The Oregon daily journal. (Portland, Or.) 1902-1972, October 31, 1920, Page 58, Image 58

Below is the OCR text representation for this newspapers page. It is also available as plain text as well as XML.

r - -V
"Tke Last Chapters of My Life, in Vkick I Escape, I Hope
em ana All
I ' ' 1 - 1 - - - . urn
and Believe, from the fcUriluckyG.
By May Yohe (Lady Francis Hope)
(Continued from fait Sunday)
Copyright, 1120, International raatuiw'tervloeTlnc.
TO-DAY I com to th last of th chap
ters of the story I hays chronicled
In these pages from week to week
the last chapter I can write, for it will
bring me up to the present up to a little
cottage in Southern California, with the
roses growing just outside my front door
and with happiness within.
But I did not arrive at this modest,
' humble haven of rest without many a dra
matic climax in the "last act" of the Ufa
drama which, I verily believe, the sinister
Hope Diamond helped td weave for me.
Last week I told of leaving Captain
Strong in Paris while I went on to London
and found new successes there In my
efforts to gather together money to replace
that which he had squandered in Buenos
Aires. I remained alone in London and
through my tour of the province.
I At the end of my tour of the province
I returned to America. Here I found little)
difficulty in procuring an engagement. 1
preferred to play "on tho road" to remain
ing in New York, so after a short atay in
town I went with my company on tour.
My health and my voice had com bach to
me, and I was very successful. Every
place I played the people were kind to m
and came In great audiences. I was saving
money. I did not send quite so much to
Captain Strong, because I began to reallz
that I was far better off. mentally and
physically, by not seeing him.
While we were in the West I met a very
rich man, a bachelor, who tell in love with
me. He was a splendid man, one of th
Western type 1 Ilk so well, and his lev
for me was unselfish and, sincere. He fol
lowed the company from town to town,
always solicitous for me and urging me to
follow the dictates of my better Judgment,
obtain a divorce from Strong and marry
him. " . .
Some telepathic wave must have carries
warning of that conclusion to the Captain,
who was having such a gay time In those
Parisian haunts which were flourishing in
those days Just as they flourish now
those same haunts of which we all have
read so much quite recently in connection
with the death of the beautiful motion, pic
ture star whose life was sacrificed to them.
My company had booked a tour of Canada,
and we began just at that time our trek
eastward, arrangements having been made
for us to play in Montreal. One day
during the week the telephone in my apart
ment rang. Something gripped at my heart
while the little bell still tinkled. My hands
were shaking when I lifted the receiver.
I knew, just as well as if someone had told
me, I would hear my husband's vote at
the other end of the wire. Sue enough,
there it was the same old soft, taunting,
merry "Hello, old girl how everythlngi"
When he first came to the hotel in Mon
treal I would not see him. I had quite a
struggle with myself, but my better judg
ment prevailed.
I told him quite coldly that I never
wanted to see him again. I really was bit
, ter. "I Just bad you stay here, Bridle,
so I could tell you myself I am suing tor
divorce. Good-by."
I heard no more of him for three days.
Then f one evening after the show. Just
'after 1 had gone to my rooms, he tele
phoned me again. I was about to hang up
when I heard a sound that took all the
strength out of me. It was the bark com
ing to me over the wire of a little French
bulldog I had had in the old days, and
which I had left with Captain Strong after
he had stolen my jewelry. Old Mrs. Strong
liked the little dog, and I never had had
the heart to take U away from her. But
often I longed for, it 8trong laid h want
ed to bring Suzzette Op to me. Hthat you
and she may have a visit." I oouldat resist.
