Monday, July 30, 2012

Picture Frame.

When I'm not working or researching, I make things! 
I recently took my love for Jack and Olive to the next level and created this picture frame! Hopefully I'll be able to make more and sell them! 

Jack and his Women.

Jack is remembered today for being a womanizer and for having relationships that were violent on his part. But whats said about Jack and his Women are mostly rumor's nowadays. No one really knows what went on except for Jack and his wives. 
Rumor's are said about Jack being a cheater, abuser, and possibly even a murderer. 

It all started with Olive Thomas. Both Jack and Olive loved to party and occasionally drink. They had a "strange" relationship and fought a lot. When Olive mysteriously died, people automatically assumed it was a fight between Jack and Olive that led to Olive's tragic demise(To read more on Olive's death go to my Tragic Night in Paris post). Which over years and years of exaggerating stories on what happened that night, people believe that it was Jack that killed Olive. Even though it was by Olive's own hands. People rule out what actually happened, it was an accident! People always find ways to blame Jack because they don't want to believe that someone could make a mistake like that. Excuses like, Jack had syphilis and he used mercury to treat it, that's why they had the pills in the first place. Mercury was the most common way to treat syphilis back then, but it was a very common household item. It was used as a cleaning product, so having this product in a hotel bathroom doesn't seem so suspicious when you think about it. It was never proven whether or not Jack even had syphilis. People believe it, Olive Thomas' biographer said he contracted it in 1917, how she got that information, I have no idea. There is not a validated document that says he ever had it. Not a medical record, nothing. So everyone, stop jumping to conclusions about why they had Mercury, everyone had it back then, a lot of people made the deadly mistake of taking mercury pills. Olive was just one of the famous ones to actually die from taking them. It's been reported that hundreds and hundreds of people have died from ingesting Mercury in those days.
Jack and Olive before fatal trip.

It's no doubt that Jack felt responsible for Olive's death, even though she made that deadly mistake on her own. After her death, that's when Jack's bad boy reputation really began. No one really noticed it back in those days but when we look back, we can see a broken man. He didn't make many films after that night and his marriages seemed to have gotten worse.

In his second marriage to actress and Ziegfeld dancer, Marilyn Miller he was allegedly abusive towards her. Whether he hit her or not is unknown but he was not kind to her. Marilyn decided that she had enough and sought a divorce. Their divorce was finalized in 1927, on the grounds of desertion and neglect.

Jack and Marilyn Miller.

His third and final marriage to Ziegfeld dancer, Mary Mulhern, was just as bad as his second, if not worse. Within three months of marrying Jack, Mary grew afraid. Allegedly he spent days being abusive towards her and other days being off somewhere drunk. Jack was hospitalized in late 1932, with years of not taking care of himself caught up with him, and Mary sought out a divorce. Mary said in court that Jack once tried to break her door down, and chased her outside where she hid in the bushes. "He was a very nasty man," said Jack and Mary's maid. Eileen Witfield, who wrote the biography on Mary Pickford (Jack's very famous sister), The Woman Who Made Hollywood, wrote "He was a very hard man to get along with."
Their divorce was finalized in 1932.

Jack and Mary Mulhern. Note that Jack was only 33 years old here, you can see how ill he was becoming. 

In a sad and cruel twist of fate, Jack was all alone and ill in Paris, staying in the same hospital Olive was at 13 years earlier. His last wish was to see his second wife, Marilyn Miller, saying "I'd like to see Marilyn one more time, if she isn't mad at me." Marilyn agreed to see Jack but passport problems halted her journey to Paris. Marilyn never made it to his bedside.
Jack's last words where, "After all, I've lived more at thirty-six than most people have in a lifetime."

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Tragic Night In Paris.

In my book I explain and rule out many theories on Olive Thomas's final hours before making a deadly mistake and meeting her untimely demise.
Here I will explain some things about Jack and Olive's time in Paris.
Olive's Boarding pass from August 6, 1920. 
One thing that was published was that Olive told friends that Jack didn't want her to come to Paris with him, and that when they arrived in Paris, Jack left Olive alone for many weeks. Jack originally planned the trip to Paris with his former brother in-law Owen Moore, to get fitting's for new outfits. It was later that Jack decided that Olive should come with, and when they first arrived Jack had to go to London to get fittings, it was all planned. Jack didn't leave Olive to be mean, he left to do his original plans. Jack and Olive planned it to be a second honeymoon, they had marriage troubles and rarely got to see each other, this was so they could spend some time together.
An unknown "intimate" friend of Olive's told the papers after Olive died that Olive wrote a letter to her saying that she couldn't live any longer with Jack. Stating that further marriage and living together would be impossible. That was published in the Los Angeles Examiner, September 11 1920, just one day after Olive died.

