• William Desmond

    1878 - 1949

    William Desmond (1878 - 1949)

    Actor. He was nicknamed “The King of the Silent Serials”. Born William Mannion in Dublin, Ireland, he was raised in New York City from infancy. He appeared in vaudeville and the legitimate stage and had his own theatrical troupe before making his film debut in 1915.  Square-jawed and muscular,  he became very popular in Universal […]

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  • William Dickerson

    1928 - 1999

    William Dickerson (1928 - 1999)

    American stage and screen actor. (bio by: A.J. Marik)

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  • William Dillard Powell

    1946 - 2005

    William Dillard Powell (1946 - 2005)

    Mary Black Gladden was an employee of The Pantry on Charles Road in Shelby, North Carolina. She was killed on October 31, 1991, while on duty at The Pantry. On that day between 3:15 a.m. and 3:30 a.m., Scott Truelove bought $5 worth of gasoline at The Pantry. Later he would state that while paying […]

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  • William Dowdell Denson

    1913 - 1998

    William Dowdell Denson (1913 - 1998)

    Jurist.  His father was an established lawyer and politician in Birmingham AL and his paternal grandfather, William Henry Denson, was a Congressman from Alabama, 1893-1895.  He attended the United States Military Academy at West Point, graduating cum laude in 1934, and was commissioned a second lieutenant in the Field Artillery of the United States Army. […]

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  • William Dozier

    1908 - 1991

    William Dozier (1908 - 1991)

    William Dozier (February 13, 1908 – April 23, 1991) was an American film and television producer and actor. Dozier was born in Omaha, Nebraska. He began in the film industry. With Joan Fontaine he co-founded Rampart Productions, responsible for Letter from an Unknown Woman (1948). He is best remembered as the executive producer and narrator of the Batman […]

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  • William Duell

    1923 - 2011

    William Duell (1923 - 2011)

    Actor. Best remembered by movie audiences for playing Sefelt in “One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest” (1975). His first experience on stage was in a production of “Arsenic and Old Lace” while attending Green Mountain College (Vermont). Following service as a medic with the US Navy during World War II, Duell attained his master’s degree […]

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  • William Dysart

    1929 - 2002

    William Dysart (1929 - 2002)

    British Actor. Film and television credits include “Edward the King,” “Softly Softly,” “Doctor Who,” “Randall and Hopkirk (Deceased),” “Submarine X-1,” “Z Cars,” and “Crossroads.” (bio by: Genet) Cause of death: Natural causes

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  • William E. Maritz

    1928 - 2001

    William E. Maritz (1928 - 2001)

    Chairman of the Maritz Inc. company, which is headquartered in Fenton, Missouri. Established in 1894 by his grandfather, the company was originally known as E. Maritz Jewelry Manufacturing Company. When William joined the company in 1953, it was known as Maritz Sales Builders. The family-owned company is one of the nation’s largest employee motivation companies […]

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  • William Edmunds

    1886 - 1981

    William Edmunds (1886 - 1981)

    Actor. He appeared in minor roles. Among others “Going Spanish” (1934), “Angels with Dirty Faces” (1938), “Idiot’s Delight” (1939), “Casablanca” (1942), “House of Frankenstein” (1944), “A Bell for Adano” (1945), “Anna and the King of Siam” (1945), “It’s a Wonderful Life” (1946), “The Beast with Five Fingers” (1946), “The Lost Moment” (1947), “The Pirate” (1948), […]

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  • William Edward Ayrton

    1847 - 1908

    William Edward Ayrton (1847 - 1908)

    Ayrton was born in London, the son of Edward Nugent Ayrton, a barrister, and educated at University College School and University College, London. He later studied under Lord Kelvin at Glasgow.  Ayrton’s second wife, Hertha Marks Ayrton, whom he married in 1885, assisted him in his research, and became known for her own scientific work […]

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  • William Edward Boeing

    1881 - 1956

    William Edward Boeing (1881 - 1956)

