Lucille Ball
American actress and businesswoman
Lucille Ball
Lucille Désirée Ball was an American comedian, model, film and television actress and executive, and star of the sitcoms I Love Lucy, The Lucy–Desi Comedy Hour, The Lucy Show, Here's Lucy and Life with Lucy.
Biography
Lucille Ball's personal information overview.
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Photo Albums
Popular photos of Lucille Ball
News
News abour Lucille Ball from around the web
Cook's Corner: Blog begets a TV show for 'pioneer woman' - Longview Daily News
Google News - over 5 years
I channel Lucille Ball, Vivien Leigh and Ethel Merman. Welcome to my frontier!" Over the past five years at www.pioneerwoman.com she has chronicled her life as a city girl who became a rancher's wife and mother of four in Oklahoma; it's a wonderful
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Classic Liz Taylor, Lucille Ball titles released - phillyBurbs.com
Google News - over 5 years
Lucille Ball: “Room Service” (1938), “Du Barry Was a Lady” (1943), “The Long, Long Trailer” (1954) and “Forever Darling” (1956). The extras include the trailer for “Long” and a cartoon “The Daffy Doc.” Burt Lancaster: “The Flame and the Arrow” (1950),
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Cook's Corner: Blog gets city girl in the country a TV show - Sacramento Bee
Google News - over 5 years
I channel Lucille Ball, Vivien Leigh and Ethel Merman. Welcome to my frontier!" Over the past five years at www.pioneerwoman.com she has chronicled her life as a city girl who became a rancher's wife and mother of four in Oklahoma; it's a wonderful
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Paul Koretz Newsletter: Resurfacing, Pets, Lucille Ball & More - Patch.com
Google News - over 5 years
It's hard to imagine anyone who has brought as much laughter and joy into people's lives as did Lucille Ball. Los Angeles is lucky to be home to the entertainment industry, but the world is lucky to have enjoyed the work she did as a beloved part of
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In Other Words: Remembering Lucille Ball - Patch.com
Google News - over 5 years
By Greenfield Public Library August 6 was the 100-year anniversary of the birth of Lucille Ball, comedian, actress and media executive. Although she has been gone since August 1989, people still watch her movies on DVD and her television shows can be ... - -
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Lucille Ball, UFOs and ghosts - Paranormal Old Pueblo
Google News - over 5 years
Yesterday, August 6th, would have been Lucille Ball's 100th birthday. She died on April 26, 1989 at the age of 77. During her life, the red-haired comedienne and actress was associated with a number of unusual tales
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Critic's Notebook: Lucille Ball, 100 and ageless - Los Angeles Times
Google News - over 5 years
Happy 100th birthday, Lucille Ball -- I won't add "wherever you are," because you're everywhere. Somewhere in the world someone is watching you do that thing you did, or someone soon will be. It doesn't feel even mildly controversial to call you the ... - -
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New comic pays tribute to beloved Lucille Ball - USA Today
Google News - over 5 years
Funny lady and pop culture icon Lucille Ball (one of my all-time favorites) is being honored by comics publisher Bluewater Productions. In honor of the centennial of her birth (she was born Aug. 6, 1911 and died in 1989),
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Anniversary edition of 'Desilu' book honors Lucille Ball's 100th birthday - USA Today
Google News - over 5 years
Desilu: The Story of Lucille Ball and Desi Arnaz (It Books), will release a special anniversary edition on Aug. 2 to honor Lucille Ball's 100th birthday and the 60th anniversary of the first episode of I Love Lucy
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Anniversary waltz for Lucille Ball, 'Lucy' - Variety
Google News - over 5 years
Variety kept a close eye on Lucille Ball and Desi Arnaz's bold gamble in producing “I Love Lucy” on film through their Desilu banner. Daily Variety reported the first rumblings that the pair were about to produce a "tele pilot film
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Love Lucy? - Allentown Morning Call
Google News - over 5 years
Lucille Ball's "I Love Lucy" antics have kept the world in stitches for 60 years. But the comedienne's legacy goes beyond the laughter that comes from watching the show's reruns. At the Lucille Ball Festival
