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Updated Nov 18 2012

marjorie torrey chanslor author illustrator
seek genealogy and famiy tree of marjorie torrey chanslor
illustrator born 1899 (ny?)\
married roy chanslor in los angeles
I am trying to find out what happened to her after 1955
and also looking for a photo of her. below is article from rue morgue press. my name L D P ierce eztone at hotmail dot com 800 570 1861


Marjorie Torrey (also known as Torrey Chanslor and Marjorie Torrey Hood) (born 1899) was an illustrator and winner of two Caldecott Honor books in 1946 and 1947.


  • Our First Murder (1940)
  • Our Second Murder (1941)
  • Penny (1944)
  • Artie and the Princess (1945)
  • Three Little Chipmunks (1947)
  • The Merriweathers (1949)
  • Viking Press ‎(7) 
  • Random House ‎(3)
  • Putnam ‎(2)
  • Howell, Soskin, c1944.
  • Grosset & Dunlap ‎(2)
  • Purnell ‎(1)
  • Hammond, Hammond & Co. ‎(1)
  • E.P. Dutton & Co. ‎(1)


  • Three little chipmunks ‎(3)
  • The Merriweathers ‎(3)
  • Far from Marlborough street ‎(3)
  • Trouble for Jerry ‎(2)
  • Songs to sing with the very young ‎(2)
  • Saturday night is my delight ‎(2)
  • Our first murder, c2002: ‎(2)
  • Alice in Wonderland ‎(2)

    16730 Chaplin Encino 91436

    HOOD TORREY SEE Chanslor Marjorie Torrey Hood

    by Marjorie Torrey pseud  New York E.P. Dutton company inc 1946

    Artie and the Princess

    in 2nd or 3rd grade (1960 1961?)a teacher in Spearman Texas (Mrs Yeary) read this book to us. I think there are other titles? I had memories (DREAMS) of this book for years (until my 30s) and finally tracked the teacher down in the late 1980s and AFTER TALKING to her about my recurrent dream was told it had to be the dragon book. she called it Arty's Dragon. She could not find her copy thinking she had given it away to other teacher. I had tried to find more info to no success when a few years ago a teacher told me she thought the story/book had been withdrawn from print due to copyright problems. (MORE than one parties were claiming ownership)


    I even find a Marjorie Torrey Hand

    The Merriweathers. By Marjorie Torrey
    (Marjorie Torrey Chanslor) © 19Aug49;
    A35419. Tom Torrey Bevans (C); 9Sep76;

    From americanartarchives.com · Marjorie Torre Bevans, Torre Bevans · Walter Biggs · Marjorie Torre Bevans, Torre Bevans · Thomas Beecham,Tom Beecham ...


    marjorie torrey bevans

    Uploaded by user. Repin Like Comment. illustrated by Brother Sebastion Schwartz, designed by Margaret and Tom Torre Bevans 1964 - þ. by Kyle K · flickr.com ..


    who was tom torre bevans?
    A 25Nov66 R398300 GATES DORIS Sarah's idea Illustrated by Marjorie Torrey l6Sep38 A121703 Doris Gates A & Tom Torre Bevans C of Marjorie Torrey Chanslor 20Jul66 R389877

    A 25Nov66 R398300 GATES DORIS Sarah's idea Illustrated by Marjorie Torrey l6Sep38 A121703 Doris Gates A & Tom Torre Bevans C of Marjorie Torrey Chanslor 20Jul66 R389877
    CHANSLOR MARJORIE TORRE Y HOOD Saturday night is my delight a novel by Torrey Hood New York Putnam 1952 245 p Torrey Hood lAug52 A69081

    HOOD TORREY SEE Chanslor Marjorie Torrey Hood

    Nicholas Ray: The Glorious Failure of an American Director
    By Patrick McGilligan

    page 240 thru 248 have good acount of roy chanslor
    and only one mention of the wife

    Evelyn M. (nee Hammon) October 27, 2009, Of West Seneca, NY; beloved wife of the late Ted; dearest mother of Michael L. and David W. Ferguson; sister of Marjorie Chancellor and Eileen (Ray) Miller. Family present Friday 2-4 PM at the HOY FUNERAL HOME, INC., 3855 Seneca St., West Seneca, where services will follow at 4:00 PM. Friends invited. Mrs. Ferguson was an active member of Ebenezer United Church of Christ. Flowers gratefully declined. Memorials to Ebenezer United Church of Christ or the appreciated.

