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!

Monday, February 20, 2006

Texas: Hippodrome 1925

Who could fill a Hippodrome, a Manhattan theatre built to epic scale, gigantic enough for gladiator combat, an elephant parade, or a calvary troop's maneuvers? Crowd-pleaser Texas Guinan and her "El Fey Gang" [a revue that included Ruby Keeler among her "little girls"], that's who!

• • Even without liquor service, Texas Guinan's name could sell tickets quicker than most in the Times Square area of New York City - - or anywhere during the 1920s.

• • In 1923 B.F. Keith took over this Sixth Avenue Circus Maximus, situated at the lip of the 6th Avenue Elevated, occupying an entire city block between West 43rd and West 44th Street.
• • Built 1905 - demolished 1939.
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• • photo: Texas Guinan [1925 ad] • B.F. Keith's Hippodrome

Texas Guinan.