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Archive for the ‘People’ Category

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Images found on RealityAsylum

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Image found on mudwerks

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A winning smile from Cynthia Kowlessar, a 24-year-old clerk at Ealing Common rail depot, who was selected London Transport Charm Girl of 1964 at the annual sports gala at Osterley.

Image and text found on Leftover London

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A Picnic with Beer ….

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…. are there any other kind 😮

Image found on Born in the wrong era

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Beaton struck up an instant rapport with the Queen. His diary reveals that she was an active participant in the staging of her romantic portraits, suggesting suitable dresses and accessories. Here, Beaton combined a painterly eye with the elegant style of his Vogue fashion studies. Like those, each royal portrait would be carefully retouched under Beaton’s instruction, to define facial features and trim silhouettes.

From the Queen Elizabeth II by Cecil Beaton exhibition  at  Victoria and Albert Museum [ 8 February – 22 April 2012]

Image and text from Oh! so 30s

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Image found in AdventuresOfTheBlackgang

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Women from the Land Army collecting the crop at Rhosmardy, Llandrillo sometimes during WWII -  And one local at least seem to enjoy the visit – Ted

Image (doctored) found on The National Library of Wales on Flickr

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Wrapping  my mind around the idea that some dimwit broad is imagining that she has been seduced by a creature from a flying saucer is one thing, but one imagining that she has been seduced by the flying saucer itself. No, I just can’t see it. Sorry.

Image found on Casa de Ricardo

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In 1958, Life Magazine invited Marilyn Monroe and photographer Richard Avedon to recreate images of five celebrated actresses of different eras, one of these was Marlene Dietrich.  Entitled “Fabled Enchantresses,” the piece was part of the magazine’s December 22 “Christmas” issue and included an article by Marilyn’s playwright husband, Arthur Miller, entitled “My Wife, Marilyn.”

Avedon found in Marilyn an easy subject to work with, “She gave more to the still camera than every other actress – every other woman – I had the opportunity to photograph…” He added that she was more patient with him and more demanding of herself than others  and that she was more comfortable in front of the camera than when not posing.


Marlene Dietrich was born on December 27, 1901 in Berlin Germany.  Her real name was Maria Magdalene Dietrich and she took up acting in her late teens.  After failing an audition with Max Reinhardt in 1921, she joined the chorus line of a touring music revue.  In 1922, she re-auditioned for Reinhardt and this time was accepted in his drama school.  She began playing small roles on the stage and in German films, never getting anything more substantial than supporting roles. However, by the late 20’s she had risen to playing leads with moderate success.

Her big break came when she was spotted onstage by American director Josef Von Sternberg, who cast her to play a sexy, seductive vamp in The Blue Angel,1930, filmed in Germany.

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Von Sternberg became a dominant force in her life, moulding her into a glamorous, sensuous star. She got a Hollywood contract and left her husband and daughter behind, going on to star in six films for Von Sternberg.  Their collaboration made her a star equal in magnitude to Garbo.

She became an American citizen in 1939; meanwhile, her films were banned in Germany because she had refused a lucrative offer from the Nazis to return and star in German films.  During World War II she entertained U.S. troops, participated in war bond drives, and made anti-Nazi broadcasts in German; she was awarded the Medal of Freedom for "meeting a gruelling schedule of performances under battle conditions… despite risk to her life". She was also named Chevalier of the French Legion of Honour.

In the 50’s, as her film career slowed, Dietrich began a second career as a recording star and cabaret performer. Singing to packed houses in major cities all over the world she became famous as an on stage performer.  See section devoted to her music.

