OCEANA LETTERHEAD - 849 Ocean Ave., Santa Monica, CA - TYPEWRITTEN

                MAY 3rd.'63.
Dear Bob & Marie [Hatfield]:
    Thanks your welcome letter, conveying May Day Greetings (Never heard of it.!)
    Pleased to know you're back in shape Bob & in condition to return to work soon - am sure Post Master General Day will welcome you back with a 21 gun Salute, may possibly present you with a solid gold 1 cent Stamp in honor of the progress made during your ABSENCE.!
    That must have been quite a trip you all made in the station wagon - sounds like you were all drunk driving around the tops of mountains & under the Golden gate Bridge, then ending up at Sally Stanford's joint in Sausilito , her name is very familiar, a notorious character around the S.F. area. tough as a 2x4 & as charming as a Mickey Finn.!!
    Re Loretta the parrot - sure had you fooled - the piano player is a ventriloquist. Boy, you must have been loaded.!!
    Eda joins in many thanks for the lovely anniversary card - appreciate your kind remembrance.
    Our kind thoughts & bestest to your Mother & Selves.
                As ever:
Stan Signature                 STAN LAUREL.



POSTCARD - 849 Ocean Ave., Santa Monica, CA - TYPEWRITTEN

                MAY 4th.'63.
Many thanks Bob [Board] for the kind remembrance - much appreciated. We shall look forward to seeing you again in July - also your latest production.
    Trust alls well & happy.
    Kind thoughts from us both here,
                As always:
Stan Signature

OCEANA LETTERHEAD - 849 Ocean Ave., Santa Monica, CA - TYPEWRITTEN

                MAY 8th.'63.
Dear Chuck Cash:
            Thanks your letter & program clipping.
Congratulations on your appearance in "STREET SCENE" at the N.Y.C. OPERA. Trust this will prove a stepping stone to a successful future in show Business - lots of good luck Chuck.
    Enclosed an 8X10 picture you requested - this is the only one I have on hand in this size.
    Every good wish,
                Sincerely always:
Stan Laurel Signature                 STAN LAUREL.


POSTCARD - 849 Ocean Ave., Santa Monica, CA - TYPEWRITTEN

                MAY 11th.'63.
Thanks Paul [Desmond] your card - nice to hear from you & to know alls well - wish you & Suhni a happy successful engt. at the 'Playboy' - how do you feel like working with all that wonderful food around you? - the menu sounds very tempting - maybe you have to work 'Blindfolded',!!
    My kindest & best -
                As always:
Stan Laurel Signature                 STAN LAUREL.

P.S. Have you heard from Kip? have'nt seen him for some time now - last I heard he was up in the Redwoods area laughing at his own material.!!

Paul Desmond Adds

I was introduced to Stan Laurel at his home in Santa Monica, CA in 1963 by friend and fellow comedian Kip King (mentioned in the postcard). Stan was a great, and a very gracious man. He personally gave me a signed photo and later sent this postcard to me and my wife in care of the Playboy Club in Arizona in 1963.



OCEANA LETTERHEAD - 849 OCEAN AVE., SANTA MONICA, CA - TYPEWRITTEN

I understand it is hoped to be a nationwide organization—a tent in every key city.

Stan Laurel

                MAY 12th.'63.
Dear Richard [Sloan]:
    Many thanks for the cute Anniversary Card - got quite a kick out of it - appreciate your kind remembrance.
    I had a letter recently from from Sir Ron Barry (The Duke of Springfield.) told me enjoyed meeting you very much. Had a letter too from Jack McCabe (author of the L&H hook) he is forming some kind of a L&H club which is to be named "Sons of the Desert" - I understand it is hoped to [be a] Nation Wide organization (a tent in every key City) - tent One would he N.Y. Jack was enquiring about the Cuckoo music - am wondering if he would be interested in the Lyrics you wrote?, its possible he would, if you want to contact him on the matter, address him to N.Y.University (Professor John McCabe) Washington Square,N.Y.3. N.Y. Dramatic Art dept. Not much else Richard, so adios mi amigo. Trust alls well. Thanks again Dick.
                As always:
Stan Signature                 STAN LAUREL.

