Talk:Joan Crawford

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Good article Joan Crawford has been listed as one of the Media and drama good articles under the good article criteria. If you can improve it further, please do so. If it no longer meets these criteria, you can reassess it.
Article milestones
Date Process Result
February 17, 2009 Peer review Reviewed
February 25, 2009 Good article nominee Listed
Current status: Good article

Birth year[edit]

The books in the current footnote all have the year as 1904. This should not be changed based on original research or synthesis. Find reliable sources that explicitly state Crawford's birth date. --NeilN talk to me 21:33, 9 February 2015 (UTC)

Perhaps we should word it like some bios do ....James Robert Parish (2011). The Hollywood Book of Extravagance: The Totally Infamous, Mostly Disastrous, and Always Compelling Excesses of America's Film and TV Idols. John Wiley & Sons. p. 72. ISBN 978-1-118-03902-1. 1904 (some sources list 1905, 1906, or even 1908 .....this may help all the edit wars if we state a range. -- Moxy (talk) 21:48, 9 February 2015 (UTC)
Good idea. You've got a good source - let's stay away from fansites. --NeilN talk to me 21:54, 9 February 2015 (UTC)
Ok added a note and made visible the dates more guess work..lets just state the facts -- Moxy (talk) 22:20, 9 February 2015 (UTC)
I have asked the page to be locked up....see if we can get the 2 new single purpose editors to this talk page . -- Moxy (talk) 15:25, 10 February 2015 (UTC)
  • Still a problem....added more info--Moxy (talk) 07:29, 23 March 2015 (UTC)

Crawford's family data[edit]

Not only is Crawford's own year of birth disputed but the date of her father's birth is also disputed. Some sources, including one I just reverted, cite January 21, 1868; however others, and more importantly his gravestone, cite January 2, 1868, so best to leave that out. Also, if Crawford's mother's eldest child was born either in 1901 (as some sources claim Hal Lesueur was) or 1902 (which most sources think her daughter Daisy was), then November 29, 1884 would make her mighty, mighty young to be a mother and may be incorrect. The handwriting of the 1910 censustaker garbled the ages of Thomas and Anna and I can't even make them out, but clearly wrote "9" for Hal (indicating 1901, almost most sources cite 1903), and "5" for Lucille, which is where the 1905 year of birth originates. If Hal was born in September 1903 it is virtually impossible that Lucille was born in March 1904. Quis separabit? 17:56, 26 March 2015 (UTC)

Dont look at fan sites for information. The census says Hal was born in 1902 not 1903. This mistake has been published widely..thus lead to the statements " impossible that Lucille was born in March 1904." They say Hal is 1902 and Joan is 1905 . This is the only place 1905 is seen with the wrong address and can we rely on this primary source at all? But I agree its a date that should be mentioned (as it is). Perhaps we should mention where the date comes form and the problem with it in the note on dates. -- Moxy (talk) 18:37, 26 March 2015 (UTC)

Regarding "if Crawford's mother's eldest child was born either in 1901 (as some sources claim Hal Lesueur was) or 1902 (which most sources think her daughter Daisy was), then November 29, 1884 would make her mighty, mighty young to be a mother," in that part of the country, at that time, becoming a mother at 16 or 17 was completely normal. Motherhood at 13 or 14 might have seemed "mighty, mighty young." — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 16:23, 26 April 2015 (UTC)

The Way I Did It[edit]

I just wrote a mini-biography on Joan Crawford for a project I am doing about my twelve favorite actresses (per decade) from the 1930s to the 1950s. In Crawford's biography, I stated "She was born as Lucille Fay LeSueur in San Antonio, Texas around 1905 (or 1904 or 1906, maybe 1908, depending on the source), and worked as a..." Also, what about the spelling of her birth name. Was it Lucille or Lucile? I've seen it spelled both ways in her biographies, however, Lucille seems to be more consistent, so that's they one I've used.

