Emma Dunn
Dunn in 1911
Born(1875-02-26)26 February 1875
Birkenhead, Cheshire, England
Died14 December 1966(1966-12-14) (aged 91)
Los Angeles, California, U.S.
OccupationActress
Years active1902–1948
Spouses
(m. 1897; div. 1909)
John W. Stokes
(m. 1909; died 1931)
Children2

Emma Dunn (26 February 1875 – 14 December 1966) was an English actress. After starting her acting career on stage in London, she became known for her works in numerous films and Broadway productions.

Career

Emma Dunn, star of The Governor's Lady (1912)

Emma Dunn appeared onstage in her early teens, graduating to the London stage for several years and later became a noted Broadway actress. She appeared in the first American production of Ibsen's Peer Gynt (1906) with Richard Mansfield as Peer. She played Peer's mother, Ase, even though she was, in real life, 20 years younger than Mansfield. She appeared in three productions for theatre impresario David Belasco: The Warrens of Virginia (1907), The Easiest Way (1909) and The Governor's Lady (1912). In The Easiest Way, Dunn portrayed Annie, who was black, in blackface. In 1913 Dunn appeared in vaudeville.[1]

Dunn made her first film in 1914, a silent film of her 1910 stage success, Mother, directed by Maurice Tourneur. This was Tourneur's first American film. Dunn's second film was 1920's Old Lady 31, reprising the role she played in the 1916 Broadway play of the same name. One more silent film followed in 1924, Pied Piper Malone, and then she made her sound debut in Side Street, co-starring the Moore brothers, Matt, Owen and Tom as her sons.

Dunn wrote two books on elocution and speech: Thought Quality in the Voice (1933)[2] and You Can Do It (1947).[3]

Personal life

Emma Dunn with daughters Helen (left) and Dorothy (1915)

Emma Dunn was born 26 February 1875,[4] in Birkenhead, England, although she sometimes gave her year of birth as 1883.[5][6]

Dunn married Harry Beresford,[7][8] an actor who was then known professionally as Harry J. Morgan, in Chicago on 4 October 1897.[9] They divorced on 10 February 1909, in New York City. She was awarded sole custody of their young daughter, Dorothy. On 19 May 1909, Dunn married John W. Stokes[5] (John W. S. Sullivan[10]), an actor, playwright[6] and theatrical manager.[11] They subsequently adopted a second daughter, Helen.[12] The couple divorced sometime between 1923[5] and Stokes' death in 1931.[13]

After suffering a heart attack some months before, Dunn died 14 December 1966 in Los Angeles, California, aged 91.[14][15]

Theatre credits

Date Title Role Notes
30 November – 6 December 1902 The Wrong Mr. Wright Tillie Bird National tour beginning at Morosco's Burbank Theatre, Los Angeles[16][17]
8 January – January 1906 The Redemption of David Corson Majestic Theatre, New York City[18]
28 October 1906 – January 1907 Peer Gynt Ase Grand Opera House, Chicago[19][20]
25 February – 23 March 1907 Peer Gynt Ase New Amsterdam Theatre, New York City[21][22]
3 December 1907 – October 1908 The Warrens of Virginia Mrs. Warren Belasco Theatre, Stuyvesant Theatre, New York City[23]
19 January – June 1909 The Easiest Way Annie Stuyvesant Theatre, New York City[24]
7 September – 31 December 1910 Mother Mrs. Katherine Wetherill Hackett Theatre, Criterion Theatre, New York City[25][26]
10 September 1912 – January 1913 The Governor's Lady Mary Slade Theatre Republic, New York City[27]
7 January – July 1915 Sinners Mrs. Horton Playhouse Theatre, New York City[28][29]
30 October 1916 – March 1917 Old Lady 31 Angie 38th Street Theatre, New York City[30][31]
16 August – 10 September 1921 Sonny Mrs. Crosby Cort Theatre, New York City[32]
24 November 1924 – January 1925 Dawn Mary Slayton Sam H. Harris Theatre, New York City[33]
24 November 1925 – 19?? Rip Van Winkle Gretchen Boston Repertory Theatre, Boston[34]
January 1927 Junk Old Sal Garrick Theatre, New York City[35]

