16 June, 2012

H. Chandler Egan

Henry Chandler Egan was an American amateur golfer and golf course architect of the early 20th century.

Egan was born in Chicago, Illinois, which at the end of the 19th century was the epicenter of golf in the United States — the first 18-hole golf course in the country, the Chicago Golf Club, in Wheaton, was built there in 1895. Egan played his first game of golf in Lake Geneva, Wisconsin at the age of 12. He attended secondary school at the Rugby School in Kenilworth, and was a star football player on its team. The school did not have a golf team, so Chandler developed his golf game at his father's club, Exmoor Country Club. He was accepted to Harvard University, where he soon became the captain of the college golf team. The team won three team NCAA Division I Men's Golf Championships from 1902 to 1904, and Egan won the individual title in 1902.

Egan won his first non-collegiate tournament in the 1902 Western Amateur, which was played at the Chicago Golf Club. Not only was the tournament played in his home metropolitan area, but the runner-up was his cousin Walter Egan. A year later, the Egan cousins switched places with Walter winning and Chandler coming in second, and Chandler Egan would win the tournament again in 1904, 1905, and 1907.

In 1904, Egan achieved the pinnacle of U.S. amateur golf success by winning the U.S. Amateur, played at Baltusrol Golf Club in New Jersey. He successfully defended his title a year later at his home turf of the Chicago Golf Club.

Egan appeared to be peaking at the right time to also win an individual gold medal at the 1904 Summer Olympics, which featured golf for the last time in 1904. While Egan's U.S. team  won team gold, Egan had to settle for individual silver, as he was defeated by Canadian George Lyon, who at 46, was more than twice Egan's age. Egan later admitted he had been outclassed by the wily Lyon, whose massive drives forced Egan out of his usual game.

Following his runner-up finish in the 1909 U.S. Amateur, Egan abruptly disappeared from competition. He reappeared in the news in May 1911 with his purchase of 115 acres of apple and pear orchard in Medford, Oregon. He reemerged on the competitive golf circuit in 1914, with a runner-up finish in the Pacific Northwest Amateur championship to Jack Neville. A year later, Egan and Neville would meet again, and this time, Egan was the winner. He would win the Pacific Northwest Amateur four more times, in 1920, 1923, 1925, and 1932. Egan traveled south to win the California State Amateur in 1926. He played on two U.S. championship Walker Cup teams in 1930 and 1934.

In the 1910s, Egan moved into golf course design, designing such notable Oregon courses as the Eugene Country Club, Eastmoreland Golf Course, Oswego Lake Country Club, Riverside Golf & Country Club, Tualatin Country Club, and Waverley Country Club. In 1929, Egan partnered with legendary golf architect Alister MacKenzie to renovate Pebble Beach Golf Links for the 1929 U.S. Amateur, in which Egan played and reached the semifinals. In 1929 Egan also aided MacKenzie and Hunter during the design and construction of The Union League Golf and Country Club, now known as Green Hills Country Club in Millbrae, California. After Seth Raynor submitted plans to re-design Sequoyah Country Club in Oakland, California just prior his death in 1926, it was Egan who ultimately did a 1930 re-design there. He designed the Indian Canyon municipal course in Spokane, Washington in 1930, which opened in 1935.

In 1936, Egan had completed plans for West Seattle Golf Course in Seattle, and was working on the half-finished Legion Memorial Golf Course in nearby Everett in late March. He came down with lobar pneumonia, was hospitalized for nearly a week, and died. His funeral was held in Seattle and he was buried in Medford.

Cyril Tolley

Cyril Tolley was an English amateur golfer.

Tolley is the only amateur too have won the French Open in 1924 and 1928 . He had won the British Amateur Championship twice. In 1920 he defeated Bobby Jones at the 19th hole of Muirfield , in 1930 he lost to him at St Andrews.

Tolley played in 1922 with the first Walker Cup, among others Wetherer with Roger, who a few years later got the final of the British Amateur twice.

Maurice Bembridge

Maurice Bembridge is an English golfer.

Bembridge turned professional at an early age in 1960 and won the British Assistants’ Professional Championship in 1966 and 1967. He won nine top level professional tournaments in Europe, including six after the commencement of the modern European Tour in 1972, and he also won several tournaments in Africa and one in New Zealand. His best finish on the European Tour Order of Merit was second in 1973 when it was points-based.

At the 1974 Masters Tournament, Bembridge tied the course record by shooting a 64 in the final round.
After turning fifty he played on the European Seniors Tour, winning twice at that level.
Bembridge played for Great Britain or Great Britain & Ireland in the Ryder Cup four times, winning six matches, losing eight and halving three. He also represented England in the World Cup twice.

