James Keteltas Hackett

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James Keteltas Hackett
James Keteltas Hackett.jpg
Born September 6, 1869
Ontario, Canada
Died November 8, 1926
Occupation Stage actor
Spouse(s) Mary Mannering,
Beatrice Mary Beckley
Parent(s) James Henry Hackett

James Keteltas Hackett (September 6, 1869 – November 8, 1926) was an American actor and manager.


He was the son of Clara C. and James Henry Hackett, a comedian and celebrated Falstaff. His elderly father died age 71 when Hackett was just two years old thus never living to see Hackett grow to an adult. He was born in Ontario, Canada, attended New York's Grammar School 69 and graduated with a B.A. degree from the College of the City of New York in 1891.

James Keteltas Hackett in an unknown role

Hackett made his professional debut in Philadelphia in 1892 as Francois in The Broken Seal. In New York later that year, he played opposite Mrs. Potter. Later in the decade, he played Romeo to Olga Nethersole's Juliet, and Mercutio to Maude Adams's Juliet.[1] Hackett played Captain Basil Jennico in the 1900 production of The Pride of Jennico with Bertha Galland in her New York stage debut.[2][3]

In 1913, Adolph Zukor lured Hackett from the stage to star in director Edwin Porter's film The Prisoner of Zenda (1913), for a role which Hackett had played in the theater numerous times. Since feature films were in their infancy, Hackett was at first reluctant to take the part. Zukor tried to convince Hackett in person, and as Neal Gabler writes, "When Hackett came to visit Zukor, he was the very picture of the faded matinee idol. He wore a fur-collared coat with frayed sleeves and carried a gold-headed cane".[4]

In 1897, he married the actress Mary Mannering and in 1911 Beatrice Mary Beckley. He and Mannering had a daughter Elise(born 1904) together.[5][6] Beckley appeared with Hackett in Hackett's debut film The Prisoner of Zenda for Zukor's Famous Players company.[7]

Recorder John K. Hackett (1821–1879) was his half-brother. In 1914, James inherited the larger part of the estate, valued at $1,389,049.46, from his niece Minnie (Hackett) Trowbridge (1850–1914), the only child of his brother John. At age 57, Minnie had married Francis Emory Trowbridge (1845–1910), and died without issue.;[8][9]


  1. ^ Eaton, Walter Prichard (1910). The American Stage of Today. New York, NY: P.F. Collier & Son. 
  2. ^ A History of the New York Stage from the First Performance in 1732 ..., Vol. 3 by Thomas Allston Brown 1903 pg. 612
  3. ^ The Pride of Jennico – IBDB
  4. ^ Gabler, Neal (1988). An Empire of Their Own. New York, NY: Doubleday. p. 31. 
  5. ^ Famous Actor Families by Montrose Moses c.1906
  6. ^ Great Stars of the American Stage by Daniel Blum c.1952 & 1954 Profile#8
  7. ^ Pictorial History of the Silent Screen by Daniel Blum c.1953 page 37
  8. ^ HACKETT FEELS SURE OF $1,500,000 LEGACY in NYT on March 5, 1914


  • Strang, Famous Actors of the Day in America, (Boston, 1900)
  • William Winter, The Wallet of Time, (two volumes, New York, 1913)

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