Donna Darling Collection – Part 59

Donna Montran – Vaudeville
Treasure Chest Thursday
By Don Taylor

For this week’s Treasure Chest Tuesday, I’m looking at three clippings from the Donna Darling Collection, all relating to the State Theatre, Beacon, New York.

Article

STATE THEATRE.

D. W. Griffith’s “The Love Flower,” which opened at the State Theatre last night for three days, lives up to the Griffith standard. It was thoroughly enjoyed by all.

A rattling good vaudeville bill wins the appreciation of all.
….
Dolly Montran, the singing comedienne, with a million dollar personality, gives the patrons a treat in song offerings She more than pleases.

“The Girlie Review,” introducing….

Advertising

With the article was an advertisement for Beacon’s State Theatre. The show “Dolly Montrose” is number 6 on the bill. Also, my grandmother highlighted the item. Beneath that is another ad showing the motion picture “The Love Flower” and Dolly Montran, a Singing Comedienne. The prima donna with a million-dollar personality. My grandmother also highlighted that clipping.

Magazine

The last clipping was a short one:

Donna Montran played Bacon [sic], New York, last week, and is appearing at Red Bank, N. J., and Stroudsburg, PA., this week, breaking on her new single, “As You Like It,” written by Hockey and Green.

The good news is I had seen the short clip before. It ran in The New York Clipper, dated 6 July 1921, on – page 15, column 3. From other documents, I knew that Donna was “breaking in” the new single in 1921.

Key features:

  • The venue is the State Theatre. It is “Beacon’s Pride – Theatre Beautiful.”
  • The show is the “Dolly Montran” A singing comedienne. The prima donna with a million-dollar personality.
  • Also on the bill:
    • David Wark [D.W.] Griffith’s picture, “The Love Flower.”
    • “The Girlie Review” – Vaudeville’s greatest dancing novelty
    • Hall and Fenton – A corking skit
    • Robertio – Novelty contortionist

Analysis

Interestingly, the theatre program called her “Dolly Montrose,” and the theatre’s advertising called her Dolly Montran.  I have not seen her going by the name of “Dolly” before. I suspect that “Montrose” was a typo, but I should look at that closer.

July 3rd was a Sunday and playbills of the period typically ran Monday through Wednesday and Thursday through Sunday, so those shows were probably the dates for Red Bank, NJ, and the Stroudsburg, PA, shows.

Conclusion

I was able to update my previous schedule with the following:

  • June 30 – July 2, 1921 – Beacon, New York, State Theatre, “As You Like It” with Donna Montran.
  • July 4-6, 1921 – Red Bank, New Jersey, _____ Theatre, Donna Montran (probable)
  • July 7-9, 1921 – Stroudsburg, Pennsylvania, _____ Theatre, Donna Montran (probable)

Actions

Search for any other examples of “Dolly Montrose” or “Dolly Montran” during 1921.

Sources

Donna Darling Collection – SCAN0080 – Don Taylor’s Private Collection.

J de Montran arrived in NY in January 1859

Montrans in the News

Montran Monday
By Don Taylor

This week I discovered an article in the New York Daily Herald from Friday, January 21, 1859.

ARRIVALS.

New York Daily Herald – 21 January 1859

From New Orleans and Havana, in the steamship Black Warrior—D Hubbard, wife, two children and servant; G Gueydon, J de Montran, Dr W A Davis, L Lavanburg, J W Retnecke, B S Wolf, H T Reinecke, Madame M Alanza and servant, A Oxosco, J P Bill, J Pusadas, F Casas, P Silva, S Sanson, J F M Acosta, Capt J Chase, Capt J S Dubel, wife and child, A Fraser, Jr, M Ferrera, A Nunez, J F Mesa, W Phillips, J Reynolds, Fr. W Gibbs; A Chase, Alex McDonald, sent by American Consul at Havana.

Comments:

J. de Montran arrived from Havana aboard the Black Warrier in January 1859. If “J de Montran” were 20 years of age, he would have been 53 years old when my grandmother was conceived. My great-grandmother (Ida Barber) was 18 years old at the time, so I don’t think this is my John Montran. However, it is worthwhile trying to track down what happened to J de Montran and see if he had any children.

