Mary Thurman

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Mary Thurman
Mary Thurman Stars of the Photoplay.jpg
Mary Christiansen

(1895-04-27)April 27, 1895
DiedDecember 22, 1925(1925-12-22) (aged 30)
Resting placeRichfield City Cemetery
EducationUniversity of Utah
OccupationActress, Model
Years active1915–1925
  • Victor E. Thurman
    (m. 1915; div. 1919)
Portrait of Mary Thurman by Ralph Barton. This drawing shows the Dutch bob hairstyle Thurman adopted in 1920, making her the first celebrity with the hairstyle that became a craze amongst young fashionable women known as flappers for the rest of the decade and into the early 1930s.[1]

Mary Thurman (April 27, 1895 – December 22, 1925) was an American actress of the silent film era.

Early life[edit]

Born Mary Christiansen in Richfield, Utah, she was one of seven children raised in the Mormon faith. Her father died in 1906. She attended the University of Utah and became a teacher.[2]


Thurman's film career began with roles in the comedies of Mack Sennett, as one of the Sennett Bathing Beauties, and featured appearances in Bombs! (1916) and The Fool (1925). Her greatest success came when she was started working with director Allan Dwan. They collaborated on several critically acclaimed films including The Sin of Martha Queed (1921) and A Broken Doll (1921). In Dwan's still extant 1923 film Zaza Thurman is the actress Gloria Swanson fights with. Off screen they were engaged for several years. She appeared in nearly sixty Hollywood films from 1915 up until her death in 1925, frequently in those made by Pathé Studios.

Thurman was married to Victor E. Thurman, son of Utah Supreme Court justice Samuel R. Thurman, until their divorce in 1919.


In 1924 while working on the movie Down Upon The Suwanee River in Florida she came down with a serious case of pneumonia. She suffered from the illness and was hospitalized for nearly a year.[3] Thurman died of pneumonia in New York, New York on December 22. 1925 in Flower Hospital. Her best friend, actress Juanita Hansen, was at her side when she died. She was buried in Richfield City Cemetery in her hometown of Richfield, Utah.

Selected filmography[edit]


  1. ^
  2. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2016-04-11. Retrieved 2015-11-15.CS1 maint: Archived copy as title (link)
  3. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2016-04-11. Retrieved 2015-11-15.CS1 maint: Archived copy as title (link)
  • New York Times, "Mary Thurman Dead", December 24, 1925, Page 13.
  • Oakland, California Tribune, "From Film Fun To Film Drama", September 19, 1920, Page 53.
  • Oakland Tribune, "Cupid Captures Mary Thurman", Tuesday Evening, December 26, 1922, Page 8.

External links[edit]

Media related to Mary Thurman at Wikimedia Commons