes to do at least three plays, but in the 
end we settled for just two: What Every Woman Knows > and 



The Story of Jean Dalrymplc ( 285 ) 

Joshua Logan's The Wisteria Trees, a play both Helen and I 
liked very much and thought underrated by the critics. But I 
learned something with that production; the critics never 
change their minds or their reviews. Our City Center produc- 
tion was no better received than the original one although our 
theatergoers loved it, thank goodness, and packed the house. 

With Helen doing but two plays, I had to complete a pro- 
gram. I turned to Franchot Tone and asked if he would do 
Mister Roberts for us. He said he would, and with the Cronyns 
(Jessica Tandy and Hume) to round out the series with Joe 
Ferrer's production, The Four Poster, the drama season was 
in good shape. The brochure to be sent to the City Center's 
mailing list of almost a hundred thousand names, for their 
advance orders, was already printed when the blow fell. 

As customary, I had cleared the rights to Mister Roberts 
with Joshua Logan, who wrote the play with the late Thomas 
Heggen. But suddenly the original producer, Leland Hayward, 
called me and said under no circumstances would he allow us 
to do Mister Roberts at City Center because he was making a 
film of it and, he claimed, if our production were a poor one, it 
would "hurt his property" and if it were a good one, it would 
draw unfavorable comparisons. 

Franchot was furious. He said he had looked forward to 
playing Mister Roberts and already had a good grasp of the 
role. He is a studious actor and always has a definite mental 
image of the character he is to portray well before rehearsal 
time. I realized I had to find another role he would enjoy play- 
ing or I would lose him, and it is not easy to come up with as 
fat a part as Mister Roberts in a hurry. 

I firmly believe in the power of prayer, although it is surpris- 
ing that my faith was not shaken when nothing moved Leland 
Hayward, and at five o'clock in the morning, with a definite 
deadline coming up the next day, I lay back against my pillows, 
dropped the anthology of plays I had been leafing through on 



( 2 86 ) SEPTEMBER CHILD: 

m y lap the bed was cluttered with a dozen or so other collec- 
tionsand closed my eyes partly from fatigue and partly in 
prayer. When I opened them a few seconds later, I looked down 
at the pages where the book had miraculously opened. I could 
hear Franchot saying the first line I read. It was a perfect part 
and a perfect play for him. There could be no doubt about it. 
How I could have overlooked this play in the first place was 
incredible. Also, it cast itself. The names of the actors to play 
each role popped into my mind faster than I could write them 
down. Several of the actors already committed to Mister Rob- 
erts, especially Myron McCormick, were just right. 

I looked impatiently at the slow-moving clock which only a 
few minutes before had seemed to be racing. I could not wait 
to tell Franchot. I had absolutely no doubt about his reaction. 
When I had waited as long as I could (it really was too early in 
the morning to disturb an actor), I called him. He was awake 
but grumpy. I told him I had found the perfect part in the per- 
fect play for him but I did not want to tell him about it over the 
telephone. When I arrived at his apartment a few minutes later, 
he had breakfast waiting for me. In fact, he was already sipping 
his coffee. 

"Well," he said, a little suspiciously, "what is it? You look 
as if you've found the Holy Grail." 

"How would you like/' I said excitedly, "to sit at a table and 
sip champagne and say some of the most wonderful lines I have 
ever read." 

"My God," he cried, almost dropping his cup, "The Time of 
Your Life! I've always wanted to play it. In fact, I once tried to 
buy the movie rights, but Jimmy Cagney beat me to it." 

The Time of Your Life was one of Franchot's and City Cen- 
ter's biggest hits and added just the proper modern note to 
that memorable Helen Hayes season, as we continued to call it. 

Several years later, when I needed a play to round out the 
program of the United States Performing Arts at the American 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( 287 ) 

Theater at the Brussels World's Fair, Franchot, surrounded by 
an extraordinary cast including Dan Dailey, Myron McCormick, 
Ann Sheridan, Susan Strasberg, Scott McKay, Morris Carnovsky, 
Larry Blyden, Paula Laurence and Arnold Moss, repeated his 
triumph not only in Brussels where The Time of Your Life 
was one of America's most popular and acclaimed offerings but 
in England, where we put it on television. It is said to have 
scored the highest rating o any straight play ever given in that 
medium. 

The most rewarding work I have done has been at City Cen- 
ter and at the Brussels World's Fair of 1958, and it was Howard 
Cullman who made both possible. When Eisenhower appointed 
him high commissioner of the United States for the fair, he 
asked me if I would be his co-ordinator of the Performing Arts 
Program. As it turned out, we never could have accomplished 
such a full and varied program at the fair without the link with 
City Center. 



chapter 

IV 



I 



N THE BEGINNING I had told Howard Cullman that I felt three 
million dollars was necessary to keep Edward D. Stone's beauti- 
ful American Theater at the Brussels World's Fair supplied 
with American musicals, ballet, opera, drama, orchestras and 
soloists from April to October. Howard assured me that two 
million five hundred thousand dollars had already been ear- 
marked for this purpose, and he said if he were successful in 
having Congress augment the fifteen million over-all budget he 
already had, with the two or three extra millions he felt neces- 
sary, I could have the other five hundred thousand dollars. 

Alas, his budget was not augmented but drastically reduced, 
and the Performing Arts Program felt the cut of the ax more 
than any other. In fact, instead of three million or two million 
five hundred thousand dollars, I ended up with only five hun- 
dred thousand! 

In spite of this, and due to the unusual generosity of the 
artists, and because of City Center's co-operation and Anta's 
International Exchange Program, we managed to display an 
( 288 ) 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( <>8g ) 

extraordinary array of American talent, beginning with a 
beautiful City Center production of Rodgers and Hammer- 
stein's Carousel, which was supervised with no cost to us by the 
great Agnes de Mille, and ending with The Time of Your Life, 
also from City Center. 

In between were City Center's production of the Carlisle 
Floyd Opera Susanna, the Leonard Bernstein musical, Wonder- 
ful Town, also from City Center, the Jerome Robbins Ballets 
U.S.A., the world premiere of Gian Carlo Menotti's own Maria 
Golovin, put on for us by the National Broadcasting Company, 
the Philadelphia Orchestra with Ormandy conducting and 
Isaac Stern as soloist, and the American Ballet Theater, both 
the latter from the International Exchange Program. More 
than a score of great soloists offered their services gratis or for 
meager expenses, including Van Cliburn in his first appearance 
after winning his prize in Moscow, Jose Iturbi, Yehudi Menu- 
bin, Leontyne Price, William Warfield, Eleanor Steber from 
the Metropolitan, Ralph KirkPatrick, the famous harpsichord- 
ist, Rosalyn Turek and many others. 

Each country had its "national days" when the attention of 
all forty-nine contributing nations was drawn to that particular 
one. Ours were July second, third and fourth. But we had such 
a plethora of talent available at this time that the United States 
had not national days but a national week, beginning on Mon- 
day with a piano concert by Byron Janis, attended by Queen 
Elisabeth of Belgium (Janis had been a winner of the first prize 
in her famous International Musical Competition), followed 
by the opening of Carnival on Ice on Tuesday (this was a purely 
commercial venture, but Morris Chalfen, the producer of the 
glamorous and popular spectacle, had obligingly switched his 
July engagement from Barcelona, Spain, to Brussels for the oc- 
casion), the first night of Wonderful Town at our American 
Theater on Wednesday, the American Ballet Theater at the 
Grand Auditorium on Thursday, the Philadelphia Orchestra 



( ago ) SEPTEMBER CHILD: 

with Isaac Stern and Ormandy on Friday and on Saturday an 
extra concert by the Philadelphia Orchestra with Van Cliburn 
as soloist. 

After this hectic week, only presenting one major production 
each week, along with a recital every Monday, documentary 
films and extracurricular events in between, such as military 
bands, American Indians, college glee clubs, jazz combos, and 
the Cavalcade of Great American Films, settled into a pleasant 
routine. Although it was necessary for me to make five round 
trips across the Atlantic during the summer, it was not as 
strenuous a job as it appeared from the outside. 

Dorothy and Jesse Hartman spent most of the summer with 
me, and we shared a remarkable old Flemish house, five minutes 
from the fair, which we turned into a miniature hostel for our 
friends, a purpose for which it was perfectly suited. Jesse had 
had the good foresight to ask its owner, Madame de France, to 
remain as a sort of super-housekeeper for us, and she and her 
little girl, Nicole, and her husband were more than happy to 
stay on. We were the only ones in the American group in 
Brussels who had absolutely no home problems, servant or 
otherwise. Madame de France saw to that. 