My apartments in the hotel connected
with those of Dorothy Morton, th prima
donna, who has Just Inherited several mil
lions of dollars from a kindly old gentle
man who adopted her late ta his life. Miss
Morton was one of th members of my
company. I told her Captain Gtronr .was
coming up, and closed the door between our
, apartments. When the Captain came op
I grabbed not him, but Suwette, Wad
quite a romp on the floor. Meantime the
Captain had closed the hall doer. I heard
Its lock click, but thought nothing of it. '
He had on his overcoat, and asked me.
after a moment, If h might take his coat
off. "Have to be very formal now, you
know, since you are getting a divorce." he
said, with a little smile. I consented, of
course. I wanted htm to tay a while, be
cause I wanted to continue my romp with
Suzsette. When he pulled off his overcoat
his under coat came c-te with it as if by
accident. He apologised quickly, and add
ed, "I'm warm anyway, Myie do you
care if I leave it oflfr
I didn't care, and told him to be com
fortable. After a moment or two he sug
gested we have a drink. 1 told him I cared
for nothing, but that he might order some
thing up for himself If he wished. He
telephoned downstairs and ordered a
brandy and soda.
It was several moments before the bell
boy came with the drink. Captain Strong
just sat on the edge of a chair, apparently
very much amused by the spectacle of me
squatting and rolling oa the floor, with
Suzzette piling all over me. My hatr came
down and my neglige became rumpled.
Suzzette was as happy aa I at the reunion
and leaped and pawed all over me.
There was a knock at the door. It wgg
th bellboy with the drink. Strong looked'
at me inquiringly. I nodded. "You get
It," I said.
Th servant cam la, proffering his tray.
Th Captain took the two glasses and the
bottle. Then to the bellboy he said:
"I want yon to remember, young man,
that when yon came to th door Mt wa
locked; that I am alone with my wife be
hind It, and that I am not completely
dressed." Then he waved bis band sug
gestively at me sitting on the floor, with
my hair about my face and my neglige
flowing and rumpled.
Th bellboy smiled I think th creattfr
winked and left ns. Captain Strong
turned to me and aaid:
"There goes your divorce, Maysi. all
knocked into a cocked hat!"
And certainly It was!
Did I upbraid him? Did I stand up to
him and tell him a few of the many differ
ent kinds of a scoundrel he was?
No, I did not His audacity and suavity
captivated me all over again. There wa
It Has
Meant for
Me and
Has Done
to Me"
i -vv
fast Jj I 1 - -. I :
,m m . ar av si i
May Yoh on Her Chicken Farm hi
hyp m
i hi zt?
'J v
I- f V
. I y , , v
"'I!, IH III I I''
"From the pampered, petted wife ml one of the proulet peers off
England to icrubwentnl What a descant from those old days
whoa I was tho potted idol of tho stage, when aaonoy meant nothing
to mo except a thing to spend for my pleasure I Fortunately I
hav a sense mt humor, and often aa I knelt noon tho floors rubbing
off their dirt with tho soapy brush, my pail beside me, I would
picture Myself la tho Hope coronet, my jewels about me, and tho
sinister Blue Diamond hanging from my neckt"
IT r
sf 0M r frmttf.
On th) Left a Photograph of Mia Yohe in tho Hope Jewel, and on the Right a Photograph of Her Going
to Work a a Scrubwoman Beside One of the Truck of the Place Where She Was Employed.
th old smiling, cruel but gentle, masterful
but affectionate, unconquerable A Putnam
Bradleo Strong, squire of dames and chev
alier of the world, standing up like a bad
boy who had stumped his teacher, waiting
to be forgiven. And I forgave him and
took him back again!
My tour of Canada was spoiled, of course.
The Canadians would have nothing to do
with Captain Strong nor with me so long
a ho was along. We landed back
New York broke again. After a few weeks
ef looking around for a new engagement I
was put out of my hotel because I couldn't
pay my bill.
I borrowed a few dollars here and there,
bested the hotel management to let me
hav enough of my clothes to .make a liv-
York and retrieve my wardrobe and to
provide me with a little pocket money.
Those were hard days-for Captain Strong.
