Monday, June 30, 2014

Duke York

Duke York was in the last Thelma Todd and Patsy Kelly comedy, ALL-AMERICAN TOOTHACHE. He also claimed that he was a "Mystery guest" who would have gone with Thelma Todd to a party given by Mrs. Wallace Ford.

Duke York

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Duke York
BornCharles Everest Sinsabaugh
(1908-10-17)October 17, 1908
Danby, New York, U.S.
DiedJanuary 24, 1952(1952-01-24) (aged 43)
Hollywood, California, U.S.
Cause of death
Resting place
Hollywood Forever Cemetery
Years active1932-1952
Duke York (October 17, 1908 – January 24, 1952) was an American film actor. Born in Danby, New York, York was born Charles Everest Sinsabaugh. He appeared in nearly 160 films between 1932 and 1952.


Modern viewers will remember York for his portrayals of grotesque monsters, ape men, or other scary goon-like characters in Three Stooges short films such as Three Little Twirps, Idle Roomers, Shivering Sherlocks, and Who Done It?. His most prominent non-monster role was as Kelly in Higher Than a Kite. York also played the role of King Kala in the serial Flash Gordon.[1]


York committed suicide in 1952 by shooting himself in the head. He was 43.

Selected filmography

York plays a docile wolfman who goes berserk whenever he hears music in the Three Stooges film Idle Roomers.


  1. Jump up ^ Three Stooges Journal, Vol. 12, p. 5

External links

                                                         *                            *                         *

We know that Duke York worked with Thelma Todd in her last two-reel comedy, but I don't know how much can be proven as to how much they were associated after that. He testified before the Grand Jury that he and "Lord Landsdowne" were to have gone to Mrs. Wallace Ford's party the day after the Lupino's party at the Trocadero. "I was going to wear a starched shirt front with a ribbon across the front end and cock a monocle in one eye. Lord Lansdowne, one of close personal friends, was going to dress similarly.

"Thelma was going to introduce me as the Duke of York and Lord Lansdowne under that title and pretend we were actually members of the British nobility visiting in Hollywood.

"Everything was all arranged. Thelma, I understood, had called Mrs. Ford the previous Wednesday and told her she was bringing a couple of guests who she would not name."

"On Sunday, the day before Miss Todd was found dead, I called repeatedly and tried to get her. I never succeeded in locating her. The following day I read that she had been found dead."

Mrs. Ford had said that Thelma Todd called her on Sunday afternoon at about 4 o'clock, saying she would be at the party in about half an hour with a mysterious guest. However, she did not say that Thelma Todd had called the previous Wednesday.

The authorities didn't believe that Thelma Todd had actually called Mrs. Ford on Sunday afternoon. They thought Thelma had died the previous morning. They also did not believe the story that Duke York and Lord Lansdowne were supposed to have gone to the party with Thelma Todd.

Roland West said that he knew who the mystery guest would have been, and that neither Duke York or Lord Lansdowne would have been it. Later he said that the mystery guest was to have been Thelma Todd herself. West could have had it in mind all along that he was going to say that, but it sounds suspiciously like he was contradicting himself again.

Patsy Kelly, Duke York, Mickey Daniels, and Thelma Todd in ALL-AMERICAN TOOTHACHE.

The story had Thelma Todd and Patsy Kelly as waitresses at a diner, while Duke York and Mickey Daniels were football-playing dental students.

Jean Rogers, Buster Crabbe, and Duke York FLASH GORDON.

  Reblogged from

Duke York played a monster in several Three Stooges comedies. The werewolf makeup he wore in IDLE ROOMERS is similar to that used in Columbia's RETURN OF THE VAMPIRE a year earlier, a movie which itself was similar to the Universal horror movies of the time.

Duke York as "Angel" in SHIVERING SHERLOCKS.
It is said that Duke York killed himself when he felt that he could no longer go on living without a woman who would not marry him. A sad end for a man who had contributed much to the movies he had appeared in.

Duke York:,315798



Saturday, June 28, 2014

Lord Lansdowne

Lord Lansdowne was an American wrestler who pretended to be an English Lord*. And it was alleged that the story that he and Duke York were going to Mrs. Wallace Ford's party with Thelma Todd as "Mystery Guests" was phony. I don't know for sure, myself.


*The more recent ( and more famous ) wrestler "Gorgeous George" drew inspiration from "Lord Lansdowne". Both used POMP AND CIRCUMSTANCE as their entrance music, and had attendants spray perfume in the ring in order to prepare it for the bout.
Lord Lansdowne Finnegan:

Friday, June 27, 2014

Lola Lane Photo - SCREENLAND, December 1929.

An early Lola Lane photo appears in the same issue as the article about the Sister act in THE SHOW OF SHOWS.

Lola Lane was one of the Lane sisters, which can be considered another sister act as they made some movies together. Lola was the only one that was in the movies in 1929.

We've had a little about Lola Lane here before, she married Roland West and inherited Thelma Todd's Sidewalk CafĂ©, eventually giving it to the Paulist fathers.

Lola Lane:

The Lane Sisters:


Alberta Vaughn

Today is the birthday of Alberta Vaughn. She worked for both Hal Roach and Mack Sennett. Incidentally, she was one of the girls in the "Sister act" in THE SHOW OF SHOWS.











She also made a movie with John Wayne.


Marion Byron - Fan Magazines

More Marion Byron items from the fan magazines.

Marion Byron made her screen debut in STEAMBOAT BILL, JR. 
Marion Byron at bottom right. 


Marion Byron at top right. 
 Marion Byron at left.

Marion Byron at bottom right.

Marion Byron at top left.



"Sister Act" - SCREENLAND, December 1929

SCREENLAND article about girls in a sister act in THE SHOW OF SHOWS mentions Marion Byron as being among the cast.

Marion Byron is third from the left. 

Third from the left is Harriet Lake, better known as Ann Southern. She pretended as Marion Byron's sister for this film. 


And here is the act.


Ann Southern ( Harriet Lake ):



More from the issue with the Marion Byron article.

 Some of the glamour girls went blonde even before Jean Harlow made it fashionable.
At right we see Mary Pickford. They bobbed her hair, too. 

At center we see Clara Bow, with whom Thelma Todd costarred, and Marshal Neilan, who directed her. 

On the left is Lina Basquette, who was one of Thelma Todd's friends. 

On the right is a little about Buddy Rogers, who graduated from Paramount's acting school along with Thelma Todd.  
Carole Lombard worked for Mack Sennett early in her career.

Dixie Dugan came from a novel and later became a comic strip. Alice White played her in the movies, although Dixie Dugan was always supposed to have looked like Louise Brooks. 
Al Jolson in THE JAZZ SINGER contributed much to the success of talking pictures.