• Jane “Punky” O’Brien Dart

    1918 - 2009

    Jane “Punky” O’Brien Dart (1918 - 2009)

    Actress. She appeared in around twenty movies in the late 1930s, then later helped persuade her friend Ronald Reagan to enter politics. Raised in Los Angeles, she was signed to a Warner Brothers contract in 1936, and performed in the 1937 “Marked Woman”; her most acclaimed role was as Paul Muni’s doomed mistress in the […]

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  • Jane Ace

    1897 - 1974

    Jane Ace (1897 - 1974)

    Radio Actress. Born Jane Epstein in Kansas City, Missouri, together with her husband Goodman Ace, they were one of the most popular novelty teams during radio’s golden era. In 1930, when circumstances forced Goodman Ace to continue broadcasting after his show had finished on KMBC Radio Kansas City, he brought his wife Jane in for […]

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  • Jane Adams

    1921 - 2014

    Jane Adams (1921 - 2014)

    Jane Adams was born in San Antonio, Texas and received a full scholarship to Juilliard, which she turned down to spend years studying at the Pasadena Playhouse. From there she got her start on Lux Radio Theatre and then with the Harry Conover Modeling Agency, where she was given her nickname “Poni”. (This was supposedly […]

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  • Jane Aiken Hodge

    1917 - 2009

    Jane Aiken Hodge (1917 - 2009)

    Jane Aiken Hodge (December 4, 1917 – June 17, 2009) was an American-born British writer. Born near Cambridge, Massachusetts, the second child of Pulitzer prize-winning poet Conrad Aiken and his first wife, the writer Jessie McDonald. Jane Hodge was 3 years old when her family moved to Great Britain, settling in Rye, East Sussex where […]

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  • Jane Appleton Pierce

    1806 - 1863

    Jane Appleton Pierce (1806 - 1863)

    Born in Hampton, New Hampshire, the daughter of Reverend Jesse Appleton, a Congregationalist minister, and Elizabeth Means-Appleton, Jane was a petite, frail, shy, melancholy figure. After the death of her father, who had served as president of Bowdoin College not long before Franklin enrolled there, she moved at age 13 into the mansion of her […]

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  • Jane Austen

    1775 - 1817

    Jane Austen (1775 - 1817)

    Austen’s parents, George Austen (1731–1805), and his wife Cassandra (1739–1827), were members of substantial gentry families. George was descended from a family of woollen manufacturers, which had risen through the professions to the lower ranks of the landed gentry. Cassandra was a member of the prominent Leigh family. They married on 26 April 1764 at […]

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  • Jane Avril

    1868 - 1943

    Jane Avril (1868 - 1943)

    Dancer. Famed for dancing the “Can-Can”. She was painted by Henri Toulouse-Lautrec.

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  • Jane Bowles

    1917 - 1973

    Jane Bowles (1917 - 1973)

    Writer. She was born in New York (United States) and died in Málaga (Andalucia, Spain). Her first novel La Phaeton Hypocrite  was printed privately and no copies survive. Despite of her lesbianism, she married the gay writer Paul Bowles in 1938, who remain her husband until her death in 1973. Her health declined and in […]

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  • Jane Connell

    1925 - 2013

    Jane Connell (1925 - 2013)

    Entertainer. She will be best remembered for creating the role of Agnes Gooch in the Broadway production “Mame” which ran on stage from 1966 until 1970. She went onto repeat the part in the 1974 motion picture adaptation of the same name. Born Jane Sperry Bennett, a child of the depression and one of four […]

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  • Jane Connelly

    1883 - 1925

    Jane Connelly (1883 - 1925)

    Actress. She appeared with her husband, Erwin Connelly, in Vaudeville. Among her handful of film appearances was as Buster Keaton’s mother in “Sherlock, Jr.” (1924).  She reportedly died after a nervous breakdown. (bio by: Bobb Edwards)  Family links:  Spouse:  Erwin Connelly (1873 – 1931)* *Calculated relationship

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  • Jane Cowl

    1884 - 1950

    Jane Cowl (1884 - 1950)