He became restless. He thought, per
haps, he could sooner succeed in attaching
himself to some Woman of means who
would provide tor his luxurious tastes if I
were out of the country. He managed ta
have a friend in New York send me a
bogus cablegram, ostensibly signed by on
of the widely known theatrical agent here,
offering me an immediate engagement at
a liberal salary. I cancelled my engage
ment in London and took the first boat for
New York, eager and happy in my expecta
tions. When I arrived the cruel hoax was made
plain to me. The firm whose nam had
lng, and went to London took Captain 'appeared at the bottom of the cablegram
Strong with me. London always had been
my Mecca. Every time I hav coma, ap
parently, to th end of my rope London
has risen to me and held out tha hand of
generous welcome. In a few weeks I had
procured another engagement there this
time a humble one in a music hall, but
good enough to pay my hotel bill In New
assured mo they had not signed it and that
tney naa notnmg tney couia offer mv
Desperate, I went to Mr. Abo Hummel,
tha noted theatrical lawyer et those days,
who had been my attorney In several the
atrical affairs. Mr. Hummel later went to "
tho penitentiary, but he was. good to tat
and lent me $5,000.
C) 1920. International restore Serrlce. Inc.
Many a tim since that day, when I hart
knelt avmy bedside to say the prayer I
have never missed reciting at bedtime
since it was first taught me by my mother,
1 have thanked God that I was ahl to
repay that generous loan of $5,000 to Mr.
Hummel at a time when he needed it
when the prison bars were just about to
close on him. It took .nearly all I had to
do It, but I did not even hesitat long
enough tor him to ask it of me.
I went to Mr. Hammerstein, then man
aging many theatrical companies, and Mr.
Hammerstein found a place for me. Again
Captain Strong came over -to join me,
bringing his sweet, winning smileand
nothing else. He explained his bogus
cable by saying, "Oh, I knew you'd strike
better luek over hero If you'd only com
and, so I. fixed up the cablegram
really for your benefit."
At Mr. Hammerstein's suggestion I fixed
up vaudeville act In which Captain Strong
was to play my leading man. Th Captain
consented readily it was a new amotion
to hinr. $ut h was a poor actor. He could .
pose on the drawing-room floor, but his
Great Britain Stints Besorred.
poses didn't Mgever" the footlights. Th
venture was a failure, and w returned to
New York and to tho little flat wo had
hired hero lor mother and the rest ot us.
I had $3,000 lef t of th money Mr. Hum
mel had loaned me, but for onoo in my life
I employed a bit of wisdom! , I did not let
Captain Strong know I had, this nest egg.
The quiet life of the flat, with aomcooked
ham and eggs and cold luncheons. Irked :
him. One day h telephoned me to bring
mother and meet him downtown for lunch
a friend was going to be th host, he ex
plained. We went, but hs did not show
up. When wo returned to the fiat wo found
Captain Strong had been there, had sent
my Japanese maid YorL who still remained
with mo, out on an errand, and had
stripped the place ot every oho of hia be
longingsand some that were mlnoand
had skipped- one : more. " " "
I did not grieve this time. I was becom
ing phllosophicaL Always my luck was
better when freed of him. Tfew engage
ments offered themselves and I travelled
the West, msking hug salaries, And even
toured the Continent. I sang. in French
and German quite as well as In English.
On this tour I made great deal of
money. Somehow I began to see the differ
ence between the men I met the real,
world-experienced men and Bradlee.
Many men made love to me, and I began
to realize, too, what a difference there was
between their love and his. I determined
again to divorce Strong and free myself
of him forever, and this time my resolve
was final.
I returned to America and procured my
divorce in Oregon City. Then I went
abroad after a season of stage success in
California. I played again through Eng
land and Scotland and accepted tha offer
of an engagement In South Africa. There
I met Captain John Smuts, -a cousin of the
famous Boer General, Jan Smuts. It was
a swift courtship on his part a speedy
realization upon mine that her at last was
the man set apart for me. We were mar
ried in great state, with all the officials of
Boerland in attendance.
Captain Smuts was poor. He had only
bis Income as an officer, and now that he
was Invalided he had only his pension.
He tried many ventures, none very suc
cessful financially. A friend suggested
that if he could get to America he might
be able to get back Into the service
r through a "back door" method here. At
once ho was eager to try it. Travelling
was difficult in those days, with all the
passenger ships taken for war purposes.