Late in her life, she was rarely seen in public, but she agreed to provide the voice-over for Maximillian Schell’s screen biography of her Marlene(1984).  She wrote three volumes of memoirs: Marlene Dietrich’s ABC (1961), My Life Story (1979) and Marlene (1987).  She lived a long life and was active until 1990; she died two years later on May 6, 1992

I attended a Dietrich concert with my parents at the Tivoli in Copenhagen back in the mid sixties. I can still remember that concert – Ted

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Great-grandson of Duncan Phyfe, the iconic furniture designer of the early republic, Herold Rodney Eaton "Hal" Phyfe was born in Nice, France, to a New York society family. Trained as a sculptor in France and a painter in Italy, Hal Phyfe began pursuing photography an an enlistee in World War I documenting an aviation unit of the U.S. Army in Europe. He made a specialty of aerial photography. After the war he supported himself as an illustrator supplying magazines with covers rendered in pastels. He opened his photography studio in 1926.

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During the 1920s he built a reputation for his theatrical portraiture (sketches and photographs) shot on commission for various magazines. He became the principal photographer for Florenz Ziegfeld during 1930-31. He became famous for his dictum that no smiles were allowed during sittings. During the late 1920s he owned a dog who became something of a Broadway celebrity. Legend holds that he turned down a remunerative long-term contract with a magazine in the wake of his dog’s death, which disabled him from talking business. During the early 1930s he habitually wore a black tie in mourning. His melancholy was somewhat tempered when bootlegger Owney Madden entrusted his red tabby cat to Phyfe’s keeping when he was put away in Sing Sing. Phyfe’s notorious eccentricity of dress extended to wearing moccasins instead of shoes and dressing down in denim at debutante balls during that period when he was official photographer to High Society.

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He was one of the best amateur cooks in Manhattan, with recipes appearing in papers as far away as Los Angeles. In 1931 he was hired on a three month contract by Fox. He went to Hollywood and was besieged for portrait sittings. He preferred the social life of New York, so he returned to New York and resumed a career as one of the central society and theater photographers in the city. A sociable man, he was invariably on the committees for the beaux arts balls in the 1930s, or serving as judge in various charity photo contests. In June 1950 he leased a penthouse in the Parke-Bernet Galleries at 980-990 Madison Avenue for his studio.

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Specialty

As adept at portraying men as women, Phyfe produced some of the most dynamic male portraits of the late 1920s. He preferred not to portray performers in costume. A master of middle grays, his exhibition and portfolio prints of the late 1920s display exquisitely refined shading. During the late 1920s he indulged in the penchant among New York portraitists to vignette heads. There would be strong graphic intervention at the perimeters of the image, suggesting a drawing. In the 1930s he opted for a straighter style of portraiture, full body, often with the subject seated. His Society portraits of the 1930s are well posed and understated, suggesting refinement rather than ostentation. His popularity among Hollywood performers derives from his disinclination to overstate elegance. He signed original prints in red crayon in distinctive squared letters. His Hollywood portraits are signed on the negative in white.

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Periodically Phyfe published advice about how women should prepare for a photo shoot. These are from January 1940.

[1] A clean face, with a dusting of fine Rachel powder. 
[2] No foundation cream of grease beneath the powder. 
[3] A light lipstick–red photographs black–but an indelible one. Shape the lips in their usual lines, rub in the lip rouge, press the lips against a facial tissue to remove every speck of excessive rouge. 
[4] Very little mascara, and what you use concentrated on the tips of the lashes to accent their length. Artificial eyelashes are fine if they are the kind which are applied at the end of each natural lash, and not the fringe strip type which drag the eyelids down out of shape. 
[5] Natural eyebrows–of course yours are habitually disciplined to a clean, well groomed line, camera sitting or no!–unless you are a very pale blonde, when a teeny bit of mascara may be used. The lens, however, will catch considerable accent from even blonde eyebrows. 
[6] No greasy highlights. Let the photographer add them if he wishes, about the eyelids. 
[7] A little dry eye shadow discreetly applied. 
[8] Choose a natural, simple and familiar hairdo, certainly one which will not date you. Your dress should be a pastel shade with a neckline which does not chop your head from your body, and it better not be of print fabric. The effect may detract from your face, confuse the issue. Too, print designs tend to date you, as do hats and strange hairdos."Facial construction must be definite, even bold. And the eyes must be the pivot of the expression. For if the eyes have "it" everything else will be forgotten in their vivid, compelling attraction. Eyes create individuality, they are the spokesman for the soul, the character, the mind. For the rest–complexion, hair, features–for he knows that art and the will to achieve a certain amount of beauty can, and does do wonders."

