Most people: Personal communication, Kevin Brownlow.
Do you know what: Cannon, Regina, “Will Nita Naldi ‘April Fool’ The Movie Directors?” Motion Picture Classic, January 1923, p.18.
Veteran fan magazine: “Erskine Johnson in Hollywood,” Blytheville (Ark) Courier News, September 21, 1953.
According to her birth: Mary Dooly, Certificate and Record of Birth, no. 2662, November 13, 1894 (registered January 1895), State of New York, City of New York, Borough of Manhattan, New York City Municipal Archives.
In my day: Wilson, Earl, “Yesterday and Today,” undated interview with Nita and Gloria Marlowe during the run of In Any Language, 1952.
When she came out: Pollack, Arthur, “Theater Time: Broadway Should Be Livelier, With Nita Naldi Coming Back,” unidentified date, prob. 1952.
After landing: Oettinger, Malcolm H. “An Optical Illusion,” Picture Play Magazine, December 1922.
The last time: Town & Country, New York, Hearst Corp, October, 1919.
Her name appears: “Nita Naldi Joining “Sally,” Weekly Variety, May 20, 1921, p.16.
Nita may have done: “”Robertson Engages Nita Naldi,” Moving Picture World, December 27, 1919, p.1169.
If you ask me: Battelle, Phyllis, “Age of Vamp Is Being Reborn,” The Daily Review, November 16, 1955.
The first time: Bolton, Whitney, “Looking Sideways,” The Clovis News Journal, March 8, 1961.
I’d look at: “Nita Naldi Approves Today’s Boudoir Attire of Films,” The Los Angeles Times, March 16, 1941.
One of the big producers: Underhill, Harriette, “A Daughter of the Gods, Divinely Tall,” New York Tribune, July 30, 1922.
Your costumes are: Cannon, op. cit.
As soon as: Goodman, Ezra, “Nita Naldi, Vamp Again, Finds Kipling a Sort of Herring Now,” New York Herald Tribune, December 28, 1941.
Blood and Sand was a: “Nita Naldi a Star,” Moving Picture World, July 29, 1922, p.352.
There’s the movie kiss…: “Only a Kiss,” Rose Marie, book and lyrics by Otto Harbach and Oscar Hammerstein II, music by Rudolf Friml and Herbert Stothart, 1924.
After viewing Naldi’s: Lasky, Jesse, Letter to Adolph Zukor, April 10, 1928, Jesse L. Lasky Papers, Special Collections, Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences, Margaret Herrick Library, Los Angeles, CA.
Miss Naldi seems: Untitled review of The Breaking Point,” The Brooklyn Eagle, April 8, 1924.
She was again cast: “Nita Naldi, Freelancing,” Weekly Variety, June 3, 1925, p.26.
Nita Naldi—if by chance: Cook, Ted, “Cook-Coos,” American, December 31, 1925.
I thought I: Taylor, Carol, “The Vamp Admits Film Sirens Now Are Sexier,” New York World Telegram, September 13, 1952.
I shall never forget: Hitchcock, Alfred, Sidney Gottlieb (ed.), Hitchcock on Hitchcock, Selected Writings and Interviews, University of California Press, 1995, p.37; Belfrage, Cedric, “Why Stars Leave Home; Once in a While Europe Puts in a Call for American Stars to Decorate Her Pictures—Which Accounts for Hollywood’s Sending it’s Quota to Have a Holiday Abroad,” Motion Picture Classic, December 1926, pp.56-82.
She was every inch: Hitchcock, op.cit.
Yes, it’s a gay life: New York Mirror, April 15, 1926.
Very cosmopolitan: “The Festive J.,” Polly Pry, Vol. 1, No. 3, September 19, 1903, p. 9.
In early 1929: “Nita Naldi on Estate,” Weekly Variety, December 25, 1929, p59; Barclay, Isabella, Berengaria Ship’s Manifest, New York, March 6, 1929, Line 3.
…hold and dispose of: “Manhattan Mortgages,” New York Times, September 19, 1930.
