Beryl Halley

The Life and Follies of a Ziegfeld Beauty, 1897–1988


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About the Book

Born in rural Ohio in 1897, Beryl Halley was educated at a strict Freewill Baptist school. After briefly teaching in a one-room schoolhouse, she joined the navy in 1918 before her unlikely path led her to Broadway, then to the Ziegfeld Follies (1923–1925). She also appeared in Earl Carroll’s Vanities and other revues, as well as in films, and had a widely publicized brush with the law (over alleged nudity) in 1926.
She retired from show business in 1930, married an insurance executive and had a family, later reappearing in the public eye as an officer in the Ziegfeld Girls’ Club. Making her home in Houston in the 1950s, she worked as legal secretary for a large law firm. Her death at age 90 was unpublicized. Her story is told here for the first time.

About the Author(s)

Jacob L. Bapst is a retired administrator and instructor from the University of Rio Grande/Rio Grande Community College, located in Rio Grande, Ohio. He currently serves as the school’s archivist.
Ivan M. Tribe, a professor emeritus of history at the University of Rio Grande/Rio Grande Community College, in Rio Grande, Ohio, has authored 12 books and more than 250 magazine and journal articles.

Bibliographic Details

Jacob L. Bapst and Ivan M. Tribe
Format: softcover (6 x 9)
Pages: 217
Bibliographic Info: 33 photos, appendix, notes, bibliography, index
Copyright Date: 2019
pISBN: 978-1-4766-7643-2
eISBN: 978-1-4766-3677-1
Imprint: McFarland

Table of Contents

Preface and Acknowledgments 1
Introduction: A Representative Ziegfeld Girl 5
1. Bladen to Rio Grande, 1897–1913 9
2. Rio Grande to Norfolk, Virginia, 1913–1920 18
3. Norfolk to Broadway, 1920–1924 28
4. Ziegfeld Girl, 1924–1925 46
5. Palm Beach Nights, The Bunk … and More, 1926–1927 55
6. The Bladen Beauty’s “Big Apple,” or Beryl Halley’s New York City 72
7. The World She Left Behind, or Gallia County in Prosperity and Depression 86
8. Life After the Follies, 1927–1929 102
9. Surviving the Depression, 1929–1933 116
10. Marriage and the Ziegfeld Girls Club, 1933–1941 123
11. New York to Texas, 1941–1953 133
12. Texas, 1953–1988 142
Appendix: Beryl’s Buddies 153
Chapter Notes 179
Bibliography 197
Index 205