Alberta Vaughn

Alberta Vaughn (June 27, 1904 April 26, 1992)[1] was an American actress in silent motion pictures and early Western sound films. She appeared in some 130 motion pictures.

Alberta Vaughn
Publicity photo of Vaughn from Stars of the Photoplay (1924)
Born(1904-06-27)June 27, 1904
DiedApril 26, 1992(1992-04-26) (aged 87)
Years active1921–1935
Spouse(s)Joseph Egil or Egli (19341943, divorce)
John R. Thompson or Thomas (1948?)

Early years

Born in Ashland, Kentucky, Vaughn was the sister of actress Adamae Vaughn.[2]


Vaughn was a selected as a WAMPAS Baby Star along with Clara Bow and Dorothy Mackaill in 1924.[3] Her movie career began in 1921 and continued until 1935. She often co-starred with actor Al Cook in comedies. She made Randy Rides Alone (1934) with John Wayne. She was a member of the cast of Intermission, a play by Irving Kaye Davis, in September 1932. The production opened in San Francisco and co-starred Madge Bellamy and Judith Voselli. Vaughn made her last onscreen appearance in the 1935 film The Live Wire opposite Richard Talmadge.

She retired from acting in 1935 at age 31.

Personal life and death

Engagements and marriages

In 1926, Vaughn became engaged to actor and leading man Grant Withers.[4] After announcing their engagement in October 1926, Vaughn traveled to New York to film some talking sequences for a movie she was filming in Hollywood. Withers broke off the engagement after he discovered Vaughn went out with friends to nightclubs in New York. Immediately after the wedding was called off, Vaughn returned to Hollywood as the fiancee of noted attorney (later agent and producer), Charles K. Feldman.

Vaughn announced her engagement to William Laitt, a "wealthy young steel man", on August 26, 1928.[5]

On April 8, 1934, Vaughn wed assistant casting director Joseph Egil of Paramount Pictures. (Other sources give the last name as Egli.)[6][7][8][9] They were married in Yuma, Arizona.[6] The couple was divorced on August 11, 1943.[10]

In 1948 she married roofing contractor John R. Thompson. (The trade publication Billboard recorded his name as John R. Thomas, reporting in its July 10, 1948, issue that Thomas and she were married June 23 in Los Angeles.)[11]

Already in trouble for drunk driving, Vaughn received a six-month jail sentence on May 13, 1946, for violating probation. Judge William R. McKay in Los Angeles revoked her probation and handed down the sentence after he did not accept her explanation that some sailors who rode in her car left a half-full bottle of whiskey in the vehicle.[9]

Another probation revocation and sentence occurred in 1948. She was sentenced to a year in jail for marrying John Robert (Thomas) Thompson in violation of her terms of probation for drunk driving. Those terms "required that she consult with authorities before marrying."[12]

In March 1949, Vaughn was jailed on an intoxication violation in Pasadena. She chose incarceration instead of paying a $25 fine. Her jail term was 12 and a half days. A previous drunken charge, then pending, would have added an additional four months to her sentence. Vaughn was arrested after an argument with her husband, John R. Thompson. The incident followed her release after serving eight months of a one-year sentence on the earlier instance.[13]


Vaughn died of cancer in Studio City, California, on April 26, 1992, two months before her 88th birthday,[1] and was buried in Valhalla Memorial Park Cemetery.