Filmography

Advertisement for Mother (1914)
Year Title Role Notes
1914 Mother Mrs. Wetherell [36]
1920 Old Lady 31 Angie Rose [36]
1924 Pied Piper Malone Mother Malone [36]
1929 Side Street Mrs. O'Farrell [36]
1930 Manslaughter Miss Bennett [36]
1931 Bad Sister Mrs. Madison [36]
Compromised Mrs. Squires [36]
The Guilty Generation Nina [36]
Morals for Women Mrs. Hutson [36]
The Prodigal Mrs. Cynthia Farraday [36]
The Texan Señora Ibarra [36]
This Modern Age Mrs. Blake [36]
Too Young to Marry Jennie Bumpsted [36]
Under Eighteen Mrs. Evans [36]
1932 Blessed Event Mrs. Roberts [36]
Broken Lullaby Mrs. Miller [36]
The Cohens and Kellys in Hollywood Mrs. Sarah Cohen [36]
Hell's House Emma Clark [36]
It's Tough to Be Famous "Moms" McClenahan [36]
Letty Lynton Mrs. Darrow [36]
The Wet Parade Mrs. Sally Chilcote [36]
When a Feller Needs a Friend Kind lady [36]
1933 Elmer, the Great Mrs. Kane [36]
Grand Slam Sob sister [36]
Hard to Handle Mrs. Hawks [36]
It's Great to Be Alive Mrs. Wilton [36]
A Man of Sentiment Mrs. Russell [36]
Private Jones Mrs. Jones [36]
1934 Dark Hazard Mrs. Mayhew [36]
Dr. Monica Mrs. Monahan [36]
Flirtation Mrs. Poole [36]
The Quitter Cordelia Tilford [36]
1935 Another Face Sheila's mother [36]
The Crusades Mother of Alan [36]
George White's 1935 Scandals Aunt Jane [36]
The Glass Key "Mom" [36]
The Keeper of the Bees Margaret Campbell [36]
Ladies Crave Excitement Mary Phelan [36]
Little Big Shot Matron [36]
Seven Keys to Baldpate Mrs. Quimby [36]
This Is the Life Mrs. Davis [36]
1936 The Harvester Granny Moreland [36]
Mr. Deeds Goes to Town Mrs. Meredith, Deed's housekeeper Uncredited[36]
Second Wife Mrs. Brown [36]
1937 Circus Girl Molly [36]
The Emperor's Candlesticks Housekeeper [36]
Madame X Rose [36]
Varsity Show Mrs. Smith [36]
Waikiki Wedding Old woman [36]
When You're in Love Mrs. Hamilton [36]
1938 The Cowboy and the Lady Ma Hawkins [36]
Cowboy from Brooklyn Ma Hardy [36]
The Crowd Roars Laura McCoy [36]
The Duke of West Point Mrs. West [36]
Lord Jeff Mrs. Briggs [36]
Thanks for the Memory Mrs. Platt [36]
Three Loves Has Nancy Mrs. Briggs [36]
Young Dr. Kildare Martha Kildare [36]
1939 Calling Dr. Kildare Martha Kildare [36]
Each Dawn I Die Mrs. Ross [36]
Hero for a Day "Mom" Higgins [36]
The Llano Kid Dona Teresa [36]
The Secret of Dr. Kildare Martha Kildare [36]
Son of Frankenstein Amelia [36]
1940 Dance, Girl, Dance Mrs. Simpson [36]
Dr. Kildare Goes Home Martha Kildare [36]
Dr. Kildare's Crisis Martha Kildare [36]
Dr. Kildare's Strange Case Martha Kildare [36]
The Great Dictator Mrs. Jaeckel [36]
Half a Sinner Granny Gladden [36]
High School Mrs. O'Neill [36]
Little Orvie Mrs. Welty [36]
One Crowded Night Ma [36]
Yesterday's Heroes Aunt Winnie [36]
You Can't Fool Your Wife Mrs. Fields [36]
1941 Dr. Kildare's Wedding Day Martha Kildare [36]
Ladies in Retirement Sister Theresa [36]
Mr. & Mrs. Smith Martha [36]
The Monster and the Girl Aunt Della [36]
The Penalty "Ma" McCormick [36]
Rise and Shine Mrs. Murray [36]
Scattergood Baines Mirandy Baines [36]
Scattergood Meets Broadway Mirandy Baines [36]
Scattergood Pulls the Strings Mirandy Baines [36]
1942 Babes on Broadway Mrs. Williams [36]
I Married a Witch Wife of the justice of the peace [36]
The Mad Martindales Agnes [36]
The Postman Didn't Ring Martha Carter [36]
The Talk of the Town Mrs. Shelley [36]
When Johnny Comes Marching Home Nora Flanagan [36]
1943 The Cross of Lorraine Mme. Marchand [36]
Hoosier Holiday Molly Baker [36]
Minesweeper Mom [36]
The North Star Old lady [36]
1944 Are These Our Parents? Ma Henderson [36]
The Bridge of San Luis Rey Dona Mercedes [36]
Irish Eyes Are Smiling Mother Machree [36]
It Happened Tomorrow Mrs. Keever [36]
My Buddy Mary Ballinger [36]
1945 The Horn Blows at Midnight Mrs. Smith [36]
The Hoodlum Saint Maggie [36]
1946 Night Train to Memphis Mom Acuff [36]
1947 Life with Father Margaret, the cook [36]
Mourning Becomes Electra Mrs. Borden [36]
1948 The Woman in White Mrs. Vesey [36]

