Judy Garland – 1922-1969
Saturday, June 10, 1922 – Judy Garland was born Frances Ethel Gumm in Grand Rapids, Minnesota, delivered by Dr. H.E. Binet of Grand Rapids, at the Itasca Hospital, weighing in at 7 pounds. Judy was the youngest of three children born to Francis “Frank” Avent Gumm and Ethel marion (nee Milne) Gumm. She was delivered by Dr. H.E. Binet of Grand Rapids, at the Itasca Hospital. She weighed 7 pounds. Her older sisters were Mary Jane (aka “Suzy/Suzanne”) born in 1915 and Dorothy Virginia (aka “Jimmie”) Gumm.
The following are highlights of how Judy celebrated her birthday over the years. Photos: Variety of shots of Judy’s birthdays.
Monday, June 10, 1929: By her seventh birthday, Judy was a part of the family Vaudeville act. On this day, she and her sisters, “The Gumm Sisters,” reprised their minstrel show at their father’s Valley Theater in Lancaster, California
Tuesday, June 10, 1930: Judy’s eight birthday was celebrated at the Lancaster High School “plunge,” and it was reported that she received “many lovely gifts.”
Friday, June 12, 1931: Judy’s ninth birthday party was held on the lawn of the Gumm family’s new, larger house, on the corner of Cedar and Newgrove, Lancaster, California
Saturday, June 10, 1933: The sisters are mistakenly billed as “The Gum Sisters” for The Scions Annual Spring Dance and Frolic at the Pollyanna Tea Rooms, West Lake, California.
Wednesday, June 10, 1936: Judy was in New York for her very first trip there, part of her very first promotional tour after being signed by MGM the previous Fall. Judy had not made a film yet, not even her official debut in the film short “Every Sunday” with Deanna Durbin.
Friday, June 10, 1938: Judy was on a forced break from working on “Love Finds Andy Hardy” due to being in an automobile accident on May 24th. She suffered three broken ribs, a sprained back, and a punctured lung. However, she was back at MGM on June 21st, prerecording songs for the film.
Saturday, June 10, 1939: Photos were taken of the birthday party given for Judy on the set of “Babes in Arms.” Judy’s birthday was also celebrated at a pool party given for Judy and her teen peers at Louis B. Mayer’s beach house. This must have taken place on their one day off, Sunday, as Saturday’s day of filming lasted from 10 a.m. to 5:50 p.m.
Monday, June 10, 1940: Judy’s 18th birthday. Judy was in rehearsals for “Strike Up The Band.” Publicity photos of Judy and Mickey Rooney were taken on this day, featuring the duo on top of a huge drum. This happened prior to the 11 a.m. rehearsal start time. Judy’s birthday was celebrated “officially” at MGM on Monday, June 24th. A photo was shot of Judy with her mom and MGM studio chief Louis B. Mayer looking at her birthday cake in his office. Another photo of Judy with Mayer and what looks to be a gift he gave her was also shot on that day, at a different location. Judy was given her very first car – an event that MGM made sure they documented with a publicity photo of Judy posing with the car n the backlot.
Wednesday, June 10, 1942: Judy’s husband David Rose gave her sables for her 20th birthday.
Thursday, June 10, 1943: Judy turned 21. A comedy record titled “The Saga of Baby Gumm” was made for her by Danny Kaye, Phil Silvers, Keenan Wynn, Dore Schary (future MGM chief), Judy’s assistant Betty Asher, and her sister Jimmie Gumm. You can listen to this recording here: http://www.thejudyroom.com/songs/The-Saga-of-Baby-Gumm.mp3
Saturday, June 10, 1944: Judy’s 22nd birthday. MGM gave a birthday party for her and forty-six invited guests.
Friday, June 10, 1949: Judy celebrated her 27th birthday at the Ritz Carlton hotel in Boston, MA with her manager Carlton Alsop and her daughter Liza. Judy was in Boston for treatment to cure her dependency on prescription medicine at the Peter Brent Bringham Hospital.