Thanks to the Hartmans, I also had no problem about enter- 
taining, although our government allotted me only four hun- 
dred dollars to cover the six months! Jesse helped to foot the 
bills for the more than forty parties, luncheons, receptions and 
teas necessary for what I considered the proper functioning of 
the United States Performing Arts Program. 

I had arranged to buy a Peugeot station wagon, and it was 
duly awaiting me on my arrival in Brussels, but the parking 
problem was as boring at the fair as it is in New York, and 
eventually I took to using the readily available taxis, embassy 
cars (it was some time before anyone told me I was entitled to 
an embassy car!) and the Hartman's gorgeous new Mercedes- 
Benz. 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( 291 ) 

One quiet Saturday with the Hartmans off in Paris, our 
house guests "doing the fair" for the day, and all going smoothly 
at the American Theater, I found myself with a few completely 
free hours for almost the very first time. I finished typing my 
long daily letter to Philip, closed up my office the secretaries 
had long since taken off and jumped into a taxi with the notion 
of going "downtown" to do some shopping. The driver was one 
who often took me home and he was very talkative. By his ac- 
cent (we were talking French) I knew he was a Fleming from 
the north of Belgium and I suddenly asked if he knew Antwerp. 

Yes, he said, he'd been born there and usually worked there 
but had come down to Brussels for the fair. 

"Did you ever hear of Ren Devos?" I suddenly asked. 

He turned completely around to stare at me. 

"But yes, certainly," he exclaimed. "But you how have you 
heard of him?" 

"I met him when he was in New York," I answered quickly, 
hoping he would again look where we were going, which he 
did, and we rode on in silence for a few moments. 

Without turning this time, he spoke again. "Why did you ask 
about Devos?" 

"He was a very good friend of mine," I said, "but I had heard 
that something dreadful had happened to him, even that he may 
be dead. Ren came from Antwerp, and I thought perhaps you 
could tell me about him." 

"He surely is not dead," the driver said. "There was some- 
thing about him in the paper very recently. He had a bad time 
just after the war when the Walloon communists were trying to 
take us over. They falsely accused him of collaboration. They 
did that to every important Fleming who opposed them and 
they kept him and thousands of us in jail without trial for a 
time. It was a disgrace." 

Later, when I had returned to our house at Sixteen Rue Van 
Huenigen, I went immediately to the telephone and called Ant- 



( 2Q2 ) SEPTEMBER CHILD: 

werp information, but they could locate no Devos. I then called 
the leading newspaper of Antwerp and asked for the sports de- 
partment. I inquired if they had any knowledge of the where- 
abouts of the former European middleweight boxing champion, 
Rene Devos. 

"Of course," they said. He was not just then in Antwerp but 
at his summer villa in Sint-Job-in-'t Goor. . . . No, he had no 
telephone. . . . No, it was not necessary to know his street ad- 
dress. Everyone in Sint-Job knew the great DeVos. 

I did not waste another minute but ran to the garage, got into 
the gorgeous Mercedes and headed for Antwerp. Once there, 
Sint-Job was not difficult to find (the roads are well marked in 
Belgium), and when I stopped at the first gas station in that 
quaint little village, I was given explicit directions how to reach 
the Villa Devos. Within a few minutes I was there. 

The house is set well back from the road, hidden by great 
trees and a high hedge. The place looked deserted. I sounded 
the horn and waited. Nothing happened, and I was convinced 
I had made the long trip in vain. However, since I was there, I 
thought I'd have a look around. 

As I walked toward the back of the house, for the front looked 
particularly forbidding, I saw an unmistakable figure approach- 
ing from the garden. It was a curious moment. Thirty years 
dropped away, and Rene Devos, unchanged, came slowly to- 
ward me. 

What an afternoon that was! He and his wife had been work- 
ing in their beautiful gardens which they showed me with great 
and deserved pride. Then we went into their charming house 
and sat in their great country kitchen. Homemade bread and 
cheese and a bottle of wine for special occasions only, since 
neither Rene nor his wife drink as a rule on the table before 
us, we talked on and on, sometimes in French and sometimes 
in English and even now and then with Flemish getting in, some- 
how trying to fill up that long, long gap, and Madame Devos 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( 293 ) 

telling me of Rene's bad times during and after the war, and 
of their eventual marriage. It was dark and well into night 
before we realized it, and I had irrevocably missed my dinner 
date at the fair. I wanted to drive Rene and Madame 
back to spend a few days with me and really see the fair, but 
they said they had been there once and that was enough. They 
would drive over to see some of my programs, they promised, 
and I gave them my card on which I wrote a "permanent passe 
a deux." 

They never used it, and though I wrote them several times, 
inviting them to special openings and functions, I never heard 
from them. Madame Devos could not have been more charm- 
ing, hospitable and friendly, but did she sense that for that little 
time Rene and I were back in our youth? It would not have 
surprised me if he had scribbled off one of his: 

J~'ai toujours voulu 

E~tre entierement 

A-toi, et goulu 

N-aitre ton amant." 
and passed it across the table to me! 

In spite of all there was to be done in my office at the theater, 
I found time for other trips and adventures. In the very begin- 
ning, April thirtieth, Philip flew over, and we went to London 
for the opening of My Fair Lady. Another weekend the Hart- 
mans and I drove up to the tip of Holland and back along the 
edge of Germany, still dreadfully scarred with bombed-out 
buildings and areas, into Cologne, and hence home to Rue Van 
Huenigen. When the Jerome Robbins Ballet was in Spoleto and 
my good friend Dorle Jarmel Soria and her sister, Faie, were 
visiting Gian Carlo Menotti there, I took off for Rome and the 
delightful auto trip through the mountains to the ochre-colored 
town which Menotti, virtually singlehanded, has restored from 
a drowsy, forgotten village to much of its original beauty. He 



( 294 ) SEPTEMBER CHILD: 

has made it into one of the most exciting and attractive spots in 
Italy at least during his Festival of Two Worlds. 

Then when Harry Belafonte was singing for the Gala at the 
Casino in Monte Carlo, just before he was to come to Brussels 
to give us four fabulous concerts at "my" American theater 
absolutely free (he was getting ten thousand American dollars 
for one appearance at the Casino and for each of his other 
European appearances!), Gertrude Astor (now Mrs. Sonio Col- 
letti), who was my house-guest at the time, and I took off to 
spend the Gala weekend on the Riviera with the George 
Gregorys. The Maharani of Baroda, whom I had met in Paris 
with Gabriel Pascal, was one of the guests at the Gregorys' din- 
ner at the Gala, and Gertrude called her Ping-Pong because of 
the size of her pearls. 

The day Gertrude and I were to return to Brussels, we were 
told at the airport in Cannes that the plane would be three 
hours late in taking off, and we decided on another adventure: 
to find Grace Moore's "Villa Lauretta" which Grace had told 
me so much about and which I never had seen. 

Gertrude and I hired a car and headed for Nantes, the suburb 
where Grace had vacationed for so many years, but when we 
reached there, it was surprising how few people remembered 
her or could direct us to the villa. I finally said, "Let us seek out 
only older people to question/' and the first white-haired man 
we asked gave us the answer and also an excited paeon of praise 
for the great diva, as he called her. 

When we reached Villa Lauretta, it was exactly as I had pic- 
tured it and had seen it in Grace's photographs, but its present 
owners were not at home and the gatekeeper, who was the only 
person about, was a grumpy and suspicious fellow who had 
never heard of its former glamorous owner and seemed loath 
even to let us look around the grounds or peer through the 
windows. 

Gertrude said, "I think he'd be more amiable if we greased 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( 295 ) 

his palm," but a great sadness had come over me by this time, 
and I was happy to take off. 

As a matter of fact, although all this summer sounds interest- 
ing, glamorous, rewarding and exciting, even now looking back, 
it was not a really happy time for me. Philip had promised to 
"catch a hitch on a transport plane" and come and visit me 
often, but he never did after London, and on my quick trips 
back home, which now was Governor's Island, I found him 
strangely distant and preoccupied. 

To be stationed at Governor's Island is the dream of just 
about every Army officer and his lady. This glamorous little 
island just across Buttermilk Channel off the southernmost tip 
of Manhattan is an ideal spot to live, and if the Army ever gives 
it up, as they threaten from time to time (its usefulness as Fort 
Jay, guardian of our harbor is, of course, anachronistic), it 
probably will become the most popular and exclusive living 
area hereabouts. It must be reached by ferry, but that only adds 
to its picturesque attractions and the trip takes less than five 
minutes. 

We had been assigned to the Governor's Mansion, a smallish 
house, built in 1710 by Lord Cornbury, New York's British 
governor, and it was ideal for Philip and me. I had great joy 
arranging it, for like most women, one of my favorite occupa- 
tions is what has become known as interior decoration. Between 
Philip and me, and with an assist from the quartermaster, we 
had plenty of furnishings, but actually it was Franchot Tone's 
beautiful Victorian sofa which set the mood of the drawing 
room and one of Iturbi's baby grand pianos which finished it 
off. 