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Phyfe on faces: "Facial construction must be definite, even bold. And the eyes must be the pivot of the expression. For if the eyes have "it" everything else will be forgotten in their vivid, compelling attraction. Eyes create individuality, they are the spokesman for the soul, the character, the mind. For the rest–complexion, hair, features–for he knows that art and the will to achieve a certain amount of beauty can, and does do wonders."

Text from BroadwayPhotographers

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Jack Ruby has been sentenced to death after being found guilty of the murder of Lee Harvey Oswald, the alleged assassin of President John F Kennedy.  Ruby’s defence team is to launch an appeal after the jury in the Dallas court returned the guilty verdict and decided he should die in the electric chair.

Jack Ruby

The jury of eight men and four women deliberated for two hours and 19 minutes.

Oswald, who was accused of firing the gun that killed the president, was shot two days later by Ruby in the basement of the Dallas police headquarters.

There was uproar in court and Ruby’s defence said the verdict was "a victory for bigotry".

"This was a kangaroo court, a railroad court and everyone knew it."

Melvin Belli, chief defence counsel:

At 12:23 local time, Judge Brown read out the verdict: "We the jury find the defendant guilty of murder with malice as charged in the indictment and assess his punishment as death."

When the judge asked if this was a unanimous decision, all the jurors raised their right hand to signal that it was. They were then discharged. Ruby, who pleaded not guilty to the murder charge, was quickly led away to prison, where he will remain as his appeal gets under way.

The district attorney said after the trial that he thought the jury had been persuaded by Dallas police officers who reported that Ruby had planned to kill Oswald for two days and had meant to shoot him three times instead of once.

The jury had been asked to consider its verdict after hearing more than five hours of summing up by prosecuting and defence barristers. Prosecutors argued that Ruby should die in the electric chair "because he mocked American justice while the spotlight was on Dallas".

Defence lawyers had suggested that the prosecution wanted Ruby to go to the electric chair to compensate for their frustrations due to their inability to try Lee Harvey Oswald. They also argued that there was medical evidence to suggest that Ruby suffered from epilepsy and was subject to seizures and mental blackouts.

In Context

Lee Harvey Oswald was arrested after John F Kennedy was assassinated in Dallas, Texas, in 1963, but he was murdered before facing trial.

Following Jack Ruby’s trial for killing Oswald, three psychiatrists recommended that he should have a "sanity hearing" amid reports that he was mentally ill.

In an appeal to the Texas Supreme Court, Ruby’s lawyers argued that he could not have received a fair trial in Dallas due to the excessive publicity.

The court agreed and ruled that his motion for a change of venue before the original trial court should have been granted, and so Ruby’s conviction and death sentence was overturned.

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While awaiting a new trial, Ruby died of a pulmonary embolism in hospital on 3 January, 1967.

Text from BBC’s OnThisDay

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Irene Dunne (December 20, 1898 – September 4, 1990) was an Irene Dunne American film actress and singer of the 1930s, 1940s and early 1950s. Dunne was nominated five times for the Academy Award for Best Actress, for her performances in Cimarron (1931), Theodora Goes Wild (1936), The Awful Truth (1937), Love Affair (1939) and I Remember Mama (1948). She was named to the International Best Dressed List Hall of Fame in 1958.