References

  1. ^ "Emma Dunn in Vaudeville; Appears at the 5th Avenue in New Sketch" (PDF). New York Times. 10 June 1913. Retrieved 18 August 2019.
  2. ^ Dunn, Emma (1933). Thought Quality in the Voice. Hollywood: Ferger. OCLC 7131895.
  3. ^ Dunn, Emma (1947). You Can Do It. Agoura, California: Industrial Arts Press. OCLC 4447617.
  4. ^ Who Was Who in the Theatre, 1912–1976. Detroit: Gale Research Company. 1978. p. 720. ISBN 9780810304062.
  5. ^ a b c "Emma Dunn Stokes", National Archives and Records Administration (NARA); Washington D.C.; NARA Series: Passport Applications, 2 January 1906 – 31 March 1925; Roll #: 2321; Volume #: Roll 2321 - Certificates: 317850-318349, 29 June 1923 – 30 June 1923. Ancestry.com. U.S. Passport Applications, 1795-1925 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations, Inc., 2007; retrieved 16 April 2016.
  6. ^ a b "Emma D. Stokes". Ancestry.com. New York, State Census, 1915 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations, Inc., 2012; retrieved 16 April 2016.
  7. ^ "Emma Beresford". Year: 1905; Arrival: New York, New York; Microfilm Serial: T715, 1897-1957; Microfilm Roll: Roll 0611; Line: 4; Page Number: 59. Ancestry.com. New York, Passenger Lists, 1820-1957 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations, Inc., 2010; retrieved 17 April 2016.
  8. ^ Fidler, Jimmie (10 August 1936). "Hollywood Shots". Reading Eagle. Retrieved 17 April 2016.
  9. ^ "Harry J. Morgan". Ancestry.com. Cook County, Illinois, Marriages Index, 1871-1920 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations, Inc., 2011; retrieved 19 April 2016.
  10. ^ "Emma D. Morgan". Ancestry.com. New York, New York, Marriage Index 1866-1937 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations, Inc., 2014; retrieved 17 April 2016.
  11. ^ "John Wickliffe Stokes". Ancestry.com. U.S., World War I Draft Registration Cards, 1917-1918 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations Inc, 2005; retrieved 17 April 2016.
  12. ^ "Emma Dunn as a Real Mother". The Green Book Magazine. January 1916. p. 103. Retrieved 17 April 2016.
  13. ^ Ancestry.com. "John W. Stokes", South Carolina, Death Records, 1821-1961 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations Inc, 2008; retrieved 17 April 2016.
  14. ^ "Actress Dies at 91". Kenosha News. 19 December 1966.
  15. ^ "Character Actress' Rites Held". The Bakersfield Californian. 22 December 1966.
  16. ^ "At the Theatres". The Capital. Los Angeles: The Capital Publishing Company. 1902. p. 6. Retrieved 17 April 2016.
  17. ^ "In the Theatres". Spokane Daily Chronicle. 22 January 1903. Retrieved 17 April 2016.
  18. ^ "The Redemption of David Corson". Internet Broadway Database. Retrieved 17 April 2016.
  19. ^ "'Peer Gynt' in English Put on by Mansfield". The New York Times. 30 October 1906. Retrieved 17 April 2016.
  20. ^ "Mansfield Falls Out with Actress". The New York Times. 24 January 1907. Retrieved 17 April 2016.
  21. ^ "Peer Gynt". Internet Broadway Database. Retrieved 17 April 2016.
  22. ^ "Mansfield Seen in Ibsen's Peer Gynt". The New York Times. 26 February 1907. Retrieved 17 April 2016.
  23. ^ "The Warrens of Virginia". Internet Broadway Database. Retrieved 17 April 2016.
  24. ^ "The Easiest Way". Internet Broadway Database. Retrieved 17 April 2016.
  25. ^ "Mother". Internet Broadway Database. Retrieved 17 April 2016.
  26. ^ "Mother's' Woes Win Tears at Hackett". The New York Times. 8 September 1910. Retrieved 17 April 2016.
  27. ^ "The Governor's Lady". Internet Broadway Database. Retrieved 17 April 2016.
  28. ^ "Sinners". Internet Broadway Database. Retrieved 17 April 2016.
  29. ^ "'Sinners' is Given at the Playhouse". The New York Times. 8 January 1915. Retrieved 17 April 2016.
  30. ^ "Old Lady 31". Internet Broadway Database. Retrieved 17 April 2016.
  31. ^ "'Old Lady 31' A Play Full of Laughter". The New York Times. 31 October 1916. Retrieved 17 April 2016.
  32. ^ "Sonny". Internet Broadway Database. Retrieved 17 April 2016.
  33. ^ "Dawn". Internet Broadway Database. Retrieved 17 April 2016.
  34. ^ "Francis Wilson as Rip Van Winkle". The New York Times. 24 November 1925. Retrieved 17 April 2016.
  35. ^ "Junk". Internet Broadway Database. Retrieved 17 April 2016.
  36. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q r s t u v w x y z aa ab ac ad ae af ag ah ai aj ak al am an ao ap aq ar as at au av aw ax ay az ba bb bc bd be bf bg bh bi bj bk bl bm bn bo bp bq br bs bt bu bv bw bx by bz ca cb cc cd ce cf cg ch ci cj ck cl cm cn co cp cq cr cs ct cu cv cw cx cy cz da "Emma Dunn profile". AFI Catalog of Feature Films. American Film Institute. Retrieved 17 April 2016.