Selected filmography

Year Title Role Notes
1921 Stop Kidding
1922 Women First Credited as Alberta Vaughan
1923 A Friendly Husband Tootsie, Friend Wife
Down to the Sea in Shoes
1924 Picking Peaches His Wife
Fire When Ready Peggy Davis
1925 The Pacemakers Soda Jerk
The Sleuth His Wife
1926 Collegiate Patricia Steele
The Adorable Deceiver Princess Sylvia
1927 Ain't Love Funny? Helen Brice
The Romantic Age Sally
1928 Skyscraper Jane
Forbidden Hours Nina
1929 Molly and Me Peggy
Points West Dorothy
1930 The Setting Son
Eventually, But Not Now
1931 Wild Horse Alice Hall
The Spell of the Circus Marie Wallace
Working Girls Violet
1932 Love in High Gear Betty
Midnight Morals Katy Dolan
1933 Alimony Madness Mary
Dance Hall Hostess Myra
1934 Randy Rides Alone Sally Rogers
1935 The Laramie Kid Peggy Bland
The Live Wire Madge King

Further reading

  • Michael G. Ankerich (2010). Dangerous Curves atop Hollywood Heels: The Lives, Careers, and Misfortunes of 14 Hard-Luck Girls of the Silent Screen. BearManor. ISBN 1-59393-605-2.


  1. Ellenberger, Allan R. (2001). Celebrities in Los Angeles Cemeteries: A Directory. McFarland. p. 208. ISBN 9780786409839. Retrieved April 22, 2017.
  2. "Actress to Marry Divorced Husband". The Daily Times. Maryland, Salisbury. Associated Press. October 12, 1927. p. 1. Retrieved April 22, 2017 via
  3. Jungmeyer, Jack (January 3, 1924). "Baby Stars of 1924 Flicker". Logansport Pharos-Tribune. Indiana, Logansport. Newspaper Enterprise Association. p. 21. Retrieved April 22, 2017 via
  4. "Alberta Vaughn, Film Star, to Wed Actor". Oakland Tribune. California, Oakland. Associated Press. September 16, 1926. p. 17. Retrieved April 22, 2017 via
  5. "Star Tells of Wedding". The Waco News-Tribune. Texas, Waco. International News Service. August 26, 1928. p. 3. Retrieved April 22, 2017 via
  6. "Director Weds Alberta Vaughn". The San Bernardino County Sun. California, San Bernardino. Associated Press. April 9, 1934. p. 3. Retrieved April 22, 2017 via
  7. "(untitled brief)". Movie-Radio Guide. 11 (26): 11. April 4, 1942.
  8. "Former Actress Jailed". The San Bernardino County Sun. California, San Bernardino. Associated Press. June 20, 1946. p. 1. Retrieved April 22, 2017 via
  9. "Court Rejects Story, Sends Actress to Jail". The San Bernardino County Sun. California, San Bernardino. Associated Press. May 14, 1946. p. 3. Retrieved April 22, 2017 via
  10. "Actress Divorced". The Wilkes-Barre Record. Pennsylvania, Wilkes-Barre. Associated Press. August 12, 1943. p. 3. Retrieved April 22, 2017 via
  11. "Marriages". Billboard. July 10, 1948. p. 75. Retrieved April 22, 2017.
  12. "Silent Screen Actress Jailed". Eau Claire Leader. Wisconsin, Eau Claire. United Press. July 1, 1948. p. 2. Retrieved April 22, 2017 via
  13. "Former Actress Is Sent To Jail". The Wilkes-Barre Times Leader, the Evening News. Pennsylvania, Wilkes-Barre. Associated Press. March 3, 1949. p. 17. Retrieved April 22, 2017 via
  • Fresno Bee, Thursday, June 24, 1948, Page 14.
  • Nebraska Night Journal, Monday, January 14, 1929, Page 1.
  • The New York Times, "Al Cook, Film Comedian, Dies", July 7, 1935, Page 22.
  • The New York Times, "Theatrical Notes", September 17, 1932, Page 18.
  • The New York Times, "Alberta Vaughn Wed", April 9, 1934, Page 20.
  • Oakland Tribune, Thursday Evening, September 16, 1926, Section B, Page 17.
  • Oakland Tribune, Wednesday Evening, October 12, 1927, Page 1.
  • St. Joseph Herald-Press, Thursday, "Former Silent Film Star Alberta Vaughn Is Jailed On Intoxication Charge", March 3, 1949, Page 3.
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