Margaret Dumont

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Description Margaret Dumont was an American stage and film actress. She is best remembered as the comic foil to the Marx Brothers in seven of their films. Groucho Marx called her "practically the fifth Marx brother."Early life and careerShe was born Daisy Juliette Baker in Brooklyn, New York, the daughter of William and Harriet Anna (née Harong) Baker. As a child, she lived in the South, where she was mainly raised by her godfather, writer Joel Chandler Harris. She grew to stand 5' 9" (1.75 m).Dumont trained as an operatic singer and actress in her teens, and began performing on stage in both the U.S. and in Europe, at first under the name Daisy Dumont and later as Margaret (or Marguerite) Dumont. Her theatrical debut was in Beauty and the Beast at the Chestnut Theater in Philadelphia, and in August 1902, two months before her 20th birthday, she appeared as a singer/comedienne in a vaudeville act in Atlantic City. The dark-haired soubrette, described by a theater reviewer as a "statuesque beauty", attracted notice later that decade for her vocal and comedic talents in The Girl Behind the Counter (1908), The Belle of Brittany (1909), and The Summer Widower (1910).In 1910, she married millionaire sugar heir and industrialist John Moller Jr., and retired from stage work, although she had a small uncredited role as an aristocrat in a 1917 film adaptation of A Tale of Two Cities. The marriage was childless. After her husband's sudden death during the 1918 influenza pandemic, she returned reluctantly to the Broadway stage, and soon gained a strong reputation in musical comedy productions. She never remarried.

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