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 William Desmond Taylor

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William Desmond Taylor

  • Original Name Deane-Tanner
  • Birth 26 Apr 1872 Carlow, County Carlow, Ireland
  • Death 1 Feb 1922 Los Angeles, Los Angeles County, California, USA
  • Burial Hollywood, Los Angeles County, California, USA
  • Plot Cathedral Mausoluem, Crypt 594
  • Memorial ID 1196

William Cunningham Deane-Tanner, was born April 26, 1872 (year of birth varies with source) in Ireland. He came to the United States in 1890 and worked in a variety of jobs before finding work on the New York stage, under the name Cunningham Deane. In 1908, he deserted his wife and a young daughter, and took the name William Desmond Taylor. He appeared in several silent films. In 1914, he made his directorial debut with "The Awakening." He directed more than forty films over the next seven years, served as a Captain in the Canadian Army during the latter part of World War I. He also served as president of the Motion Picture Directors Association. He had directed such acting greats as Mary Pickford, Dustin Farnum, Wallace Reid, and Mary Miles Minter. His notable films included "Davy Crockett," "Tom Sawyer" and "Huckleberry Finn," "The Green Temptation," and "Anne of the Green Gables." Approximately 7:30 a.m. on February 2, 1922, valet Henry Peavey arrived, and discovered Taylor's body on the living room floor. Among the items found on the body, was a wallet with $78 in it, a silver cigarette case, an ivory toothpick, and a Waltham pocket watch, a wrist watch, and a two-carat diamond ring was on his finger. Another director, Charles Maigne, lived next door to Taylor. Actors Agnes Ayres, Douglas MacLean, and Edna Purviance also lived in Alvarado Court (West Lake Park), where Taylor's home was. Several people came to the home, to tamper with, and or remove evidence. They didn't want another scandal in Hollywood, as Taylor's murder occurred while Roscoe “Fatty” Arbuckle was on trial for the murder of Virginia Rappe. The police investigation focused on some of Hollywood's biggest stars at the time, including silent screen actress Mabel Normand.





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  • Maintained by: Find A Grave
  • Added: 1 Jan 2001
  • Find A Grave Memorial 1196
  • Find A Grave, database and images ( : accessed ), memorial page for William Desmond Taylor (26 Apr 1872–1 Feb 1922), Find A Grave Memorial no. 1196, citing Hollywood Forever Cemetery, Hollywood, Los Angeles County, California, USA ; Maintained by Find A Grave .