    Boeing was born in Detroit, Michigan, to a wealthy German mining engineer named Wilhelm Böing from Hagen-Hohenlimburg who had made a fortune and who had a sideline as a timber merchant. Anglicizing his name to “William Boeing” after returning from being educated in Switzerland in 1900 to attend Yale University, William Boeing left Yale in […]

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  • William Egan Colby

    1920 - 1996

    William Egan Colby (1920 - 1996)

    United States Intelligence Service Officer. Born in St. Paul, Minnesota, the son of Elbridge Colby, an army officer and educator, and Margaret Mary Egan Colby, an ardent Catholic who guided her son in the path of that religion. His grandfather, Charles Colby, had been a professor of chemistry at Columbia University but had died prematurely. […]

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  • William Ellery Channing

    1818 - 1901

    William Ellery Channing (1818 - 1901)

    Poet. Often referred to as William Ellery Channing the 2nd or simply Ellery Channing, he was the nephew of Dr. William Ellery Channing, the Unitarian preacher of Boston.  The name they shared was also the name of an ancestor who had signed the Declaration of Independence. The younger Channing dropped out of Harvard College and […]

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  • William Etty

    1787 - 1849

    William Etty (1787 - 1849)

    Painter. Studying in England and Venice, Etty became famous for painting nudes (he was once considered the ‘first pornographer’!). His work is exhibited in many major British galleries and often incorporate mythological themes. Although much of his work was created in London, Etty later moved to York where a statue of the artist now stands […]

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  • William Eythe

    1918 - 1957

    William Eythe (1918 - 1957)

    Actor. He is probably best remembered for his role as double-agent ‘Bill Dietrich’ in the 1945 film “The House of 92nd Street.” Born William John Joseph Eythe, he became interested in acting at an early age and often put on his own shows as an amateur producer/director. He attended the Carnegie Institute of Technology in […]

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  • William F. Albright

    1891 - 1971

    William F. Albright (1891 - 1971)

    From the early twentieth century until his death, he was the dean of biblical archaeologists and the acknowledged founder of the Biblical archaeology movement. Most notably, coming from his own background in radical German historical criticism of the historicity of the Biblical accounts, Albright, through his seminal work in archaeology (and most notably his development […]

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  • William Fairbanks

    1894 - 1945

    William Fairbanks (1894 - 1945)

    Actor. Born Carl Ullman in St. Louis, Missouri, he was a popular figure in over 65 movies during the silent film era. He made his first screen debut in war drama “Somewhere in France” (1916). He appeared in five movies released the next year, including “The Little Brother” (1917). With the advent of World War […]

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  • William Farnum

    1876 - 1953

    William Farnum (1876 - 1953)

    One of three brothers, William Farnum grew up in a family of actors. He made his acting debut at the age of ten in Richmond, Virginia in a production of Julius Caesar, with Edwin Booth playing the title character. His first major success was as the title character of Ben-Hur in 1900 though replacing the original […]

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  • William Fawcett

    1894 - 1974

    William Fawcett (1894 - 1974)

    Actor. After obtaining a Ph.D. he became a Professor of Theatre Arts at Michigan State University. Among his film credits were: “Stars Over Texas” as Judge Smith, “Green Dolphin Street” as Nat; and “The Sea Hound” as Andre the beachcomber. He also guest starred on numerous TV series including: “The Adventures of Rin Tin Tin”; […]

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  • William Fisk Harrah

    1911 - 1978

    William Fisk Harrah (1911 - 1978)

    Founder of Harrah’s Casino Hotels. Having been fascinated with cars in his childhood and teens, he studied mechanical engineering at UCLA until the stock-market crash of 1929. He then worked at his family’s business, where a Bingo-like game was played. At age 20 he bought the business. It prospered under his leadership, but he eventually […]

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  • William Frank Buckley, Jr