We turned what had been a small library into a charming 
"sittin' and drinkin' room," as Joe, Philip's driver, called it, 
where Philip's beautiful bamboo bar, chairs and table from the 
Philippines fit perfectly. There was a splendidly equipped 



(296) SEPTEMBER CHILD: 

kitchen and pantry which the quartermaster obligingly had re- 
painted and refloored in my favorite glistening white, and down 
in the cellar there was something I had not seen since I left 
Morris town a "provision room" with shelf upon shelf for 
comestibles or homemade preserves and pickles, and instead of 
my grandmother's "cold closet/' there was a huge, modern 
deep-freeze. 

I particularly favored the big sunny dining-room where my 
large collection of blue and white Meissen set the color scheme. 
I loved giving dinner parties or luncheon parties and even teas 
or breakfasts there. In fact, I just love feeding people and I 
looked forward to doing a great deal of entertaining with the 
able help of Philip's mess sergeant, Candeau (who like Sergeant 
Carpenter had been with him in Korea), and our amiable house- 
boy, Calculus, a handsome young Chinese whose real name, 
Jimmy Lee, was too prosaic for Philip. Calculus he became 
when Philip discovered his favorite pastime was the study of 
higher mathematics. There also was Joe to help out and Philip's 
Aide, Captain Dunn, to run things. 

By the time the house was redecorated and ready to receive 
the many guests I had anticipated, it was April and I was off to 
Brussels. During my quick trips back I did manage to have a 
few of our friends over, and we gave several pleasant parties, 
one on the general's beautiful big boat when we took our guests 
around Manhattan Island a trip I had often contemplated 
taking on the sight-seeing liner and had never dreamed of mak- 
ing in such luxury. 

There was another luxury attached to this post at Governor's 
Island a limousine and driver, and with Philip's faithful Joe, 
that meant uncomplaining service twenty-four hours a day if 
necessary. Joe Svedonik is a Czech who drove for Philip when 
Philip was senior military attache at the American Embassy in 
Prague after World War II. Somehow toward the end of Philip's 
tour of duty there he managed to spirit Joe out of the country. 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( 297 ) 

I did have my darling friend, Newbold Morris, at the Gover- 
nor's Mansion for luncheon one day and I was delighted to find 
that my luxurious surroundings made him quite wide-eyed. 
"Why," he remarked to my great satisfaction, "you're just like a 
queen over here." I told him it was quite true and I loved it and 
that I was looking forward to the fall when my work in Europe 
would be over and I could settle in at Governor's Island and 
really revel in it. 

Alas, come October, and the end of the fair, I returned to 
find Philip had taken a sudden and violent dislike to his bril- 
liant military career after thirty-five years of it and was retiring 
from the Army. 



chapter 

v 



*NE LATE SUMMER DAY when I was about five, Miss High and 
I were stringing green beans and snapping them into three parts 
for Mrs. Murphy to "put up." I was enjoying myself thoroughly 
at the job when suddenly Miss High picked up a piece of bean 
with a bit of string still attached to it. 

She examined it for a moment and then said, "Jeannie, the 
world is changing very fast. One day you may have to work, 
just as I do, for your living. ... I hope you will have to work 
because you enjoy being useful. Stringing these beans is fun for 
you, but look at this one!" She held up the bean and waved it 
at me. 

"Always remember this: whatever you do, do thoroughly. 
Don't leave any strings attached. Always work a little longer 
and a little harder and a little more carefully than the others 
around you. You will never achieve perfection- no one does 
but try for it. Then you will be able to say to yourself and to 
the world, too, *I did my best/ In the end, that's life's finest 
reward. Not the money, or the acclaim your well-done work can 

( 298 ) 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( 299 ) 

bring, but just that being sure In your heart that you have 
done your best." 

It is not easy to do your best, especially in show business 
where your work at least my work as a producer is with people, 
hundreds o them, and each one a unique, independent, often 
self-willed soul. To find the best among them and get each one 
of them to do his best is the producer's job. 

One of the joys of working at the New York City Center is 
the spirit with which everyone connected with the productions 
there is seized. Dancing choruses dance better; singing choruses 
sing better; the musicians play better; and principals love and 
help one another in a wonderfully united effort, all of them 
doing their best. This spirit sweeps the production along, 
reaches out and kindles the audience which, caught up by the 
enthusiastic outgiving on the stage, gives out in return with 
uninhibited laughter and spontaneous applause. Everyone is 
doing his best in back and in front of the footlights, and the 
end result must be a hit. 

Am I responsible for this? I try to have the best director, best 
choreographer, best scenic and costume designers, best conduc- 
tor and, of course, the best players in the best works, but it is the 
City Center itself and its unswerving policy which bring about 
this unusually co-operative "do-or-die for Alma Mater" spirit. 
That policy is to pay everyone involved exactly the basic mini- 
mum salary demanded by his craft union. I believe the knowl- 
edge of this eliminating all inherent personal quirks in 
competitive greed allows each artist involved subconscious 
freedom to display his talents for his own inner satisfaction and 
for the benefit of the whole. 

All the foregoing, of course, applies to the musicals which I 
particularly enjoy producing. It is pleasant to be able to put to 
use the knowledge and experience acquired through a lifetime 
of association and work in the varied performing arts. 

At City Center many vital elements are close at hand a su- 



/ o 00 ) SEPTEMBER CHILD; 

perb orchestra to begin with; gifted conductors, excellent voices 
from our Opera Company which is directed by Julius Rudel; 
skilled dancers from the Ballet directed by George Balanchine 
and Lincoln Kirstein, and unseen and too often unsung, the 
finest crew of stagehands in the world. 



The only time I ever seriously thought of giving up or retiring 
was when I came to believe that being more completely "the 
General's Lady*' and concentrating on the important work to 
be done on the distaff side of the Army were more important 
than anything I had left to do in the theater. 

That, however, was not my destiny. 

Is the pattern of our lives predestined? World-famous figures 
for good or for evil arrive from absolute obscurity. I have pored 
over biographies of the great creators and the great destroyers, 
in Spanish, French and English, and the incidences and co- 
incidences which have shaped their ends are fascinating. 

"Work out thine own salvation/ 1 the Bible says-your salva- 
tion, not your destiny. It is too bad, it seems to me, that one 
cannot talk about salvation today in so-called intellectual circles 
without being labeled a "psalm-singer/* Yet everyone seems to 
agree that we do have such a thing as a soul and are not the 
thousands who lie on the psychiatrists 1 couches seeking salva- 
tion? The longed-for peace of mind cannot be achieved without 
peace of soul. 

My feeling of relief and even joy was boundless when I met 
the first doctor of psychosomatics I ever knew Arnold Hutsch- 
necker, who was introduced to me by a fellow refugee from 
Hitler Germany, Elizabeth Bergner. 

The few times in my life when I felt sick to death and sent 
for a doctor, he took my temperature, felt my pulse, thumped 
my knees and concluded, with a touch of impatience, "Nothing 
on earth is the matter with you." 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( 301 ) 

"Nothing on earth" was true. No bugs were biting me; no 
cells were getting out of kilter. But why the malaise, the sick-to- 
death feeling, the longing to curl up and die? It took Dr. Hutsch- 
necker and his book, The Will to Live, to tell me and thousands 
of others why. Once I had learned to ask myself, "Why do I feel 
this way? What is the psychosomatic cause of this indisposition?" 
I was well on my way to years of good health and new-found 
energy. 

Of course there have been some bouts both with germs for 
they do exist and with accidents. There was the pneumonia 
which almost did me in at the time of Bob Benchley's death and 
the collapse of Brighten the Corner, and once I did fall and 
crack my head, but Dr. Hutchy has made me understand they 
were both "psychic lapses," and today, if I have so much as a 
stomach-ache, I do not ask myself, "What did I eat?" but "What 
is bedeviling me?" And work in the theater can bring many 
bedevilments. 

Almost the first thing young reporters say when they interview 
me is, "Your job must be full of headaches for you. Tell us 
about some of them." 

When I answer, "I can't think of any that would be interest- 
ing," they are disappointed and don't appear to believe me. 
They seem to like to think that my work is grueling, harrowing, 
killing. When I assure them that it is easy, pleasant and reward- 
ing, they actually are crestfallen. 

Then they turn to their next big question: "What are your 
ambitions?" 