P.S. Have you heard from Chuck [McCann] lately?

Note from the Editor

The first meeting of The Sons of The Desert took place on May 14, 1965 at the Three Lions pub in New York City. Today, there is virtually “a tent in every key city,” as Stan had so wisely predicted.



OCEANA LETTERHEAD - 849 OCEAN AVE., SANTA MONICA, CA - TYPEWRITTEN EXCERPT

                MAY 14th.'63.
My Dear Charles [Jackson]:
                Thanks yours, 9th.inst.
Happy to know you are back home again - its only natural you will feel weak for awhile - take it easy for a while, but make effort to get a little exercise each day & gradually get your strength back, this of course takes time - I went thru this experience, so fully understand your situation - main thing - do'nt worry about it or let it get you down - when I came out of hospital, I was so weak I looked like a fortnight.!!
    The news clip article re Hardy's passing, was certainly very nice - quite touching - I placed the date on the article - Aug. '57, do'nt know definitely the exact day, but I believe it was either the 7th or 27th. You have a nice collection of letters Charles, a lot of good friends - do'nt worry about putting on a Magic show just forget it & devote your time to getting real well again - that more important than anything else right now.
    You're best new magic trick is to get well & I do'nt mean an illusion.!! I enjoyed reading your gags, it indicates you still have your good sense of humor - NEVER LOSE TT.!! [that's] the best Tonic.!
    Not much else Charles, so bye for now. Mrs L joins in kind thoughts & wishes for a speedy recovery - Bestest always to your kind self & family.
    Take care of yourself - God Bless.                 As always:
Stan Signature                 STAN LAUREL.

Note from the Editor

Charles T. Jackson was a magician, known professionally as “The Great Jaxon.”

Oliver Hardy died on August 7, 1957.



POSTCARD - 849 Ocean Ave., Santa Monica, CA - TYPEWRITTEN

                MAY 14th.'63.
Thanks your card [Ron Maher]. I have'nt seen the Film "SCRAM" for several years, am not too sure who played the Judge, could have been Anders Randolph - Walter Long or Richard Cramer. The Wife was Vivien Oakland now deceased. It would take too long to describe the many funny happenings off screen.
    Wish you lots of pleasure out of your new films.
    Again my regards & best -
                Sincerely:
Stan Laurel Signature                 STAN LAUREL.

P.S. Have you heard from Kip? have'nt seen him for some time now - last I heard he was up in the Redwoods area laughing at his own material.!!

Note from the Editor

Scram! was filmed in 1932 and, indeed, featured Vivien Oakland as the wife and Richard Cramer as the judge.



OCEANA LETTERHEAD - 849 OCEAN AVE., SANTA MONICA, CA - TYPEWRITTEN

                MAY 21st.'63.
Dear Jennie & Jack [Racey]:
                Thanks yours,18th.inst.
Fully understand your delay in writing - hope this new Gal will prove satisfactory & take some of that responsibility off your shoulders.
    Sorry I missed seeing your nephew Sherwood in the "Untouchables" last week - I used to watch that program every week, but it finally began to get a bit monotonous, frankly, I was never too impressed with Robt. Stack as Ness - felt he was badly miscast.
    Note Dave has returned home from Gardenia a sadder but wiser man, but generally a Loser will continue to try his luck again - gambling is just in his blood - its a sickness.
    Another joke: A guy told his Dr: I'm terribly worried Doc - every once in a while I blow smoke rings out of my nose -?!
    DR. That's nothing to worry about, many people do that -
    GUY. I know, but this is different - I DO'NT SMOKE.!
    Enclosed a recent snapshot - thought you'd like to have it.
    Nothing new, so will hang up. Eda joins in kind thoughts to Jack & your kind Self & convey my best to Goldie, Bill & Freddy.
    Take care - God Bless.
                As always:
Stan Signature                 STAN LAUREL.

