Louise Fitch

Louise A. Fitch (October 18, 1914 – September 11, 1996) was an American actress best known for her work in old-time radio.

Louise Fitch
Born
Louise A. Fitch

October 18, 1914[1]
DiedSeptember 11, 1996
NationalityAmerican
Alma materCreighton University
Home townCouncil Bluffs, Iowa
Spouse(s)Jerome Rosenthal (1938 - ?)

Early years

Fitch was born into a Yiddish-speaking family in Omaha, Nebraska,[1] to Leo (Lev) Fitch (1884–1947) and Fannie (Frieda) Riekes Fitch (1896–1960), Jewish immigrants from Ukraine and Russia, respectively.[2][1][3] She grew up in Council Bluffs, Iowa, where she received her elementary and secondary education.[4] While she was a student at Creighton University, Fitch was a beauty queen, editor of the school's newspaper, and the school's best violinist.[5] She initially majored in journalism, planning to go into that profession, but opportunities for acting changed her mind.[6] Participation in Creighton's dramatics society helped Fitch to develop her acting skills, and her debut on stage came unexpectedly when she had to go on for a leading lady who became sick. She gained additional experience by acting with a stock theater company throughout her college years.[4]

Radio

Fitch first worked in radio as a copywriter for station KOIL in Omaha, Nebraska, for five months. Her entry into acting on radio came by accident when she visited a friend who was an announcer at a station in Chicago. A director mistakenly had her audition for a part, leading her to be cast as Nancy in That Brewster Boy.[4]

Fitch's roles on radio programs included those shown in the table below.

ProgramCharacter
Arnold Grimm's DaughterBernice Farriday[7]
Bachelor's ChildrenAnne Beacham[8]
Big SisterMargo Kirkwood[9]
Fighting SenatorPriscilla (Mike) Logan[10]
Guiding LightRose Kransky[11]
Kitty Keene, Inc.Anna[12]
Light of the WorldZebudah[4]
Lone JourneySydney Sherood[13]
Manhattan MotherDale Dwyer[14]
Mortimer GoochBetty Lou Harrison[15]
The Road of LifeCarol Evans Martin[12]:285
The Romance of Helen TrentGloria Grant[16]
Scattergood BainesEloise Comstock[12]:296
Two on a ClueDebbie Spencer[17]
Valiant LadyChristine Jeffreys[18]
We Love and LearnAndrea Reynolds[19]
Woman in WhiteBetty Adams[20]

By late 1937, Fitch had rejected two offers to act in films, preferring to remain in radio.[21]

Hollywood Blacklist

Fitch was an actress in the 50's that took on roles such as Blood of Dracula and I Was a Teenage Werewolf. During this time period, McCarthyism and the Red Scare were circulating. With the fear of Communism during the Cold War, Senator Joseph McCarthy claimed that he had a list of confirmed communists in the United States.[22] This list affected politicians, blue collar workers, and actors/actresses such as Fitch herself. "The Red Channels" in which was a pamphlet written that gave a list of people in show business who had potential communist ties.[23][24] This pamphlet created the Hollywood Blacklist that Fitch was placed on[25][26] Hundreds of others in show business were Blacklisted and were not able to get jobs, having to testify in front of the HUAC [27] These people were given the option to give the name of another communist or remain silent and be placed on the blacklist.

Television

Fitch played Nurse Bascomb on the CBS drama Medical Center.[28]

Personal life

Fitch married attorney Jerome Rosenthal in 1938.[16]

Death

On September 11, 1996, Fitch died in Los Angeles at age 81.[29]

