Ruby McDaniel, Orlena McDaniel, Adele McDaniel, James McDaniel
“The family settled for a time in Wichita, Kansas, which is where Hattie was born. Though Hattie’s birthdate is listed on some documents, and on her tombstone, as being June 10, 1895, a census taken in Kansas in 1895 states that she was two years old at the time. So it’s likely she was born in 1893.”
McDanielHouse 317 Cherry St.
After a while, the family decided to head west again, this time to Colorado. They settled in Fort Collins where Henry got work as a teamster. They rented a small house in the Black part of town (If you can say that a one-block area that included four African-American families in among several White families constitutes such a thing.) at 317 Cherry Street.
There young Hattie (probably about 7 years old) made friends with a little White girl around the corner, Ruth Collamer… As Hattie’s biographer, Carlton Jackson recounts,”
“At school, Hattie and Ruth played jacks on the flagstone sidewalks, and a game called, “Pom pom pullaway.” Hattie taught Ruth how to bounce a rubber ball while repeating in rhythm, “one, two, buckle your shoe.” Each afternoon after school Ruth’s father drove his cattle to pasture, always passing by the McDaniel’s residence on the way. Hattie frequently came out fo her house and walked wit the herd for a way, she and Ruth picking flowers (violets and “johnny jump ups” in the Spring), and, hand in hand, “hippety-hopping” through the fields.”
“But the McDaniels’ time in Fort Collins was short-lived. According to Hattie’s biographer, the family moved to Denver in 1901. There Hattie excelled in singing and oration and would often give recitations to her classes. She loved to sing around the house and sometimes her mother would give her a dime if she would promise to stay quiet for a while. Hattie confessed that it rarely worked for long. The music just kept bubbling out.
Hattie left high school early in order to follow her acting dream. She joined her brother Sam and sister Etta in Los Angeles to seek her fortune.”
(“AKA Mammy in “Gone with the Wind”)
by Meg Dunn
(Hattie stands out in this classroom photo. (From the collection of Josephine Clements.)
The brother of Oscar-winning actress Hattie McDaniel, he also had a long and prolific movie career. He appeared in 208 films but seldom got screen credit. Today his name is known only to cinema historians and trivia buffs. His credits include Hallelujah!(1929), The Public Enemy (1931), Grand Hotel (1932), Footlight Parade (1933), Manhattan Melodrama (1934), Belle of the Nineties (1934), Captains Courageous (1937), Jezebel (1938), Union Pacific (1939), They Died With Their Boots On (1941), Son of Dracula (1943), Double Indemnity (1944), The Egg and I(1947), Ma and Pa Kettle (1949), Carmen Jones (1954), A Hole in the Head (1959), Ice Palace (1960), and The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn (1960).
Sam had his own jazz band in the 1920s, playing on the radio and on the vaudeville circuit. The lead singer was his longtime girlfriend Roberta Hyson.
McDaniel was born in Witchita, Kansas. After 30 years of performing in minstrel troupes, he went to Hollywood in 1929, with Hattie McDaniel tagging along. To his surprise, it was his baby sister who became famous. He died at the Motion Picture Country Home. (bio by Bobb Edwards)
Born: January 28, 1886 – Died: September 24, 1962
Shirley Temple And Sam McDaniel Poor Little Rich Girl(cosmosonic.tumblr.com)
Gangway for Tomorrow (1943) as Hank (Credited as Sam McDaniels)
Sam McDaniel and Lillian Yarbo in The Naughty Nineties (1945)
Sam McDaniel and James Dunn in The Ghost and the Guest
Double Indemnity (1944) as Charlie, garage attendant (uncredited)
“McDaniel is familiar to modern viewers for his role as Spiffingham the Butler in the Three Stooges film Heavenly Daze.
Robert Wilcox, Helen Mack, Joe Sawyer and Sam McDaniel – “Gambling Ship”
Having been the only African-American to ever appear in the I Love Lucy series, he was “Sam the Porter” in a 1955 episode of I Love Lucy called “The Great Train Robbery.”
Sam McDaniel (Sam, the Porter) appeared with a young Lucille Ball in Broadway Through a Keyhole(1933) and Kid Millions (1934). McDaniel has the distinction of being the first of only two African Americans to appear on “I Love Lucy” and the only one with a character name and lines. The other was singer Betty Allen, who would appear as a Kidoonan townsperson in “Lucy Goes To Scotland” (S5;E17).
The McDaniel siblings (Otis, Sam, Etta & Hattie) were performing in the early 1900’s, way before the bright lights of Hollywood.
The McDaniel Sisters Company IMDbPro
Etta McDaniel and Hattie McDaniel in The McDaniel Sisters Company (1914) Musical One of the first 19th century minstrel shows created and produced by African American trailblazers Hattie McDaniel and Etta Goff (McDaniel), featuring songs and dances while defying racial and gender stereotypes of the time through comedy Writer Hattie McDaniel Stars Hattie McDaniel Etta McDaniel Sam McDaniel
Etta McDaniel was born on December 1, 1890, in Wichita, Kansas, USA. She was an actress and producer, known for The Great Man’s Lady (1941), What a Man! (1944), and Johnny Doughboy (1942). She died on January 13, 1946, in Los Angeles, California, USA.