Barclay’s last reported: “Manhattan Transfers,” New York Times, September 11, 1933.
Nita, a widow: Pollack, op.cit.
Godowsky is not: Godowsky, Dagmar, The Lives of Dagmar Godowsky, The Viking Press, New York, 1958.
I feel like: Wilson, op.cit.
In theatrical circles: Brock, Alan, “Nita Naldi,” Classic Images, No. 90, December 1982 (written 1940, update 1982), p.58.
Diana affectionately: Barrymore, Diana, with Gerold Frank, Too Much Too Soon, Holt, New York, 1957.
Nita, in a letter: Naldi, Nita, letter to Daniel Blum dated December 19, 1956, The Daniel C. Blum Collection, Wisconsin Center for Film and Theater Research, Wisconsin Historical Society, Madison, WI.
Frankly, she told: Personal communication (a New York
memorabilia dealer who knew Nita in the 1950s).
They had ermine: Perry, Lawrence, “Heyward-Logan Team Plans Musical Comedy,” The Pittsburgh Press, August 10, 1952.
It is most difficult: Naldi, Nita, letter to Daniel Blum dated February 18, 1952, The Daniel C. Blum Collection, Wisconsin Center for Film and Theater Research, Wisconsin Historical Society, Madison, WI.
Her hair remained: Golden, Eve, Golden Images, 41 Essays on Silent Film Stars, McFarland & Company, Inc., Jefferson, NC and London, 2001.
I liked Nita Naldi: Bolton, op.cit.
From the New York City Municipal Archives
Barclay, James Searle, Certificate of Death, No 2705, Manhattan Borough, January 30, 1945.
Barclay, James Searle and Nita Naldi, Certificate of Marriage, American Consular Service, August 29, 1929 (filed September 12, 1929) Marriage Certificate, Nita & James Searle Barclay
Cronin, Agnes C., Certificate and Record of Death, No. 16506, Manhattan Borough, May 27 1903.
Cronin, Daniel, Certificate and Record of Death,No. 19564, Manhattan Borough, June 5, 1906.
Cronin, Margaret, Certificate and Record of Death, No. 37728, Manhattan Borough, December 23, 1911.
Dooley, Daniel A., and Angelina Fetschko, Certificate and Record of Marriage, No. 27502, Manhattan Borough, October 8, 1917.
Dooley, John D., Certificate and Record of Death, No. 32886, Manhattan Borough, October 28, 1897.
Dooley, John, Certificate and Record of Birth, No. 16705, Manhattan Borough April 9, 1905.
Dooley, John, Certificate and Record of Death, No. 12196, Manhattan Borough, April 10, 1905.
Dooley, Julia, Certificate and Record of Death, No. 6604, Manhattan Borough, November 4, 1915.
Dooley, Mary Agnes, Certificate and Record of Death, No. 26815, Manhattan Borough, August 5, 1894.
From the City of New York Department of Health
Naldi, Nita (AKA Donna Dooley), Certificate of Death 156-61-103985, February 17, 1961, Bureau of Records and Statistics, Department of Health, The City of New York.
From the Connecticut State Department of Health
Dooley, Daniel Aloysius, Certificate of Death, May 8, 1979, Connecticut State Department of Health, State File Number 225.