    1925 - 2008

    William Frank Buckley, Jr (1925 - 2008)

    Author and conservative commentator. Born in New York City, he was recruited into the CIA in 1951, the same year his first book, God and Man at Yale, was published. Soon founded the National Review in 1955, which he used as a forum to mobilize support for Barry Goldwater’s presidential bid. In 1964 helped form […]

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  • William Franklyn

    1926 - 2006

    William Franklyn (1926 - 2006)

    Actor. A native of London,  he is probably best known to many for his voice and appearances in Schweppes Tonic commercials which aired internationally during the 1960s and 1970s. After making his big screen debut with a minor role in the 1952 film “The Secret People”, with Audrey Hepburn, Franklyn would have memorable performances in […]

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  • William Frawley

    1887 - 1966

    William Frawley (1887 - 1966)

    Actor. He is best known for his portrayal of Lucille Ball’s gruff landlord ‘Fred Mertz’ on the groundbreaking 1950s television situation comedy “I Love Lucy.” By the time he came to “I Love Lucy” he was a veteran of vaudeville, the theatre and over 100 Hollywood motion pictures. Born in Burlington, Iowa, in his youth […]

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  • William Fritz “Dick the Bruiser” Afflis

    1929 - 1991

    William Fritz “Dick the Bruiser” Afflis (1929 - 1991)

    Born in Delphi, Indiana, Afflis grew up in Lafayette, Indiana, graduating from Lafayette Jefferson High School where he played football and wrestled. Afflis played varsity football at Purdue University and played for the Green Bay Packers in the early 1950s, as a lineman, before he became a pro wrestler.  In the late 1950s, Dick the […]

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  • William G McGowan

    1927 - 1992

    William G McGowan (1927 - 1992)

    Founder and Chairman of MCI Communications Corporation. After founding MCI in 1968, McGowan fought a legendary uphill battle to gain access to the local telephone network controlled by AT&T, culminating in an antitrust lawsuit and the breakup of the Bell System in 1984. Among his many philanthropic endeavors, he founded the William G. McGowan School […]

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  • William Gaddis

    1922 - 1998

    William Gaddis (1922 - 1998)

    William Gaddis was born in New York City to William Thomas Gaddis, who worked “on Wall Street and in politics”, and Edith (Charles) Gaddis, an executive for the New York Steam Corporation. When he was 3, his parents separated and Gaddis was subsequently raised by his mother in Massapequa, Long Island. At age 5 he […]

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  • William Gargan

    1905 - 1979

    William Gargan (1905 - 1979)

    William Gargan was born William Dennis Gargan on July 17, 1905, in Brooklyn, New York. He was the younger brother of actor Edward Gargan, whose birthday July 17 he shared. His father was a detective, and his mother was a teacher. He graduated from St. James School in Brooklyn. On leaving school, Gargan became a salesman […]

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  • William Gerhard Mennen

    1884 - 1968

    William Gerhard Mennen (1884 - 1968)

    Businessman. The son of Mennen Company founder Gerhard Mennen, he took control of the business in 1912 and built it into a giant corporation. Today it is part of the Colgate-Palmolive Company.

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  • William Gershom Collingwood

    1854 - 1932

    William Gershom Collingwood (1854 - 1932)

    Author, Artist, Antiquary. After a brilliant academic career at Oxford, where he was a pupil of John Ruskin, he married and settled at Gillhead, Windermere. He was influenced by Ruskin and William Morris, from whom he derived a life-long interest in Norse settlement, art and language. His interest in art and Scandinavia prompted his research […]

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  • William Gibson

    1914 - 2008

    William Gibson (1914 - 2008)

    William Gibson (November 13, 1914 – November 25, 2008) was an American playwright and novelist. He graduated from the City College of New York in 1938, and was of Irish, French, German, Dutch and Russian ancestry. William Gibson’s most famous play is The Miracle Worker (1959), the story of Helen Keller’s childhood education, which won him […]

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