Additional Research

Shipname – “Black Warrior” or “Black Wamer?”

I looked closely at the New York Passenger and Crew Lists from 1859 and found a record for the “Black Wamer” arriving on 20 January 1859 from Havana. My review of the document indicates that the ship name could be Black Warrior just as easily as Black Wamer, so I believe the transcription of the name in Ancestry.Com is incorrect regarding the ship’s name.  That said, it is very interesting that J de Montran does NOT show up in the list of passengers or crew. [1]

So, it appears that J de Montran may have intended to go to New York as was reported by the American Consul as going, but didn’t as he doesn’t appear in the Passenger/Crew list.

Source:

New York Daily Herald – NEW YORK, NEW YORK – Friday, January 21, 1859 via Newspapers.Com

Endnotes

[1] Ancestry.com. New York, Passenger and Crew Lists (including Castle Garden and Ellis Island), 1820-1957 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations, Inc., 2010.
Ship: Black Wamer – Arrived 20 January 1859.

Donna Darling Collection – Part 53

Shamokin – Donna appears after “Baby Marie Osborne”

Treasure Chest Thursday

By Don Taylor

Photo of Don Taylor with cat Nasi.For this week’s Treasure Chest Tuesday, I’m looking at a page from the Donna Darling Collection. The page includes two articles, one newspaper banner, and five tiny clips.

The two articles both appear to be from the Shamokin Daily News, Friday, February 10, 1922, but they might be a day apart.

BABY OSBORNE HEADS STRONG PROGRAM AT THE STRAND

BABY OSBORNE HEADS STRONG PROGRAM AT THE STRAND

This article talks about “Baby Marie Osborne,” at length, before it begins to talk about Donna or any of the other shows. The section about Donna reads,

“Miss Donna Darling, former musical comedy star, who is appearing on the Keith bill at the Strand the last three days of the week, has one of the most appealing and enjoyable musical and dancing acts seen here this season. Miss Darling is all that her name implies in appearance and ability and is supported by two talented young men, both of whom are gifted dancers and vocalists. The stage settings are among the most elaborate seen here this winter while Miss Darling’s vocal selections appeal to people of all ages.”

The “last three days of the week,” in this case, means February 9th, 10th, and 11th.

A second article,

FAMOUS CHILD ACTRESS HEADS THE STRAND PROGRAM

FAMOUS CHILD ACTRESS HEADS THE STRAND PROGRAM

also talks about Baby Marie Osborne before mentioning Donna. The Donna part reads,

“Another widely known star of the stage appearing on the same program is Miss Donna Darling, former musical comedy star and who is now on the Keith circuit in a high class vaudeville revue I which she is most popular as well as pleasing.”

With Donna at the Strand are

  • Baby Marie Osborne
  • Frank Markey (the “Banjo Boy”)
  • Coogan and Casey (Song act)
  • Crumley and Jones (Comedians)

Along with the two larger articles on the page are five small clippings, some of which are cut off (I use the symbol of “}|” to indicate the place where the image was cut off.)

ELMIRA (First Half) – Jean & White – Hunniford – Donna Darling Co.—Manuel Romaine Co.—At the Party.

ITHACA (Second Half)—Homer Romaine—Peel & Corvan—Donna Darling Co.—Gobson & Price—At the Party.

OLE}|
(First Half)—Crowden’s }|
&Casey—Alf Grant—Don}|

WHEELING
(First Half)—Hunniford—Harr}|
mings—Donna Darling Boys—Co}|
—Murray Kissen Co.

NEW CASTLE (Second Half)—Polli Cassi Co.—Hunniford—Ahern & Peterson{|
Donna Darling Co.

Analysis

I have long known that Donna played in Elmira the January 28th thru 31st, 1922.

I knew she played in Ithaca on Feb 2nd. The “Second Half” would indicate that she was in Ithaca on February 2nd thru the 4th. That added two new days to my schedule for Donna.

I have known that Donna played in Olean Feb 13-15, which would be the first half of that week.

I have never had a record of Donna playing in Wheeling. The clipping’s placement seems to be between Olean, NY, and New Castle, PA. The first half of the week following Olean would be February 20, 21, & 22. The rest of that week would be 23, 24, and 25, February for her to have been in New Castle, PA.