¶ I realize comments on the qualities of her movies are not encouraged, but her last two (at least) - Berserk, and Trog - were stinkers in which she was the only name performer (perhaps taking the jobs simply to demonstrate she wasn't yet retired) and she valiantly attempted to raise the quality of badly conceived, badly written flicks. Sussmanbern (talk) 07:53, 31 March 2017 (UTC)

According to IMDb she was born March 23 1906 Mzimmerle (talk) 14:52, 4 July 2017 (UTC)

Removal of sources??[edit]

I am wondering why the new sources have been removed and find a grave has been added back again despite the concerns raised? I understand that primary sources are not that good... but if we are to have the guesswork in the article it should be sourced and correct (census estimates 1902..not 1901). What is the problem with this source and this source. So more on the guesswork.....1901 is a very hard date to believe for Hal if there is another sibling also born that year. --Moxy (talk) 00:53, 22 August 2015 (UTC)

Hi, @Moxy: The problem with the LeSueur family is that NONE of their years of birth have been conclusively. No one is sure when Daisy, the eldest child, was born hence (her years of birth and death are usually given as "ƒ1902". Thomas LeSueur's years of birth range from 1866 to 1878. Anna Bell Johnson LeSueur was allegedly born in November 1884, yet if she had her first child in 1901, she would have been 16. Possible, sure, but... Also, other sources cite different years for Anna's birth, including 1878. The ages on the 1910 census are hard if not almost impossible to decipher (due presumably to the enumerator's horrific handwriting), with only young Lucille's age of "5" clear. Hal LeSueur is interesting because everything points to his being born in 1903 yet his marriage certificate in 1931 gives his age as 30, and he could have had no possible reason to lie as he was nowhere near underage. If anything he could have made himself two years younger so as to serve in WWII (a birth year of 1901 might have been prohibitive, but 1903 isn't much better). In short, we have to acknowledge that we can't know everything, and trust me I know how frustrating that is. Yours, Quis separabit? 01:18, 22 August 2015 (UTC)
Lets list the sources and not mention all the guess work ....again why the removal of the sources? I am not frustrated at the problem because I understand it (as seen by past ten years of edit history here)....I am fustared at the sources used and the deletion of others. I am the one that implemented the range ....but the guess work is a bit much in all the stuff about Hal's DOB in this article....all we need to say is that her siblings and parents DOB is also a problem. Its not just about Hal's DOB that is a problem for Joan's age question-- Moxy (talk) 01:40, 22 August 2015 (UTC)
This source is not particularly reliable as it is user generated. This source is OK for me provided one understands that the census age is the age as of the person's last birthday, so deducing 1902 for Hal would be incorrect, as we have already gone over ad nauseam (and which is why it says "Birth Year (Estimated)".
This source is the most important for me and the one I keep citing, dated on September 16, 1931 on his marriage license, which gives his age as of his last birthday (which would have been September 3) as 30, clearly indicating a 1901 year of birth. So, @Moxy, I am with you on most of the sources you cite, except the user-generated one from So obviously I did not remove them. I am going to check and will restore as needed. Findagrave in this is not inappropriate as it is not unsourced claims but a photo of Hal's gravestone which is being sourced. I don't see a problem under that circumstance. If there is another way to get an image of his gravestone, fine. Quis separabit? 21:21, 22 August 2015 (UTC)
Thats one of the sources you keep deleting when I added it. I dont understand what you are doing. As i have said before we have no need for all this speculation on Hal's age here. All the ages are in question not just Hal's. Still find it odd that your ok with Hal's DOB from findagrave but not for Daisy, The article is loosing its credibility,,,, fansite speculation has made it into our lead making the article look like an armature is making a guess based on different unreliable primary sources..... over following what the majority of bibliographers say (as sourced). For example anyone can see that this source says Birth Year (Estimated) 1902 ...not 1901 as you have personally calculated from the document .. may be right but the source does not stat what your saying. We have no need to list all the guesswork from non-legible primary sources that dont even have the right name .....because we have secondary sources that state the problem. -- Moxy (talk) 00:28, 23 August 2015 (UTC)
I did not remove reflinks that I myself support. I don't know what "We have no need to list all the guesswork from non-legible primary sources that dont even have the right name .....because we have secondary sources that state the problem." even means. As far as "Still find it odd that your ok with Hal's DOB from findagrave but not for Daisy" --that would be because, as I have repeated numerous times, his findagrave page has a gravestone (commissioned by his family) with a year of birth (1903). There is no gravestone at Daisy LeSueur's findagrave page, or are you mixing it up with the user-generated link I referenced above? Do you even check? ──────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────── However, I suggest we open a discussion for other editors to contribute and state their opinions. Quis separabit? 00:44, 23 August 2015 (UTC)
I agree we need others to look at the problem,,,,THAT is.... it ok to have a debate in the lead with primary sources about a relatives age in this article over citing secondary sources about the main person this page is about. --Moxy (talk) 00:59, 23 August 2015 (UTC)