Barclay, Isabella, U.S. Passport Application #98178, Issued October 8, 1920 Passport Applications 1795-1925, Ancestry.com, http://www.ancestry.com. Isabella Barclay, Passport Application
Barclay, J. Searle, U.S. Passport Application #170586, February 12, 1920, U.S. Passport Applications 1795-1925, accessed at Ancestry.com, http://www.ancestry.com. Barclay, Passport Application, 1920
Barclay, James Searle, Certificate of No Record for Estate, Surrogate’s Court of the County of New York, September 9, 2009
Barclay, James Searle, World War I Draft Registration Card, 1917-1918, Serial Number 3355, File Number A813, Agency Local Board No #3, District of Columbia, September 11, 1918, accessed at Ancestry.com, http://www.ancestry.com. WWI Draft Registration
Barclay, Nita Naldi, U.S. Social Security Act, Application for Account Number (SS-5), completed April 10, 1940, U.S. Social Security Administration
Barclay, Nita, U.S. District Court, Southern District of New York, Bankruptcy Docket, Case #56121 (case closed January 4, 1934), National Archives at New York City. Bankruptcy Docket
Calvary and Allied Cemeteries, Interment Record for plots owned by Daniel Cronin, purchase date April 21, 1876, Section 1W, Range 5, Plot AA Grave(s) 13/14. Note: although the stone above the Cronin family plot is carved with five names, there are fifteen people, representing three generations and three marriage-related families (Dunphy, Cronin, and Dooley), buried in this plot. Most are infants, the children of Daniel and Margaret Dunphy Cronin (Nita’s maternal grandparents), and Nita’s infant siblings, the children of Patrick and Julia Cronin Dooley. The names carved on the stone are Nita, her mother Julia (Cronin) Dooley, Mary and Bridget Dunphy (the siblings of John and Sr. Mary Nonna Dunphy, and Margaret Dunphy Cronin), and Daniel Francis Cronin, infant son of Daniel and Margaret Dunphy Cronin.
Naldi, Maria Rosa, Petition for Citizenship, U.S. District Court, Southern District, New York, N.Y., No. 170739, August 27, 1931, Ancestry.com, http://www.ancestry.com Naturalization Petition
Naldi, Nita, Application for Extension and Amendment of Passport, Department of State, Passport Agency, Passport #473415, September 5, 1924, http://www.ancestry.com
New York City Directories, 1890–1940, Los Angeles Public Library, History & Genealogy Department
Manhattan Phone Books, 1950–1972, Los Angeles Public Library, History & Genealogy Department
Perez, Maria Rosa Naldi, Declaration of Intention, October 21, 1949, Certificate No. C-3423510, Petition No. 170739, Date of Original Naturalization August 27, 1931, Ancestry.com, http://www.ancestry.com Naturalization Record
All federal census enumerations and the New York State Census of 1905 are located at Ancestry.com, http://www.ancestry.com. New York State Census microfilm located at the New York Public Library.
Barclay, J. Searle (as Searle J.), and Isabella Barclay, 1915 New York State Census, AD27, ED22, pg. 18, Line 31, J. Searle Barclay, 1915
Barclay, James S. and Isabella Barclay, 1920 U.S. Federal Census, Manhattan, SD 1, ED 1080, Page 15B, James Barclay, 1920
Barclay, Nita, 1940 U.S. Federal Census, Manhattan, SD 17, ED 31-1367-A, Sheet 5-B, Nita Barclay, 1940
Cronin, Daniel and Margaret, Sarah, Mary A. & Julia Cronin, 1870 U.S. Federal Census, Manhattan, 11th Ward, ED 10, Page 11 & 12, Cronin Family, 1870
Cronin, Daniel, and Margaret, Sarah, Mary A., Julia A., Loretta Cronin, 1880 U.S. Federal Census, Manhattan, SD 1, ED 321, Page 26, Cronin Family, 1880 Census
Cronin, Daniel, and Margaret Cronin, Agnes Cronin, Patrick Dooley, Julia Dooley, Nonna Dooley, Daniel Dooley, 1900 U.S. Federal Census, Manhattan, SD 1, ED 930, Page 1-2 Cronin-Dooley household, 1900 Page 1, Cronin-Dooley household, 1900, Page 2
Cronin, Daniel, 1905 New York State Census, Manhattan, AD 13, pg. 20, Daniel_Cronin_1905
Cronin, Margaret, and Julia Dooley, Nonna Dooley, Daniel Dooley, 1910 U.S. Federal Census, Manhattan, Ward 19, ED 1043, Page 3-4, Cronin-Dooley Household, 1910
Dooley, Nonna, 1910 U.S. Federal Census, Fort Lee, Bergen County, New Jersey (Academy of Holy Angels), ED 17, Page 28A, Holy Angels, 1910
Dooley, Nonnetta, 1915 New York State Census, ED 12, Ward X, Line 39, Nonnetta Dooley 1915
Nita is enumerated on the 1915 state census residing in the Regina Angelorum Catholic Home for Working Women, with the occupation “stenographer.” Mary Naldi, a telephone operator,
is enumerated on line 38. Nita’s mother Julia Dooley also resided at Regina Angelorum although she is not enumerated–she died after a lengthy hospitalization in November of 1915. This is
the first public record that shows Nita and Maria residing together; it is possible the two met at this boarding home.