Notes from the Editor

Jennie and Jack Racey’s nephew, Sherwood Price appeared in an episode of The Untouchables, which aired on May 14, 1963. He played Herbie Pulaski, a sniper who shoots people without provocation. Elliott Ness, of course, catches up with him and sends him packing for 8 years to the Northern Illinois State Mental Hospital.



SNAPSHOT PHOTO ENCLOSURE- May 21, 1963
Snapshot Photo Enclosure


OCEANA LETTERHEAD - 849 OCEAN AVE., SANTA MONICA, CA - TYPEWRITTEN

I understand the old studio is going to be demolished entirely. Sorry to hear that.

Stan Laurel

                MAY 29th.'63.
Dear Richard [Sloan]:
    Thanks yours, 27th.inst. enclosed with photograph which I autographed & returned under seperate cover via underground grape vine.
    I copied the letter you requested for the Lake L&H placque business (enclosed) I did'nt seal or affix any stamp for postage, as I was'nt sure how you wished to handle this - mail it direct to Senor Lesser or to have it delivered with the piece of old IRON.!
    Dick Van Dyke called me a few days ago, said he was going over to the Roach Studio to pack up the plique - to plock up the Plinque - plink up the plonk.! to hell with it.!
    I understand the old Studio is going to be demolished entirely, sorry to hear that.
    Lincoln's dying words gag is very funny - did you hear this one - 2 Englishmen: "Heard you buried your wife last week" Oh yes, Had to -- dead you know.!
    Pleased to know Chuck McCann is much better - give him my love & best when you see or hear from him again.
    Glad you got in touch with Jack McCabe & gave him the low down on the copyright situation re "Dance of the Cuckoos".
    Not much else Richard, so bye for now trust alls well & happy.
    Again my bestest.
                As always:
Stan Signature                 STAN LAUREL.

Richard Sloan Adds

The plaque was technically offered to Stan, but he didn’t want it as he had no room for it. The Hollywood Motion Picture Museum (not the one currently in existence, but rather one that never even got built) got it. A ceremony was held, by which Dick Van Dyke gave it to the museum on Stan’s behalf. Film historian Arthur Knight was the driving force for museum acquisitions, and drafted a letter for Stan to type on his stationery, thanking the Museum for offering the plaque, and saying that Dick would act on his behalf and turn it over to the museum.



Hal Roach Movie Studio To Be Razed

The 43-year-old Hal Roach Studio, where many of the great stars of the silent film era made their movies, will be demolished.
    The 14-1/2 acre parcel will be converted to commercial or industrial uses, according to Dick Carter, a representative of the Ponty-Fenmore real estate firm.
    The firm originally planned to rent the studio to a master tenant for continued use as either a move or television studio. But the original plans were abandoned after a five-month negotiation period failed to produce a transaction.
    Ponty-Fenmore realtors were the high bidder in the Dec. 20. 1962, U.S. District Court auction in Scranton, Pa., acquiring the property for $1,326,000.
    Now under way is an inventory of all the assets which will be sold and an economic survey to determine the property’s future use.
    In recent years the studio had been the site for television productions.