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Lucille Ball, Marlon Brando, Bette Davis, James Stewart Among Stars Celebrated ... - TVbytheNumbers
Google News - over 5 years
As a special spotlight during this year's SUMMER UNDER THE STARS, TCM will celebrate the life and career of the incomparable Lucille Ball on Aug. 6, marking the 100th anniversary of her birth. This year, more than half of TCM's SUMMER UNDER THE STARS
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Mila Kunis on Lucille Ball, Dating and Her Love of 'Star Trek' - Moviefone (blog)
Google News - over 5 years
Lucille Ball is perfection -- her timing and her commitment. Sarah Silverman is raunchy and brilliant, and people call her out for saying f*cked-up stuff that they wouldn't have a problem with a man saying. How dare she? Who else? Tina Fey
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Lucille Ball museum: Where you can love Lucy all over again - Los Angeles Times
Google News - over 5 years
The Lucille Ball-Desi Arnaz Center in Jamestown, NY, draws fans of all ages. They also stop at the house where she grew up and at her gravesite. Lucille Ball was “thrilled by show business,” says Lucille Ball-Desi Arnaz Center tour guide Susan Ewing,
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Timeline
Learn about memorable moments in the evolution of Lucille Ball
    LATE_ADULTHOOD
  • 1989
    Age 77
    Ball received many prestigious awards throughout her career including some posthumously such as the Presidential Medal of Freedom by President George H. W. Bush on July 6, 1989, and The Women's International Center's 'Living Legacy Award'.
    More Details Hide Details There is a Lucille Ball-Desi Arnaz Center museum in Lucy's hometown of Jamestown, New York. The Little Theatre was renamed the Lucille Ball Little Theatre in her honor. Ball was among Time magazine's "100 Most Important People of the Century." On June 7, 1990, Universal Studios Florida opened a walk-through attraction dedicated to Lucille, named "Lucy - A Tribute", which features clips of shows, as well as various pieces of trivia about Lucille, along with items owned by or associated with Lucille, and an interactive quiz for guests. On August 6, 2001, which would have been her 90th birthday, the United States Postal Service honored her with a commemorative postage stamp as part of its Legends of Hollywood series. Ball appeared on the cover of TV Guide more than any other person; she appeared on thirty-nine covers, including the very first cover in 1953 with her baby son, Desi Arnaz, Jr. TV Guide voted Lucille Ball as the 'Greatest TV Star of All Time' and it later commemorated the fiftieth anniversary of I Love Lucy with eight collector covers celebrating memorable scenes from the show. In another instance it named I Love Lucy the second-best television program in American history, after Seinfeld. Because of her liberated mindset and approval of the Women's Movement, Ball was inducted into the National Women's Hall of Fame in 2001. The Friars Club named a room in its New York clubhouse for Lucille Ball.
    On April 18, 1989, Ball was at her home in Beverly Hills when she complained of chest pains.
    More Details Hide Details An ambulance was called and she was rushed to the emergency room of Cedars-Sinai Medical Center. She was diagnosed with dissecting aortic aneurysm and underwent heart surgery for nearly eight hours, receiving an aorta from a 27-year-old man who had died in a motorcycle accident. The surgery appeared to have been successful, and Ball began recovering very quickly, even walking around her room with little assistance. She received a flurry of get-well wishes from Hollywood, and across the street from Cedars-Sinai Medical Center, the Hard Rock Café erected a sign reading "Hard Rock Loves Lucy". However, shortly after dawn on April 26, Ball awoke with severe back pains and soon lost consciousness. All attempts to revive her proved unsuccessful, and she died at 05:47 PDT. Doctors determined that the 77-year-old comedian had succumbed to a second aortic rupture, this time in the abdominal area, and that it was not directly related to her surgery the previous week. Her body was cremated and the ashes were interred in Forest Lawn – Hollywood Hills Cemetery in Los Angeles. However, in 2002, her children moved her remains to the family plot at Lake View Cemetery in Jamestown, New York, where Ball's parents, brother, and grandparents are interred.
