Born on 12 January 1884 in Waco, Mary Louise Cecilia "Texas" Guinan played a gun-slinger and rode bareback in silent films, took New York by storm in 1906, and earned a salary of $700,000 as a speakeasy hostess. Here are highlights from a life led at full speed until 5 November 1933. Meet TEXAS GUINAN!

Wednesday, October 11, 2006

Once in Love with Aimee

Of course, it's time to commemorate a woman admired by Texas Guinan on her birthday in October.
Aimee Semple McPherson [9 October 1890 –– 27 September 1944], also known as "Sister Aimee" or simply "Sister," was an evangelist and media sensation in the 1920s and 1930s; she was also the founder of the Foursquare Church.
• • McPherson had started out as a Salvation Army worker.
• • Aimee McPherson spent four years [1918-1922] as an itinerant Pentecostal preacher, finally settling with her mother in Los Angeles, California, and founding the Foursquare Gospel church. She supervised construction of a large, domed church building in the Echo Park area of Los Angeles, and it was completed in June 1923. Named Angelus Temple, it had a seating capacity of over 5,000.
• • When Aimee Semple McPherson, the famous Evangelist (with marcel-waved hair) from Los Angeles visited New York in 1927, she insisted on visiting Texas Guinan's club.
• • Texas welcomed McPherson and the two formed a sort of mutual admiration society. It was a promotional dream - - two gals of Irish descent in different types of show business. Aimee thanked Texas and invited her to her Glad Tidings Tabernacle the next day. Texas and her chorus girls showed up (before going to work), to the astonishment of everyone.
• • At the time, women in the pulpit ministry were rare — — those who wore makeup and jewelry in the pulpit, nonexistent. McPherson's uniqueness in this respect, her flamboyance and her unashamed use of low-key sex appeal to attract converts, endeared her to her crowd of followers in Los Angeles. She would invariably appear before parishioners in a white gown, carrying a bouquet of flowers.
• • On 27 September 1944 she was found dead of an overdose of prescription barbiturates.
• • Photo of Texas Guinan and Aimee Semple McPherson [1927] from Texas Guinan: Queen of the Nightclubs by Louise Berliner
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• • photo: Texas Guinan • • Aimee Semple McPherson • • 1927 • •

Texas Guinan.