—Los Angeles Times
    May 23, 1963

Ex-Comedian Still Gets Fan Mail

By George C. Flowers

For Stan Laurel, the resurgence of his 200 old movies on television is just another one of the ironic tricks of life.
    At 71 years, he gets little kick out of watching them, and is more than considerably saddened by the fact that his phenomenal career as a comedian brought him almost everything a man could want—except money.
    Laurel, surviving half of she famed Laurel and Hardy slapstick team that hit the silver screen like a bombshell in 1927, lines quietly is a Santa Monica beachfront apartment. Fairly well recovered from a stroke four years ago, he suffers from diabetes, and rarely leaves his three-room apartment.
    He shuns the limelight, has refused offers in television, and frankly regards himself as:
    “An old man, all washed up...I don’t see why anybody would be interested in me any more...”
    This aging, quiet man first appeared on the stage in England when he was seven years old. He came to the United States in 1910 in a cattle boat, and was, for a time, teamed with Charlie Chaplin in vaudeville.
    His comic genius, based largely on wistful pantomime, went unnoticed and unrewarded for many years. He made two brief passes at motion pictures, in 1917 and 1922, and “gave up the whole project. I didn’t think I was getting anywhere.”
    In 1926, employed by Hal Roach Studies as a writer and director, he was pressed into a bit part as a comic butler, when the actor assigned to the role took sick. In that movie, he met and teamed with rotund Oliver (Babe) Hardy.
    From then on, the movies rolled out almost as fast as the developers could process the film. Hardy was the fat, frustrated clown. Laurel his silent, gentle partner in a series of slapstick movies that still play—on television.
    Hardy died in 1957, following a paralytic stroke. The death of Hardy brought a sadness to Laurel that has not left him, for the two men were close friends.
    Despite the enormous popularity of their comedies, Laurel and Hardy never were among the high-paid stars of Hollywood. And they received only flat sums for each picture. Laurel has no rights now in the movies being shown on television.
    Laurel married four women a total of eight times, causing one wife to comment:
    “Stan's a good boy, realty, but he’s got a marrying complex.”
    That wife was Virginia Ruth Rogers, who was Laurel’s second, third and seventh bride. He married Ida Kitaeva in 1946, and theirs has been a quiet and happy marriage.
    Of the marriages, he now quips:
    “You know my hobby—I married them all.”
    During this costly fling at matrimony, Laurel managed to save enough money for an annuity, that now supports him in modest style. His frail health prevents him from appearing in public, and he has few visitors. But he has mail—enormous quantities of it.
    Laurel and Hardy movies still are playing all over the world. Not long ago they were shown for the first time in Ghana, and a whole new series of fan letters began to arrive.
    “Laurel and Hardy were always more popular overseas than in the United States,” Laurel Says. “At one time there was a fan club in Europe that was supposed to have a million members.
    “After our movie-making days were over, Babe and I toured Europe. It was a wonderful experience.”
    The sad-faced comedian becomes even sadder when he thinks of the opportunities that were kicked away.
    “We came together almost by accident, Babe and I, and we never had an agent. Manufacturers made Laurel and Hardy dolls, Laurel and Hardy ashtrays, and Laurel and Hardy flowerpots, even—but we never got a cent for them.
    “I have a Laurel and Hardy ashtray—see. I had to pay full price for it at the souvenir shop in Shannon.”
    However, Laurel would like the world to know that he is not living in poverty.
    “I have more than enough for my needs,” he says.
    Some years ago, when he had his stroke, word was passed around that Laurel was broke. Not so.
    “One little girl even mailed me a dollar,” he recalls. “I sent her back $2—she made a good investment.”
    Of the Laurel and Hardy movies that crowd television screens, Laurel says, “I can’t like them, because they’re so cut up.
    “I wish I could have edited them. They seem so slow, nowadays. That was because we had to leave time between the gags for the audience to laugh. You, don’t need that spread in television.”
    Of his relationship with Oliver Hardy:
    “It’s a strange thing, but we realty got to know each ether better in the later years of life.
    “When we were making pictures together. we never saw each other off the set. As soon as a picture was finished, he’d go his way and I’d go mine.
    “We both had our own circle of friends and interests. Babe liked golf and the horses. I liked to fish. He left me to work with the writers; whatever I did was all right with him.”

—Independent Press-Telegram
    May 27, 1963

Kid Fan Amazed

Children scarcely can realize that this is the real Stan Laurel.
    One day recently, Laurel was getting a haircut. The barber nonchalantly introduced a boy to him. The boy left, and shortly after the shop’s phone rang with a call for Stan.
    “Is this the real Mr. Laurel?” a boyish voice inquired.
    “It is,” Stan replied.
    “Golly, I just couldn’t believe that barber.”

—Independent Press-Telegram
    May 27, 1963

Stan Watermark