Melvyn Douglas

Melvyn Edouard Hesselberg, better known as Melvyn Douglas, was an American actor.

Coming to prominence in the 1930s as a suave leading man, Douglas later transitioned into more mature and fatherly roles as in his Academy Award-winning performances in Hud (1963) and Being There (1979).

Douglas was born in Macon, Georgia, the son of Lena Priscilla (née Shackelford) and Edouard Gregory Hesselberg, a concert pianist and composer. His father was a Jewish immigrant from Riga, Latvia, then part of Russia. His mother, a native of Tennessee, was Protestant and a Mayflower descendant. His maternal grandfather, George Shackelford, was a General and Civil War veteran.

Douglas, in his autobiography, See You at the Movies (1987), writes that he was unaware of his Jewish background until later in his youth: "I did not learn about the non-Christian part of my heritage until my early teens," as his parents preferred to hide his Jewish heritage. It was his aunts, on his father's side, who told him "the truth" when he was 14. He writes that he "admired them unstintingly and modeled" himself on them; they in turn treated him like a son.

Though his father taught music at a succession of colleges in the U.S. and Canada, Douglas never graduated from high school. He took the surname of his maternal grandmother and became known as Melvyn Douglas.

Douglas developed his acting skills in Shakespearean repertory while in his teens and with stock companies in Sioux City, Iowa; Evansville, Indiana; Madison, Wisconsin, and Detroit, Michigan. He established an outdoor theatre in Chicago. He had a long theatre, film and television career as a lead player, stretching from his 1930 Broadway role in Tonight or Never (opposite his future wife, Helen Gahagan) until just before his death. Douglas shared top billing with Boris Karloff and Charles Laughton in James Whale's sardonic horror classic The Old Dark House in 1932.

He was the hero in the 1932 horror film The Vampire Bat and the sophisticated leading man in 1935's She Married Her Boss. He played opposite Joan Crawford in several films, most notably A Woman's Face (1941), and with Greta Garbo in three films: As You Desire Me (1932), Ninotchka (1939) and Garbo's final film Two-Faced Woman (1941).

During World War II, Douglas served first as a director of the Arts Council in the Office of Civilian Defense, and then in the United States Army. He returned to play more mature roles in The Sea of Grass and Mr. Blandings Builds His Dream House. In 1959 he made his musical debut playing Captain Boyle in the ill-fated Marc Blitzstein musical Juno, based on Sean O'Casey's Juno and the Paycock.

From November 1952 to January 1953, Douglas starred in the DuMont detective show Steve Randall (Hollywood Off Beat) which then moved to CBS. In the summer of 1953, he briefly hosted the DuMont game show Blind Date. In the summer of 1959, Douglas hosted eleven original episodes of a CBS Western anthology television series called Frontier Justice, a production of Dick Powell's Four Star Television.
In addition to his Academy Awards (see below), Douglas won a Tony Award for his Broadway lead role in the 1960 The Best Man by Gore Vidal, and an Emmy for his 1967 role in Do Not Go Gentle Into That Good Night. As Douglas grew older, he took on the older-man and father roles, in such movies as The Americanization of Emily (1964), Hud (1963), for which he won his first Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor, (1966) The Fugitive, The Candidate (1972) and I Never Sang for My Father (1970), for which he was nominated for the Academy Award for Best Actor. He won his second Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor for the comedy-drama Being There (1979).

Douglas' final screen appearance was in Ghost Story (1981). He did not finish his role in the film The Hot Touch (1982) before his death. Douglas has two stars on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, one for movies at 6423 Hollywood Blvd. and one for television at 6601 Hollywood Blvd.

Melvyn Douglas died a year later, in 1981, aged 80, from pneumonia and cardiac complications in New York City.

Harold Huth

Harold Huth was a British actor, film director and producer.

Born in Huddersfield, Yorkshire in 1892. He made his screen debut as an actor in the 1928 film One of the Best and followed it up with the role of Captain Nolan in the film Balaclava about the Charge of the Light Brigade. He directed his first film Hell's Cargo in 1939, and moved into producing the following year. He went on to direct and produce a number of films over the next twenty years before retiring in 1961. He died in 1967 in London.

