Friday, November 30, 2012

gone but not forgotten - adrienne ames

ca. 1933

photographed by eugene robert richee, 1934

ca. 1933

photographed by alfred cheney johnson

photographed by otto dyar

adrienne ames (3 august, 1907 - 31 may, 1947)

born as adrienne ruth mcclure in fort worth, texas, ames married oilman derward duont truax when she was 16 & he was 19 (or 23 by some accounts). they had a daughter, dorothy j. barbara around 1922. they divorced shortly after. 

she worked in hollywood for a year & a half doing bit & small parts & in 1927 she is a stand-in for pola negri. she heads east to new york to do a film with ben lyon but that fails to materialize.  she stayed & attended columbia university studying literature. 

around 1928/1929 she meets beverly hills millionaire broker stephen m. ames & they marry on 21 august, 1929. they move to beverly hills.  she is photographed by ruth harriet louise & rumor is that paramount gives her a contract with a screen test based on these pictures.  her husband, now a producer, has his close friend bruce cabot escort his wife around town while he is busy.  in 1933 she & ames agree on a trial separation because their work keeps them apart. "the fact that miss ames has been frequently in the company of bruce cabot, screen actor, has nothing to do with the separation," miss ames said & her husband affirms.  ames would go on to marry another beauty - raquel torres.

on 15 september, 1933 she leaves by train for reno to divorce ames & files for divorce there on october 30th. on 31 october, 1933, the day after her divorce, she marries jacques etienne de bujac a.k.a. bruce cabot, at the carlsbad, new mexico home of his mother. they are both 29. they would separate in july of 1935 but would have an on again off again relationship & after being granted an uncontested divorce, they decided not to divorce in 1936. in march of 1937 she filed again citing his unbearable & drunken behavior but once again was persuaded to drop the case by cabot. finally, in april of 1937 they were divorced.

the following year, the couple had to appear together before the united states board of tax appeals. with a war looming in europe & the country still in the throes of the depression, ames attempted to explain a $9.053 wardrobe allowance for her 1934 tax filing (the equivalent of about $146,000 today). she told the federal judge overseeing the proceedings that she had to use her own clothes in "filthy still galleries" long before films went into production. "i must have a maid to hlep change me during the taking of stills," ames said. "it's impossible to hook my dress in the center of my back when i'm in a hurry." furthermore, she explained, each outfit could only be work 3 to a dozen times, depending on its "distinctiveness." she said her daily living expenses, which included hotel, taxis, food, flowers, tips, massages & beauty work, totaled $50 a day while she was in new york & $35 a day when she was in london.

ames went to new york & is seen out with various men.  in 1941 she leaves the film world & becomes a commentator on WHN, a new york city radio station, where she interviews celebrities & hands out beauty advice. in 1947 she dies at her home from cancer at the age of 39. obituaries across the country claim her to be one of the best dressed women in the states.

she really was a beauty....

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