Thursday, December 10, 2009

The Latest Addition to

Click on the images for views of the Muskegon area
from the days when Buster Keaton called the city "home".

Downtown Muskegon

The Trip to Bluffton

Lake Michigan Park
(AKA - Pere Marquette Park)

Pigeon Hill

Visit often, as the I continue to add to the pages as I unearth more images
and history on the area.

Have images to share? Feel free to send them along! You can find me at

Sunday, October 4, 2009

Images from the 15th Annual Buster Keaton Convention in Muskegon MI

The Cast of Characters...

flash the "High Sign" at the baseball diamond where Keaton played as a kid.

Our every gracious hosts, the D'Alcorn's, at Jingles Jungle.

Melissa Talmadge Cox, Buster's grandaughter, shows off "The General" during Saturday's talks at the convention.

Britian's David McLeod again presented his running series on Keaton features, this year is was "Seven Chances".

Virgil Noble's presentation on the Cutlers - Buster's Mother's side of the family was outstanding...

As was the presentation on "The General" by Ted Keaton III.

The annual auction included shots of Keaton in uniform - both large and small.

Saturday concluded with a performance by the West End Jazz Band at the glorious Frauenthal Theater.

And, of course, the incredible Dennis Scott at the Barton Theater Organ, performing for Keaton's Masterpiece, "The General".

(Someone, please, send along a better photograph - my camera isn't that skilled at stopping the action!)

Monday, September 28, 2009

Saturday, September 26, 2009

Only a few more days to go...

Muskegon's 15th Annual Buster Keaton Celebration is nearly here.

I see the new Bluffton sign is in place - just in time for the event. Watch for it as you head to the beach.

What I especially love about the Keaton weekend is the interest it generates within the Muskegon area about Buster and the Actors' Colony, including various pieces of artwork created by local residents. Check out this image by long-time graphic artist Ferrel Cordle.

Here's a link to more of Cordle's work. The Keaton image measures 16x20 and is available for purchase.

Saturday, June 20, 2009

Samaroff and Sonia - A Love Story in Postcards - Part 6

In February 1909, Bedini and the dogs were again on tour that led west into Canada. This time his cards were sent to an address on Huron Street in Chicago. On the trip, Donat's humor shines through.

The "three" performers commented on their long trip in a postcard postmarked Calgary, Alta, on Feb 18th. The artwork is credited to Al St. Pierre. Perhaps he is the same artist mentioned in Donat's next postcard.

A Valentine from his wife was quite the hit in Calgary, according to Donat.

Unfortunately, the Valentine doesn't appear among the collection. Based on the text, it must have included the image of a baby.

"Next baby you send," writes Donat, "send one that smiles." It was the beginning of a running commentary...

"Ever since I received the baby I have no rest at night, She is always crien (sp)."

Ella sent Donat another image of herself, taken at the Peoples Arcade on Clark St, near Madison. While she is smiling for the photo, she misses her husband wishes she were in New York amongst friends.

She then sent a Kiss Coupon that would reach Donat at his next stop in Lathbridge.

Another card featuring a drawing was sent from Lathbridge, Alberta . This one appears to be drawn by Donat, and includes commentary about the size of the city's Lyceum Theater.

Donat would return to the States, stopping in Great Falls Montana and the Pantages in Spokane Washington.

Ella sent a post card with an image that Donat had sent early in their courtship.  This version is in color.

"Don't you think so to?" she adds.

"How is the baby," Ella jokes. "Still crying"

Go back to Chapter 5

Sunday, June 7, 2009

Samaroff and Sonia - A Love Story in Postcards - Part 5

Donat returned to his wife, but the reunion was shortlived. By the mid-June, the couple were back on the road - separately. From Boston, Donat sent a card to his wife, who was now on tour in Cuba. Note his reference to buying a new hat.

Ella responded with three cards from Cuba, including this one.

Meanwhile, Donat was bouncing around Massachusetts, playing theaters in Palmer, Worcester and Lexington, and sending cards and letters to his bride. In this one, he "showcases" his purchase.

Ella and her sisters returned stateside, playing Western New York in late July. "Two Weeks" she notes in a card from postmarked Charlotte, NY.

Ella sent a pair of cards to her husband from Ontario Beach Park, located outside Rochester.

Donat sent a card postmarked July 24th from Worchester and to the New York City address, listing Lincoln Park in Norwich Connecticut as a new stop on his tour.

A beautiful image of Ella was sent to Donat on August 8 from Charlotte to Lexington. It was forwarded to the New York City address. She expressed thanks to her husband that he was headed to New York. Based on the postcards, they would reunite again soon.

Go to Chapter 6
Go back to Chapter 4