JIM THORPE, GRACIE FIELDS, MONTY BANKS, MARCEL E. WAGNER and ROBERT I. GANNON Jim Thorpe, Gracie Fields, Monty Banks, Marcel Wagner and Robert J. Gannon sign an album leaf Signatures: “Jim Thorpe Los Angeles, Calif.”, “Monty Banks”, “Robt J. Gannon S.J. Fordham Univ.”, “Marcel E. Wagner Member of Legislature of New Jersey” and, on verso, “Best Wishes & Thanks/Gracie Fields, 1941”, 6½x2½ album leaf. JIM THORPE (1888-1953), All-American Halfback at Carlisle, was the 1912 Olympic decathlon gold medalist. In 1920, he became the first President of the American Professional Football Association, now the NFL. Thorpe played pro football on six teams (1915-1926, 1928), including the New York Giants (1925) and the Chicago Cardinals (1928). In 1950, the Associated Press polled sports-writers and broadcasters for the greatest football player and most outstanding male athlete of the first half of the 20th century. Thorpe won both polls. GRACIE FIELDS (1898-1979) was the highest paid British actress and biggest film box office draw of the 1930s. Movies of the singer comedienne included We’re Going To Be Rich and Smiling Along (1938). She was created Dame Commander O.B.E. (1979). Fields was married to MONTY BANKS, who directed many British films of the same era, from 1940 until his death in 1950. When Britain and Italy went to war in 1940, the Italian-born Banks had to leave the country or risk internment as an enemy alien. He and Fields moved to the Hollywood and made two more films each, but never achieved the same popularity in this side of the Atlantic. MARCEL E. WAGNER (1904-1973) was the first Ukrainian elected to the New Jersey legislature. From1943 to 1949, Wagner served as Assistant City Attorney for Jersey City. In 1955, the judge petitioned current mayor Bernard J. Berry to issue a proclamation declaring January 22nd “Ukrainian Independence Day”. The proclamat… More information available. Please contact us if you have questions. HFSID 167539
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