Biog: Mary "May" Augusta Yohé, maiden name She was born at Bethlehem PA. April 6, 1866 (some references state 1869), the only child of Lizzie Batcheller and William W. Yohe, and she died in 1938. Though famed as an interpreter of "coon" songs, as African-American tunes were called at the time, her first appearance was as a chorus girl, but it was from her success in rendering Prince Polydor von Prettywitz in "Crystal Slipper" at the Chicago Opera House in the summer of 1887, that her career may be said to have dated. She toured extensively, having visited Britain at least twice and also Australia, before fhe final trip to England, which terminated in her making that country her home.
She married Lord Henry Francis Hope Pelham-Clinton-Hope on 27 November1894; he was the younger brother of and eventual heir to the 7th Duke of Newcastle. They were divorced in 1902, but not until she had ample opportunity to wear the famed Hope diamond. Her second husband was Putman B. Strong; her third husband was John Smuts. Among her hits were Martina in "The Magic Opal" at the Lyric Theatre, London Jan. 19, 1893; "Mam'zelle Nitouche" in the comic opera of the name, May 6, 1893; the title role of "The Lady Slavery," Oct. 1894, at the Avenue Theatre; and in "Dandy Dick Whittington," at the same theatre, in March of the same year. She also appeared in "The Arabian Nights," "Hoss and Hoss," "The City Directory," "Natural Gas" and "Little Christopher Columbus," a burlesque opera staged in London on 10 October 1893. She also appeared in American silent films, after her divorce from Lord Francis Hope, notably "The Hope Diamond Mystery" (1921).
Date: 2 June 1899
Descr: TQL standing
Furniture & Props: -
Photographer: Lafayette Ltd
Evidence of photographer at work:
No of poses: 5
Copyright: V&A Provenance: Pinewood Studios; acquired 1989.