Dorothy  Dandridge

Dorothy Dandridge

Female 1923 - 1965  (41 years)    Has 3 ancestors but no descendants in this family tree.

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  • Name Dorothy Dandridge 
    Relationshipwith Adam
    Born 9 Nov 1923  Cleveland, Cuyahoga Co., OH Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Gender Female 
    Died 8 Sep 1965  West Hollywood, California, USA Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Person ID I373519  Geneagraphie
    Last Modified 7 Apr 2002 

    Father Cyrus Dandridge,   d. Yes, date unknown 
    Mother Ruby Dandridge,   b. 3 Mar 1900, Memphis, Tennessee, USA Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 17 Oct 1987, Los Angeles, California, USA Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 87 years) 
    Siblings 1 sibling 
     1. Vivian Dandridge,   b. 22 Apr 1921, Cleveland, Cuyahoga Co., OH Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 1991  (Age 69 years)
     
    Family ID F148189  Group Sheet  |  Family Chart

    Family 1 Harold Lloyd Nicholas,   b. 27 Mar 1921, Winston-Salem, North Carolina, USA Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 3 Jul 2000, New York City, NY, USA Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 79 years) 
    Married 1944 
    Divorced 1955 
    Last Modified 7 Apr 2002 
    Family ID F148192  Group Sheet  |  Family Chart

    Family 2 Jack Denison,   d. Yes, date unknown 
    Married 1959 
    Divorced 1962 
    Last Modified 7 Apr 2002 
    Family ID F148191  Group Sheet  |  Family Chart

    Family 3 Peter Sidney Ernest Lawford,   b. 7 Sep 1923, London, Middlesex, England Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 24 Dec 1984, Los Angeles, California Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 61 years) 
    Last Modified 7 Apr 2002 
    Family ID F148183  Group Sheet  |  Family Chart

    Family 4 Otto Preminger,   b. 5 Dec 1906, Wien, Österreich Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 23 Apr 1986, New York City, NY, USA Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 79 years) 
    Last Modified 7 Apr 2002 
    Family ID F148184  Group Sheet  |  Family Chart

  • Photos
    373519.jpg
    373519.jpg

  • Notes 
    • Under the prodding of her mother, Dorothy and her sister began performing publicly usually in black Baptist churches throughout the country. Her mother, an entertainer herself and the daughter of Madame Sul-Te-Wan, an actress from Kentucky, would often join her daughters on stage. As the depression worsened, Dorothy and her family picked up and moved to Los Angeles where they had hopes of finding better work, perhaps in film. Her first film was in the Marx Brothers comedy, A DAY AT THE RACES in 1937. It was only a bit part but Dorothy had hopes that it would blossom into something better. But because she was a black woman in a very prejudiced society, she didn't land the roles that were readily available to her white counterparts. She did not appear in another film until 1940 in FOUR SHALL DIE. The role was nothing great other than to establish the fact that she was very beautiful and talented. Her next few roles in the early forties included films such as BAHAMA PASSAGE (1941), DRUMS OF THE CONGO (1942), and CHANGE OF HEART (1943). There were others in between, of course, but they were the usual black stereotypical films for women such as Dorothy. Not only was she a talented actress but she could also sing which was evident in films such as ATLANTIC CITY (1944) and PILLOW TO POST (1945). This helped to showcase her talents as a singer and brought her headline acts in the nation's finest hotel nightclubs in New York, Miami, Chicago, and Las Vegas. She may have been allowed to sing in these fine hotels, but because of racism, she couldn't stay there. It was reported that one hotel drained its swimming pool to keep her from enjoying that little amenity. In 1954, Dorothy appeared in the all-black production of CARMEN JONES in the title role. She was so superb in that picture that she garnered an Academy Award nomination but lost out to Grace Kelly in THE COUNTRY GIRL. Despite the nomination for her performance Dorothy did not get another movie until she appeared in TAMANGO (1956) which was an Italian film. She was to make six more motion pictures of which ISLAND IN THE SUN (1957) and PORGY AND BESS (1959) were worthy of mention. Once again she was a standout. The last movie she would ever play would be in 1961's THE MURDER MEN. Dorothy faded quickly after that with a poor second marriage to Jack Denison (her first was to Harold Nicholas), poor investments,other financial woes, and a problem with alcohol. She was found dead in her West Hollywood apartment on September 8, 1965, the victim of a barbituate poisoning. She was only 41. Had she been born 20 years later, Dorothy Dandridge would no doubt be one of the most well-known actresses in film history.
    • (Medical):overdose drugs


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