    Her last public appearance, just one month before her death, was at the 1989 Academy Awards telecast in which she and fellow presenter, Bob Hope, were given a standing ovation.
    More Details Hide Details When Ball registered to vote in 1936, she listed her party affiliation as Communist. (She was registered as a Communist in 1938 as well.) In order to sponsor the Communist Party's 1936 candidate for the California State Assembly's 57th District, Ball signed a certificate stating, "I am registered as affiliated with the Communist Party." The same year, she was appointed to the State Central Committee of the Communist Party of California, according to records of the California Secretary of State. In 1937, Hollywood writer Rena Vale, a self-identified former Communist, attended a Communist Party new members' class at Ball's home, according to Vale's testimony before the United States House of Representatives' Special Committee on Un-American Activities, on July 22, 1940. Two years later, Vale affirmed this testimony in a sworn deposition: "Within a few days after my third application to join the Communist Party was made, I received a notice to attend a meeting on North Ogden Drive, Hollywood; although it was a typed, unsigned note, merely requesting my presence at the address at 8 o'clock in the evening on a given day, I knew it was the long-awaited notice to attend Communist Party new members classes... on arrival at this address I found several others present; an elderly man informed us that we were the guests of the screen actress, Lucille Ball, and showed us various pictures, books and other objects to establish that fact, and stated she was glad to loan her home for a Communist Party new members class."
  • 1988
    Age 76
    In May 1988 Ball was hospitalized after suffering a mild heart attack.
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    In February 1988, Ball was named the Hasty Pudding Woman of the Year.
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  • 1986
    Age 74
    Her 1986 sitcom comeback Life With Lucy, costarring her longtime foil Gale Gordon and co-produced by Ball, Gary Morton, and prolific producer/former actor Aaron Spelling was canceled less than two months into its run by ABC.
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  • 1982
    Age 70
    In 1982 she hosted a two-part Three's Company retrospective, showing clips from the show's first five seasons, summarizing memorable plotlines, and commenting on her love of the show.
    More Details Hide Details A 1985 dramatic made-for-TV film about an elderly homeless woman, Stone Pillow, received mixed reviews.
  • 1974
    Age 62
    She made a few more movies including Yours, Mine, and Ours (1968), and the musical Mame (1974), and two more successful long-running sitcoms for CBS: The Lucy Show (1962–68), which costarred Vivian Vance and Gale Gordon, and Here's Lucy (1968–74), which also featured Gordon, as well as Lucy's real life children, Lucie Arnaz and Desi Arnaz, Jr. She appeared on the Dick Cavett show in 1974 and spoke of her history and life with Arnaz.
    More Details Hide Details She revealed how she felt about other actors and actresses as well as her love for Arnaz. Ball was originally considered by Frank Sinatra for the role of Mrs. Iselin in the Cold War thriller The Manchurian Candidate. Director/producer John Frankenheimer, however, had worked with Angela Lansbury in a mother role in All Fall Down and insisted on having her for the part. During the mid-1980s, Ball attempted to resurrect her television career.
  • FORTIES
  • 1960
    Age 48
    Ball and Arnaz divorced in May 1960 and she married comedian Gary Morton in 1961.
    More Details Hide Details In 1962, Ball became the first woman to run a major television studio, Desilu Productions, which produced many popular television series, including Mission: Impossible and Star Trek.
    On March 3, 1960, a day after Desi's forty-third birthday (and one day after the filming of Lucy and Desi's last episode together), Lucy filed papers in Santa Monica Superior Court, claiming married life with Desi was "a nightmare" and nothing at all as it appeared on I Love Lucy. On May 4, 1960, just two months after filming that episode (the final episode of The Lucy-Desi Comedy Hour), the couple divorced.
