I have had the pleasure of meeting a lot of great people during this journey and one of them is Glenn Santos who provided us with this great picture which I believe is from the New Jersey Steel Pier in the 1930’s. It shows Mary Small with Bobby Gilbert and Ralph Dumpke, but more importantly it shows Mary’s great and close friends, who gave her a huge break after she asked the for an autograph at the Hippodrome in Baltimore. Glenn, thanks for all of your support during this project and your own incredible research product, and hopefully soon we can hear the girls sing together again!
WORK FOR THE USO
Excerpt from Vaudeville, Old and New: An Encyclopedia of Variety Performers By Frank Cullen, Florence Hackman, Donald McNeilly
Here’s a clip from one of Bob Hope’s USO shows…
An Article From Radio Guide Magazine, October 5, 1935 Authored by Mary. CLICK HERE for the PDF.
This is another article written by Mary discussing her trouble being taken seriously as a grown adult. I love this article in particular because it has a picture of her mother Fannie and a group shot of her and the Three X Sisters celebrating her 13th Birthday.
From the article:
I have the hardest time in the world making people believe the simplest of truths. At least 100,000 persons who have written to me and have talked to me, doubt that truth. They refuse to believe I am a little girl. The insist that I am a grown woman.
BEFORE THE ANDREWS SISTERS THERE WERE THE THREE X SISTERS
Radio Guide magazine ran a full page story about Mary and she said about her singing career … “There are three lovely ladies to whom I owe a great deal. They are Vi and Pearl Hamilton, and Jessie Fordyce, whom you hear on the radio as the Three X Sisters. It was they who heard me in Baltimore when I was eleven years old and really got me started”. (October 5, 1935). Mary was a fan of the Three X Sisters before she had been a radio singer. From Youtube:
Below they perform Rex and His Soundeffects, as sung by the Three X Sisters (aka,Hamilton Sisters & Fordyce) in 1935 step away from their regular radio schedule at NBC in New York to sing for a Paramount Film short called ‘Excuse My Gloves.’