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Irma LaPierre


One of impresario Augustin Daly's many discoveries, the young Irma LaPierre secured employment in New York at age fifteen and became a leading lady in "Way Down East" at age seventeen. She conformed to the Gibson Girl ideal of beauty, so photographers amplified her celebrity in the first decade of the 20th century. Her temperament did not lend itself to roles besides those of modern girls and women, so her career, which lasted from 1900 to 1914, was spent mainly in touring companies of three plays: "Way Down East," "Skipper & Company, Wall Street," and "The College Widow." The one exception in her repertoire was the costume drama, "The Bonnie Briar Bush." Something of a mystic in her private life, she dabbled in magic, spirit calling, and prognostication.

NOTES: details about her early career, David S. Shields/ALS