Patric Knowles

Reginald Lawrence Knowles was an English film actor who renamed himself Patric Knowles, a name which reflects his Irish descent. He appeared in films of the 1930s through the 1970s. He made his film debut in 1933, and played either first or second film leads throughout his career. In his first American film, Give Me Your Heart (1936), released in Great Britain as Sweet Aloes, Knowles was cast as a titled Englishman of means.

While making The Charge of the Light Brigade (1936) at Lone Pine, California, he befriended Errol Flynn, whose acquaintance he had made when both were under contract to Warner Bros. in England. Since that film, in which Knowles played the part of Capt. Perry Vickers, the brother of Flynn's Maj. Geoffrey Vickers, he was cast more frequently as straitlaced characters alongside Flynn's flamboyant ones, notably as Will Scarlet in The Adventures of Robin Hood (1938). Both actors starred as well in Four's A Crowd, also in 1938. More than two decades after Flynn's death, biographer Charles Higham sullied Flynn's memory by accusing him of having been a fascist sympathizer and Nazi spy. Knowles, who had served in World War II as a flying instructor in the RCAF, came to Flynn's defense, writing Rebuttal for a Friend as an epilogue to Tony Thomas' Errol Flynn: The Spy Who Never Was (Citadel Press, 1990).

He was a freelance film actor from 1939 until his last film appearance in 1973. In the 1940s, he was known for playing protagonists in a number of horror films, including The Wolf Man (1941) and Frankenstein Meets the Wolfman (1943). He was also cast as comic foils in a number of comedies such as Abbott and Costello's Who Done It? (1942) and Hit The Ice (1943). He also appeared opposite Jack Kelly in a 1957 episode of the television series Maverick called "The Wrecker", which was based on a Robert Louis Stevenson adventure and co-starred James Garner.

Knowles was inducted into the Hollywood Walk of Fame.

Claude Rains

William Claude Rains was an English stage and film actor whose career spanned 46 years. He was known for many roles in Hollywood films, among them the title role in The Invisible Man (1933), a corrupt senator in Mr. Smith Goes to Washington (1939), Mr. Dryden in Lawrence of Arabia (1962), and, perhaps his most notable performance, as Captain Renault in Casablanca (1942).

Rains was born in Camberwell, London. He grew up, according to his daughter, with "a very serious cockney accent and a speech impediment". His parents were Emily Eliza (Cox) and English stage and film actor Frederick William Rains. The young Rains made his stage debut at 11 in Nell of Old Drury.

His acting talents were recognized by Sir Herbert Beerbohm Tree, founder of the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art. Tree paid for the elocution lessons Rains needed in order to succeed as an actor. Later, Rains taught at the institution, teaching John Gielgud and Laurence Olivier, among others. Many years later, after he had gone to Hollywood and become a film star, Gielgud was to quip: "He was a great influence on me. I don`t know what happened to him. I think he failed and went to America."

Rains served in the First World War in the London Scottish Regiment, with fellow actors Basil Rathbone, Ronald Colman and Herbert Marshall. Rains was involved in a gas attack that left him nearly blind in one eye for the rest of his life. However, the war did aid his social advancement and, by its end, he had risen from the rank of Private to Captain.

Rains began his career in the London theatre, having a success in the title role of John Drinkwater's play Ulysses S. Grant, the follow-up to the playwright's major hit Abraham Lincoln, and travelled to Broadway in the late 1920s to act in leading roles in such plays as Shaw's The Apple Cart and in the dramatisations of The Constant Nymph, and Pearl S. Buck's novel The Good Earth, as a Chinese farmer.

Rains came relatively late to film acting and his first screen test was a failure, but his distinctive voice won him the title role in James Whale's The Invisible Man (1933) when someone accidentally overheard his screen test being played in the next room. Rains later credited director Michael Curtiz with teaching him the more understated requirements of film acting, or "what not to do in front of a camera".

Following The Invisible Man, Universal Studios tried to typecast him in horror films, but he broke free, starting with the gleefully evil role of Prince John in The Adventures of Robin Hood (1938), then with his Academy Award-nominated performance as the conflicted corrupt US senator in Mr. Smith Goes to Washington (1939), and followed with probably his most famous role, the flexible French police Captain Renault in Casablanca (1942). In 1943, Rains played the title character in Universal's full-colour remake of Phantom of the Opera. Bette Davis named him her favourite co-star, and they made four films together, including Mr. Skeffington and Now, Voyager. Rains became the first actor to receive a million dollar salary, playing Julius Caesar in Gabriel Pascal's lavish and unsuccessful version of Shaw's Caesar and Cleopatra (1945), made in Britain. In 1946, he played a refugee Nazi agent opposite Cary Grant and Casablanca co-star Ingrid Bergman in Alfred Hitchcock's Notorious. In 1949, he appeared in David Lean's The Passionate Friends.

