Today is the birthday of Mary and Margaret Gibb (1912-1967). Born in Mount Holyoke, Massachusetts, they generated publicity from the time they were born, having been one of the first pairs of twins to be delivered without caesarian section. The pair left home to go into vaudeville at age 14, presenting an act in which they sang, danced and played the piano. Billed as “America’s Siamese Twins” they also toured the U.S. and Europe with Ringling Bros, Barnum and Bailey, and Cole Bros. Circuses. They remained in show business until they were 30, then opened in a store in their hometown, where they sold their own handmade craft items. By 1949 they had retired completely.
To find out about the history of vaudeville, consult No Applause, Just Throw Money: The Book That Made Vaudeville Famous, available at Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and wherever nutty books are sold.
For more on silent and slapstick comedy please check out my new book: Chain of Fools: Silent Comedy and Its Legacies from Nickelodeons to Youtube, just released by Bear Manor Media, also available from amazon.com etc etc etc