    Actress. Born Grace Bailey in Boston, Massachusetts, she made her Broadway debut in the play “Dorothy Vernon of Haddon Hall” on the night of her twentieth birthday in 1903. She was known for her interpretation of Shakespearean roles, playing Juliet in over 1000 consecutive performances in 1923. She made her screen debut in the lead […]

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  • Jane Croly

    1829 - 1901

    Jane Croly (1829 - 1901)

    Jane Cunningham was born in England, the daughter of a Unitarian minister, Reverend Joseph Cunningham, and his wife Jane Scott. The family emigrated to the United States when young Jane was twelve. The family first lived in Poughkeepsie, New York and later in Southbridge Massachusetts.  Jane first became interested in journalism while a student; she […]

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  • Jane Darwell

    1879 - 1967

    Jane Darwell (1879 - 1967)

    Born Patti Woodard to William Robert Woodard, president of the Louisville Southern Railroad, and Ellen Booth in Palmyra in Marion County in northeastern Missouri, she originally intended to become a circus rider, then later an opera singer. Her father objected, however, and she compromised by becoming an actress but changed her name to Jane Darwell […]

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  • Jane Dornacker

    1947 - 1986

    Jane Dornacker (1947 - 1986)

    American Rock Musician, Actress, and Comedian.  Her music career included lead vocals for the San Francisco rock group “Leila and the Snakes”.  She appeared in theater and standup performances, including the role of the stoic ‘nurse Murch’, in the 1983 movie “The Right Stuff”.  In the mid 1980’s, she worked as a traffic reporter for […]

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  • Jane Dornacker

    1947 - 1986

    Jane Dornacker (1947 - 1986)

    Jane Dornacker was the tall lead singer (Leila), keyboardist, and songwriter of the 1970s/1980s San Francisco “tack” rock group Leila and the Snakes. Pearl Gates and Pamela Wood provided supporting vocals. Their repertoire included “Rock and Roll Weirdos,” “Pyramid Power” and a spoof version of Peggy Lee’s “Is That All There Is?” Gates later left […]

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  • Jane Elizabeth Lathrop Stanford

    1828 - 1905

    Jane Elizabeth Lathrop Stanford (1828 - 1905)

    Educator. She was the co-founder of Stanford University with her husband, Leland Stanford. She and then President of Stanford, David Starr Jordan, rescued the University after Leland’s death. (bio by: Bona Rae Villarta)  Family links:  Parents:  Dyer Lathrop (1787 – 1855)  Jane Ann Shields Lathrop (1803 – 1882)  Spouse:  Leland Stanford (1824 – 1893)*  Children: […]

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  • Jane Froman

    1907 - 1980

    Jane Froman (1907 - 1980)

    Ellen Jane Froman was born in University City, Missouri, the daughter of Elmer Ellsworth Froman and Anna T. Barcafer. Her childhood and adolescence were spent in the small Missouri town of Clinton. Her father left her mother when Jane was about 5 years old. She developed a stutter around this time, which plagued her all […]

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  • Jane Gail

    1890 - 1963

    Jane Gail (1890 - 1963)

    Silent film actress of the 1910s, she was in over 80 movies. Some of her more famous roles were Dr. Jekyll’s fiancé, ‘Alice’, in “Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde”(1913), ‘Mary Barton’ in ‘Traffic in Souls” (1913), ‘Princess Flavia’ in “The Prisoner of Zenda” (1915), and  ‘A Child of Nature’ in  “20,000 Leagues Under the Sea”(1916) […]

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  • Jane Greer

    1924 - 2001

    Jane Greer (1924 - 2001)

    The five-foot five Greer began life as Bettejane Greer in Washington, D.C., the daughter of Charles Durell McClellan Greer, Jr., and his wife, Bettie. In 1940, at age 15, Greer suffered from a facial palsy, which paralyzed the left side of her face. She recovered, but it has been speculated that the condition contributed to […]

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  • Jane Hamilton

    1915 - 2004

    Jane Hamilton (1915 - 2004)

    Actress. Jane Hamilton started her career as a Goldwyn girl. She also worked as a model at Saks fifth avenue in Beverly Hills. She married millionaire William I. Hollingsworth in 1939. During the war, she worked for the Red Cross. In 1949 she married her second husband, Edward G. Wormhoudt. Jane appeared in several movies […]

