The Betty MacDonald Network™
A literary society and fan magazine
Welcome to our open, community supported fan site for American author and humorist Betty Bard MacDonald.
Inkubator: The Editor's Log
Another View of the Bishop Trial
Larry Trotter posted in Vashon's Betty MacDonald at Facebook.: 1951 - A nasty lawyer made Betty cry. Hard to imagine that someone could break that smile.
"The Seattle Times reported, "Mrs. MacDonald testified that she had lived on a farm with her mother near the Albert Bishop farm for more than a year before she married Robert Heskett and moved to the farm adjoining the Bishop place ... under stiff cross-examination by George H. Crandell, plaintiff's attorney, Mrs. MacDonald broke into tears and fled the courtroom" (February 16, 1951, p. 2)."
Link points to the story with a couple of courtroom photos...
Larry Trotter 6:10pm Aug 3
Pick Your Font Size
Having trouble reading our site? Click one of the alternate font sizes in the main menu at left. (Some special features may not respond to resizing; you may be able to combine our font size changer with that of your browser to find the most readable combination.) -FA
Betty Pushes Xmas Seals 1948
I'm not sure this item from 1948 ever got the play it deserved. So here's another view of what Burlington, NC, readers were learning at the time. Here's the caption from the photo:
Mrs. Piggle Wiggle on Hulu!
I don't think I mentioned this before, but you can watch episodes of the Mrs. Piggle Wiggle TV show - free - on hulu.com. Here is the link - Enjoy!
Commemorative Stamp Drive
Dear Friends: As many of you know, for several years now, we have hoped to have a commemorative stamp issued by the US Postal Service, depicting our favorite author. I put this on the back burner a few years ago, when it seemed there already was a stamp request in the works, but I have found out from the Postal Service that no stamp is in the offing. Their process can take up to three years, so it would behoove us to begin the "campaign" now, with the goal of seeing the stamp issued in 2015. That would be the 70th anniversary of the release of "The Egg and I," and the Postal Service prefers a commemorative event to link to the issuance, so this seems a good time to make the request.
Bob Heskett Grave Found!
Thanks to Media Coordinator, John Crawford, the web site "Find a Grave" has included Bob Heskett's grave marker at Golden Gate Cemetery on their site. Thanks to Find A Grave for posting a very nice photo of the marker, as well. To see additional images of Bob's headstone, follow the link below.
Betty's Friend Wins Lottery!
The little town of Chimacum was put on the map recently, when 92-year old George Huntingford won $2.1 million in the Washington State lottery! George knew Betty and her family, as he recounted to Debbie and Emily on their visit with him a few years ago.
George's aunt, Annie McGuire, was said to be the inspiration for the character of Mary McGregor in "The Egg and I." Annie's testimony on the stand during the libel trial led many to believe Betty didn't stretch too much if she used Annie as her "template" for Mary. To read about Annie's testimony, go [url=http://www.historylink.org/index.cfm?DisplayPage=output.cfm&file_id=8271]here[/url].
George and Betty's brother Cleve were buddies who "ran in the same circles" in the small communities of Chimacum and Center in the later 1920's and early 1930's. We couldn't be happier for George and his family. See the stories at: [url=http://www.peninsuladailynews.com/article/20090904/news/309049992]Peninsula Daily News[/url] or [url=http://www.ptleader.com/Main.asp?SectionID=36&SubSectionID=55&ArticleID=25103]Port Townsend Leader[/url].
E&I Trailer from 1947
Cathy Bredlau has contributed another gem: The original introductory movie trailer for the 1947 film, The Egg and I, with a spoken introduction by Betty MacDonald herself. The YouTube upload (sadly with time codes across it) is here:
Finding and Caring for First Editions
John Crawford has sent some guidelines on including first editions and other rare books in your library. Major topics include scarcity and condition, Internet research, and care and cleaning.
Have a look!
Betty M in the news, 1946
Cathy Bredlau writes... "Frank, this is my birthday present for all the viewers of the FOBM website. Betty's birthday is this Thursday, March 26th.
I finally figured out how to convert the VHS tape of the Universal Pictures newsreel into a digital format compatible with YouTube. (You can) go to YouTube, and (search): Betty MacDonald newsreel, September 17, 1946.
(Ed.: You can see the video clip here if your browser supports Flash video. Cathy's link appears below. FA)
A recent discovery
The source of this clip from a 1950 Porky Pig epic comments that it shows the penetration of the "Egg" brand into 1940s pop culture.
Betty promoted Christmas Seals
Cathy Bredlau has found a 1948 promotional piece that has Betty MacDonald urging the purchase of Christmas Seals. It was printed December 29, 1948, in the Burlington, NC, Daily Times-News.
The caption reads: "Pictured above is Betty MacDonald, authoress of the best selling 'The Egg and I' and most recently 'The Plague and I', as she applied Christmas Seals to gifts prior to Christmas. The authoress, in endorsing the Tuberculosis Association drive to the limit, pointed out that the dred disease can strike anyone and added that she knew from experience. She urged the success of the Alamance County Seal Sale Campaign which has been extended for the next few weeks in an effort to meet the $14,000 goal."
Giving might have been less arduous when one could buy a pair of pants for $1.98 and a leather jacket for $9.95. (Click image to enlarge and see the ads in the background; the full-size PDF is [url=http://bettymacdonald.net/files/bettyxmasseals1948.pdf]here[/url].)
For those of you outside the US, Christmas Seals are an annual appeal by the American Lung Assn. (ALA). (Of course there may be similar projects elsewhere.)
Today's inspiration: When you next buy Christmas Seals, why not donate in the name of Friends of Betty MacDonald and include our URL (bettymacdonald.net). You might find some new friends. A link to the Christmas Seals pages appears below.
Mary Bard Jensen Radio Adaptation
Visit our companion site to hear a '50s radio adaptation of "...Three Faces" with Dorothy McGuire and Frank Lovejoy.
Thirteen Cures from Mrs. P-W
The BMcD network is on the air! Follow the link below to a must-see collection of Mrs. Piggle-Wiggle episodes on hulu.com.
Pretty good video; the trade off is you have to sit through some 30 second commercials.
They have lots of other shows; many have full seasons. Many are free; some require payment. The site features classic shows like WKRP, barney miller, Emergency, adam 12..., and new stuff like National Geographic Channel shows, Nova, 24, and John Stewart.
I didn't bother to watch all, but you might want to link to it. The series was produced in the 1990s with Jean Stapleton, Shelly Duvall, Joan Cusack, Christopher Lloyd and many other faces you will recognize.
Rumor has it that there are old Betty MacDonald TV shows (video or kinescope???) "out there" - now may be the time for one of you to do some research.
-FA (Clark Internet Publishing)
The Deserted Mansion
Was that deserted mansion she and Bob explored just a product of Betty's vivid imagination ... or did it really exist? If it did, could I find it?