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Minnie Maddern Fiske
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Actress
    (December 19, 1865-February 15, 1932)
    Born in New Orleans, Louisiana
    Birth name was Marie Augusta Davey
    Appeared on Broadway in 'Tess of the D'Ubervilles' (1897), 'Becky Sharp' (1899), 'A Doll's House' (1902), 'Hedda Gabbler' (1903), 'The High Road' (1912), 'Wake Up, Jonathan!' (1921), 'Ghosts' (1927), 'The Merry Wives of Windsor' (1928) and 'The Rivals' (1930)
    Appeared in the films 'Tess of the D'Ubervilles' (1913) and 'Vanity Fair' (1915)
    Wrote several one act plays, including 'A Light for St. Agnes' (1896), 'The Rose' (1905) and 'The Eyes of the Heart' (1905)
    She began performing on stage at age three with the family theater troupe, the Maddern Family Band.
    She was often billed as just 'Mrs. Fiske.'
    She was so sensitive to noise in the theater that she banned members of the audience from eating peanuts.
    She and her husband lost their fortune after they bought and renovated the Manhattan Theatre, only to find that it cost too much to maintain.
    For her earliest performances, she was paid in lollipops.
    She popularized the plays of Henrik Ibsen in America.
    She also popularized a more restrained and subtle acting style.
    She was credited with helping to save the snowy egret from extinction by campaigning against using their feathers to decorate hats.
    The League of Women Voters named her one of the 12 greatest living American women (1923).

Credit: C. Fishel


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