brothers age[edit]

The following discussion is an archived record of a request for comment. Please do not modify it. No further edits should be made to this discussion. A summary of the conclusions reached follows.
The consensus was clear at the end that the dates should not be included. Boxing this one up as it is listed on WP:ANRFC. AlbinoFerret 20:45, 12 October 2015 (UTC)

Should the articles lead note contain the debate and conflicting primary sources of her brothers age or should the article only use sources about Joan herself. Does the article need to go into details about her brother DOB ..because like Joan and the rest of her family the DOB's are uncertain. -- Moxy (talk) 14:55, 26 August 2015 (UTC)


Do not include - no need to have all the guess work of her brothers age here. All that needs to be mentioned is that the dates of all her siblings and parents are uncertain. Leave the Hal debate to the Hal page. -- Moxy (talk) 14:55, 26 August 2015 (UTC)
FINE: in that case do not include any birthdate/birthyear/age for Hal in Crawford's article, only include his date/year of death, which is undisputed. Again, for the rest, it's not guesswork, at least not on MY part. It's called LOGIC. Quis separabit? 15:20, 26 August 2015 (UTC)
  • No DOB necessary - summoned by bot. I don't see why her brother's date of birth is important for this article. МандичкаYO 😜 09:06, 1 September 2015 (UTC)
  • Do not include - I agree with the above user. I don't the think the DOB of the brother is important for this article, especially because it is not even about him. Solely mention that the births of the family members are uncertain. Cheers, Comatmebro User talk:Comatmebro 18:36, 9 September 2015 (UTC)

@Wikimandia: Because if Hal was born in September 1903, it makes Crawford's purported year of birth of 1904 almost biologically impossible. Otherwise let's remove all references, for consistency's sake, to Hal and Daisy's dates/years of birth and death, I have no problem with that. Quis separabit? 14:28, 1 September 2015 (UTC)

  • Comment: Summoned here by bot. Not having looked into this, I'm confused why her brother's DOB would be relevant to her biography. Could the editor(s) who support inclusion of a discussion of the brother's DOB explain its relevance to her article? Lacking that context, I'd be inclined to agree with Wikimandia that it doesn't seem relevant in her biography. Thanks. Safehaven86 (talk) 01:35, 3 September 2015 (UTC)
  • Okay, after further investigation, I see the question is only whether we should include this information in the lead note, and not in the lead itself. That makes a big difference. I also see the interrelationship between her brother's purported DOB and her purported DOB. I don't see any harm in keeping the article as-is as it appears to provide a comprehensive and unobtrusive overview of the best available sources on the matter, and it is clearly of relevance to the article subject as it regards her DOB. So, I support inclusion. Thanks. Safehaven86 (talk) 01:50, 3 September 2015 (UTC)
  • I support inclusion after some investigation as well. I dream of horses (T) @ 02:52, 9 September 2015 (UTC)
Yes but its all guess work as we have sources that state 4 different dates. In no way is 1903 a firm date as with the rest of her family. Simply not the place for listing all the speculative dates we are not a fan site making guess as to what source is right. 1903 is not a date found in bios on the topic....just on fansites taking guess as to what sources is best. Moxy (talk) 13:03, 9 September 2015 (UTC)
Do not include - This sort of speculation is unnecessary whether in a note or not. Aparslet (talk) 11:37, 11 September 2015 (UTC)
Do not include - The discussion about her brother's DOB would be fine for a full-length biography, but it is way too detailed for an encyclopedia article, even as a note. Kaldari (talk) 06:06, 22 September 2015 (UTC)