When I answer that I don't know, that I don't remember 
ever having had any particular ambitions or special goal, again 
I see the young eyes filled with disbelief. But it is true. Just as 
Miss High taught me, I simply have tried to do each job 
thoroughly as it came along, "leaving no strings attached." I 
have tried to work a little longer and a little harder and a little 
more carefully than was expected of me. Of course I have been 



( 302 ) SEPTEMBER CHILD: 

fortunate that many of the jobs that came to me have been 
unique in themselves and some of them outstanding. 

But has it been coincidence or destiny which so logically, it 
seems to me, led me from one step to another? If Miss High had 
not brought opera and theater into my child's world, would I 
later on have pored over my stepmother's copy of Variety? Would 
I have preferred Dan Jarrett, a man of the theater, above and 
beyond the other attractive and successful young men I met in 
my teens? Would I have left the security of my work in Wall 
Street and my powerful friends there for the uncertainties and 
everlasting, ever-recurring gamble that is show business? I don't 
know. 

Many years after Leah Salisbury first came into my life as the 
astute literary agent who sold Ward Morehouse's play, Bagdad 
on the Hudson, to the movies, which definitely led to my mar- 
riage to Ward, Leah and I were lunching together. For the first 
time she talked about how she, from an obscure and poor family 
in St. Louis, came to be one of New York's top representatives 
for playwrights and other talent. It seemed that she, like I, had 
had her start in the theater as an actress, and she went on rem- 
iniscently, "When I married Phil Salisbury, he didn't want me 
to leave him and New York, and so I had to give up the good 
part I had in a headline vaudeville act which was about to go 
off on a long tour/' 

A shiver ran through me. 

"What sort of a headline vaudeville act was it?" I asked. 

"A dramatic act of short scenes from several famous plays. It 
was called Thomas E. Shea and Company/' 

I hardly knew how to tell her that it was I who had taken her 
place and that it was that step which thus had set my feet on 
the path which led to that very luncheon with her. 

When I did tell her, we both had a hint of tears in our eyes. 
Then we laughed and she put her hand over mine for a moment. 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( 303 ) 

"And just think," she said, "I wouldn't approve if one of my 
playwrights used such a corny coincidence !" 

I once had a radio program called "Cocktails at Dalrymples" 
which was as informal as the title. My maid, Big Mary, often 
took part in it, and my guests were my personal friends. Abe 
Burrows made his New York debut on that little program. 
Marc Connelly told his inimitable stories; Lindsay and Grouse 
reminisced, and Iturbi brought the series to a fairly spectacular 
end, amusing me and playing for me just before flying me to 
California to recuperate from that bad bout with pneumonia. 

The program had been arranged by brilliant Ted Cott, who 
was then at WNEW. When he was with WNTA-TV, the famous 
and controversial Channel 13 of New York, he had another 
happy thought for me: to include me among the pioneer pro- 
ducers of that noble experiment, The Play of the Week. I pro- 
duced Crime of Passion (my old friend Red Gloves, by Jean-Paul 
Sartre, under its London title) and The Cherry Orchard with 
Helen Hayes, 

Unknown to me, up in Connecticut people were watching my 
work and deciding what my next step on the show-business path 
would be: pay-TV. 

Leslie Winik, working with Barney Balaban, the president of 
Paramount Pictures, and program director for their pay-TV 
division, the International Telemeter Company, evidently liked 
what he saw and gave me the opportunity to become the first 
producer in the world, I guess, for this new development in 
show business. Gian Carlo Menotti's The Consul was our first 
production, and it was spectacularly successful, thanks mainly 
to the fact that we "picked up" City Center's magnificent re- 
vival with Patricia Neway repeating her original starring role. 

We did several other studio productions, including Hedda 
Gabler, and Chekov's A Country Scandal, with Franchot Tone 



( 304 ) SEPTEMBER CHILD: 

and Mai Zetterling. But what I felt from the beginning would 
be one of pay-TV's special functions created the first real stir. 
That was picking up, "live," Carol Channing's review Show 
Girl, direct from the Eugene O'Neill Theater while It was 
running on Broadway. This was seen by our 5,800 Telemeter 
subscribers in Etobicoke, a suburb of Toronto, Canada, simul- 
taneously with the actual performance before a packed house 
in New York, just as we see the baseball games, football games 
and other sports events "live" on "free" or commercial TV. 

At this writing, efforts are being made to start pay television 
in Denver, Wichita, and Santa Monica, that I know of, but the 
whole system is being heavily attacked and certain zealous 
senators and representatives are even trying to introduce a bill 
into Congress completely forbidding it. This attack is sponsored, 
in the main, by motion picture exhibitors who, it seems to me, 
would do better to ride with the tide, close their outmoded 
movie palaces which only make money with a few smash hits, 
and turn to this electronic theater and box-office in the home. 
Instead they fight it furiously just as some of them did the 
"talkies," drive-ins, and the wide screen. What a pity! 

The advantages of pay-TV, not only to the discriminating 
viewer, but particularly to the creative artists and performers, 
always have interested me, since under the present system ad- 
vertising sponsors of commercial television programs cannot 
possibly afford, generally speaking, to present attractions for 
the minority who love concerts, ballet, opera, classical drama, 
art exhibits and such. But once there are a few million sub- 
scribers, instead of the 5,800 in Canada and four or five hun- 
dred in Hartford, even a rating of 4 or 5 per cent could make 
these telecasts not only possible but also lucrative for everyone 
involved. 

Picking up a few of our productions at City Center, for in- 
stance, could bring great pleasure to many viewers and also 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( 305 ) 

help to relieve us of the ever-present problem of passing the 
hat, to make ends meet. 

We now have a splendid organization originated by Newbold 
Morris called "The Friends of City Center/' and our several 
thousand members "pass the hat" for us with great success. 
They pay ten, fifteen and twenty-five dollars in the various 
categories of ' "friends" and one hundred dollars or more as 
sponsors. In return they become part of the "family" of City 
Center and are invited to rehearsals, lectures and other get- 
togethers. But we still always need money and more money. 

And so here am I at this pretty-far-along point in my life 
with not one but many exhilarating and rewarding outlets for 
the fund of knowledge accumulated since those first days at the 
opera with Miss High to this very moment when new doors are 
opening. I have been appointed Consultant for the Performing 
Arts for the New York World's Fair, 1964-65, by Robert Moses 
and made a member of the Advisory Committee on Arts for the 
National Cultural Center by President Kennedy. 

I will also be working, God willing, with Norman Winston, 
the commissioner for the government-sponsored Federal Pavil- 
ion into which the architects are now trying to squeeze a small 
showcase theater for the performing arts. 

So much for my work. What of my personal life? 

Well, it is such a part and parcel of what I do that it is hard 
to separate them. The people I work with have been and are 
my friends. Many of those who are indispensably with me 
now are people I was associated with in the very beginning, 
like our general manager, Buford Amritage, who read my play 
On the Chin and talked his boss, John Golden, into buying it. 

My father lived until a short time ago in complete bliss with 
his devoted wife, who as Helen Ruth Matthews was Grace 
Moore's fan-club president and then my secretary. 

My sister, Madge, runs my City Center office with casual 



( 306 ) SEPTEMBER CHILD: 

efficiency. Painting is her avocation (very good, too) and her 
jewels are her two boys, handsome six-footers both: Bradford, 
the dark one, a gifted sculptor like his uncle Ogden, off in 
Greece for the moment, banging away with hammer and chisel 
at hunks of marble, to turn out beautiful modern works which 
would cause the old masters some consternation; David, the 
blond one, has just been elected to Phi Beta Kappa, has won 
the Woodrow Wilson Award and will pursue an academic 
career like so many of his forefathers. 

Brother Ogden carves his beautiful "sermons in wood" for 
church doors and passes along the torch to his students at 
Augustana College in South Dakota and writes me rhapsodic 
letters about his good fortune in having his vocation his avoca- 
tion as well and about his lovely wife and three little daughters. 
("Damned shame he couldn't produce a boy to carry on the 
family name/' Father grumbled just before his end.) 

Philip, as dashing in country tweeds as he was in uniform, is 
a delightful companion and says he has a wonderful time attend- 
ing rehearsals and watching me put my shows together. He 
revels in sleeping late after thirty-five years of getting up at 
dawn. 

I just had a note praising one of my City Center productions 
from Emilie Hall McCoy who had something to do with mak- 
ing up my mind not to stay at Dominick's but to strike out in 
the theater. I am about to lunch with William McCleery who 
wrote Hope for the Best for me to produce "on my own" years 
ago, and just last night Iturbi called from the coast with news 
that he will be conducting Carmen in Cincinnati, an event I 
do not want to miss. 

What more is left to say? 

On the wall of my bedroom is the sampler of the Twenty- 
third Psalm which Paula Laurence painstakingly cross-stitched 
for me when we first met. I read it and gratefully know that 



The Story of Jean Dalrymple ( 307 ) 

surely goodness and mercy have followed all the days of this 
September child. 