    More Details Hide Details Until his death in 1986, however, Arnaz and Ball remained friends and often spoke very fondly of each other. Her real-life divorce indirectly found its way into her later television series, as she was always cast as an unmarried woman. The following year, Ball starred in the Broadway musical Wildcat, which co-starred Keith Andes and Paula Stewart. That marked the beginning of a thirty-year friendship between Lucy and Stewart, who introduced Lucy to second husband Gary Morton, a Borscht Belt comic who was thirteen years her junior. According to Ball, Morton claimed he had never seen an episode of I Love Lucy due to his hectic work schedule. Ball immediately installed Morton in her production company, teaching him the television business and eventually promoting him to producer. Morton played occasional bit parts on Ball's various series. Ball was outspoken against the relationship her son had with actress Patty Duke. Later, commenting on when her son dated Liza Minnelli, she was quoted as saying, "I miss Liza, but you cannot domesticate Liza."
    The 1960 Broadway musical Wildcat ended its run early when Ball became too ill to continue in the show.
    More Details Hide Details The show was the source of the song she made famous, "Hey, Look Me Over," which she performed with Paula Stewart on The Ed Sullivan Show.
  • 1957
    Age 45
    In 1957, CBS bought the rights back for $1,000,000, which provided Ball and Arnaz the down payment for the purchase of the former RKO Studios, which became Desilu Studios.
    More Details Hide Details I Love Lucy dominated the ratings in the United States for most of its run. (An attempt was made to adapt the show for radio; the cast and writers adapted the memorable "Breaking the Lease" episode – in which the Ricardos and Mertzes fall out over an argument, the Ricardos threaten to move, but they are stuck in a firm lease – for a radio audition disc that never aired, but has survived.) A scene in which Lucy and Ricky are practising the tango, in the episode "Lucy Does The Tango", evoked the longest recorded studio audience laugh in the history of the show; it was so long, the sound editor had to cut that particular part of the soundtrack in half. During the show's production breaks, Lucy and Desi starred together in two feature films: The Long, Long Trailer (1954) and Forever, Darling (1956). Desilu produced several other popular shows, such as The Untouchables, Star Trek, and Mission: Impossible. Desilu was eventually sold for $17,000,000 and merged into Paramount Pictures in 1967.
  • 1953
    Age 41
    The birth made the cover of the first issue of TV Guide for the week of April 3–9, 1953. (Lucy appeared on the cover of TV Guide more times than any other star in the history of the magazine.)
    More Details Hide Details In October 1956, Ball, Vivian Vance, Desi Arnaz, and William Frawley all appeared on a Bob Hope special on NBC, including a spoof of I Love Lucy, the only time all four stars were together on a color telecast. By the end of the 1950s, Desilu had become a large company, causing a good deal of stress for both Ball and Arnaz.
    The same year, Ball gave birth to their first child, Lucie Arnaz, followed by Desi Arnaz, Jr. in 1953.
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  • 1952
    Age 40
    She stated that in the 1952 US Presidential Election, she voted for Republican Dwight Eisenhower.
    More Details Hide Details On September 4, 1953, Ball met privately with HUAC investigator William A. Wheeler in Hollywood and gave him sealed testimony. She stated that she had registered to vote as a Communist "or intended to vote the Communist Party ticket" in 1936 at her socialist grandfather's insistence. She stated she "at no time intended to vote as a Communist." J. Edgar Hoover, then director of the FBI, named "Lucy and Dezi sic" among his "favorites of the entertainment world." Immediately before the filming of episode 68 ("The Girls Go Into Business") of I Love Lucy, Desi Arnaz, instead of his usual audience warm-up, told the audience about Lucy and her grandfather. Reusing the line he had first given to Hedda Hopper in an interview, he quipped: "The only thing red about Lucy is her hair, and even that is not legitimate."
