MISS ELIZABETH FIRTH : SINGER, ACTRESS, AND PHILANTHROPIST (1908)

This vintage real photo postcard features soprano, actress, and philanthropist, Elizabeth Firth (1880-1960). Although she was born in Phillipsburg, New Jersey, she became an accomplished singer and actress on the English stage. When she lived in Phillipsburg, she was known as “Jimmy” Firth. The nickname, Jimmy, came courtesy of her beloved father. She went by this moniker with her most intimate friends as well as among those in her theatre world. “Jimmy” graduated from high school in New Jersey and sang as a soprano soloist in the choir of her church. She then entered the New York Conservatory of Music. At a concert at New York City’s Waldorf-Astoria, she came to the attention of a leading London musical directress. Miss Firth then appeared in a few theatrical productions, including a small part in a play starring Viola Allen. In 1903 she accepted an offer to do an English concert tour. Before she could return to the United States, she was signed to a three year contract to act and sing on the English stage. She experienced a great deal of success in Gaiety theatre productions. Among her major roles was her appearance as Natalie, in the “Merry Widow”. The production was in 1907 at the Daly Theatre. Other actors in the play included Lily Elsie and Gabrielle Ray. Five portraits of the actress can be found in England’s National Portrait Gallery. She was known as a beautiful woman. One writer described her as “tall and slender” and that she had a “clear blond complexion along with blue eyes”. She was also considered one of the best dressed women in London. While in England, the actress visited her parents in the US annually and also engaged in theatrical tours there. “Jimmy” was a charitable woman and she established the “Elizabeth Firth Wade Foundation Endowment Fund”. Among the groups work was the building a a Youth Center in Phillipsburg. The foundation is still operating. Firth was married to a widower from Cleveland, Ohio. They wed in New York City in 1931. Miss Firth’s photo portrait was taken by the Foulsham & Banfield studio. Foulsham & Banfield were well known celebrity photographers. Frank Foulsham and A. C. Banfield operated a studio from the 1900’s through the 1920’s.. The postcard was published by Rotary Photo as part of a series (no.4829 B). This postcard was postmarked in 1908 and is in very good condition (see scans). (SOLD)

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One CommentLeave a comment

  1. You might want to add the H to tree lol


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