Early life

a12102_irene dunne_02Born Irene Marie Dunn in Louisville, Kentucky, to Joseph Dunn, a steamboat inspector for the United States government, and Adelaide Henry, a concert pianist/music teacher from Newport, Kentucky, Irene Dunn would later write, “No triumph of either my stage or screen career has ever rivalled the excitement of trips down the Mississippi on the river boats with my father.” She was only eleven when her father died in 1909. She saved all of his letters and often remembered and lived by what he told her the night before he died: “Happiness is never an accident. It is the prize we get when we choose wisely from life’s great stores.”

After her father’s death, Irene, her mother, and her younger brother Charles moved to her mother’s hometown of Madison, Indiana. Dunn’s mother taught her to play the piano as a very small girl. According to Dunn, “Music was as natural as breathing in our house.” Dunne was raised as a devout Roman Catholic. Nicknamed “Dunnie,” she took piano and voice lessons, sang in local churches and high school plays before her graduation in 1916.

She earned a diploma to teach art, but took a chance on a contest and won a prestigious scholarship to the Chicago Musical College, where she graduated in 1926. With a soprano voice, she had hopes of becoming an opera singer, but did not pass the audition with the Metropolitan Opera Company.

Career

a12102_irene dunne_03Irene, after adding an “e” to her surname, turned to musical theatre, making her Broadway debut in 1922 in Zelda Sears‘s The Clinging Vine. The following year, Dunne played a season of light opera in Atlanta, Georgia. Though in her own words Dunne created “no great furore”, by 1929 she had a successful Broadway career playing leading roles, grateful to be at centre stage rather than in the chorus line. In July 1928, Dunne married Francis Griffin, a New York dentist, whom she had met in 1924 at a supper dance in New York. Despite differing opinions and battles that raged furiously, Dunne eventually agreed to marry him and leave the theatre.

Dunne’s role as Magnolia Hawks in Jerome Kern and Oscar Hammerstein II‘s Show Boat was the result of a chance meeting with showman Florenz Ziegfeld in an elevator the day she returned from her honeymoon. Dunne was discovered by Hollywood while starring with the road company of Show Boat in 1929. Dunne signed a contract with RKO and appeared in her first movie in 1930, Leathernecking, a film version of the musical Present Arms. She moved to Hollywood with her mother and brother and maintained a long-distance marriage with her husband in New York until he joined her in California in 1936. a12102_irene dunne_04That year, she re-created her role as Magnolia in what is considered the classic film version of the famous musical Show Boat, directed by James Whale. (Edna Ferber‘s novel, on which the musical is based, had already been filmed as a part-talkie in 1929, and the musical would be remade in Technicolor in 1951, but the 1936 film is considered by most critics and many film buffs to be the definitive motion picture version.)

During the 1930s and 1940s, Dunne blossomed into a popular screen heroine in movies such as the original Back Street (1932) and the original Magnificent Obsession(1935). The first of three films she made opposite Charles Boyer, Love Affair (1939) is perhaps one of her best known. She starred, and sang “Smoke Gets in Your Eyes“, in the 1935 Fred AstaireGinger Rogers film version of the musical Roberta.

She was apprehensive about attempting her first comedy role, as the title character in Theodora Goes Wild (1936), but discovered that she enjoyed it. She turned out to possess an aptitude for comedy, with a flair for combining the elegant and the madcap, a quality she displayed in such films as The Awful Truth (1937) and My Favourite Wife (1940), both co-starring Cary Grant. Other notable roles include Julie Gardiner Adams in Penny Serenade (1941) (once again opposite Grant), a12102_irene dunne_05Anna Leonowens in Anna and the King of Siam (1946), Lavinia Day in Life with Father (1947), and Marta Hanson in I Remember Mama (1948). In The Mudlark(1950), Dunne was nearly unrecognizable under heavy makeup as Queen Victoria.

She retired from the screen in 1952, after the comedy It Grows on Trees. The following year, she was the opening act on the 1953 March of Dimes showcase in New York City. While in town, she made an appearance as the mystery guest on What’s My Line? She also made television performances on Ford Theatre, General Electric Theatre, and the Schlitz Playhouse of Stars, continuing to act until 1962.