    Torrey, Marjorie [Chanslor, Marjorie Torrey (Hood)], Penny (NY: Howell, Soskin, 1944). 126 pp. Illustrated by the author. Coloured plates. Young Penny and her black Poodle, Pouf, wander through adventures mostly including a same-age boy and his terrier.

    from crime fiction website
    CHANSLOR, (MARJORIE) TORREY (HOOD). 1899-1984(?).

    name: Roy E Chanslor
    birthplace: Missouri
    relationship to head of household: Son
    residence: Meadow Lake, Nevada, California
    marital status: Single
    race : White
    gender: Male
    immigration year:
    father's birthplace: Kentucky
    mother's birthplace: Missouri
    family number: 368
    page number: 17
      Household Gender Age Birthplace
    self R P Chanslor M 44y Kentucky
    wife Hattie Chanslor F 37y Missouri
    son Roy E Chanslor M 10y Missouri

    Marjorie Hood

    name: Marjorie Hood
    event: Death
    event date: 23 Sep 1956
    event place: San Francisco, California, United States
    birth date: 13 Nov 1899
    birthplace: New York
    gender: Female
    father: Leroy
    titles & terms:
    event: Census
    event year: 1925
    event place: Seneca Falls, A.D. 01, E.D. 01, Seneca, New York, United States
    gender: Female
    age: 36
    nationality: United States
    race: White
    relationship to head of household: Cousin
    estimated birth year: 1889
    years in the u.s.:
    family number: 87
    page: 8
    line number: 49

    I did some posting on some genealogy forums and got this back
    this morning

    U.S. City Directories, 1821-1989 (Beta) about Marjorie MN Chanslor
    Name: Marjorie Chanslor
    Residence Year: 1959
    Street Address: 15W75
    Residence Place: Manhattan, New York
    Publication Title: Manhattan, New York, City Directory, 1959
    --Mrs Marjorie Chanslor 15W75

    That's all I could find post-1955 and I can't prove that that is even her. According to the 1940 Census, Marjorie was born in NY:

    1940 United States Federal Census about Marguis Chanslor
    Name: Marguis Chanslor
    Age: 40
    Estimated Birth Year: abt 1900
    Gender: Female
    Race: White
    Birthplace: New York
    Marital Status: Married
    Relation to Head of House: Wife
    Home in 1940: Los Angeles, Los Angeles, California
    View Map
    Street: Chaplin
    House Number: 16730
    Inferred Residence in 1935: Los Angeles, Los Angeles, California
    Residence in 1935: Same House
    Sheet Number: 7A
    Household Members:
    Name Age
    Roy Chanslor 40 b. 1900 Mississippi; Writer, Private Home
    Margerie Chanslor 40 -wife- b. 1900 NY; Writer, Private Home
    Jack Bronowski 24 -caretaker-

    More likely Roy was born in Missouri, as evidenced by a death record:

    California, Death Index, 1940-1997 about Roy Chanslor
    Name: Roy Chanslor
    Social Security #: 548074468
    Gender: Male
    Birth Date: 25 Aug 1899
    Birth Place: Missouri
    Death Date: 16 Apr 1964
    Death Place: Los Angeles
    Mother's Maiden Name: North

    According to his 1923 U.S. Passport application, his full name was Roy Edwin Chanslor:

    U.S. Passport Applications, 1795-1925 about Roy Edwin Chanslor
    Age: 23
    Born: 25 Aug 1899 Liberty, Missouri
    Father Name: Robert Pogue Chanslor
    Father's Birth Location: Mayesville, Kertucky, USA
    Father's Residence: Berkeley, California

    This couple was together as early as 1931, according to a passenger flight list from Mexico to San Diego:

    San Diego, California, Airplane Passenger and Crew List Arrivals, 1929-1954 about Mrs M Chanslor
    Name: Mrs M Chanslor
    Gender: Female
    Birth Date: abt 1899
    Age: 32
    Arrival Date: 8 Sep 1931
    Departure Port: Agua Caliente, Baja California, Mexico
    Origin: United States
    --Roy Chanslor 32 b. 1899 Destination: 932 Ocean Front, Santa Monica
    --Mrs. M. Chanslor 32 b. 1899 Destination: same

