Kathleen Clifford

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Kathleen Clifford
Kathleen Clifford.jpg
Kathleen Clifford in a circa 1912-1916 publicity photograph.
Born (1887-02-16)February 16, 1887
Charlottesville, Virginia, United States
Died December 28, 1962(1962-12-28) (aged 75)
Los Angeles, California, United States
Occupation Actress
Years active 1907–1932
Spouse(s) Meo Illitch (1926-1962)

Kathleen Clifford (February 16, 1887 – December 28, 1962) was an American vaudeville and Broadway stage and film actress of the early twentieth century.


Born in Charlottesville, Virginia, Kathleen Clifford's career acting was initially built on the vaudeville stages as a comedian. Clifford was renowned for her impersonations of men[1] and was often humorously billed as "The Smartest Chap in Town".[1] At one point, as a male impersonator, she was working as a duo with female impersonator Bothwell Browne.[2]

In January 1907, Clifford made her Broadway stage debut at the Lincoln Square Theatre in the J.J. and Lee Schultz produced musical The Bell of London Town. Clifford's stage career was prolific and lasted throughout the 1910s. Some of her most notable roles were in the 1911 musical triple bill Hell, Tempations and Gaby at the Folies Bergère theatre, the 1911-1912 original musical comedy Vera Violetta at the Winter Garden Theatre, the Florenz Ziegfeld musical production A Winsome Widow (1912) and the 1916 H. H. Frazee produced A Pair of Queens opposite actor Edward Abeles at the Longacre Theatre.

Kathleen Clifford made her screen debut in the 1917 William Bertram directed mystery serial Who Is Number One? opposite silent film actor Cullen Landis. She would appear in several high-profile roles throughout the late 1910s and early 1920s. Most notably: opposite Douglas Fairbanks, Sr. in the 1919 comedy When the Clouds Roll By, in the Ouida Bergère penned and George Fitzmaurice directed crime drama Kick In opposite Betty Compson, May McAvoy and Bert Lytell (1922), and in the role of 'Queen Berengaria' opposite Wallace Beery and the young actress Marguerite De La Motte in Richard the Lion-Hearted (1923). Clifford's last silent film would be in the 1928 James Cruze directed comedy Excess Baggage opposite the popular silent film actor William Haines.

With the advent of talkies Clifford settled into semi-retirement. She would make only one film during the early years of sound film; The Bride's Bereavement, a comedy short featuring several former silent film stars such as Aileen Pringle, Montagu Love, Luis Alberni and Charles Ray.

Kathleen ran a florist business Broadway Florist in Hollywood in the late 1920s.

In 1945, Kathleen Clifford penned a book for children entitled The Enchanted Glen: Never Trod By the Feet of Men that was illustrated by Kim Weed and published by Beverly Publishing, Los Angeles, California. Clifford's It's April. . . Remember? was published by Exposition Press, New York, 1955

Kathleen Clifford died at the age of 75 in Los Angeles, California in 1962.



  1. ^ a b [1] AllMovie.com
  2. ^ Vaudeville old & new: an encyclopedia of variety performances in ..., Volume 1 By Frank Cullen, Florence Hackman, Donald McNeilly, page 150

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