Dooley, Patrick (as Doolry), 1910 U.S. Federal Census, Manhattan, Ward 19, ED 1028, Page 17B, Patrick Dooley, 1910
Dooley, Daniel A. (and Angelina), 1920 U.S. Federal Census, Manhattan, AD 10, ED 787, Page 2B, Daniel Dooley, 1920
Dooley, Daniel A., (and Angelina, Gloria), 1925 New York State Census, AD23, ED51, Page 53, DanielDooley 1925
Dooley, Daniel A. (and Angeline, Gloria V.), 1930 U.S. Federal Census, Manhattan, SD 24, ED 1230, Page 19A, Daniel Dooley, 1930
Dooley, Daniel A. (and Angela, Gloria), 1940 U.S. Federal Census, Manhattan, AD 23, ED 31, SD 21, Sheet 18A, Daniel Dooley, 1940
Dunphy, John, and Mary, & Mary, Agnes, John, William, Charlotte, (as John Demphy and Mary Dumphy), 1900 U.S. Federal Census, City of New York, SD 1, ED 553, Page 4-5, John Dunphy Family, 1900
Dunphy, Mary, and John, Agnes, Charlotte (as Dunphey), 1910 U.S. Federal Census, Manhattan, Ward 12, ED 723, Sheet 14B, Dunphy Family, 1910
Gibbs, Katherine E., 1910 U.S. Federal Census, Fort Lee, Bergen County, New Jersey (Academy of Holy Angels), ED 17, Page 27, Kay Francis (Katherine E. Gibbs), Holy Angels, 1910
Naldi, M., 1925 New York State Census, AD 15, ED 18, pg. 76-77, Naldi 1925 Census
NOTE: This enumeration could be either Nita or Maria Naldi; however, your Naldi Investigators lean toward it being Nita. As far as we know, Maria was out of the country at this time and the “Naldi”
enumerated lists the U.S. as country of birth and gives a birthdate that is closer to Nita’s than to Maria’s.
Naldi, Mary R., 1930 U.S. Federal Census, Manhattan, SD 22, ED 413, Sheet 17A, Maria Naldi, 1930
Naldi, Nita, and Mary Naldi, (indexed as “Maldi”), 1920 U.S. Federal Census, Manhattan, AD 15, ED 1051, Sheet 4A, Nita & Maria Naldi, 1920
Ship Passenger Lists
All records from Ancestry.com, New York Passenger Lists, 1820-1957, http://www.ancestry.com
J. Searle Barclay
Barclay, James, October 20, 1926, Paris, Line 22, Page 170, Barclay, 1926 Arrival
Barclay, J. Searle (as Scale, James S. Barclay), November 15, 1927, Ile de France, Line 27, Page 19, Barclay, 1927 Arrival
Barclay, Searle (as Ecarle Barclay), October 22, 1931, Ile de France, Line 12, Page 31, Barclay & Nita, Arrival 1931
Barclay, James, December 15, 1938, Nieuw Amsterdam, Line 1, Page 36, Barclay, Arrival 1938
Barclay, Isabella, March 9, 1927, France, Line 8, Page 193, Isabella Barclay, Ship Arrival, March 9, 1927
Barclay, Isabella, January 26, 1928 (did not embark), Aquitania, Line 1, Page 34, Nonembark, January 1928
Barclay, Isabella, February 1, 1928, Paris, Line 1, Page 72, Ship Arrival, Feb 1, 1928
Barclay, Isabella, July 31, 1928, Majestic, Line 29, Page 16 Ship Arrival, July 31, 1928
Barclay, Isabella, March 6, 1929, Berengeria, Line 3, Page 5 Ship Arrival, March 6, 1929
Barclay, Isabella, September 10, 1929, Majestic, Line 7, Page 30, Ship Arrival, September 10, 1929
Maria Rosa Naldi (de Perez)