"Oh, Earth, you are too wonderful for anybody to realize you. 
Do any human beings ever realize life while they live it? Every, 
every minute?" 

Well, I have tried! 



index 



Abel, Walter, 138 

Abravanel, Maurice, 215 

A Country Scandal, 303 

Ada Beats the Drum, 130 

Adams (F.P.A.), 114 

Aguilar, Chato, 201 

Ahearn, Billie (Mrs. James Bergen), 
40-42, 143 

Aherne, Will and Gladys, 64-66, 72, 
81, 82, 141 

Aldrich, Richard, 245, 273, 274 

Alice in Wonderland, 142 

All Wet, 122 

American Ballet Theater, 289 

American Theatre Wing, 210 

Anatomy of a Murder, 233 

And So to Bed, 270 

Anders, Glenn, 104 

Anderson, Judith, 244, 264 

Angel Street, 246 

Anstey, K, 214 

Anta's International Exchange Pro- 
gram, 288 

Aranha, Oswaldo, 204 

Armitage, Buford, 111, 277, 305 

Armour, Norman, 206 

Arms and the Man, 248 

Arthur, Jean, 232 

Arsenic and Old Lace, 196, 197 

As Husbands Go, 120, 121 

Associated Press, 112, 238 

Astaire, Fred, 131 

Astor Gertrude (Mrs. Sonio Colletti), 
269, 294 



ATPAM, 162 
Ayres, Anne, 162 

Bagdad on the Hudson, 147, 155, 302 

Baker, Belle, 73 

Baker, Kenny, 216 

Balaban, Barney (paramount Pic- 
tures), 303 

Balanchine, George, 300 

Baldwin, Joe, 269 

Ballets, U.S.A., 289 

Bankhead, Tallulah, 139, 141, 143, 
145, 147, 194, 211, 273 

Barnes, Howard, 127, 149, 163 

Baroda, The Maharani, 294 

Barron, Mark, 112, 127, 163 

Baruch, Bernard, 100 

Baum, Morton, 280, 281 

Bay, Howard, 215 

Beahan, Charles, 39-41, 43, 69, 91, 92, 
95, 108, 146 

Beaton, Cecil, 261 

Behrman, S. N., 256 

Belafonte, Harry, 204 

Belle of New York, The, 248 

Bells, The, 45 

Benchley, Robert, 231-234, 301 

Benedict, Howard, 127 

Berg, Gertrude, 273 

Bergner, Elizabeth, 300 

Berini, Mario, 229 

Berle, Milton, 107 

Berlin Arts Festival (U.S. Perform- 
ing Arts Program), 263 

( 309 ) 



INDEX 



Berlin Opera Company, 264 

Berlin Staatsoper, 180 

Bernstein, Leonard, 226, 260, 289 

Biddle, Anthony Drexel, 96 

Bloom, Phillip, 193, 198, 209, 212 

Blum, Suzanne, 255 

Blyden, Larry, 287 

Boardman, Lillian, 130 

Boland, Mary, 130 

Boles, John, 216 

Born Yesterday, 232 

Bowers, Ambassador Claude, 207 

Boyer, Charles, 252, 254, 255 

Boyer, Pat, 254 

Brando, Marlon, 257 

Brigadoon, 261 

Brighten the Corner, 229, 232, 233, 

301 

Brooke, Walter, 256 
Brown, Himan, 280 
Brown, Pinkey, 83-85, 118, 119, 142, 

143, 145, 149, 152, 156, 163, 174, 

183 

Brussels World's Fair, 287, 288 
Brynner, Yul, 273 
Bulletin, Philadelphia, 81 
Burlesque, 236, 244, 262 
Burrows, Abe, 303 
Butterworth, Charlie, 232, 233, 234 

Cacheiro, Candido, 161 

Caesar and Cleopatra, 247 

Cagney, Billie, 92 

Cagney, James, 87, 92, 132, 286 

Candeau, Sergeant, 296 

Captain Brassbound's Conversion, 

249 

Carminati, Tullio, 150, 152 
Carnegie Hall, 7, 116, 117, 120, 149, 

221 

Carnegie, Hattie, 121, 209 
Carnival on Ice, 289 
Carnovsky, Morris, 287 
Carousel, 289 

Carpenter, Master Sergeant, 279, 296 
Carr Gloria (Countess de Veyrac), 

212 



Carroll, Madeleine, 253 

Cavalcade of Great American Films, 

290 

Chalfen, Morris, 289 
Channel 13, 303 
Chanin, Henry (Chanin Bldg.), 188, 

239 

Channing, Carol, 304 
Chaplin, Charlie, 134 
Charley's Aunt, 245, 275 
Charrington, Ben, 180 
Chekov, 6 

Cherry Orchard, The, 6 
Chocolate Soldier, The, 248 
Christie, Audrey, 219 
Christie, Winifred, 180 
City Center Symphony, 226 
Clanton, Ralph, 278 
Clark, General Mark Wayne, 272, 

*75> 277 

Clark, Maureen (Renie), 276 
Cliburn, Van, 289 
Clift, Montgomery, 227 
Clipper, The, 96 
Cochran, Gifford, 137, 147 
Cocktails at Dalrymples, 303 
Coffee, Lenore, 193, 276 
Coleman, Emily, 239 
Collins, Grandmother, 105, 106 
Collins, John (uncle), 23 
Columbia Artists, 160 
Comden, Betty, 260 
Conklin, Peggy, 195 
Connelly, Marc, 227, 231, 303 
Consul, The, 303 
Cooksey, Curtis, 227 
Corrigan, Dr. Frank, 263 
Corrigan, Robert, 263, 264 
Cornell, Katharine, 211 
Cott, Ted, 303 
Cowan, Lester, 270, 273, 274 
Coward, Noel, 145 
Cowen, Garry, 276 
Cowen, William Joyce, 193, 276 
Craven, Frank, 3, 107, 109, no, 114, 

115, 227, 230-233 



INDEX 



Craven, John, no, 227 

Crawford, Cheryl, 193, 194, 209, 214, 

215, 216 

Crime of Passion, 303 
Cronyn, Hume, 285 
Cronyn, Jessica Tandy, 285 
Crothers, Rachel, 120-122, 136, 137, 

147, 211, 226, 257 
Grouse, Russel, 196, 303 
Crowninshield, Frank, 96 
Cullman, Howard, 217, 218, 287, 288 
Cumming, Helen (Mrs. Joseph Zieg- 

ler), 212 

Cyrano de Bergerac, 275, 278 
Czatlicki, George, 229 

Dahl, Arlene, 278 
Dailey, Dan, 287 
Dalrymple, Earl of Stair, 67 
Dalrymple, Elizabeth (mother), 6, 7, 

18 
Dalrymple, George (father), 4-9, n- 

17, 19-22, 24, 25, 27, 36, 38, 71, 84, 

85, 106, 142, 143, 175, 178, 180, 235, 

238, 305, 306 

Dalrymple, Grandfather, 5 
Dalrymple, Grandmother, 4-1 2, 17- 

i9>36 

Dalrymple, John, 67 
Dalrymple, Lady Jean, 67 
Dalrymple, Aunt Laura, 4, 5, 8, 10- 

13* 1 7' 3 6 > 8 3 

Dalrymple, Madeleine Ross (step- 
mother), 7-9, 12-22, 24, 25, 27, 36, 
49, 72, 84, 85 

Dalrymple, Madge Graves (sister), 
14, 16, 17, 26, 36, 38, 72, 85, 106, 
118, 123, 129, 146, 183, 305 

Dalrymple, Ogden R. (brother), 12, 
36, 38, 72, 85, 106, 118, 119, 212, 
229, 306 

Davidson, Jo, 208 

Davis, Owen, 195 

Death in the Afternoon, 169 

de France, Madame, 290 

Delacorte, George T., 284 



de Liagre, Alfred, Jr., 148, 195, 196, 

214, 220, 261 

de Marco, Tony and Sally, 71 
de Mille, Agnes, 151, 215 
de Mortimer, Julie, 48, 50, 63 
Denham, Sergei, 226 
de Quesada, Ernesto, 159, 162, 181, 

201, 202, 207 

Devil's Disciple, The, 249 
Devos, Rene (The Little Fox), 96-98, 

118, 119, 127, 135, 168, 291-293 
Diamond, Milton, 283, 284 
di Frasso, Countess Dorothy, 222 
Disney, Walt, 205 

