Child Actors: Baby Peggy (United States, 1918- )


Figure 1.--Baby Peggy's publicity team sent this publicity still to a fan about 1923. We think she is wering one of her film cotumes. It looks rather like a Buster Brown outfit.

A decade before Shirley Temple captured the hearts of American movie goers America, another little girl briefly dominted American movie theaters -- Baby Peggy. She along with Jackie Coogan were the two dominant child stars of the Silent Era. Baby Peggy first appered in Hollywood films at age 20 months (1920). Her real name was Peggy-Jean Montgomery. She soon commanded an amazing $1 million a picture from Universal -- some $14 million in modern dollars. She lived to be the last silent film star. One film historian writes, "Child stars were important in those days. And Baby Peggy made a pretty good dent in people's lives." Americans bought Baby Peggy dolls, jewelry, sheet music, even brands of milk. [Gardner] This was all before the endorsement game was fully understood. She did over 150 shorts over a three years span. Shorts were brief films that went alone with a feature movie and newsreels. PabyPeggy soon became known as Hollywood's 'Million Dollar Baby'. The Democrats at their 1924 presidential convention appounted her the party's official mascot. Unlike Shirley, however, her career was over at age 6 years. The roles begn the disppear. Principal Pictures, run by legendary silent producer Sol Lesser, decided to let her go as a result of a dispute with her father, Her parents went on to squandered her substantial fortune. They kept spebding even when the earnings delined. She lived to a ripe old age and rembered Baby Peggy with affection.


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Created: 1:10 AM 4/9/2016
Last updated: 1:10 AM 4/9/2016