    I could not find Marjorie Torrey, b. 1900 NY in the U.S. Census. It might be that her last name Torrey was a pseudonym. Sorry I could not be of more help. Annie

    Roy Edwin Chanslor
    event: Draft Registration
    registration date year range: 1917-1918
    event place: Berkeley City no 2, California, United States
    gender: Male
    birth date: 25 Aug 1899
    birthplace: , , United States
    country of citizenship: United States
    nara publication title: World War I Selective Service System Draft Registration Cards
    nara publication number: M1509
    film number:
    digital folder number: 005240887
    image number: 03370

    From Rue Morgue Press: (Website)

    Fame is a funny, fickle thing. Marjorie Torrey, who as Torrey Chanslor wrote Our First Murder, was one of the major illustrators of childrens books in the mid-twentieth century, achieving back-to-back Caldecott Honor awards, but today she is virtually forgotten. She was born in New York in 1899 but somewhere in the late 1950s, she seems to have quietly passed from the scene.

    She wrote a few childrens books herself but she was primarily an artist, whose old-fashioned style was ideally suited to illustrating books for young people. She also did the covers for the two mysteries featuring the Beagle sisters, Our First Murder (1940) and Our Second Murder (1941). Although these covers were uncredited, theres absolutely no doubt whose work it is when one compares the playful, yet extremely accurate, cover of Our First Murder (reproduced for this edition in a slightly enlarged form) with the delightful illustrations in her 1946 Caldecott Honor book, Sing Mother Goose.

    The Beagle Sisters books were her only books written for adults. They belong to that school of elaborately plotted mysteries solved by very eccentric detectives popularized in this country by S.S. Van Dine and Ellery Queen. What makes Torrey Chanslors books stand apart from her predecessors are her delightful and unusual sleuths. The Beagle sisters are two sixtyish spinsters from a small upstate New York town who inherit a New York City private detective agency from their brother and almost immediately plunge themselves into a spectacular murder case. Elder sister Amanda Beagle (think Margaret Hamilton or Edna May Oliver) heads up the firm and runs it with an iron hand, but most of the sleuthing is done by Lutie, the younger sister (think Helen Hayes), who honed her adopted craft by reading scores of mysteries borrowed from the East Biddicutt circulating library. The action is described by their Watson and somewhat younger niece, Marthy Meecham (picture Spring Byington). Their other cohorts in crime are Jeff Mahoney, a young, lanky redhead (think a young Van Johnson on a Jimmy Stewart frame) who does some of the legwork and all of the heavy lifting; Tabby, a cat; and Rabelais, a parrot with a colorful vocabulary (learned from his previous owner, a sailor).

    The Misses Beagle werent the first women in the genre to assume the duties of what P.D. James called an unsuitable job for a woman. Rex Stout, the creator of Nero Wolfe, gave us Theolinda Dol Bonner in The Hand in the Glove (1937), and Patricia Wentworths Miss Silver earned her keep as an English private detective for many years, starting with The Case is Closed (also 1937) among others. But the Beagle sisters were among the earliest and certainly the most eccentric women ever to walk the mean streets as private eyes. Lutie, though several decades older, is as adept as Dol in her use of and fondness for revolvers, while Amanda and Miss Silver share a stern resolve and reliance on common sense.

    Contemporary critics gave the Beagle sisters a warm welcome. Quaint but funny, is how Will Cuppy, a major critic of the day, accurately described Our First Murder in Books, while Isaac Anderson in the New York Times gratefully acknowledged the arrival of two such delightful spinsters. Marian Wiggin, writing in the Boston Transcript, was even more enthusiastic: The Misses Beagle (what a name for detectives!) are charming, especially Lutie, who has stepped up to the head of the list of my favorite detectives. These two women greatly enhance what would be, anyway, a very neat case of hidden identity. In spite of those reviews, the Beagle sisters returned for only one more case, Our Second Murder, in 1941, after which Marjorie Torrey devoted herself almost exclusively to writing and drawing for children because, as she once commented, what happens to children is the most important thing in the world, I think.