On the evening of September 5, 1920 after a night of partying, Olive and Jack went back to their room at Hotel Ritz. Jack said they arrived at 3 O' clock in the morning, although some employee's at the Ritz hotel said that they saw Olive arrive alone at 1 am and Jack arrived at 3 am. Jack told papers that he went straight to bed and that Olive fussed around for a little bit and wrote a letter to her mother. The letter read: 
"'Mamma dear:  
Well and having a nice time. Leaving here September 11. I will cable you from the boat and will tell you all the news when I arrive.

Love to all.'"
Jack then stated that Olive went to the bathroom and then she suddenly shrieked, "My God!"  Jack jumped out of bed, and caught Olive in his arms. He read the label on the medicine bottle she just took pills from, and it read "Poison". He called for a doctor and then forced eggs and water down Olive's throat in order to make her vomit. When the doctor arrived, he pumped Olive's stomach 3 times and then brought her to the hospital. From vomiting the Mercury Bichloride tablets, it burned Olive's vocal chords and stomach. She soon lost sight and hearing. Olive suffered for four days before finally dying on September 10, 1920. 

From Jacks first instinct on making Olive vomit, it caused Olive to live longer only to die with more pain.  On his trip back to America, he planned to jump off the ship and kill himself. But everyone talked him out of it, saying he was a coward if he killed himself.

Many people blame Jack for Olive's death. But in my personal opinion, it was merely just a terrible accident. I think that swallowing mercury was more common than we think. More than five years before Olive's death, another actress swallowed this mercury solution. Actress Nellie Esling swallowed half a bottle of Mercury after a night of partying with friends. That sounds eerily similar to Olive's situation. Now, two actresses make that deadly mistake on accident? That's very suspicious. 
No one knows in today's world if Nellie lived or died, all we have is just a little newspaper clipping of her. Not even a picture of her has surfaced. All we know is that she was unconscious when people found her and when she was some what conscious, she said she swallowed half a bottle of pills on accident. What I don't get is that why would you swallow half a bottle of pills in the first place? Olive thought she took aspirin, why take so much? That would be just as deadly. 

Mercury Bichloride was an extremely common household item. People used it as a cleaning solution. Anyone could buy these pills at local drug stores, sometimes you had to get permission from a doctor. depending on the state you lived in. People either inhaled, injected, or applied it topically. What I don't get is that Olive died from it. Many other people swallowed this and they where fine. Why did she die? 
Perhaps, she died from throwing it up?

Olive and Jack on the ship, just before their trip to Paris. This is one of the last pictures of Olive.

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Exit Smiling

One of my all time favorite movies is the 1926 silent film, Exit Smiling starring Jack Pickford and Beatrice Lillie.

Exit Smiling was the film debut of a woman once named the funniest woman in the world, Beatrice Lillie. Lillie plays Violet, a stage actress touring with the acclaimed Flaming Woman, Violet wishes to get a bigger role in the show, but she doesn't realize that shes one of the worst actresses that has ever lived. While touring Violet meet Jimmie Marsh, played by the one and only Jack Pickford, who is an escaped convict and joins the crew of Flaming Woman.

Jack and Beatrice behind the scenes on Exit Smiling. I love the one hand holding the compact and the other hand holding a coke.

One of my favorite scenes is when Violet tells Jimmie that she's a famous actress, when really shes only in Flaming Woman so that the crew has someone to cook and clean for them. You can tell right from the start that Violet falls head over heals over Jimmie, and who wouldn't? It's Jack playing Jimmie. 
Jimmie later finds out that she plays a small part in the show, but he still makes her feel important and tells her that he's never met an actress before, he smiles at her and walks out of the room, leaving Violet there smiling at herself. 

This film shows the depth of Jack Pickford's acting abilities and Beatrice Lillie's comedic talent. Exit Smiling is one of my all time favorite movies and will remain one of my favorite comedies. I would recommend this to any silent film fan and it's a must see for Jack Pickford fans. He would have gone far if he had not had personal drug and alcohol issues. This was his second to last film before dying in 1933.

Jack and Olive.

Jack Pickford and Olive Thomas were the wild, young silent movie stars of the 1910's. They both loved life and loved acting. But behind closed doors they were two kids playing marriage. They were separated months at a time and were in passionate fights when together. In an act to save there marriage, they went on a second honeymoon together in Paris. 

But what happened on one fatal night in Paris, separated them for life.