Naldi, Maria, October 22, 1903, Liguria, Line 2, Page 37, Maria Naldi 1903
Naldi, Maria, July 1, 1921, Berengaria, Line 6, Page 35, Maria Naldi 1921
Naldi, Mary, November 18, 1922, Paris, Line 1, Page 30, Maria Naldi 1922
Naldi, Maria, May 20, 1925, Colombo, Line 7, Page 161, Maria Naldi 1925
Naldi, Maria, May 3, 1926, Conte Biancamano, Line 12, Page 32, Maria Naldi 1926
Naldi, Mary, April 15, 1927, Rochambeau, Line 4, Page 179, Maria Naldi 1927
Naldi, Mary, December 10, 1929, Minnekahda, Line 5, Page 260, Maria Naldi 1929
Naldi, Maria Rosa, August 6, 1936, Rex, Line 2, Page 178, Maria Naldi 1936
de Perez, Maria Naldi, April 22, 1951, Havana, Line 2, Page 75, Maria Naldi de Perez 1951
Naldi, Nita, November 10, 1924, Leviathan, Line 3, Page 59, Nita Arrival 1924
Naldi, Nita, November 15, 1927, Ile de France, Line 9, Page 26, Nita Arrival 1927
Barclay, Nita Naldi, October 22, 1931, Ile de France, Line 13, Page 31, Nita & Barclay, Arrival 1931
“Fame for Nita, then Dreams,” Leonard Lyons, Hollywood Citizen News, February 25, 1961
J. Searle Barclay, New York Times, January 31, 1945
Mary Agnes Cronin, New York Times, May 31, 1903
Daniel A. Dooley, The Middletown (Conn.) Press, May 9, 1979
John Dunphy, New York Times, July 2, 1900
Sr. Mary Nonna Dunphy, New York Times, May 28, 1931
Harry Smith, The Middletown (Conn.) Press, May 1, 1982
Books and Articles
Barrymore, Diana, with Gerold Frank, Too Much Too Soon, Holt, New York, 1957
Birchard, Robert S., Cecil B. DeMille’s Hollywood, The University Press of Kentucky, 2004
Brock, Alan, “Nita Naldi,” Classic Images, No. 90, December 1982 (written 1940, update 1982), p. 58
Cumberland, Sharon, “North American Desire for the Spanish Other: Three film versions of Blasco Ibanez’s Blood and Sand” (article dated September 1998), Links & Letters 6, 1999, pp.43–59
Godowsky, Dagmar, The Lives of Dagmar Godowsky, The Viking Press, New York, 1958
Golden, Eve, Golden Images, 41 Essays on Silent Film Stars, McFarland & Company, Inc., Jefferson, North Carolina and London, 2001
Hitchcock, Alfred, Sidney Gottlieb (ed.), Hitchcock on Hitchcock, Selected Writings and Interviews, University of California Press, 1995
Kuhns, J. L., “Filmography Notes on The Mountain Eagle,” unpublished manuscript 1995, core files on The Mountain Eagle, Margaret Herrick Library, Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences.
Negra, Diane, “The Fictionalized Ethnic Biography: Nita Naldi and the Crisis of Assimilation,” in American Silent Film: Discovering Marginalized Voices, ed. Gregg Bachman & Thomas J. Slater, Southern Illinois University Press, 1st edition, June 3, 2002
Slide, Anthony, Silent Players, A Biographical and Autobiographical Study of 100 Silent Film Actors and Actresses, The University Press of Kentucky, 2002
Talese, Gay, A Gay Talese Reader: Portraits & Encounters, Walker & Company, New York, 2003