    Marjorie Torrey herself began drawing as a child in and near New York City and entered the National Academy of Design at the age of thirteen before moving on to the Art Students League. She was inspired to draw by her father, who entertained young Marjorie and her brother with his own drawings, which accompanied games he invented. An injury to her back kept her out of regular school, but she spent many years at home drawing, painting, reading, reading, reading, and writing stories. After she started at the National Academy, her father built her a small studio beside a brook on their property where she could work during summer vacations.

    Her favorite memories of her art school days involved winter evenings at the Metropolitan Museum of Art when it was even more still and magic, and with a small group of young peoplenot all art studentsinformally led by Nicholas Vachel Lindsay (the poet), we wandered where we chose, gazing raptly at sculpture, at medieval tapestries, at Egyptian mummies, discussing what we saw, trying to express what we felt. Those excursions paid off when one of her earliest art jobs called for her to draw cartoons of medieval ladies and their courtiers for tapestries. She longed to make a cartoon of modern young people on Riverside Drive, with the Palisades in the background, but was told this would not be salable¦ However, I sketched New York scenes, mostly of children playing, and painted from these during the weekends.

    After she finished school, she married and had a son. Soon she was getting a great deal of illustration work from various magazines, which required two extended trips to Europe. Such work was mostly for the adult market and she soon gave it up. She moved to the San Fernando Valley in California with her husband, Roy Chanslor, a novelist who was beginning to get considerable screen work. His most famous novels were Johnny Guitar and The Ballad of Cat Ballou, both made into even more famous movies. Our Second Murder was dedicated to Roy, who died in 1964. Marjorie earned a screen credit herself (some sources credit Roy) for the 1936 screwball comedy The Girl on the Front Page, starring Gloria Stuart, who was nominated for a best supporting actress Oscar for her performance in Titanic.

    From her hilltop home overlooking the valley, Marjorie Torrey was finally free to devote herself exclusively to creating books for children. She wrote and illustrated four of her own: Penny (1944), Artie and the Princess (1945), Three Little Chipmunks (1947), and The Merriweathers (1949). But it was her work as an illustrator that brought her fame and awards. Her first Caldecott Honor book, Sing Mother Goose, with songs by Opal Wheeler, came in 1946. The following year she earned another Caldecott Honor medallion for illustrating Sing in Praise: A Collection of the Best Loved Hymns, once again selected by Wheeler. A Caldecott historian wrote of her work: The full-color illustrations reflect the solemnity and reverence seen in Torreys Mother Goose collection, and these interpretations communicate the essence and importance of the songs words¦Torreys gentle black-and-white illustrations possess the softness of pencil, some the sharp lines of pen and ink, and others a combination of both.

    She also illustrated Fairing Weather by Elspeth MacDuffle Bragdon in 1955, Far from Marlbrough Street by Elizabeth Philbrook in 1944, and several books by Doris Gates, including Sarahs Idea (1938), Sensible Kate (1943), and Trouble for Jenny (1951). She deftly illustrated reprints of several classic childrens books, including Alice in Wonderland in 1955 and Peter Pan in 1957, after which she seems to have vanished without a trace. Marjorie is not mentioned in Roys obituary in a 1964 edition of Variety and he appears to have remarried.

    All of her books are out of print today. Even her Caldecott honor books are difficult to find, often confined to rare book rooms or the special collections section of larger libraries. Ironically, shes perhaps best known today for her two mysteries, which have been mentioned in Carolyn G. Harts popular Death on Demand mystery series and are sought after by collectors specializing in the evolution of the private eye novel, especially those featuring women sleuths.

    Marjorie Torrey gave us perhaps the ultimate portrayal of the spinster sleuth. The adventures of Amanda and Lutie on the streets and in the nightclubs of 1940 Manhattan might seem preposterous to the jaded reader of today, who associates private eye novels with gritty urban cityscapes and even grittier characters. In their joyful innocence they offer up a picture of time when people read murder mysteries just for fun. It was a period in which America was emerging from the Great Depression and not yet embroiled in the Second World War. The country certainly needed a laugh then. Who is to say that it doesnt need another one today? Tom & Enid Schantz July 2002

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