Corinne Mae Marshall (Griffith) (1894 - 1979)

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About Corinne Mae Marshall (Griffith)

Corinne Mae Griffith (November 21, 1894 – July 13, 1979) was an American actress. Dubbed "The Orchid Lady of the Screen", she was one of the most popular film actresses of the 1920s and widely considered the most beautiful actress of the silent screen. Shortly after the advent of sound film, Griffith retired from acting and became a successful author.

Early life and career

Griffith was born in Texarkana, Texas to John Lewis Griffin and Ambolina (Ambolyn) Ghio. She attended Sacred Heart Convent school in New Orleans and worked as a dancer before she began her acting career.

Griffith began her screen career at the Vitagraph Studios in 1916. She later moved to First National, where she became one of their most popular stars. In 1928, she had the starring role in The Garden of Eden. The next year, in 1929, Griffith received an Academy Award nomination for her role in The Divine Lady.

Griffith's first sound film, Lilies of the Field, was released in 1930. Griffith's voice did not record well (The New York Times stated that she "talked through her nose"), and the film was a box office flop. After appearing in one more motion picture, the British film Lily Christine in 1932, she retired from acting. She returned to the screen in 1962 in the low-budget melodrama Paradise Alley, which received scant release.

Later career

Griffith was one of the few film stars to move successfully into new careers once her stardom had ended. She was an accomplished writer who published eleven books including two best sellers, My Life with The Redskins and the memoir Papa's Delicate Condition, which was made into a 1963 film starring Jackie Gleason about the Ghio and Griffin family. Her actual family names were used in the film.

Her ventures into real estate were particularly successful (at one point she owned four different major office buildings in Los Angeles, each of them named after her).

Personal life

Griffith was married four times. She married actor and frequent co-star Webster Campbell from 1920 to 1923, producer Walter Morosco from 1924 to 1934, and the owner of the Washington Redskins football team George Preston Marshall from 1936 to 1958. During her marriage to Marshall, she composed the lyrics to the Redskins fight song "Hail to the Redskins" which became one of the most famous football anthems.

In 1966, within a few days, she married and divorced her fourth husband, Broadway actor Danny Scholl (Call Me Mister). Scholl was 45, more than 25 years Griffith's junior. In court she testified that she was not Corinne Griffith. She claimed that she was the actresses' younger (by twenty years) sister who had taken her place upon the famous sister's death. Contradicting testimony by actresses Betty Blythe and Claire Windsor, who had both known her since the 1920s, did not shake her story. In 1974, Adele Whitely Fletcher, editor of Photoplay, said Griffith was still claiming that she was her own younger sister.

Griffith was a member of the Christian Science religion.


On July 13, 1979, Griffith died of heart failure in Santa Monica, California, aged 84. At the time of her death, her personal estate was worth over $150,000,000.

For her contribution to the motion picture industry, Corrine Griffith has a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame at 1560 Vine Street.

Selected filmography

Year Title Role Notes

1916 La Paloma Stella

1916 The Waters of Lethe Joyce Denton

1916 The Yellow Girl Corinne

1916 Through the Wall Pussy Wimott

1916 The Last Man Lorna

1917 The Stolen Treaty Irene Mitchell

1917 Transgression Marion Hayward

1917 The Love Doctor Blanche Hildreth


1917 I Will Repay Virginia Rodney

1917 Who Goes There? Karen Girard

1918 Love Watches Jacqueline Cartaret

1918 The Clutch of Circumstance Ruth Lawson

1918 The Girl of Today Leslie Selden

1918 Miss Ambition Marta

1919 The Adventure Shop Phyllis Blake

1919 The Girl Problem Erminie Foster

1919 The Unknown Quantity Mary Boyne


1919 Thin Ice Alice Winton

1919 A Girl at Bay Mary Allen

1919 The Bramble Bush Kaly Dial

1919 The Climbers Blanche Sterling

1920 The Tower of Jewels Emily Cottrell

1920 Human Collateral Patricia Langdon

1920 Deadline at Eleven Helen Stevens


1920 The Garter Girl Rosalie Ray

1920 The Whisper Market Erminie North

1920 The Broadway Bubble Adrienne Landreth/Drina Lynn


1921 It Isn't Being Done This Season Marcia Ventnor

1921 What's Your Reputation Worth? Cara Deene

1921 Moral Fibre Marion Wolcott

1921 The Single Track Janette Gildersleeve

1922 Island Wives Elsa Melton

1922 Divorce Coupons Linda Catherton

1922 The Common Law Valerie West

1923 Black Oxen Madame Zatianny/Mary Ogden Extant

1923 Six Days Laline Kingston

1924 Single Wives Betty Jordan Executive producer

1924 Love's Wilderness Linda Lou Heath Executive producer

1925 Declassee Lady Heelen Haden Producer; Extant(British Film Institute)

1925 Classified Babs Comet Producer; Incomplete(Library of Congress)

1925 Infatuation Violet Bancroft Executive producer

1926 Into Her Kingdom Grand Duchess Tatiana (at 12 and 20) Executive producer

1926 Syncopating Sue Susan Adams Executive producer

1927 The Lady in Ermine Mariana Beltrami Executive producer; Lost film

1927 Three Hours Madeline Durkin Executive producer

1928 The Garden of Eden Toni LeBrun Extant/Incomplete(Library of Congress)

1928 Outcast Miriam

1929 Saturday's Children Bobby Halevy

1929 Prisoners Riza Riga

1929 The Divine Lady Lady Emma Hart Hamilton Extant

1930 Back Pay Hester Bevins Extant(Library of Congress)

1932 Lily Christine Lily Christine Summerset

1962 Paradise Alley Mrs. Wilson Alternative title: Stars in the Backyard

Books by Corinne Griffith

1947 My Life with the Redskins - history of the Washington Redskins football team, owned by her husband, George Marshall

1952 Papa's Delicate Condition - memoir of her childhood

1955 Eggs I Have Known - collection of recipes

1961 Antiques I Have Known - book about her interest in antiques

1962 Taxation Without Representation - Griffith's argument against taxes.

1963 I Can't Boil Water - collection of recipes she obtained from famous restaurants

1963 Hollywood Stories - collection of short fiction written by Griffith

1965 Truth is Stranger - collection of articles collected by Griffith that struck her as unusual with their information

1969 Not For Men Only - But Almost - a book on sports and its lack of appeal for most women

1972 This You Won't Believe - another collection similar to "Truth is Stranger"

1974 I'm Lucky at Cards - a book of various essays by Griffith

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Corinne Griffith's Timeline

November 21, 1894
July 13, 1979
Age 84