Norma Talmadge

Norma Talmadge


Norma Talmadge
Film: East side of the 1500 block of Vine Street
Born May 26, 1893 in Jersey City, NJ
Died Dec. 24, 1957 of pneumonia in Las Vegas, NV

Norma Talmadge was one of the fabulous stars of Hollywood's Golden Age of the 1920s.

Miss Talmadge began her screen career at the age of 14 and her dark, dramatic beauty became a symbol of the silent motion-picture era.

She made more than 200 pictures, winning the idolatry of millions of fans and earning millions of dollars in the Hollywood film industry's heyday.

Miss Talmadge rose to stardom under the guidance of her first husband, Joseph M. Schenck, whose success as a film producer paralleled her own glittering career.

In 1934, ten days after she obtained a Mexican divorce, Miss Talmadge married comedian George Jessel. She divorced Jessel in 1939.

Miss Talmadge married Dr. Carvel James, a prominent Beverly Hills physician, on Dec. 4, 1946, after his release from war-time medical service with the Navy.

The daughter of Fred and Margaret Talmadge, she was one of three sisters who were to achieve fame in the new industry of moving pictures.

The sisters, Constance and Natalie, were contemporaries of their more celebrated sister on the nation's screens.

The Talmadge girls began their theatrical careers by staging and performing in neighborhood plays in Brooklyn. During her first year in high school Norma went to work at the old Vitagraph Studio in Brooklyn for $25 a week.

She soon came to Hollywood and grew up with the movies. She began modestly with walk-on roles in one-reelers but quickly became a featured player.

Her first major success was in "A Tale of Two Cities."

Some of her earlier titles included "The Social Secretary," "The Probation Wife," ""The Way of a Woman," "Love's Redemption," "The Eternal Flame" and "Ashes of Vengeance."

She became one of the industry's wealthiest stars, earning $7500 a week.

Schenck has been given much credit for Miss Talmadge's success. As head of United Artists, he watched over her career, handpicking her roles and the other players and directors of her films.

Like many another prominent star, Miss Talmadge did not long survive the coming of the talking picture. She made only two sound films—"New York Nights" and "Madame Du Barry."

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