Wednesday, July 31, 2013


These days the cars are sleeker and the furs are sometimes faux if the mistress is a vegetarian, but many mistresses expect - and get - expensive presents.  Their keeper may not be wealthy and they may still be self supporting, but a little luxury is a lot.

Monday, July 29, 2013


page 294 of Matt Ridley's book THE RED QUEEN

... That blond hair on a woman has been considered by Europeans more beautiful than brown or black has long been noted. In ancient Rome women dyed their hair blond. In medieval Italy fair hair and great beauty were inseparable. In Britain the words fair and beautiful were synonymous. ... Blond hair in children is a fairly common gene among Europeans ... So when a mutation arose in the not so distant past ...for that blondness to last into adulthood but not beyond the early twenties, any men with a genetic preference for blond women would have found themselves marrying only young women... They therefore would have left more descendants and a preference for blond hair would have spread...  Hence, gentlemen prefer blondes.

Saturday, July 27, 2013


Obituary Revives Rumor of Hearst Daughter : Hollywood: Gossips in the 1920s speculated that William Randolph Hearst and mistress Marion Davies had a child. Patricia Lake, long introduced as Davies' niece, asks on death bed that record be set straight. LA TIMES ARTICLE  link here!

Indeed, the skeptics have a point. All the proof Lake had to offer were countless stories and a suspiciously familiar nose and long face. Whatever the truth, Lake undeniably led a glamorous life at the center of one of Hollywood's most enduring rumors, at a time when the star system flourished, the incomes were fabulous and the lifestyles opulent and uninhibited.

"She lived her life on a satin pillow," Lake said fondly after his mother's death. "They took away her name, but they gave her everything else."

Thursday, July 25, 2013


Marion Davies was a Ziegfeld girl... a lot of the girls had "Stage Door Johnny's, Sugar Daddys... some became mistresses, some became wives.

Tuesday, July 23, 2013


"I thought the least I could do for a man who had been so wonderful and great, one of the greatest men ever, was to be a companion to him."

-Marion Davies from her memoir "The Times We Had."

Monday, July 15, 2013


Page 18 hardback

"He used to call up my mother and ask if he could come for dinner.  And we'd sit around afterwards and listen to the radio or play cards or something silly like that.  It got to be a very friendly affiliation.

He told my father that he was in love with me, and my father said, "It's up to her.  She went on the stage of her own volition, and her life is in her own hands.  Her career, what she wants to do, whatever my daughter decides - it's all right with me."

And my mother felt the same way.

W.R. said he would try to get a divorce, and he did try.  He spent hundreds and thousands of dollars trying.  But there was the Catholic religion, and I think his wife felt that it said, "I will not accept a divorce,"  But instead it says, "If you are divorced, you cannot get married again in the Catholic church."

Page 20

"They were estranged before I met him - W.R. was fifty-eight when we me - and he was lonely.  That is why he would go to the shows, and the girls would think he was a wolf.  But he was not."

(Marion was about 14 or 15 when they met.

The Times We Had - Life with William Randolph Hearst by Marion Davies was published by the Indianapolis/New York publisher Bobbs-Merril Company, Inc. in 1975.

Tuesday, July 2, 2013


MARION DAVIES is one of the most known mistresses in the world.

That's because when his wife would not go through a divorce, William Randolph Hearst chose to live with her anyway and she him, in California.

According to her memoir, written in 1961, ten years after he died, and which was not published until 1975, more than ten years after she died in 1963, W.R. wanted to get a divorce but couldn't convince his wife to allow it.  So they gave up trying but he did not see or speak to his wife, though they had grown sons, for 25 years.

Marion and W.R. met when she was about 14 years old, maybe 16; she is known to have lied about her age as an adult taking about 7 years off the January 3rd 1897 date when she was born Marion Cecilia Douras, claiming to be born in 1905.  At the time they met she was on stage at the Ziegfield Follies in New York City where so many of the dancers had "Back Stage Johnnys, " Patrons," "Mentors," and became mistresses.  She and her sisters all had entertainment ambitions and the family together changed their surname to Davies.

The family was respectable and so was the early courtship of Marion and W.R.  He gave expensive presents to impress her. He came around the house, was friendly with her parents, who liked him, and Marion and W.R. were fast friends for some time before becoming more involved.

At the time they met W. R., as she called him, was a fifty eight year old mega-successful newspaper man who began building his personal fortune during the Spanish Civil War.  If there is any criticism of Marion's acting or movie success, it is that some say if it were not for Hearst's promotions and involvements in her career, she would not have made it so far. When Marion "retired" into mistresshood sometime before World War II, she was a movie star, a major star of the 1920's and 1930's, who had made 45 films in those early days of Silent Pictures and then Talkies. 

Their relationship is called "a 32 year affair." 

His pet name for her was "Rosebud."

He built her a "beach house" in Santa Monica that was a manor house.  Together they held lively parties at San Simeon, known today as Hearst Castle, because of all the parts of castles he bought in Europe and installed inside, but which he called "The Ranch."  (San Simeon is a major tourist attraction on the Central Coast of California today.) They flew Hollywood stars and supporting casts up the California Coast from Hollywood to be part of the weekend parties.  Charlie Chaplin was one of many regular visitors. Marion had a bubbly personality and kept things lively for their guests.

They sailed with their guests off the coast too.  There was one big scandal when a film producer was accidentally shot and killed on the boat, but generally their relationship was not considered scandalous. 

They lived across the country from W.R.'s wife, they traveled with an entourage to Europe every year for many years, and were accepted as a couple by many of the most elite. 

Marion was ambitious, though she hardly sounds it when you read her story as she wrote it.

She also used the money she earned to invest in real estate and is said to have turned her personal fortune into 20 million dollars.  She became a charitable giver and amassed a precious jewelry collection that was sold in 1963 after her death for about half a million dollars. (The beach house was sold at great loss.)

While Marion was not a secret mistress, there is a story that came out years later,  that she had a secret child. 

The rumor was leaked after the the death of  Marion's "niece" Patricia Van Cleve Lake, who was married to Arthur Lake, an actor, successfully, for her entire adult life.  The rumor was that Patricia was actually Marion's child with Hearst.  Patricia was raised by Marion sister and they spent many a summer and much of their European travel with Marion and W.R.  According to Patricia Lake herself, who made recordings on her death bed, at her wedding to Arthur at San Simeon, Hearst called her into his office and said "I'm your father." 

In her memoir Marion denied ever having had any children.