Doheny, Edward (Cities Service), 34 
Dominick & Dominick, 32, 34, 42, 49, 

7> 73> 8 3> 8 9> 9> 3 6 

Donahue 8c Co., 186 

Donahue, Vincent, 278 

Douglas, Paul, 232 

Downey, Morton, 64, 71 

Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, 45 

Dudley, Bide, 112, 114 

Duncan, Mary (Mrs. Stephen (Lad- 
die) Sanford), 193 

Dunn, Captain, 296 

Durocher, Leo, 273 

Eager, Helen, 210 
Earhart, Amelia, 179 
Edmunds, William, 105 
Eisenhower, D wight, President, 287 
Elisabeth, Queen of the Belgians, 

289 

Ella, Cousin, 18, 19 
Elzy, Ruby, 210 
Emperor Jones, The, 147 
Englund, George, 257 
Enters, Angna, 264 
Ernst, Richard, 269 
Essex House (Suite 3802), 126, 128, 

130, 136, 139, 144, 149 
Essex House (Suite gB), 157 
Estrellita (Now or Never), 159 
Etting, Ruth, 82 
Evans, Emerson, 39, 40, 43 
Evans, Maurice, 248 



( 3*2 ) 



INDEX 



Facconi, Norbert, 194 

Factor, Max, 58 

Fairchild, Bill, 192, 209, 211, 212 

Family Portrait, 193 

Fennelly, Parker, 227 

Ferrer, Jose", 244-246, 263, 275-279, 

285 

Ferrer, Mel, 278 
Ferrier, George, 122 
Festival of Two Worlds, 294 
Fifth Column, The, 169 
Fineman, Margaret and Bernard, 

151 

Finkelhoff, Freddie, 244 
First Year, The, 107 
Fishback, Margaret, 215 
FitzPatrick, James (Traveltalks), 92- 

94, 98, 101 

Fleischmann, Julius, 270 
Floyd, Carlisle, 289 
Fontanne, Lynn, 102, 104, 181 
Forsaking All Others, 141, 147 
Fox Film Corporation, 69 
Freedley, Vinton, 129, 216 
Freedman, Elizabeth, 37-39, 41, 130 
Freedman, Mrs., 37, 73 
French, Dixie, 102, in, 125, 130, 

i35> 136 

Friedgut, Harry, 219 
Friends of the City Center, 305 

Gabler, Hedda, 303 

Gandhi, 284 

Garland, Judy, 221 

Gaxton, Biliie, 73 

George, Henry, 152 

Gershwin, Ira and Lee, 215 

Giannini, Dusolina, 229 

Gilbert, John, 132 

Gimbel, Bernard, 201 

Ginder, Philip de Witt, 264, 265, 266, 

267, 268, 269, 270, 272, 276, 278, 

282, 291, 295 

Giner, Senor and Senora, 171, 172 
Golden, John and May, 98-104, 107, 

109-116, 120-122, 124-126, 128, 130, 



225, 245, 246, 274, 275, 278, 305 
Golovin, Maria, 289 
Goulding, Edmund, 91 
Governor's Island, 295 
Graham, Marian, 209, 212, 251, 263, 

269, 270 
Grant, Gary (Archibald Leach), 88, 

95> *3* 

Graves, Bradford, 183, 306 
Graves, David, 306 
Green, Adolph, 260 
Green, Mrs. Hetty, 25 
Green Hat, The, 234 
Green Pastures, The, 227 
Gregory, George, 294 
Griffis, Stanton, 201, 207 
Gruenberg, Louis, 262 
Guggenheimer, Minnie, 163 

Hackett, Albert, 195 

Hagen, Uta, 244, 246 

Haines, Mr. and Mrs., 9, 123 

Haines, Georgianna, 9 

Hdlasz, Laszlo, 227, 228, 229, 270 

Hale, Horton, 179 

Hall, Dorothy, 145 

Hall, Emilie (Mrs. Frank McCoy), 

49, 51, 52, 77, 78, 80, 130, 174, 306 
Halliday, Richard, 216 
Hammerstein, Oscar II, 260, 273, 288 
Handy, General Thomas, 263 
Harriet, 244, 281 
Harrigan, Nedda, 245 
Harris, Don, 34 
Harris, Jed, 90, 96, 226, 227, 253, 

255-257 262, 263, 280 
Harris, Radie, 143, 211 
Hart, Moss, 261 

Hart, William S., 14, 19, 23, 69, 127 
Hartigan, Margaret, 212 
Hartman, Dorothy and Jesse, 290, 

293 

Harvey, 257 
Hayes, Helen, 211, 244, 281, 282, 284, 

286, 303 

Hayward, Leland, 139, 141, 145, 285 
Heckart, Eileen, 227 



INDEX 



( 3*3 ) 



Heggen, Thomas, 285 

Heiress, The (Washington Square), 

253 

Hemingway, Ernest, 169 
Herbert, Hugh, 70 
Her Cardboard Lover, 194 
Hercules, 118, 119, 123, 125, 146 
Herman, Al and Madge, 59, 63, 64, 

65, 66, 71, 75, 78, 83, 85, 109 
Hero, Stefan, 187 
Herrera, Rafael Larco, 207, 208 
High, Miss Anna, 4-8, 10, 13, 18, 35, 

72, 82, 134, 145, 156, 186, 197, 268, 

298, 301, 302, 305 
Hippodrome, 24, 25 
Hirschfeld, Al, 195 
Holliday, Judy, 232 
Hollo way, Stanley, 261 
"Hollywood After Dark/' 128, 132 
Holm, Celeste, 266 
Holm, John Cecil, 229, 232 
Holtzmann, Fanny, 273, 274 
Hope, Constance, 192 
Hope for the Best, 225, 229, 256, 262, 

306 

Hopkins, Arthur, 88, 236 
Hopkins, Miriam, 131, 132, 135, 145 
Houdini, 64, 65 
Hull, Cordell, 202 
Hull, Henry, 44 
Hull, Mrs. Lytle, 226 
Hurston, Zora, 116 
Hutschnecker, Arnold, Dr., 233, 234, 

283, 300, 301 
Hyer, Walter, 102 
Hymes, Mrs., 101, 102, 136 

Idiot's Delight, 181 

Fm Just Wild About Harry, 96 

Ince, Alexander, 246, 249 

Inquirer, The (Philadelphia), 81 

International Telemeter Co., 303 

In the Park, 85, 87 

It Happened in New York, 147 

Iturbi, Amparo (Navarro), 168, 173, 

179, 199, 200, 220, 243, 250, 251 



Iturbi, Amparin, 168, 173, 199, 200 

Iturbi, Jose", 149-152, 154* *55> X 59 

160, 162, 163, 169, 170-173, 174- 

179, 182, 184, 191, 193, 199, 200, 

2l8, 220-222, 229, 233, 234, 238, 

239, 243, 250, 251, 254, 256, 257, 
276, 277, 289, 294, 303, 306 

Iturbi, Madre, 168, 173, 220 
Iturbi, Maria, 153, 154, 159, 164, 167, 

169, 170-172, 174, 187, 220, 222 

Janis, Byron, 289 
Janis, Jack, 87, 95 
Jarmel, Dorle (Soria), 160, 167, 168, 

170, 293 

Jarmel, Faie, 293 
Jarrett, Arthur, 44, 130 

Jarrett, Dan, 41-49, 51, 52, 54-58, 60, 
62, 68-82, 85-88, 90-95, 98-101, 106, 
108, 119, 128, 130, 302 

Johnson, Mary, 183, 190 

Johnston, J. Edward, 34, 35 

Joseph and His Coat of Many Colors, 

iQ 

Junior Miss, 195 
Just a Pal, 70, 71, 74-78, 80-82, 89, 91, 

95, 96, 100, 262 

Kabuki, 277 

Kahan, Salomon, 163 

Kahn, Otto, 96, 116 

Kahn, Robert, 280 

Kanin, Carson, 232 

Katzenberg, Mr. and Mrs. Ira, 274 

Kazan, Elia "Gadj," 215 

Keefe, Willard, 127, 163 

Kefauver, Senator, 239 

Kelly, Grace, 278 

Kennedy, President John F., 305 

King and I, The, 261 

Kirkpatrick, Ralph, 289 

Kirkpatrick, Reed, 201 

Kirstein, Lincoln, 300 

Kirsten, Dorothy, 239 

Kramm, Joseph, 263 

Krantz, Ben, 262 



INDEX 



Krimsky, Angela and John, 137, 142, 
147 

La Cava, Gregory, 189 
La Cotorra, 172, 173, 199, 251 
Laemmle, Junior, 146 
LaGuardia, Mayor Fiorello, 217-219, 

225-227, 274, 281 
Lahr, Bert, 73, 74, 130, 236, 237, 244, 

262 

Landls, Jessie Royce, 270 
Lane, Jirnmie, 102, 105, 111 
Larrimore, Earl, 104 
LaScala, 180 
Laurence, Paula, 194, 195, 216, 217, 