  • THIRTIES
  • 1951
    Age 39
    On July 17, 1951, one month before her 40th birthday, Ball gave birth to daughter Lucie Désirée Arnaz.
    More Details Hide Details A year and a half later, Ball gave birth to her second child, Desiderio Alberto Arnaz IV, known as Desi Arnaz, Jr. Before he was born, I Love Lucy was a solid ratings hit, and Ball and Arnaz wrote the pregnancy into the show. (Ball's necessary and planned caesarean section in real life was scheduled for the same date that her television character gave birth.) There were several challenges from CBS, insisting that a pregnant woman could not be shown on television, nor could the word "pregnant" be spoken on-air. After approval from several religious figures the network allowed the pregnancy storyline, but insisted that the word "expecting" be used instead of "pregnant." (Arnaz garnered laughs when he deliberately mispronounced it as "'spectin'".) The episode's official title was "Lucy Is Enceinte," borrowing the French word for pregnant; however, episode titles never appeared on the show.
  • 1948
    Age 36
    In 1948, Ball was cast as Liz Cugat (later "Cooper"), a wacky wife, in My Favorite Husband, a radio program for CBS Radio.
    More Details Hide Details The program was successful, and CBS asked her to develop it for television. She agreed, but insisted on working with her real-life husband, Cuban bandleader Desi Arnaz. CBS executives were reluctant, thinking the public would not accept an All-American redhead and a Cuban as a couple. CBS was initially not impressed with the pilot episode produced by the couple's Desilu Productions company, so the couple toured the road in a vaudeville act with Lucy as the zany housewife wanting to get in Arnaz's show. The tour was a great success, and CBS put I Love Lucy into their lineup. The I Love Lucy show was not only a star vehicle for Lucille Ball, but also a way for her to try to salvage her marriage to Desi Arnaz, which had become badly strained, in part because both had hectic performing schedules which often kept them apart.
  • 1946
    Age 34
    In 1946, Ball starred in Lover Come Back.
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  • 1944
    Age 32
    Ball filed for divorce in 1944, going so far as obtaining an interlocutory decree; however, she reconciled with Arnaz and stopped the proceedings.
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    In a 1944 British Pathé newsreel, titled Fund Raising For Roosevelt, Ball was featured prominently among several stage and film stars at events in support of President Franklin D. Roosevelt's fundraising campaign for the March of Dimes.
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  • TWENTIES
  • 1938
    Age 26
    When that completed its run in 1938, Ball joined the cast of The Wonder Show starring Jack Haley (best remembered as the Tin Woodman in The Wizard of Oz, 1939).
    More Details Hide Details Here she began her 50-year professional relationship with Gale Gordon, who served as show announcer. The Wonder Show lasted one season, with the final episode airing on April 7, 1939. MGM producer Arthur Freed purchased the Broadway hit musical play DuBarry Was a Lady (1943) especially for Ann Sothern, but when Sothern turned down the part, the choice role was awarded to Ball, who in real life was Sothern's best friend.
  • 1937
    Age 25
    In 1937, she appeared regularly on The Phil Baker Show.
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    The play premiered in Princeton, New Jersey, on January 21, 1937 with Ball playing the part of Julie Tucker, "one of three roommates coping with neurotic directors, confused executives, and grasping stars who interfere with the girls' ability to get ahead."
    More Details Hide Details The play received good reviews, but there were problems, chiefly with its star, Conway Tearle, who was in poor health. Cormack wanted to replace him, but the producer, Anne Nichols, said the fault lay with the character and insisted that the part needed to be reshaped and rewritten. The two were unable to agree on a solution. The play was scheduled to open on Broadway at the Vanderbilt Theatre, but closed after one week in Washington, D.C., when Tearle suddenly became gravely ill. Ball signed with Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer in the 1940s, but never achieved major stardom from her appearance in the studio's films. She was known in many Hollywood circles as "Queen of the B's" – a title previously held by Fay Wray – starring in a number of B-movies, such as Five Came Back (1939). Like many budding actresses, Ball picked up radio work to earn side income, as well as gain exposure.
