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Arthur Harold Wimperis

Male 1874 - 1953  (78 years)



  • Name Arthur Harold Wimperis  [1, 2, 3
    Birth 03 Dec 1874  Lambeth Find all individuals with events at this location   [2, 3, 4, 5
    Residence Feb 1875  3 Lambert Rd, Brixton Find all individuals with events at this location   [6
    Baptism 24 Feb 1875  St Jude, East Brixton Find all individuals with events at this location   [6
    Residence Apr 1881  Lambert Rd, Brixton Find all individuals with events at this location   [4
    Education abt 1887 - 1892  Dulwich College Find all individuals with events at this location   [2, 7
    Residence Apr 1891  Dulwich College Find all individuals with events at this location ; Ivyholme House  [7
    • boarder
    Occupation bef 1899  Black and white artist with The Graphic  [2
    Military Service abt 1899 - 1902  South African War, Paget's Horse  [2
    Marriage abt May 1905  St Pancras Find all individuals with events at this location ; Mabel Mary Richards  [8
    Occupation aft 1906  Stage and Film Writer  [9
    Occupation Apr 1911  Dramatic Author  [5
    Residence Apr 1911  21 Berners St, Marylebone Find all individuals with events at this location   [5
    • with wife Mabel, 29, b Westbourne Park, married 6 yrs, no children
    Marriage abt Feb 1916  St Giles-in-the-Fields, Holborn Find all individuals with events at this location   [1
    Edyth Ivy Tatham,   b. 18 Aug 1894, West Hampstead Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 13 May 1947, National Hospital for Diseases of the Nervous System, Queen Square, Bloomsbury Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Residence 1922  1 Granville Chambers, Mayfair Find all individuals with events at this location   [10
    • office address
    Residence 1922  The Little House, Maidenhead Find all individuals with events at this location   [10
    Residence 1925  Chuffs, Holyport Find all individuals with events at this location   [11
    Residence abt 1935 - 1936  27 Church Walk, Hampstead Find all individuals with events at this location   [10
    Residence abt 1937 - 1939  Etchea, Fishery Rd, Bray Find all individuals with events at this location   [10
    Residence 1943  Beverley Hills, CA Find all individuals with events at this location   [12
    Marriage 30 Aug 1943  Eton Find all individuals with events at this location ; Dorothy Russell-Taylor  [12, 13
    • On Aug. 30, 1943, Arthur Wimperis, of Beverley Hills, California, to Dorothy Russell-Taylor, of Maidenhead. [The Times, 01 Sep 1943]
    Death 14 Oct 1953  Maidenhead Find all individuals with events at this location   [2, 15
    • On Oct. 14, 1953, very peacefully, Arthur Harold Wimperis, beloved husband of Dorothy, and dear father of Anne Lambe, in his 80th year. Cremation at Golders Green Crematorium at 11.45 a.m. on Monday, Oct. 19. [14]
    • place not certain - registered in Surrey N W
    • Probate not found in NPC
    Burial 19 Oct 1953  Golders Green Crematorium Find all individuals with events at this location   [14
    Notes 
    • co-respondent in divorce case Oldfield v. Oldfield (ne Tatham) and Wimperis, Jun 1915
    • Arthur Harold Wimperis (b. 1875) worked as a black and white artist with The Graphic before serving in the South African War and then becoming a notable film writer. His screenplay for Mrs Miniver won an Oscar in 1942 [DNB sv his father]
    • Arthur Harold Wimperis (3 December 1874 - 14 October 1953) was an English illustrator, playwright, lyricist and Academy Award-winning screenwriter.
      Early in his career, Wimperis was an illustrator. For 25 years beginning in 1906, he became a librettist and lyricist for musical comedies, including the hit The Arcadians in 1909 and many other musicals. Beginning in 1930, he moved into writing screenplays for British films, and later Hollywood films, contributing to dozens of screenplays.
      Biography
      Wimperis was born in London, England and educated at Dulwich College and University College London. He began a career as an illustrator on the Daily Graphic, but this was soon interrupted by service in the Second Boer War from 1899 to 1902 with Paget's Horse.
      1906-1930: Theatre and songwriting years