His only singing and dancing role was in a television musical version of Robert Browning's The Pied Piper of Hamelin, with Van Johnson as the Piper. This 1957 NBC colour special, shown as a film rather than a live or videotaped programme, was highly successful with the public. Sold into syndication after its first telecast, it was repeated annually by many local US TV stations.

Rains remained a popular character actor in the 1950s and 1960s, appearing in many films. Two of his well-known later screen roles were as Dryden, a cynical British diplomat in Lawrence of Arabia (1962) and King Herod in The Greatest Story Ever Told (1965). The latter was his final film role.

Rains made several audio recordings, narrating a few Bible stories for children on Capitol Records, and reciting Richard Strauss's setting for narrator and piano of Tennyson's poem Enoch Arden, with the piano solos played by Glenn Gould. This recording was made by Columbia Masterworks Records.

Rains became a naturalized citizen of the United States in 1939. He married six times, the first five of which ended in divorce: Isabel Jeans (1913–1915); Marie Hemingway (1920, for less than a year); Beatrix Thomson (1924 – 8 April 1935); Frances Proper (9 April 1935–1956); and to classic pianist Agi Jambor (4 November 1959–1960). He married Rosemary Clark Schrode in 1960, and stayed with her until her death on 31 December 1964. His only child, Jessica Rains, was born to him and Proper on 24 January 1938.
He acquired the 380-acre (1.5 km2) Stock Grange Farm in West Bradford Township, Pennsylvania just outside Coatesville in 1941, and spent much of his time between takes reading up on agricultural techniques. He eventually sold the farm when his marriage to Proper ended in 1956.

Rains died from an abdominal haemorrhage in Laconia, New Hampshire on 30 May 1967 at the age of 77. He is interred in the Red Hill Cemetery, Moultonborough, New Hampshire.

Leo Genn

Leo John Genn was a British stage and film actor.

He was born at 144 Kyverdale Road, Stamford Hill, Hackney, London, England to a Jewish family. His father, Woolfe (William) Genn, was a jewellery salesman and the maiden name of his mother, Rachel, was Asserson.

Genn attended the City of London School and studied law at Cambridge, qualifying as a barrister in 1928. He ceased practising as a lawyer soon after the Second World War.

Genn's theatrical debut was in 1930 in A Marriage has been Disarranged at the Devonshire Park Theatre, Eastbourne and then at the Royalty Theatre in Dean Street, London. Actor/manager Leon M. Lion had engaged him simultaneously as an actor and attorney. In 1933 he appeared in Ballerina by Rodney Ackland. Between September 1934 and March 1936, Leo Genn was a member of the Old Vic Company where he appeared in many productions of Shakespeare. In 1937 he was Horatio in Tyrone Guthrie's production of Hamlet, with Laurence Olivier as Hamlet, in Elsinore Denmark. In 1938, Genn appeared in the theatrical hit, The Flashing Stream by Charles Langbridge Morgan and went with the show to America and Broadway. His many other stage performances included Lillian Hellman's Another Part of the Forest, 12 Angry Men, The Devil's Advocate, Maugham's The Sacred Flame. In 1959 Genn gave a reading in Chichester Cathedral.

Genn's first film role was as Shylock in Immortal Gentleman (1935), a biography of Shakespeare. Douglas Fairbanks, Jr. hired Genn as a technical advisor on the film Accused (1936). He was subsequently given a small part in the picture on the strength of a "splendid voice and presence". Genn received another small role in Alexander Korda's The Drum (1938) and was the young man who danced with Eliza Doolittle at the duchess's ball in Pygmalion, a film made in the same year, although he was uncredited.

During World War II Genn served in the Royal Artillery, being made Lieutenant Colonel in 1943. In 1944, the actor was given official leave to appear as the Constable of France in Laurence Olivier's Henry V. Genn was awarded the Croix de Guerre in 1945. He was part of the British unit that investigated war crimes at Belsen concentration camp and later was an assistant prosecutor at the trial for Belsen in Lüneburg, Germany.

