Tallulah Bankhead was a stage and screen actress who began her career as a teenager. She was born into a powerful political family in Huntsville, Alabama. Her father, William Bankhead was a Congressman and Speaker of the House of Representatives from 1936 – 1940. Because her mother passed away shortly after her birth, she was raised by family members and attended school in New York, Washington DC, and Virginia. Bankhead’s career took off after she left for England in 1923, and acted in several stage plays. It was there that she became known for her deep, sultry voice and boisterous personality. She returned to the US in 1931, and performed in several Broadway plays and Hollywood films. Some of her notable work includes Lifeboat (1944), A Royal Scandal (1945), and Die! Die! My Darling (1965). Her career spanned five decades and included film, television, theater, and radio.
Portrait of Tallulah BankheadCarl Van Vechten
Image Source (Top): Carl Van Vechten - Library of Congress, Prints & Photographs Division, Carl Van Vechten Collection, LC-USZ62-134171 - 1936