      Wimperis then began a theatre writing career as a lyricist and librettist for Edwardian musical comedies in London. His first major show was The Dairymaids (1906), which was favourably reviewed by The Times, though the derivative nature of the plot was noted, as was the similarity between the lyrics for the song "Mary in the Dairy" and an earlier Punch magazine parody of a musical comedy number which contained the words, "Mary, Mary, managed a dairy". This similarity was attributed to the paucity of rhymes for Mary, rather than deliberate plagiarism. The show was followed by The Gay Gordons written with Seymour Hicks in 1907. He next contributed songs (including "The Pipes of Pan", "I've Got a Motter", "Arcady Is Always Young", and "Half Past Two") for one of the most popular musicals of the Edwardian age, The Arcadians (1909). In addition to contributing lyrics or dialogue to other shows, he then began adapting Viennese operettas into English. The best-known of these are The Balkan Princess (1910) and The Girl in the Taxi (Die keusche Susanne; 1912). He also wrote for The Sunshine Girl (1912). Wimperis also wrote lyrics for reviews such as The Follies and The Passing Show of 1914, and many of his songs became music hall hits, such as "Gilbert the Filbert" and "I'll Make a Man of You".
      He served in the Royal Artillery as a temporary second lieutenant during the First World War [This seems unlikely. He was already 39 at the outbreak of WW1. Quoted as source is the name A H Wimperis appearing in a list in London Gazette of 09 Jan 1922 of officers who have relinquished their commissions; but this could refer to his Boer War service, or to another man altogether. In any case, no record has been found of any military service in WW1.], and then resumed playwriting and songwriting, including for My Lady Frayle (1916) and Pamela (1917). In 1925, he wrote the English-language adaptation of for the American production of Sigmund Romberg's Louie the Fourteenth, and the next year he had another hit with Princess Charming in London. His last London success was a vehicle for Binnie Hale in 1930 called Nippy. Wimperis also contributed lyrics and scenes to many other reviews and musicals in London and New York and created English-language adaptations of several French and German plays.
      1930-1953: Film years
      Wimperis then wrote screenplays and additional dialogue for British films. His first major film was Harmony Heaven in 1930. His film career quickly began to flourish under the guidance of director and producer Alexander Korda. He collaborated on many screenplays with Lajos Bir. Some of his best-known films of the 1930s were The Men of Tomorrow, The Private Life of Henry VIII (1933), Catherine the Great (1934), The Scarlet Pimpernel (1934), Brewster's Millions (1935), Knight Without Armour (1937), The Divorce of Lady X,[8] The Drum (1938) and The Four Feathers (1939).
      Wimperis also wrote the lyrics for the songs heard in the Paul Robeson film Sanders of the River (1936). In the 1940s, and until his death, Wimperis worked in Hollywood for MGM. Crossing the Atlantic in 1940 at the height of the Second World War during the Battle of the Atlantic, his ship was torpedoed, and he was one of just eight survivors of the 32 people who had been in the same lifeboat. He won an Academy Award for Best Writing for his contribution to the screenplay of Mrs. Miniver (1942), in which he also had a small acting part. He was also nominated for another Oscar for his contribution to the screenplay of Random Harvest (1942).[9] His later films included If Winter Comes (1947), Julia Misbehaves (1948), The Red Danube (1949), That Forsyte Woman (1949), Calling Bulldog Drummond (1951), Young Bess (1953) and Storm Over the Nile (1955). In 1990, some of his songs were used in The Fourth War.
      Wimperis died in Maidenhead, Berkshire, England at the age of 78. [Wikipedia accessed 25 Feb 2009 19:57]
    • Wimperis, Arthur (b London, 3 December 1874; d Maidenhead, 14 October 1953). Lyricist and librettist for a quarter of a century of London shows.
      Wimperis began his working life as a black-and-white artist, and it was not until after the Boer War, in which he served with Paget's, Horse (1899-1902), that he began a writing career. He made his theatrical mark at first as a lyricist, contributing to Robert Courtneidge's production of The Dairymaids and to the Seymour Hicks and Ellaline Terriss musical The Gay Gordons, before he found major success with his songwords for a second Courtneidge show, The Arcadians ('The Pipes of Pan', I've Got a Mot-ter', 'Arcady is Always Young', 'Half Past Two' etc). He next supplied some replacement lyrics to a rewrite of the in-trouble The Mountaineers at the Savoy Theatre (1909) but, with the coming of the Viennese musical, he found a new area of activity. He adapted a number of such pieces to the English stage, winning a major success with The Girl in the Taxi (Die keusche Susanne) and a second good run with the Hungarian musical Princess Charming (Alexandra), and he also adapted Julius Wilhelm and Paul Frank's German original as the libretto for the lavish American musical Louie the Fourteenth.