Friday, June 9, 1950: MGM had a birthday party for Judy’s 28th birthday during a break in rehearsals for “Royal Wedding.” Quite a few photos were taken on this day. In the photos with Judy are Vincente Minnelli, Arthur Freed, Gene Kelly, and Dottie Pondedel (Judy’s makeup woman and friend).
Sunday, June 10, 1951: Judy spent her 29th birthday traveling to Manchester, England with husband Sid Luft, where she would open the next night.
Monday, June 10, 1957: Judy’s 35th birthday was highlighted by the first concert of a two week engagement at the Dallas State Fair in Dallas, TX. The show was Judy’s Vegas show . During this time, Judy reunited with her sister, Jimmy, who lived in Dallas. Judy also cut the June 15th show short after singing four songs, distraught over the news of her friend Robert Alton’s (MGM choreographer) death.
Friday June 8, 1962: Judy was in London filming “I Could Go On Singing.” On this particular day, she shot studio retakes of the Canterbury Cathedral scene, then celebrated her birthday a few days early, with the cast, crew, her children Liza, Lorna and Joe, and fan Lorna Smith.
Saturday, June 8, 1963: To celebrate Judy’s 41st birthday, the Luft’s eleventh wedding anniversary, their new Brentwood home, and the launch of Judy’s TV series, Judy and Sid gave a housewarming party at their new home at 129 South Rockingham Avenue, in the Brentwood section of Los Angeles, just south of Sunset Blvd.
Wednesday, June 10, 1964: Judy was in Hong Kong with Mark Herron, and celebrated her 42nd birthday with a small private party in her room at the Mandarin Hotel.
Thursday, June 10, 1965: Judy’s 43rd birthday. Her friend Peter Lawford hosted a birthday party for her.
Friday, June 10, 1966: Judy celebrated her 44th birthday at the Captain’s Table with escort Richard Grant (they had also been seen at the Beverly Hilton’s Escoffier Room), but Harrison Carroll reported in his June 14 column that Judy told him “Richard is just one of my associates in my music publishing firm. I’m very excited about this new project.” Unfortunately, this was another project that never materialized.
Saturday, June 10, 1967: Judy and boyfriend Tom Green got off the train they were riding to New York, in Chicago. They had dinner at the Pump Room of the Ambassador East Hotel to celebrate Judy’s 45th birthday. The conditions were not quite fitting for a birthday celebration, though. First, the train had air conditioning trouble, so the temperature climbed to 92 degrees. Then, their arrival in Chicago coincided with a rainstorm, which caused a power failure to the front elevators of the hotel, so Judy had to use the service elevator. Then, the kitchen was flooded in the hotel, so Judy and Tom had their meal prepared at their table. Judy soon decided to take an evening flight to New York, instead of continuing by train. She returned to her suite by the back elevator, but had to walk down fifteen flights of stairs when even that elevator wouldn’t work on her way out. In the meantime, her driver had been sent to get her luggage off the train, and as the twenty-three pieces filled the entire back area of the limousine, Judy and Tom rode up front with her driver to the airport!
Tuesday, June 10, 1969: Judy’s 47th – and last – birthday was spent in bed a Charlie Cochran’s apartment. Harold Arlen had found out Judy was in New York and sent her flowers. That day, she called her friend John Carlyle. John said that Judy asked him to “let me come to California,” where she often stayed with John, or his friends Tucker Fleming and Charles Williamson. John then kidded Judy that she was a “married lady now – I can’t ask you. I would, you know I would.” When John mentioned that his cat named after Judy was ill and not expected to live much longer, Judy had him put the cat near the receiver, where he heard Judy sing for the last time, softly, and tenderly, “Ju-dy . . . Ju-dy darling, get well, darling, for John and me, please get well…” Also on this day, NBC-TV’s “The Today Show” aired a birthday tribute to Judy.