Memorable Manitobans: Marjorie Ann Guthrie [Marjorie White] (1904-1935)
Born at Winnipeg on 22 July 1904, daughter of Nettie and Richard Guthrie, her family owned a feed mill on Princess Street and were resident owners of a boarding house on Pacific Avenue. She began appearing on stage as a dancer and singer at the age four. In 1915, she became an original member of A. H. Smith’s Returned Soldiers’ Association Juvenile Performers, which put on shows in Manitoba and beyond to raise funds for returned soldiers and their families. The group was renamed the Winnipeg Kiddies in 1919.
When the Kiddies disbanded in December 1921, several of its performers went into vaudeville, including Guthrie and Thelma Wolpa as a two-woman song and comedy act. Though not related, they billed themselves as the White Sisters and had success on the Keith vaudeville circuit. When Guthrie married fellow tour performer Eddie Tierney in 1924, they started a new act called Guthrie and Tierney before settling in New York.
In August 1929, she signed on as a contract player with Fox Studios. After a few small roles in big budget films, her break came in 1933 with a starring role in “Diplomaniacs” by the popular comedy duo Wheeler and Woolsey. The following year, she was cast as the female lead in “Woman Haters,” the first short film that The Three Stooges made for Columbia Pictures.
She died on 20 August 1935 when the car that she and Tierney were in was involved in an accident at Santa Monica, California. She is buried in the Hollywood Forever Cemetery at Hollywood, California.
This page was prepared by Christian Cassidy.
Page revised: 25 February 2018
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