      Several attempts at an original musical libretto, with the clever, Faustian My Lady Frayle (130 performances), the pretty Pamela (172 performances) and a vehicle for Binnie Hale as a tea-shop Nippy (137 performances), did well enough without establishing themselves as genuine hits.
      Wimperis provided musical burlesques and lyrics for The Follies pierrot show during its period in London, scored two of his most memorable song hits with 'Gilbert the Filbert' and 'I'll Make a Man of You' in The Passing Show (1914) and contributed scenarios, scenes and song-words to a large number of other revues including By jingo If We Do ..., Bric a Brac, Irving Berlin's Follow the Crowd, Vanity Fair, the French As You Were, Buzz Buzz, just Fancy, London, Paris and New York, The Curate's Egg and Still Dancing. He also put out a number of plays, most of which were adaptations from French or German originals.
      In 1932 Wimperis both made his last contribution to the musical stage with a disastrous version of a piece by Girl in the Taxi composer, Jean Gilbert (Lovely Lady, 3 performances) and had his first great success in the film world with the screenplay for The Private Life of Henry VIII. There-after, filmland became his chief occupation and his subsequent screen credits included Sanders of the River (1935), The Four Feathers (1939), the wartime Mrs Miniver (Academy Award) and Random Harvest.
      1906 The Dairymaids (Paul Rubens, Frank E Tours/w Rubens/Alexander Thompson, Robert Courtneidge) Apollo Theatre 14 April
      1907 The Gay Gordons (Guy Jones/w others/Seymour Hicks) Aldwych Theatre 11 September
      1909 The Arcadians (Lionel Monckton, Howard Talbot/Mark Ambient, Alexander M Thompson) Shaftesbury Theatre
      1910 The Balkan Princess (Rubens/w Rubens/Frederick Lonsdale, Frank Curzon) Prince of Wales Theatre 19 February
      1910 Our Little Cinderella (Herman Lhr) Playhouse December
      1911 The Mousm (Talbot, Monckton/w Percy Greenbank/Thompson, Courtneidge) Shaftesbury 9 September
      1912 The Sunshine Girl (Rubens/w Rubens/Rubens, Cecil Raleigh) Gaiety 24 February
      1912 The Girl in the Taxi (Die keusche Susanne) English version w Frederick Fenn (Lyric Theatre)
      1913 Love and Laughter (Oscar Straus) English version w Fenn (Lyric Theatre)
      1913 The Laughing Husband aka The Girl Who Didn't (Derlachende Ehemann) English version (New Theatre)
      1914 Mam'selle Tralala aka Oh! Be Careful (Frkulein Tralala) English version w Hartley Carrick (Lyric Theatre)
      1914 The Slush Girl (Herman Finck) 1 act Palace Theatre 14 September
      1916 My Lady Frayle (ex-Vivien) (Talbot, Finck/w Max Pemberton) Shaftesbury Theatre 1 March
      1917 Pamela (Frederic Norton) Palace Theatre 10 December
      1920 The Shop Girlrevised version (Gaiety Theatre)
      1925 Louie the Fourteenth (Sigmund Romberg/Julius Wilhelm, Paul Frank ad) Cosmopolitan Theater, New York 2 March
      1926 Princess Charming (Alexandra) English version w Lauri Wylie (Palace Theatre)
      1928 Song of the Sea (Lady Hamilton) English version w Wylie (His Majesty's Theatre)
      1930 Nippy (Billy Mayerl/w Frank Eyton/w Austin Melford) Prince Edward Theatre 30 October
      1932 Lovely Lady (Jean Gilbert) English version Phoenix Theatre 25 February
      Adapted from The Encyclopedia of the Musical Theatre by Kurt Gnzl.
      [grateful acknowledgements to Gilbert & Sullivan Archive]
    • - passengers on RMS "Hilary" (Booth Line) arr Plymouth 20 May 1914: Arthur Wimperis, 39, dramatic author, and wife, 30; emb Leixoes (Oporto).
      - passenger on "Olympic" arr Southampton 13 Mar 1925 ex New York: Arthur Wimperis, 50, artist, perm res England, UK addr "Chuffs", Holyport, Berks.
      - passenger on "City of Benares" dep Liverpool 12 Sep 1940: Arthur Wimperis, 65, playwright, dest Montreal, perm res England. [torpedoed & sunk 18 Sep 1940 with loss of 248 lives.]
      - passenger on "Bayano" dep Liverpool 02 Oct 1940: Arthur H Wimperis, 66, playwright, dest Montreal, perm res England;
      - passenger on SS "Triona" arr Manchester 15 Aug 1943 ex Philadelphia: Arthur Wimperis, b 03 Dec 1874, writer, former res USA, future res England, UK addr Claridge's Hotel.
      - passengers on "Guayana" arr London 25 Jul 1951: Arthur Wimperis, 76, writer; Dorothy Wimperis, 61; emb Los Angeles, perm res USA, UK address Flat 7, 217 Sussex Gardens, London W.2.
    Person ID I2521  Tatham | Crew branch | Spouse
    Last Modified 01 Nov 2013 