Moving forward[edit]

I guess its clear that the majority don't see a need for the info here. The few that do support the info only one makes an argument for the dates but does not address the speculation concerns. This is now the 3 or 4th time we have had an RfC on this date stuff...think its clear the source have not changed ...just the same old speculative sources. But we should mention within the article of the date of death and omit date of birth/or say no dates a firm. Bit of a clean the Lead Note we should mention that no siblings DOB is certain nor are her parents. -- Moxy (talk) 16:17, 4 October 2015 (UTC)

Me again so lets redo the note ...--Moxy (talk) 17:03, 4 October 2015 (UTC)
"Crawford maintained that she was born in 1908 (the date on her tombstone). There are no official records before 1910 for any family member. The 1905 date is based on the 1910 U.S. Census, where she was listed as five years old in April of that year.[1] Most modern biographers cite 1904 as the most likely year with 1903 and 1906 also cited numerous times.[2][3][4][5][6][7] Joan Crawford's daughter Christina, in the 1978 biography Mommie Dearest, firmly states 1904 twice:

"Publicly her birth date was reported as March 23, 1908, but Grandmother told me that she was actually born in 1904."[8]:20

"My mother was born Lucille LeSueur in San Antonio, Texas, in 1904, although when she came to Hollywood she lied about her age and changed the year to 1908."[8]:66


  1. ^ 1910 United States Federal Census
  2. ^ Thomas S. Hischak (2008). The Oxford Companion to the American Musical:Theatre, Film, and Television: Theatre, Film, and Television. Oxford University Press. p. 174. ISBN 978-0-19-533533-0. 
  3. ^ Mark Knowles (2009). The Wicked Waltz and Other Scandalous Dances: Outrage at Couple Dancing in the 19th and Early 20th Centuries. McFarland. p. 233. ISBN 978-0-7864-3708-5. 
  4. ^ Liz Sonneborn (2002). A to Z of American Women in the Performing Arts. Infobase Publishing. p. 43. ISBN 978-1-4381-0790-5. 
  5. ^ Lawrence J. Quirk; William Schoell (2002). Joan Crawford: The Essential Biography. University Press of Kentucky. p. 1. ISBN 978-0-8131-2254-0. 
  6. ^ James Robert Parish (2011). The Hollywood Book of Extravagance: The Totally Infamous, Mostly Disastrous, and Always Compelling Excesses of America's Film and TV Idols. John Wiley & Sons. p. 72. ISBN 978-1-118-03902-1. 
  7. ^ Time magazine (June 23, 1947). LIFE. Time-Life Inc. p. 45. ISSN 0024-3019. 
  8. ^ a b Christina Crawford (1979). Mommie Dearest. Berkley. ISBN 978-0-425-04444-5. 

The above discussion is preserved as an archive of the debate. Please do not modify it. No further edits should be made to this discussion.

Allegations of sexual abuse by stepfather[edit]

The source provided for this claim is not reliable and the claim should not be included -- certainly not presented as fact. Even the non-reliable source itself makes clear that there is considerable ambiguity and doubt. For example:

"The New Yorker told her childhood story a bit differently and reported that Crawford's second stepfather — Harry Hough — allegedly had sexually assaulted her at age 13. (The writer said that Cassin had treated Crawford well and she went by the name Billie — his nickname for her — Cassin at this time.) With everyone involved no longer living, the truth may never come out, and Feud is a dramatization so it can't be held as fact either."

Serious discussion needed. Quis separabit? 04:36, 15 May 2017 (UTC)


Marilyn Monroe stated that she had a sexual affair with Joan Crawford on one occasion and that Crawford "wanted to have another round," but she declined. This was detailed in the book "Goddess." Shouldn't there be a mention of this and other probable instances of bisexuality? (talk) 16:20, 26 December 2017 (UTC)Vainomoinen

Only if the content can be verified and sourced reliably. See WP:REF and WP:VERIFY. -- ψλ 16:44, 26 December 2017 (UTC)