In 1952-53, Dunne played newspaper editor Susan Armstrong in the radio program Bright Star. The syndicated 30-minute comedy-drama also starred Fred MacMurray.

Dunne commented in an interview that she had lacked the “terrifying ambition” of some other actresses and said, “I drifted into acting and drifted out. Acting is not everything. Living is.

Text from Wikipedia 

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It all started 45 years ago, when Drummond Randall took his three-and-a-half-year-old son for a day out on the Romney, Hythe and Dymchurch Railway, on the South coast.

"I remember very clearly what happened when we got home," recalls Drummond. "My son turned to me and said, ‘Dad, are you going to build me a locomotive?’" The answer was yes. And while most fathers might have made do with buying their son a little electric train set and putting it in the loft, Drummond went one further and constructed an entire, working miniature railway, around the garden of the family home in Kent.

There’s a little station at which passengers can get on, an engine shed where the trains sleep overnight, and, rather than just chuffing around in a boring circle, the locomotives wind their way through holes in hedges, into long, dark tunnels, around the edges of attractive flower beds and across dramatic bridges that span ponds.

Plus, on each circuit of the garden, the train passes just a couple of feet in front of the spectacular half-timbered, 17th-century home in which the Randalls live. Step out with a cup of tea, and if you didn’t look where you were going you could find yourself being struck at kneecap level (it’s a miniature railway, remember) by one of Drummond’s immaculately polished trains. Maybe the gleamingly caramel-coloured locomotive Crowborough, or perhaps its elegant, powder-blue cousin Dunalistair. Or conceivably Toby the shunting diesel, powered by silent electricity, rather than roaring coal fires and wheezing steam.

In all there are seven trains running on Drummond’s network, which he still lovingly maintains, although his son left home some time ago. So is he fulfilling one of his own boyhood fantasies? "No question about it," he says with a laugh. "When I was a teenager, I built my own small version of this railway in my back garden. But my mother wasn’t very keen on it, and when I got called up to do National Service, she pulled all the track up."

Article from The Telegraph written by By Christopher Middleton – 21 Jan 2015

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Found on barnorama

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Kusakabe Kimbei (日下部 金兵衛) (1841–1934) was a Japanese photographer. He usually went by his given name, Kimbei, because his clientele, mostly non-Japanese-speaking foreign residents and visitors, found it easier to pronounce than his family name.

Image found on Turn of the Century – Text from Wikipedia

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In context

Prince Birabongse Bhanudej Bhanubandh (born 15 July 1914 in Bangkok, Thailand; died 23 December 1985 in Barons Court Station, London), better known as Prince Bira of Siam (now Thailand) or by his nom de course B. Bira, was the only Thai race car driver to race in Formula One. He raced in Formula One and Grand Prix races for the Maserati, Gordini, and Connaught teams, among others. He also was an Olympic sailor in the Melbourne Olympics, 1956 in the Star, Rome Olympics, 1960 in the Star, Tokyo Olympics, 1964 in the Dragon and the Munich Olympics, 1972 in the Tempest. In the 1960 Games he competed against another former Formula One driver, Roberto Mieres, who finished 17th and ahead of the prince in 19th. Birabongse was the only Southeast Asian driver in Formula One until Malaysia‘s Alex Yoong joined Minardi in 2001. Prince Bira was not only a racing driver, he was also an excellent pilot of gliders and powered aircraft. In 1952 he flew the remarkable distance from London to Bangkok with his own twin engine Miles Gemini aircraft.

Prince Bira accepting the trophy for winning the London Grand Prix at Crystal Palace in 1937, having driven his ERA.

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Text from Wikipedia

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…… should be considered cheating.

Image found on shorpy.com

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Picture found on shorpy.com

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Test Pilot George Aird, flying an English Electric Lightning F1
ejected  from his plane at only about 100 feet in the air in 1962.

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Images found on: Ego is a rat on the sinking ship of being

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