He was in Green for Danger (1946) and The Snake Pit (1948). After his Oscar-nominated success as Petronius in Quo Vadis (1951) he appeared in John Huston's Moby Dick (1956). Genn also appeared in some rather forgettable American films, such as The Girls of Pleasure Island, and Plymouth Adventure (1952), a fictionalized, but entertaining soap opera treatment of the Pilgrims' landing at Plymouth Rock. He fared far better in a British picture, Personal Affair (1953), starring opposite Gene Tierney. He played Major Michael Pemberton in Rossellini's remarkable and largely forgotten film Era Notte a Roma (Escape by Night, 1960). Leo Genn narrated both the coronation programmes of 1937 and 1953;[2] the King George VI Memorial Programme, 1952; UN opening (from USA), 1947.

Genn was a Governor of The Mermaid Theatre and trustee of the Yvonne Arnaud Theatre. He was also council member of the Arts Educational Trust. He was appointed Distinguished Visiting Professor of Theatre Arts, Pennsylvania State University, 1968 and Visiting Professor of Drama, University of Utah, 1969.
Genn died January 26, 1978 in London from pneumonia, complications of a heart attack. His interment was in France.

Burgess Meredith

Oliver Burgess Meredith, known professionally as Burgess Meredith, was an American actor in theatre, film, and television.

Hyam Plutzik

Hyam Plutzik, a Pulitzer prize finalist, was a poet and Professor of English at the University of Rochester.

Hyam Plutzik was born in Brooklyn, New York, on July 13, 1911, and raised in Connecticut. The son of Russian Jewish immigrants, Plutzik, who spoke Yiddish, Russian, and Hebrew at home, did not learn English until he began grammar school at the age of seven in a one-room schoolhouse in rural Connecticut. Plutzik later recalled that he first developed his interest in poetry while in this rural environment.

In 1932, he graduated from Trinity College in Hartford, Connecticut, where he had studied closely with Pulitzer Prize-winning poet Odell Shepard. Plutzik received a two-year fellowship to pursue graduate studies at Yale University in New Haven, Connecticut, where he studied literature and poetry. Although he left Yale at the end of his fellowship before receiving his degree, he won Yale’s Cook prize, awarded to the best unpublished poem or group of poems, in 1933 for his poem “The Three.”

In the years following his departure from Yale, Plutzik took various editorial jobs before retreating to the Connecticut countryside, where he worked on a satirical novel about dictatorship. In 1940, he returned to Yale to complete his master’s degree, during which time he won the Cook prize for a second time.

In 1942, Plutzik enlisted in the Army and moved to twelve different cities before heading overseas. Although Army life made it difficult for him to write, he did begin what would eventually grow into “Horatio,” a 2,000-line narrative poem.

After his discharge from the Army, Plutzik was hired as an English professor at the University of Rochester in New York, where he remained for the rest of his professional life.

In 1949, he published his first collection of poems, Aspects of Proteus (Harpers). Ten years later, he released his second collection, Apples from Shinar (Wesleyan University Press), which received the University of Rochester’s Lillian P. Fairchild Award. Horatio (Atheneum) was published in 1961.

Plutzik’s work examines nature and the paradoxes of time, the relationship between poetry and science, and delves into questions of Jewish history and identity. In his report for the 1960 Pulitzer Prize (awarded to W. D. Snodgrass), prize juror Alfred Kreymbourg said of Plutzik, who was a finalist for his book Apples from Shinar, “While he is not a musical poet like most of his contemporaries, he more than compensates by the strength and depth of his writing and the power of his visions and personality.”

Plutzik was the recipient of the California Borestone Mountain Poetry Award with Rolfe Humphries. In 1961, he was appointed Deane Professor of Rhetoric and Poetry at the University of Rochester. The following year, the university established the Plutzik Poetry Series in his honor. In 2002, the City of Rochester proclaimed a “Hyam Plutzik Day.”

Plutzik died of cancer on January 8, 1962, at the age of fifty.

Harry Brearley

Harry Brearley is usually credited with the invention of  "stainless steel."

Brearley was born in Sheffield, England. His life had humble beginnings as the son of a steel melter. He left school at the age of twelve to enter his first employment as a labourer in one of the city's steelworks, being transferred soon afterwards to the post of general assistant in the company's chemical laboratory.

For several years, in addition to his laboratory work, he studied at home and later in formal evening classes, to specialize in steel production techniques and associated chemical analysis methods.

By his early thirties, Brearley had earned a reputation as an experienced professional and for being very astute in the resolution of practical, industrial, metallurgical problems. It was in 1908, when two of Sheffield's principal steelmaking companies innovatively agreed to jointly finance a common research laboratory (Brown Firth Laboratories) that Harry Brearley was asked to lead the project.

Brearley died in 1948, at Torquay, a coastal resort town in Devon, south west England. He is buried at Sheffield Cathedral.