  • 1936
    Age 24
    In 1936, she landed the role she hoped would lead her to Broadway, in the Bartlett Cormack play Hey Diddle Diddle, a comedy set in a duplex apartment in Hollywood.
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  • 1932
    Age 20
    She moved back to New York City in 1932 to resume her pursuit of a career as an actress and supported herself by again working for Carnegie and as the Chesterfield cigarette girl.
    More Details Hide Details Using the name Diane (sometimes spelled Dianne) Belmont, she started getting some chorus work on Broadway but the work was not lasting. Ball was hired – but then quickly fired – by theatre impresario Earl Carroll, from his Vanities, and by Florenz Ziegfeld, from a touring company of Rio Rita. After an uncredited stint as a Goldwyn Girl in Roman Scandals (1933), starring Eddie Cantor and Gloria Stuart, Ball moved permanently to Hollywood to appear in films. She appeared in many small movie roles in the 1930s as a contract player for RKO Radio Pictures, including a two-reel comedy short with the Three Stooges (Three Little Pigskins, 1934) and a movie with the Marx Brothers (Room Service, 1938). She can also be seen as one of the featured models in the Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers film Roberta (1935), briefly as the flower girl in Top Hat (1935), and in a brief supporting role at the beginning of Follow the Fleet (1936), another Astaire-Rogers film. Ginger Rogers was a distant maternal cousin of Ball's. Rogers and she played aspiring actresses in the film Stage Door (1937), co-starring Katharine Hepburn.
  • TEENAGE
  • 1928
    Age 16
    Ball was determined to prove her teachers wrong and returned to New York City in 1928.
    More Details Hide Details Among her other jobs, she landed work as a fashion model for Hattie Carnegie. Her career was thriving when she became ill, with rheumatoid arthritis, and was unable to work for two years.
  • 1925
    Age 13
    In 1925, Ball, then only 14, started dating Johnny DeVita, a 23-year-old local hoodlum.
    More Details Hide Details DeDe was unhappy with the relationship, but was unable to influence her daughter to end it. She expected the romance to burn out in a few weeks, but that did not happen. After about a year, DeDe tried to separate them by using Lucille's desire to be in show business. Despite the family's meager finances, she arranged for Lucille to go to the John Murray Anderson School for the Dramatic Arts in New York City, where Bette Davis was a fellow student. Ball later said about that time in her life, "All I learned in drama school was how to be frightened."
  • CHILDHOOD
  • 1915
    Age 3
    While DeDe Ball was pregnant with her second child, Frederick, Henry Ball contracted typhoid fever and died in February 1915.
    More Details Hide Details Ball recalled little from the day her father died, but remembered a bird getting trapped in the house. From that day forward, she suffered from ornithophobia. After her father died, her mother returned to New York. Ball and her brother, Fred Henry Ball (July 17, 1915 – February 5, 2007), were raised by their mother and maternal grandparents in Celoron, New York, a summer resort village on Lake Chautauqua, just 2.5 miles west of downtown Jamestown. Lucy loved Celoron Park, one of the best amusement areas in the United States at that time. Its boardwalk had a ramp to the lake that served as a children’s slide, the Pier Ballroom, a roller-coaster, a bandstand, and a stage where vaudeville concerts and regular theatrical shows were presented which made Celoron Park an entertainment destination. Four years after Henry Ball's death, DeDe Ball married Edward Peterson. While her mother and stepfather looked for work in another city, Lucy's stepfather’s parents cared for her and her brother. Ball’s new guardians were a puritanical Swedish couple who banished all mirrors from the house except for one over the bathroom sink. When the young Ball was caught admiring herself in it, she was severely chastised for being vain. This period of time affected Ball so deeply that, in later life, she claimed that it lasted seven or eight years. Peterson was a Shriner.
  • 1911
    Born
    Born on August 6, 1911.
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Original Authors of this text are noted here.
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