Wisecracker: The Life and Times of William Haines, Hollywood's First Openly Gay Star by William J. Mann
|Jimmy Shields and William Haines|
Jan Antaya shared this very telling letter from her collection of Jerome Zipkin's personal letters. Jan read my book and was moved by the accounting of William Haines and Jimmy Shields story as it relates to Tom Lyle Williams and his partner, Emery Shaver, in The Maybelline Story.
The letter was written by William Haines, to his friend, Socialite Jerome Zipkin, in 1971, two years before Haines death. Haines refers to Shields as JS and remarks about their 45 year Anniversary. He calls Zipkin by the nickname, HEM and goes on to mention many famous friends including
Estee and Joe Lauder (Estee Lauder Cosmetics.)
Doris Stein of the Stein Eye Institute.)
George Frelinghuysen, Socialite.
Eadie Goetz, LB Mayer's sister
Louie B. Mayer, Head of MGM
and many more.
Haines signs the letter...
cona·mo·re [Italian: con, with + amore, love,] Hattie Mc Daniels mother, Willee. Hattie Mc Daniel was MGM's Gone with the Wind Star and the first African American to win an Oscar. (Maybe Haines was refering to him being as excited as Mc Daniel's mother must have been when her daughter won the Oscar.)
Jerry Zipkin with Nan Kempner at an AIDS benefit in 1990. Mr. Zipkin was the confidant of many grande dames including First Lady Nancy Reagan. People Magazine review of Zipkin
Estee and Joe Lauder with Helen Gurley Brown
Photo By: irv Steinberg/Globe Photos, Inc Esteelauderretro
Gstaad 1973 ( l. to r.:) — George Frelinghuysen, Mary-France Pochna, Cecil Everley, Ann Rapp, and Gordon Taylor
Louie B. Mayer with his wife, Lorena Mayer
William Hines home at 601 Lorna Lane, was built in Brentwood - 1942 - and is owned today, interesting enough, by the Lidia Rubinstein Trust.
(Helena Rubinstein Cosmetic family?)
Haines and Jimmy Shields were a devoted couple for almost 50 years.....Jimmy Shields, committed suicide a few months after William Haines, death.
Tom Lyle Williams and Emery Shaver were together for close to 50 years and after Emery's unexpected death in 1964, Tom Lyle sold the Maybelline Company in 1967. Unlike Haines and Shields who openly flaunted their relationship, Williams and Shaver lived a very private life.