    Father Edmund Morison Wimperis,   b. abt 1835, Chester Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 25 Dec 1900, Southcliff Hotel, Southbourne-on-Sea Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age ~ 65 years) 
    Mother Anne Harry Edmonds,   b. abt 1841, Penzance Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 08 Jun 1911, Southbourne-on-Sea Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age ~ 70 years) 
    Marriage 11 Apr 1863  Penzance Find all individuals with events at this location   [16, 17
    Notes 
    • also resid Apr 1891: children b Brixton: Edmund W, 26, architect; Ethel M, 22, teacher of music; Annie H, 21, art student; + 2 serv.
      [Edmund Walter Wimperis became an architect, death reg Uckfield 4Q1946; Ethel Mary Wimperis died St Ives Cornwall 07 Mar 1912; Annie Harrie Wimperis died Dunedin NZ 04 Apr 1927 - see NPC 1928]
    Family ID F0719  Family Group Sheet

    Family Edyth Ivy Tatham,   b. 18 Aug 1894, West Hampstead Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 13 May 1947, National Hospital for Diseases of the Nervous System, Queen Square, Bloomsbury Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 52 years) 
    Marriage abt Feb 1916  St Giles-in-the-Fields, Holborn Find all individuals with events at this location   [1
    Children 
     1. Ann Harrie Wimperis,   b. 20 Jul 1915, Marylebone Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. abt Aug 1971, Westminster Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 56 years)
    Last Modified 18 Sep 2010 
    Family ID F0629  Family Group Sheet

  • Event Map Click to display
    Link to Google MapsBirth - 03 Dec 1874 - Lambeth Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsResidence - Feb 1875 - 3 Lambert Rd, Brixton Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsBaptism - 24 Feb 1875 - St Jude, East Brixton Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsResidence - Apr 1881 - Lambert Rd, Brixton Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsEducation - abt 1887 - 1892 - Dulwich College Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsResidence - Ivyholme House - Apr 1891 - Dulwich College Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsMarriage - Mabel Mary Richards - abt May 1905 - St Pancras Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsResidence - Apr 1911 - 21 Berners St, Marylebone Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsMarriage - < - abt Feb 1916 - St Giles-in-the-Fields, Holborn Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsMarriage - abt Feb 1916 - St Giles-in-the-Fields, Holborn Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsResidence - 1922 - 1 Granville Chambers, Mayfair Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsResidence - 1922 - The Little House, Maidenhead Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsResidence - 1925 - Chuffs, Holyport Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsResidence - abt 1935 - 1936 - 27 Church Walk, Hampstead Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsResidence - abt 1937 - 1939 - Etchea, Fishery Rd, Bray Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsResidence - 1943 - Beverley Hills, CA Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsMarriage - Dorothy Russell-Taylor - 30 Aug 1943 - Eton Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsDeath - 14 Oct 1953 - Maidenhead Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsBurial - 19 Oct 1953 - Golders Green Crematorium Link to Google Earth
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  • Sources 
    1. [S02] BMD Index, marriage reg St Giles, 1Q1916.
      Arthur H Wimperis = Edyth I Oldfield alias Tatham

    2. [S05] The Times, obituary, 15 Oct 1953.

    3. [S02] BMD Index, birth reg Lambeth, 1Q1875.

    4. [S01] Census, UK, 1881.
      age 6

    5. [S01] Census, UK, 1911.
      age 36 b Brixton

    6. [S06] Parish Registers, baptisms, St Jude, East Brixton, 24 Feb 1875.

    7. [S01] Census, UK, 1891.

    8. [S02] BMD Index, marriage reg Pancras, 2Q1905.

    9. [S21] Dictionary of National Biography, sv his father.

    10. [S17] Telephone Directories.

    11. [S12] Passenger Lists, Olympic, 13 Mar 1925.

    12. [S05] The Times, marriage notice, 01 Sep 1943.

    13. [S02] BMD Index, marriage reg Eton, 3Q1943.
      Arthur Wimperis = Dorothy Taylor

    14. [S05] The Times, death notice, 15 Oct 1953.

    15. [S02] BMD Index, death reg Surrey N W, 4Q1953.
      age 78

    16. [S02] BMD Index, marriage reg Penzance, 2Q1863.

    17. [S21] Dictionary of National Biography.