263, 269, 278, 287, 306 
Lawrence, Gertrude, 145, 226, 261, 

273, 274 

Leachman, Cloris, 256, 257 
Leahy, Frank (Century Play Co.), 90, 

92, 99 

Leave It to Me, 216 
Lee, Jimmy (Calculus), 296 
LeGallienne, Eva, 142 
Lerner, Alan Jay, 261, 282, 284 
LeRoy, Mervyn, 127, 132 
Les Mains Sales (Red Gloves), 251- 

254, 262, 303 
Lesser, Sol, 119 
Let Us Be Gay, 122 
Levin, Herman, 284 
Lewis, Jerry, 63, 107 
Lewisohn Stadium, 163, 236 
Lindsay, Howard, 196, 303 
Lindsay, Margaret, 256 
Littlefield, Emma, 82 
Liveright, Horace, 157 
Lockridge, Richard and Frances, 195 
Loewe, Frederick, 261, 282, 284 
Logan, Joshua, 245, 280, 285 
Lord, Dorothy, 95, 119 
Love of Three Oranges, The, 192 
Lulu Belle, 44 
Lunt, Alfred, 181 
Lyons, Cecil, 264 
Lytell, Grace, 211 



MacArthur, Charles, 246, 249, 281 
MacArthur, General Douglas, 277 
Macombo, 278 

Madchen in Uniform, 137, 138, 147 
Madison Av. Presbyterian Church 

(Dr. Flood), 269 
Madison Square Garden, 119 
Mainbocher, 121 
Main Street to Broadway, 270, 273, 

274 

Major Barbara, 247, 248 
Man and Superman, 248, 249 
Man Who Came to Dinner, The, 195 
Martin, Mary, 121, 216, 217, 219, 273 
Martinez, Mr., 177, 178 
Mathers, Al, 74, 76 
Matthew, Brander, 38 
Matthews, Helen Ruth, 198, 235, 305 
McCleery, William, 224, 225, 306 
McCormick, Myron, 286, 287 
McCoy, Frank, 98, 99 
Mclntire, W. T., 33, 34, 37, 48, 49, 

69* 73^ 7$> 79* 13 
Mclntyre, Mabel, 115 
Mclntyre, O. O., 111, 114 
McKay, Scott, 287 
Medea, 244, 264, 266 
Meller, Racquel, 62 
Mellish, Vera Fuller, 227 
Menken, Helen, 211 
Menotti, Gian Carlo, 289, 293, 303 
Menuhin, Yehudi, 289 
Merande, Doro, 225, 227 
Meredith, Burgess, 142, 143, 257 
Merkle, Una, 105 
Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer, 221 
Metropolitan Opera, 7, 192, 197, 216, 

228, 289 

Millay, Edna St. Vincent, 116 
Miller, Gilbert, 246, 281, 282 
Milstein, Nathan, 212 
Mirimanova, Madame, 164, 174 
Mister Roberts, 285, 286 
Molnar, 245 

Mooney, Martin, 110-112 
Moore, Grace, 96, 140, 181, 182, 191, 

192, 197, 198, 199, 201-210, 212, 



INDEX 



( 3*5 ) 



2i6, 224, 228, 236, 238, 239, 294, 

35 

Moore, Jimmy, 239 
Moore, Victor, 82, 229, 230, 233 
Morehouse, Ward, 112-116, 122-135, 
139, 141, 143, 145, 146, 148, 149, 
152, 154, 155, 157, 162-164, 167, 

188-190, 193, 209, 211, 2l6, 269, 302 

Morgan, J. P., 24 

Morgenthau, Mrs. Henry, Jr., 245, 

246 

Morning Telegraph, The, 22 
Morris County Fair, 1 1 
Morris, Newbold, 218, 225, 297, 305 
Mornstown Record, 11 
Moses, Robert, 305 
Moss, Arnold, 287 
Moulin Rouge, 275 
Mr. and Mrs. North, 195, 196 
Murphy Family, 4, 11, 134, 280, 298 
Murphy, Katie, 4, 6, 7, 8, 10, 175 
Murray, Vincent, 41 
Music in the Air, 150 
Myers, Caraiel, 131 
My Fair Lady, 284, 293 

Nagel, Louis, 252, 255 

Nash, Ogden, 215 

Nast, Conde, 96 

National Broadcasting Co., 289 

National Vaudeville Artists' Club 

(N.V.A.), 45' 73> 77> 88, 93, 108 
Nelly Ely, 230 
Newark Sunday Call, 11, 12 
Neway, Patricia, 303 
New York American, 111, 116 
New York City Center of Music and 

Drama, Inc., 214, 217, 219, 225, 

227, 244, 246, 248, 249, 262, 270, 

274, 275, 277-281, 285-300, 303-306 
New York Herald Tribune, 121, 175 
New York Philharmonic, 116, 117, 

149, 226 
New York Sun, 112, 128, 129, 133, 

141, 163, 195 
New York Times, The, 22, 32, 121, 

163, 195 



New York Town, 124 
New York World, The, 13 
New York World's Fair, 305 
New Yorker, The, 215 
Nineteenth Hole, The, 155 
Norris, Yolanda, 204, 205 
Novotna, Jarmila, 216 
Nugent, Elliott, 219 

O'Connell, Arthur, 232 

O'Donnell, Bob, 201 

Oklahoma!, 215, 266 

Olivier, Sir Laurence, 281 

On the Chin, 90, 98, 101, 102, 106, 

107, 278, 305 

One Hundred Men and a Girl, 220 
One Touch of Venus, 121, 214, 215, 

219 

Ormandy, Eugene, 289, 290 
Osato, Sono, 216 
Othello, 244, 245 
Our Town, 3, no, 226, 227 

Padilla, Exequiel, 201 

Paley, William (C.B.S.), 181 

Pallaras, Eduardo, 160 

Pal Joey, 263 

Palmer, Susan, 185, 186, 188 

Parera, Valentin, 197, 201, 202, 209, 

*39 

Paris Art Centennial, 270 
Paris Sports, 96 
Parker, Thelma, 87 
Pascal, Gabriel, 247-252, 255, 256, 

259, 260, 282, 294 
Pascal, Valerie, 282-284 
Pasternak, Joe, 220, 221 
Peck, Gregory, 246 
Perelman, S. J., 215 
Phillips, Frank (Phillips Petroleum), 

34. 4*> 74 
Piazza, Ben, 69 
Picnic, 280 

Pierce Business School, 23, 24, 25 
Play of the Week, The, 303 
Play's the Thing, The, 245 
P.M., 224 



INDEX 



Ponce, Manuel, 159 
Poor Butterfly, 102, 103 
Porgy and Bess, 210 
Porter, Cole, 260 
Powers, Tom, 104 
Price, Leontyne, 289 
Priori, Willie, 115, 163 
Pygmalion, 248, 260, 261, 282, 284 

Quiet Room, The, 281 

Rachmaninoff, 120 

Rafsky, Dr. Henry, 128 

Raines, Ella, 257 

Raphaelson, Samson, 273, 274 

Rattigan, Terence, 281 

Reavis, Holland, 35, 49, 50, 71, 73, 

89, 108, 130, 174 
Reed, Florence, 193 
Respectful Prostitute, The, 251 
Reunion in Vienna, 181 
Renter, Hannah, 265 
Reynolds, R. J. (Reynolds Tobacco), 

34 

Rhee, Syngman, 280 
Rice, Grantland, 115 
Richard the Third,, 279 
Richelieu, Cardinal, 45, 48 
Ritz Hotel (Boston), 88 
R.K.O., 69, 205 
Robbins, Jerome, 289 
Robeson, Paul, 147, 244, 245 
Robinson, Constance, 74, 75, 77 
Rodgers, Richard, 131, 132, 260, 273, 

289 

Rodzinski, Artur, 226 
Rome, Harry, 88 
Rose, Jack, 61, 62, 63, 64, 65, 66, 71, 

75> 7^> 107 
Rosebrook, John, 116, 119, 122, 123, 

127, 129, 130, 135, 149 
Rubin, J. Robert, 196 
Rudel, Julius, 300 

Sabrina Fair, 220 

St. Louis Opera Co., 227, 228 

St. Nicholas Magazine, 11, 12 



Salisbury, Leah (Mrs. Phil), 125, 126, 

139, 182, 192, 216, 302 
Salt Water, 100, 102, 103, 105-110, 

146 
Sartre, Jean-Paul, 251, 252, 254, 255, 

3<>3 

Sayao, Bidu, 226 

Schafer, Natalie, 130, 134, 185, 193 
Schirmer, Gus, 236 
Schnitzer, Robert, 262-264 
Scott, Martha, 227 
Second Man, The, 256 
Selwyn, Archie, 139, 141 
Seven-Eleven Restaurant, The, 185, 

