Peggy O'Neil

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Peggy O'Neil

Peggy O’Neil Autograph Sentiment - 1919

Beautiful florid autograph sentiment in Irish brogue, “Top o’ th’ Mornin’ to ye / Peggy O’Neil.” In black fountain pen on stiff cream 2.5″ x 4″ card dated 1919.

Peggy O’Neil (1894-1960) was an Irish-American singer and actress born in Buffalo, New York, and who was reportedly the first person to be interviewed on television, appearing on an experimental Baird Televisor at the Ideal Home Exhibition in Southampton, England, 1930.

O’Neil got her start as a child on the stage of St. Patrick’s School in Buffalo. Later a star of both American and European stages, Peggy O’Neil was also the subject of the famous Irish ballad Sweet Peggy O’Neil, first recorded in 1921 by lyricists Harry Pease, Edward Nelson, and Gilbert Dodge.

Peggy O'Neil
¬† Peggy O’Neil’s portraits¬†still hang today in the National Portrait Gallery in London.

As a teenager, Peggy O’Neil made it big in Chicago, rising from a few minor roles in various theatre productions to her one big break: an unlikely appointment as the lead in a production of Peg O’ My Heart. Her career later took her to Broadway, London and Paris stages. She reputedly broke theatre records with hundreds of consecutive star performances of Paddy the Next Best Thing at the Savoy in London, the performance for which she is best known, and continued to please London and Paris crowds for years to follow.

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