She began in vaudeville with H. M. Johnson’s Denver-based “Mighty Modern Minstrels“. From 1933, she was typecast in Hollywood films as maids and mammies.
Etta McDaniel, sister of renowned character actress Hattie. She was in 61 movies from 1933 to 1946, mostly in maid or mammy roles. Her first film role was as a native in King Kong, and she appeared in such films as Stella Dallas andSon of Dracula. Pictured here in False Faces(1943), a run-of-the-mill Republic Studios murder mystery, with a few extra twists to the script courtesy of writer Curt Siodmak. Paired with slow and querulous Nick (Nicodemus) Stewart as an apartment building maid.
Etta played uncredited bits, usually as maids and mammies, in 58 films. Perhaps her most memorable moment is in “King Kong” (1933), as the native woman with the coconut bra snatches her baby away from the rampaging ape. Her other credits include The Green Pastures (1936), The Devil Is a Sissy (1936), Stella Dallas (1937), Sergeant Madden (1939), Son of Dracula (1943), and The Thin Man Goes Home (1945).
Mokey (1942) , Sam McDaniel (as Uncle Ben) and Etta McDaniel
(1936) The Invisible Ray
(1936) The Lonely Trail
JEAN DIXON, ETTA McDANIEL and BILL BURRUD – “The Magnificent Brute” (1936 )
(1945) Calling All Fibbers (Short)
“CALLING ALL FIBBERS” – ETTA MCDANIEL, FRANK SULLY, S MARTIN STAMP
Etta McDaniel was born in Wichita, Kansas. She made her performing debut with her seven siblings as a member of H. M. Johnson’s Mighty Modern Minstrels, a Denver-based vaudeville troupe. In 1933, she settled in Hollywood. – (bio by Bobb Edwards)
Otis McDaniel (Brother) Birth: Nov. 1882 Death: Nov. 1916 Entertainer. A noted Vaudevillian, he was the driving force behind the Henry McDaniel Minstrel Show. Brother of Hattie McDaniel. (bio by Laurie)
Her parents introduced her to music and entertainment early on- her father was a Baptist preacher yet also sang and played the banjo in minstrel shows and her mother was a gospel singer. The family moved to Denver in 1901. “McDaniel was one of only two Black children in her elementary school class in Denver. Racial prejudice was less virulent in the West than elsewhere in the United States, and she became something of a favorite at the 24th Street Elementary School for her talents as a singer and reciter of poetry.
Even as a child, according to a letter written to Hattie years later by her teacher, “you had an outstanding dramatic ability, and ability to project to your listeners your strong personality and your ever-present sense of humor.” By high school, Hattie’s talents were already starting to shine in school and church; thus began her early career as a singer and a dancer.
She often joined her father’s (Henry McDaniel Minstrel Show) minstrel act and toured with other vaudevillian troupes. and several other troupes. The minstrel shows, usually performed by Blacks but sometimes by Whites in blackface, presented a variety of entertainments based on caricatures of Black cultural life for the enjoyment of mostly White audiences. With her father’s troupe, which also featured a number of her brothers and sisters, she visited most of the major cities in the western United States while honing the skills that would later make her famous. In addition to performing, Hattie was also a songwriter, a skill she honed while working with her brother’s minstrel show.
Hattie’s father was a Civil War soldier who fought in the United States Colored Infantry as a freed Virginians slave. He survived the war, but was injured, and McDaniel’s mother also survived slavery.
Hattie’s father, Henry, had been born into slavery in Virginia. During the Civil War, he joined the Union Army, though he worked non-combat roles. After the war, Henry was a bit of a nomad. He began to preach in Baptist churches. He was also skilled at singing and oratory and would perform wherever he went. While in Nashville, Tennessee, he met Susan Holbert, a gospel singer. Henry and Susan were married in 1875 and had thirteen children, over half of whom died at birth or soon after.
After the death of her brother Otis in 1916, the troupe began to lose money, and it wasn’t until 1920 that Hattie got her next big break. During 1920–25, she appeared with Professor George Morrison’s Melody Hounds, a touring Black ensemble, and in the mid-1920s she embarked on a radio career, singing with the Melody Hounds on station KOA in Denver. In 1925, she became one of the first African-American women of radio- and the very first Black female voice to sing on the radio.
ARCHIVIST, EDUCATOR, HISTORIAN, and ARTiST
Dale Shields is a professor of theatre, director, and actor (Broadway, Off-Broadway, Off-Off-Broadway, and Regional).
The 2017 winner of The Kennedy Center/Stephen Sondheim Inspirational Teacher Award®, 2017 and 2015 Tony® award nominee for the Excellence in Theatre Education Award, and the winner of the 2017 AUDELCO/"VIV" Special Achievement Award. In 2020 He was also awarded The Actors Fund / Encore Award
On the web, he is the archivist and historian of Iforcolor.org and Black Theatre/African American Voices [Facebook] (theatre, music, and art). He has taught classes and workshops at SUNY Potsdam, Susquehanna University, Denison University, Randolph-Macon College, Macalester College, The College of Wooster, Ohio University, Wayne State University, and the Joseph Papp Public Theatre (New York Shakespeare Festival).
B.F.A. and M.F.A. degrees from Ohio University.