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  • Jane Harker

    1922 - 2000

    Jane Harker (1922 - 2000)

    Actress, Model. A popular glamour girl of the late 1940s, she is remembered as Alice from a number of the ‘Joe McDoakes’ film shorts. Though little is recorded of her early years, she was born Jane Ellen Harker, was a native of the Chicago suburbs, became a Warner Brothers contract player, and made her 1946 […]

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  • Jane Henson

    1934 - 2013

    Jane Henson (1934 - 2013)

    Jane Nebel Henson Jane Nebel Henson met Jim Henson in a puppetry class at the University of Maryland and soon after became an integral creative and business partner in what would become the world famous Muppets. As a fine arts education major studying at the University of Maryland in 1954, Jane Nebel shared with Jim […]

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  • Jane Hoffman

    1911 - 2004

    Jane Hoffman (1911 - 2004)

    Actress. She appeared on staged in plays such as Edward Albee’s “American Dream” and “The Sand Box,” also in “Rhinoceros,” “Rose Tattoo,” and “Mother Courage and Her Children. On films, she appeared in “Up the Sandbox” (1972), “The Day of the Locust” (1975), “*batteries Not Included” (1987), “Deconstructing Harry” (1997) and “In & Out” (1997). […]

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  • Jane Hylton

    1927 - 1979

    Jane Hylton (1927 - 1979)

    Talent-spotted in her teens, Jane Hylton was a product of the Rank Organisation’s Company of Youth (more commonly referred to as the Rank Charm School), which took promising young actors and groomed them for a career in film. The programme turned out some genuine stars such as Dirk Bogarde and Diana Dors, but most alumni […]

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  • Jane Kean

    1923 - 2013

    Jane Kean (1923 - 2013)

    Kean and her older sister, Betty (1914 (some sources cite 1915 or 1916) – 1986), formed a comedy duo that worked the nightclub circuit throughout the 1940s/50s, and the two appeared on Broadway as sisters in the short-lived 1955 musical, Ankles Aweigh. Jane Kean was the sister-in-law of actor Lew Parker, best known as Lou […]

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  • Jane Matilda Bolin

    1908 - 2007

    Jane Matilda Bolin (1908 - 2007)

    Jurist. She was the first black woman to become a judge in the United States. Judge Bolin was the first black woman to graduate from Yale Law School, the first to join the New York City Bar Association, and the first to work in the office of the New York City corporation counsel, the city’s […]

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  • Jane Novak

    1896 - 1990

    Jane Novak (1896 - 1990)

    Jane Novak, the delicate beauty whom William S. Hart saved from savage hordes and runaway trains in a series of adventure films seven decades ago and who became one of a select few that reclusive star would permit near him in his declining years, died Thursday afternoon. The actress who began her career in 1915 […]

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  • Jane Randolph

    1915 - 2009

    Jane Randolph (1915 - 2009)

    Actress. A veteran of around twenty Hollywood films during the 1940s, she was best known for playing Alice Moore in Jacques Tourneur’s 1942 classic “Cat People”. Born Jane Roemer, she was raised in Kokomo, Indiana, and in 1939 moved to Hollywood to study acting. Briefly under contract to Warner Brothers, she made her 1941 silver […]

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  • Jane Russell

    1921 - 2011

    Jane Russell (1921 - 2011)

    Jane Russell Russell had three husbands: Bob Waterfield, (a UCLA All American, Cleveland Rams quarterback, Los Angeles Rams quarterback, Los Angeles Rams head coach, and Pro Football Hall of Fame member (married on April 24, 1943, then divorced in July 1968)); actor Roger Barrett, (married on August 25, 1968, until his death of a heart […]

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  • Jane Swisshelm

    1815 - 1884

    Jane Swisshelm (1815 - 1884)

    Jane Swisshelm was born Jane Grey Cannon in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, U.S., one of several children of Mary (Scott) and Thomas Cannon, both of Scotch-Irish descent; her father was a merchant and real estate speculator. In 1823, when Jane was eight years of age, both her sister Mary and her father died of consumption, leaving the family […]

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