References

  1. U.S., Social Security Applications and Claims Index, 1936-2007
  2. 1920 United States Federal Census
  3. JewishGen Online Worldwide Burial Registry (JOWBR)
  4. "Nebraska-Born Girl Heard In CBS Drama". The Nebraska State Journal. Nebraska, Lincoln. September 9, 1945. p. 28. Retrieved August 7, 2018 via Newspapers.com.
  5. "Meet a Radio Cinderella". Harrisburg Telegraph. Pennsylvania, Harrisburg. February 11, 1937. p. 13. Retrieved August 7, 2018 via Newspapers.com.
  6. "Studio Notes". The Evening News. Pennsylvania, Harrisburg. November 3, 1937. p. 18. Retrieved August 7, 2018 via Newspapers.com.
  7. "Violin Brings Actress Chance to 'Crack' Radio". Wisconsin State Journal. Wisconsin, Madison. March 25, 1941. p. 24. Retrieved August 8, 2018 via Newspapers.com.
  8. "Early All-Cohan Broadcast Promised For Waring Band". The Greenville News. South Carolina, Greenville. July 13, 1942. p. 10. Retrieved August 9, 2018 via Newspapers.com.
  9. "Joins 'Big Sister'". Harrisburg Telegraph. Pennsylvania, Harrisburg. October 18, 1947. p. 19. Retrieved August 8, 2018 via Newspapers.com.
  10. "CBS Drama Probes Corrupt Elections". The Nebraska State Journal. Nebraska, Lincoln. August 11, 1946. p. 32. Retrieved August 8, 2018 via Newspapers.com.
  11. "Versatile Star". The Wilkes-Barre Times Leader, the Evening News. Pennsylvania, Wilkes-Barre. March 31, 1943. p. 7. Retrieved August 9, 2018 via Newspapers.com.
  12. Terrace, Vincent (1999). Radio Programs, 1924-1984: A Catalog of More Than 1800 Shows. McFarland & Company, Inc. p. 190. ISBN 978-0-7864-4513-4.
  13. "Questions and Answers". The Nebraska State Journal. Nebraska, Lincoln. June 22, 1941. p. 36. Retrieved August 9, 2018 via Newspapers.com.
  14. "On the Air". The Cincinnati Enquirer. Ohio, Cincinnati. October 3, 1938. p. 19. Retrieved August 8, 2018 via Newspapers.com.
  15. "Louise Fitch". The Los Angeles Times. California, Los Angeles. January 17, 1937. p. 52. Retrieved August 7, 2018 via Newspapers.com.
  16. "Helen Trent". Des Moines Tribune. Iowa, Des Moines. March 21, 1940. p. 21. Retrieved August 9, 2018 via Newspapers.com.
  17. Steinhauser, Si (June 11, 1945). "Radio Star Hitched her Wagon to a Motto". The Pittsburgh Press. Pennsylvania, Pittsburgh. p. 23. Retrieved August 9, 2018 via Newspapers.com.
  18. "Here and There on the Air". St. Louis Post-Dispatch. Missouri, St. Louis. October 14, 1945. p. 79. Retrieved August 9, 2018 via Newspapers.com.
  19. "New 'Andrea'". The Times. Louisiana, Shreveport. July 20, 1944. p. 7. Retrieved August 9, 2018 via Newspapers.com.
  20. "Busy Actress". Harrisburg Telegraph. Pennsylvania, Harrisburg. July 25, 1942. p. 20. Retrieved August 9, 2018 via Newspapers.com.
  21. "Actress Declines Hollywood Offers". Detroit Free Press. Michigan, Detroit. November 21, 1937. p. 50. Retrieved August 7, 2018 via Newspapers.com.
  22. History.com Editors (November 13, 2009). "McCarthy says communists are in State Department". History.com.CS1 maint: extra text: authors list (link)
  23. McDonough, John (June 22, 2010). "Reliving The Scare: Looking Back On 'Red Channels'". National Public Radio.
  24. "The Cold War Home Front: Red Channels". History on the Net. July 18, 2012.
  25. Goldsmith Press (2018). "The Broadcast 41 Women and the AntiCommunist Blacklist". MIT press.
  26. "McCarthyism". 2008–2018.CS1 maint: date format (link)
  27. History.com Editors (October 17, 2018). "Hollywood 10". History.com.CS1 maint: extra text: authors list (link)
  28. Terrace, Vincent (2011). Encyclopedia of Television Shows, 1925 through 2010 (2nd ed.). Jefferson, N.C.: McFarland & Company, Inc., Publishers. p. 676. ISBN 978-0-7864-6477-7.
  29. "Louise Fitch; Acted in Movies, Cult Films, TV". The Los Angeles Times. California, Los Angeles. September 19, 1996. p. 24. Retrieved August 8, 2018 via Newspapers.com.
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