186, 188 

Seventh Day Adventists, 108 
Severence, Elbert, 188 
Shanghai Gesture, The, 193, 194 
Shapiro, Herman, 262 
Shaw, George Bernard, 246-248, 260 
Shea, Mr. and Mrs. Thomas E., 45- 

48, 54> 55> 57> 63, 65, 71, 72, 128, 

302 

Sheridan, Ann, 287 
Sherwood, Robert, 181 
Show Girl, 304 
Shrike, The, 275 
Shriner, Herb, 273 
Shurtleff, Michael, 281 
Simms, Edward (Simms Petroleum), 

34, 74 

Skelly, Hal, 236 

Skin of Our Teeth, The, 215 

Skolsky, Sidney, 114 

Slauson, Bob, 34 

Sleeping Prince, The, 281 

Smith, Alison, 109 

Smith and Dale, 72 

Smith, Paul Gerard, 70 

Smith, Rex, 168 

Smith, Rhoda, 189, 192 

Smith, Winchell, 125 

Snowden, Lord (Anthony Arm- 
strong-Jones), 259 

Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, 

7>47 
Sobol, Louis, 114 



INDEX 



( 317 ) 



Sockman, Dr. Ralph, 129 

Something for the Boys, 217 

Speed, (Mrs.) Fawkie, 129 

Speed, Keats, 129, 153 

Stage Door Canteen, 211 

Stanislavsky, 108 

Stanwyck, Barbara, 236 

Steber, Eleanor, 289 

Sterling, Sir Louis and Lady, 259 

Stern, Isaac, 289, 290 

Sailings, Kemp, 187, 189 

Stokowski, Leopold, 220, 226 

Stone, Edward D., 288 

Stone, Robinson, 278 

Strange Interlude, 101, 104 

Strasberg, Susan, 287 

Strohl, Clifford, 197 

Sturges, Preston, 145 

Styne, Jule, 263 

Sullavan, Margaret, 219, 220 

Sun Looks Down, The, 280 

Susan and God, 226 

Susanna, 289 

Svedonik, Joe, 279, 295, 296 

Swarthout, Gladys, 269 

Sweden, Crown Prince of, 238 

Taradash, Daniel, 254 
Taylor, Deems, 116, 117, 149 
That's Gratitude, no, in, 114, 230 
Theater Arts Magazine, 246, 249 
Theater Guild, 112, 252 
Theaters: Apollo, Atlantic City, 105; 
Apollo, i25th Street, 84,; Audu- 
bon, 21; Belasco, 44, 236, 244; 
Broadway Colonial, 84; Bushwick, 
Brooklyn, 84; Capitol, 189; Coli- 
seum, Washington Heights, 21, 
84; Criterion, New York, 138; Em- 
pire, 190; Flatbush, Brooklyn, 84; 
Fordham, Bronx, 84; Fort Lee, 
100; Golden Gate, San Francisco, 
68; John Golden, 126, 230; Keith's, 
Boston, 88; Philadelphia, 81; Lin- 
coln Theater, New York, 84; 
Loew's State, New York, 81, 84; 
Loew's State, Brooklyn, 85; 



Loew's State, Newark, 85; Maple- 
wood, 193, 195, 210; Martin Beck, 
274; Maryland, Baltimore, 81; 
Orpheum, Brooklyn, 84; Or- 
pheum Circuit, 45, 49; Orpheum 
House, Oakland, San Francisco, 
68; Orpheum, Los Angeles, 68, 
69; Orpheum, Nebraska, 63; Or- 
pheum, Sioux City, 55; Palace, 
Chicago, 72; Palace, New York, 7, 
49, 69, 83; Plymouth, 88; Proc- 
tor's East Fifty-Eighth, 84; Proc- 
tor's Fifth Avenue, 84; River- 
side, New York, 83, 85, 89; Royale, 
Bronx, 48, 51, 84; St. James, 282; 
Teatro Arbeau, 159; Teatro Co- 
lon, 207; Teatro Palacio, deBelles 
Artes, 159; Teatro Hidalgo, 159, 
160; Teatro Politeama, 162 

There Shall Be No Night, 181 

Time of Your Life, The, 286, 287, 
289 

Tinted Venus, The, 214 

They Knew What They Wanted, 
104, 190, 193 

Thiele, Herta, 139 

Thousands Cheer, 221 

Three-Cornered Moon, 148 

Three Daring Daughters, 222 

Three Men on a Horse, 229 

Three Penny Opera, The, 147, 150 

Tibbett, Jane, 238 

Tibbett, Lawrence, 226, 238, 239, 
262 

Tishman, Max, 74, 75, 76, 77, 78, 80, 
82, 83, 85, 87, 88, 100 

Todd, Mike, 217 

Tone, Franchot, 17, 124, 169, 225, 
256, 257, 285, 286, 295, 304 

Tone, Gertrude, 124 

Tonkonogy, Gertrude (Miss Teck), 
142, 143. H7 

Tony's Restaurant, 115, 124; Angel- 
ica, 125, 139 

Tracy, Spencer, 105 

Tucker, Sophie, 72 

Tunney, Gene, 96 



INDEX 



Turek, Rosalyn, 289 
"21," 125, 139, 151. *5 6 > l88 > l8 9 
213, 230, 233, 239, 275 

Ugly American,, The, 257 

Ulric, Lenore, 44 

United States Performing Arts 

(American Theater, Brussels 

World's Fair), 287, 290 
Universal Pictures, 147, 220 

Valentino, Rudolph, 87 

Van Druten, John, 219 

Van Dusen, Bill, 209 

Van Dyke, Tom, 90, 96, 119 

Vanity Fair., 96 

Van Grove, Isaac (Vanny), 204 

Varden, Evelyn, 227 

Vargas, President and Madame Ge- 

tulio, 204-206 
Variety, 22, 81, 85, 302 
Varnay, Astrid, 264 
Velie, Jay, 227 
Voice of the Turtle, The, 214, 219, 

257 
Volpone, 46 

Waldorf, Wilella, 109, 149 
Walker, Mayor James, 129, 130 
Walker, June, 190, 193 
Walker, Mickey, 119 
Wall Street, 26, 73, 89 
Wanger, Walter, 182 
Warfield, William, 289 
Warner Bros., 126, 128, 131 
Warner, MacDonald (National City 

Bank), 187 
Washer, Ben, 185, 186 



Watters, George Manker, 236 
Watts, Richard, 127, 149, 150, 154, 

156, 163, 188, 189, 197 
Webster, Margaret, 278 
Weill, Kurt, 147, 150, 214-216 
Weir Brothers, 72 
Welles, Orson, 195 
Westport Country Playhouse, 256 
What Every Woman Knows, 284 
When Ladies Meet, 136-138, 147 
White, George, 73 
Whiteman, Paul, 64, 71 
Whitley, Albert, 278 
Whorf, Richard, 246, 275, 278 
Wiecke, Dorothea, 138 
Wightman, Myna Tally, 121 
Wildberg, Jack, 193, 194, 209, 214, 

217 

Wilder, Thornton, 3, 216, 226, 227 
Will to Live, The, 234, 301 
Winchell, Walter, 46, 73 
Winik, Leslie, 303 
Winston, Norman, 305 
Wisteria Trees, The, 280, 285 
Woman Pays, The, 87 
Wonderful Town, 289 
Woollcott, Alexander, 109 
Wright, May, 21, 22, 49, 85 
Wyatt, Jane, 225 

You Never Can Tell, 248 
Young and Rubicam, 116 

Zanuck, Darryl, 127, 132 
Zanuck, Virginia, 132 
Zetterling, Mai, 304 
Ziffren, Lester, 168, 169 






o jJ^T -nv --, 

&"&&&- ?M *^ 



(Continued from front flap) 

der of the Crown by King Baudouin i, 
is a Director and Consultant for the 
Performing Arts for the New York 
World's Fair, 1964-1965, and is a 
member of the Advisory Committee 
on Arts for the National Cultural 
Center. 

This engaging story of her life, the 
personalities with whom she has been 
involved and the bizarre experiences 
to which her drive and spirit have led 
her, will delight readers with its in- 
sight into a glittering and stimulating 
world that all would love to share. 

"Surprisingly matter-of-fact about 
incidents that are startling, very, very 
funny, or intrinsically dramatic and 
colorful. The book is a treasury of the- 
ater reminiscences and anecdote and 
makes good reading." 

Publisher's Weekly 

"A whirlwind career with a power- 
house behind it. Jean Dalrymple pulls 
her reader along with her dynamic 
personality.'* Virginia Kirkus 



DODD, MEAD & COMPANY