Mary Jane West (1893 - 1980) MP

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Nicknames: "Mary Jane West"
Birthdate:
Birthplace: Bushwick, New York
Death: Died in Los Angeles, California
Managed by: Erica Howton, (c)
Last Updated:
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Immediate Family

About Mary Jane West

Mae West (1893–1980) was an American actress, playwright, screenwriter and sex symbol. For her contribution to the film industry, she has a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame at 1560 Vine Street in Hollywood.

She was born as Mary Jane West on 17 Aug 1893 and died of a stroke on 22 Nov 1980 in Hollywood, California. Entombment in the family mausoleum at Cypress Hills Abbey in Brooklyn, New York.

Parents: John "Battlin' Jack" Patrick West (d. 1935) and Matilda "Tillie" Doelger (also spelled Delker) (d. 1930).

Married:

  1. on 11 Apr 1911 in Milwaukee, Wisconsin to Frank Szatkus AKA Frank Wallace. Legally divorced on 21 July 1942.
  2. in Aug 1913 to Guido Deiro; some sources reported that the pair were married.
  3. in 1916, liason with James Timony, who remained close friends until his death in 1954.
  4. ? liason with boxing champion William Jones, nicknamed Gorilla Jones. [130]
  5. in 1955, liason with Chester Rybonski AKA Pal Novack (1923-1999); until her death in 1980.
  6. in 1959 she dated actor Steve McQueen.

Notes

Mae West was an American screen legend and erotic icon famous for her voluptuous figure, sexy innuendos, and irrepressible wit. A free thinking and independent woman far ahead of her time, West expressed herself boldly, both sexually and creatively.

She famously surrounded herself with handsome muscle men, both onscreen and off, and accrued a long list of famous and powerful lovers. Notably, West was one of the first female American playwrights, and actresses, to demand and receive creative control over her work.

West's creative expression encompassed nearly every facet of the entertainment spectrum including theatre and screenwriting, film, radio, television, and audio recording. And with a career spanning some 80+ years, she holds the further distinction of having performed both vaudeville and rock and roll.

As a cultural icon she is immortalized by imitators, biographers, and even an assortment of snacks and devices bearing her name. Her trademark phrases have been translated into numerous languages, including Mandarin, Mongolian, Norwegian, and Lithuanian.

Her eulogy, written by Kevin Thomas and delivered by producer Ross Hunter, concluded --

“Mae West always said that no one was ever to feel sorry for her, and she would not want anyone to start now….Mae West figured that in one way or another she would live forever. And she probably will.”


The Quotable Mae

from Mae West Quotes

  • "It's not the men in your life that count, it's the life in your men."
  • "Marriage is a great institution, but I'm not ready for an institution."
  • "When I'm good, I'm very good, but when I'm bad, I'm better."
  • "Is that a gun in your pocket, or are you just glad to see me?"

"What only one?"

Does she sing the heart out of that song or what?

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Footnotes

[130] When the management at her apartment building discriminated against the African-American boxer and barred his entry, West solved the problem by buying the building.

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Mae West's Timeline

1893
August 17, 1893
Bushwick, New York
1980
November 22, 1980
Age 87
Los Angeles, California
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