Today is the birthday of Rube Marquard (1886-1980). Marquard was a legendary pitcher for the New York Giants, Boston Braves, Brooklyn Robins, and one non-defunct team, the Cincinnati Reds. His career as a major league baseball player lasted from 1908 through 1925. It’s unusual for us to treat of sports figures here, but we occasionally do when they happen also to have been vaudeville performers. From 1917 through 1920, Marquard was married to Blossom Seeley and the pair performed in big time vaudeville together. Strange to think of her being wife and vaudeville partner to anyone but Benny Fields, but there you have it. There is a book about the pair. I haven’t read it yet, so this isn’t quite a recommendation, but I think I will get it and let you know how it is!
For more on 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 film history don’t miss 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.