It took us twelve months of constant trav
elling, leaving boats here and waiting for
passport vises there, to reach Vancouver.
From there wo went to Seattle, where there
was a British recruiting mission. .
Captain Smuts presented himself and
was royally received. But when he had
been examined his hopes were dashed to
the ground. They .told him he never could
join th army again.
Wo were "broke." It was no new expe
rience for me. but my husband was not
strong and was in a strange country. I
left him ta Seattle and went to San Fran
Cisco to seek engagements. For a time I
was successful. I might have gone East
and obtained better opportunities, but I
would not leave Captain Smuts, who
needed the Western climate.
One day I received a letter from my hus
band telling me he had found his way to
-do hia bit." Th Mayor of Seattle issued
a proclamation calling upon clttsecs to
take their places In th shipyards, that
ships might bo hurried along for trans
ports. Captain 8muts went to tho ship
yard fores' an and asked for a job. He was
Inexperienced, so h was taken on as a
laborer. I gave two more concerts, mad
a thousand dollars and hurried back home.
We settled, down then to a homey life.
Captain Smuts came home to me each
evening, very dfrtr'and tired, and found
;a hot dinner watting for him cooked by
May Tone, of "Littl Christopher" fame,
who once had owned the Hope Diamond
and who might have been a duchess! And
they were good dinners and he was en
thusiastic about them.
He dislocated his arm one day, and be
fore he had fully recovered was stricken
with influenza. Ho was ill for twelve
weeks, and our savings disappeared.
What was I to do T I could not earn
money on the stag and remain in Seattle
taking caro ot my sick husband.
I put on a gingham dress and a cotton
apron, tied my hair in a knot on top of my
head, wrapped an old shawl about me and
went to the shipyards. "Please let me help
a bit," said, "even if I have to scrub tho
office floors."
They asked me -who I was, and I told
them "Mrs. Smuts." The name meant
nothing to them. They asked me if I
were experienced with the mop. Once I
had played th part of a slavey in a comic
-'opera, and during on of my songs waved
a mop back and forth over the stage floor.
So 1 said I was an adept scrubwoman.
I was told to report for duty at 7 o'clock
that evening night shift and that I was
to be the office Janitress at $18 a week.
So every night for many loyg weeks T
scrubbed the office floors. Quite often I
would bum wil I worked, and sometimes,
if tho office were quiet. I owuld sing
snatches of my old songs especially the
one which helped me to become famous,
"Hony, Mah Honey."
(Mr. Erickson wss th office manager
and an executive. As he reads these lines
perhaps he will remember one midnight,
while he nibbled at a, bit of lunch on bis
desk, too busy to go out to a reHtanrant,
Stopping to listen to the song his janUreas
was singing.. H called me over to his
, desk.
"What ia that you are singing?" he
asked me.
"Oh, that?-n replied. -Just a song I
heard May Yoho sing in London once."
Many times while I swung that mop I
wondered what these men about mo would
say if they knew their janitress was May
Yohe, who had been Lady Francis Hope,
and whoso throat, now covered with grime
and perspiration, had glistened white be
hind the great Hope Diamond and count-
less pther gems men liked to hang upon it
the same. May Yoho who might have be
come a duchess!
My husband went back to work after a
while, and although he was very angry
with me I kept oa doing the scrubbing.
Then th armistice was signed and we
moved to Los Angeles, where the .won
drous climate is best for his health. Ho
is In business sow, a modest little business,
which Just supports -our little bungalow.
I am up early In the mornings cooking
breakfast while my husband stirs about
in the garden. While he is at his little
business I am sweeping and dusting and
chatting with th neighbors about our
chickens. Saturday nights we go to the
movies and Sundays we take long walks,
hand in hand, out along the boulevards'
and Mrs. John Smuts, housewife, is hap
' pier thaa May Yohe ever was, and prouder
of th good dinners she cooks than she
would, have been sitting at the head of the
banquet table at Newcastle, with a hua
died servants to call her "Your Grace."
. (Th End.) - .