So, thanks to this page of the Donna Darling Collection, I learned of two new venues for Donna’s schedule.

  • Feb 9-11, 1922 – Shamokin, PA – The Strand – Donna Darling
  • Feb 20-22, 1922 – Wheeling WV – Unknown Theatre – Donna Darling Boys

Sources

Donna Darling Collection – Image SCAN0087.

Montrans in the News – Maronites’ Society

Montran Monday
By Don Taylor

Photo of Don Taylor with cat Nasi.

This week for Montran Monday[i], I found two articles from The Chat (Brooklyn, New York). They both appeared to relate to Montrans that lived in Brooklyn. Neither Mr. Montran nor his wife, May, are a likely fit into my Montran Line.

The Chat (Brooklyn, New York) dated 5 December 1908, Page 27. This article is a brief mention that Mr. and Mrs. Montran and daughter attended a 25th wedding anniversary celebration of Mr. and Mrs. Martin Seibert.

The Chat (Brooklyn, New York) dated 30 May 1925, Page 31. This article is a society page paragraph in which Mrs. May Montran attended a meeting of the Maronites’ Society[ii] along with more than 500 Syrians. 

Sources:

  • The Chat (Brooklyn, New York) Sat, Dec 5, 1908, · Page 27 – Downloaded on July 26, 2019, via Newspapers.com.

The Chat (Brooklyn, New York) · Sat, May 30, 1925, · Page 31 – Downloaded on July 26, 2019, via Newspapers.com



ENDNOTES

[i] Montran Monday – My grandmother’s father was John Montran. She used the surname, as a young child and again when she began in show business. The name is uncommon and most of the Montrans I see in the newspapers are my grandmother during her early vaudeville career. However, with the constant flow of newly digitized material, I often learn of new articles which contain the Montran name. I pay attention to the finding and try to determine a possible relationship of any Montrans to Donna’s father, John Montran.

[ii] Maronites are a Christian group whose members adhere to the Syriac Maronite Church.  A mass emigration from Lebanon and Syria to the Americas occurred in the early 20th century due to famine, blockades, and World War I that resulted in between one-third to one-half of the population. Source: Internet: Wikipedia: Maronites – https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Maronites

 

Donna in the News – New July 8th 2019

“Donna in the News” is my reporting of newly found newspapers articles and advertising regarding my grandmother, Madonna Montran (aka Donna Montran and aka Donna Darling). I am always excited when I find a new venue for my grandmother’s exciting show business career of the 1910s and 1920s. 

This week I received a notification from Newspapers.com that I had 36 new hits on my alerts – 15 from “Montran,” 15 from “Walter Wills” (which suggests “Chin Chin”), and 6 from “Dona/Donna Darling” from seven different newspapers dated between 3 May 1920 and 5 March 1928.

The articles related to six shows during her career.  Four of the shows I had previously in my list of Donna’s performances. They were:

  • Lyceum Theatre, Paterson, PA – May 7 -8 1920 – “Chin Chin.”
  • Colonial Theatre, Lancaster, PA – April 17, 18, & 19, 1922 – “Special Easter Show.”
  • Grand Theatre, Saint Louis, MO – July 7-9, 1923 – Donna Darling show.
  • Majestic Concerts – Brooklyn, NY – Mar 5, 1928 – Donna Darling and Somory [sic] Clark in “The Princess and the King.”
Can anyone translate?

Adding more clippings to what I already had is always good.  However, what is particularly cool about the Grand Theatre clipping is that the newspaper that speaks of Donna is written in German. I don’t know what it says.  I tried OCRing the words and transcribing the text to no avail. All I really know is that the article mentions “Donna Darling” and was published during the week Donna was in Saint Louis, Mo.  Hopefully, someone who reads German and German font will help me out.

The other two venues were new to me.

  • Fulton Opera House, Lancaster, PA May 29, 1920 – Chin Chin
  • Keeney’s Theatre – Brooklyn, NY – Aug 1921, Donna Montran.

So, I’ve been able to add two new shows that Donna was a part of. I will add All of these clippings to future venue writeups.

Have a great week.