Monte Carlo by the Sea Opens!

This undated, unidentified article is likely from around July 1926. (See the ad I found in the Brooklyn newspaper at the bottom of this post)

1926 Monte Carlo by the Sea openingEverybody who is anybody in Yonkers was present at the Monte Carlo last night when 150 social and political lights of upper New York had a dinner there.

Billy Gallagher was in a real good mood with the big crowd present, so he took time to tell us all about his activities.

Sunday night, this week, Billy will open up his new place at Hollands Station, L. I., which will be knokn [sic] as Monte Carlo by the Sea.  It is right by the intersection of the new Cross Bay road and Beach Ninety-second street and Beach Channel, the busiest corner in the resort.

The place is all newly done over and has a seating capacity of 750 and a dance floor space enough for 300 couples.

He will take his whole crew down from the Monte Carlo, New York, which closes for the season this Saturday night.  “Big Tim” Reardon and Walter Gallagher will be in charge.

The entire Ed Hutchison revue, “That’s That,” the Four Diamonds and the Buffalodians Orchestra go down, too, and Billy expects to make it the smartest place on Long Island, as no other resort down there has as pretentious a revue as his.

Ad for Monte Carlo by the Sea - 11 Jul 1926
Brooklyn Daily Eagle, July 11, 1926, p. 3F below the fold


When Good Fellows Get Together

This is another undated, unidentified article from Pop’s scrapbook.  With the references to Jack Dempsey’s new nose and the mention of the new Monte Carlo restaurant, I’ve narrowed the time frame to around September/October 1924.

1925 10 When Good Fellows Get Together at Gallagher's

1925 10 When Good Fellows Get Together at Gallagher's caption

A couple of things caught my eye in this one.

First, the artist got Pop’s name wrong – and wrote it as “John J Gallagher” (which has been corrected in pencil to “Walt”).  Oops.

Second, the artist is identified as “the Inimitable Sketchist” Ving Fuller of the Morning Telegraph.  I think that might be kind of a big deal.  He started out as a gag cartoonist for the Daily Graphic in the early 1920s.  After that, he became an animator and then went back to cartooning .  He eventually became the editor for New York Daily Mirror in the 1930s.  You can see more of his work here.

This cartoon pokes fun at Jack Dempsey when he had plastic surgery to repair his nose after so many beatings in the ring.  It was supposedly to fix a deformity in order to help his breathing, but he took some good-natured ribbing because he had also been appearing in several films to that point, which called into question his true motivation for having plastic surgery – either for the screen or to please his second wife, Estelle Taylor, a silent movie actress who played Miriam in Cecil B. DeMille’s The Ten Commandments in 1923.


Walter Gets Married

My aunt and I were searching for my great grandparents’ marriage certificate when we stumbled across this little tidbit:

It’s April 15, 1921 in New York City.  Walter Wiltze Gallagher marries Ruth Jean Arameta Olmstead.  Ruth was born in New York in 1901.  She is the daughter of Charles Olmstead (b. 1878 NY) and Nellie Smith (b. 1879 PA).

1921 Ruth Olmstead marriage #1


They were married at the Church of the Transfiguration in Manhattan. It appears to be the first marriage for both of them.

1921 Marriage record - Transfiguration Church

Aside from being blindsided by this mysterious first marriage that no one had ever mentioned, something seemed weird about this union.  First, it’s in an Episcopal church instead of a Catholic church (even though there is a Roman Catholic church by the same name on the other side of town).  Neither of them were Episcopalian.  She was Presbyterian and he was Catholic.

So I did a little digging.  Walter was technically in the “restaurant business,” but was very closely affiliated with actors, dancers, and other entertainers.  Historically, theater folk were not felt to be worthy of Christian marriages and burials, so many churches turned them away.  But not the Church of the Transfiguration (the “little church around the corner”).  They were always a “church of inclusion.”  Even today, the church maintains close ties with the theatrical community.  Of course, I can only speculate that this has anything to do with the reason they were married there.  It’s still a neat story.

Here is the church today:


Unfortunately (but fortunately for me!), the marriage didn’t last long.  By 1922, Walter had remarried another woman: Ruth Burrows, and would go on to adopt my grandfather.  Ruth Olmstead remarried Joseph Cook in 1923 (and a Mr. Spafford sometime after that).  Locating those divorce records are on my to-do list, for sure.

I also have not found a marriage record for Walter’s marriage to Ruth Burrows, which is another mystery all its own.  This entire episode creates some questions that need answering: (1) was Walter still able to marry Ruth in the Catholic church? (2) since his first marriage (and subsequent apparent divorce) were not in the Catholic church, does that count?  I will have to consult the Catholic experts (my cousin) to see if I can get answers.


Steamship China Sets Precedent

I think this unidentified, undated article is from around 1924.  Also, I’m pretty sure the author, David, has a last name, but it wasn’t preserved in the scrapbook.


1924+ Steamship ChinaThe steamship China, which leaves this port on September 15 for the Orient, is to establish a precedent along lines of entertainment for its passengers, one which will open up another field for thespians, singers and dancers.  The ship will have its own revue aboard, a revue now in rehearsal at the Restaurant-Theatres, Inc., studios, which was recently incorporated, with W. J. Gallagher, owner of the Monte Carlo, Broadway and Fifty-first street, as president and Ted Riley as managing director, to provide a national cabaret circuit.  With the sailing of the China, however, the organization becomes international in character.  Other vessels of the line, which leave fortnightly, are to have their own performers also.  Performances are to be given every afternoon and evening, as well as in theatres at all ports of call, which include Havana, Honolulu, Yokohama, Nagasaki, Shanghai, Hongkong and Australian cities.  The revues are being written by Mr. Riley, with Frank Gillen taking care of the score.  Joe Mann will personally direct the first tour . . . The Marcellis Four, a quartet of dancers from France, have been put on at the Monte Carlo during the week, and it is doubtful if such versatility in the terpsichorean art has ever been seen in a Broadway restaurant.  They are equally at home in soft shoe, buck, waltzing, Russian, acrobatic and Apache dances.  The work of Edouard Burdy and Jenny Burdy stands out most prominent in the acrobatic whirls, while Andrew and Madeleine Bekkers excel in ballroom dances.  Mr. Gallagher and John Kennedy, his business representative, are very much pleased at the increasing amount of the Monte Carlo’s business.  Walter Gallagher, son of the former, who is following in his father’s footsteps, has been made floor manager of the restaurant.