Nelson Eddy

Nelson Eddy


6/29/1901, Providence, Rhode Island



Birth Name


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Nelson Ackerman Eddy was born on June 29, 1901, in Providence, Rhode Island, to a family rich in a history of musical entertainment. His grandparents were musicians and his parents were vocalists in musical theater. As a younster, Eddy was unable to have the luxury of a professional…more


Trivia and Quotes

  • Trivia

    • Nelson Eddy and Jeanette MacDonald always planned to star in another film after the eight they made together. However, this plan never materialized, after three attempts.

    • Nelson Eddy spent many hours entertaining American servicemen at The Hollywood Canteen during World War Two. Eddy was one of the ealiest supporters of the rally to fight the Axis Powers with a concert in 1939, in support of Poland.

    • Nelson Eddy's salary for a concert jumped from $500 a performance to $10,000 a performance after he signed his first film contract. Eddy also had it written into his film contract, that he was to have three months off each year to tour with his musical concerts.

    • The personal journals and letters belonging to Nelson Eddy are now in the University of Southern California Cinema/Television Library.

    • Nelson Eddy was very active in support of the Allied troops during World War Two. Eddy made an overseas trip to entertain the troops in 1943 that ended up being 35,000 miles in length.

    • Nelson Eddy had the same accompanist for the entire 39 years of his musical career. Theodore (Ted) Paxson joined Eddy in 1928 on piano and stayed with him in the accompanist position until Eddy's death in 1967.

    • Nelson Eddy appeared in 19 musicals during the the 1930's and the 1940's. Eight of those musical films were with his singing partner, Jeanette MacDonald.

    • Nelson Eddy was invited to sing at the third inauguration of United States President, Frankin Delano Roosevelt.

    • Nelson Eddy was portrayed by actor Mick Hucknall, in the 2004 Cole Porter biographical film, De-Lovely. The Eddy character appeared as a cameo.

    • Nelson Eddy earned three gold records for his recordings over the years. He actually made 290 recordings over the span of his 39 year career in musical entertainment. These recordings ranged from opera to popular music of the day.

    • Nelson Eddy always claimed that there was no romance between himself and singing partner Jeanette MacDonald. However, it has come to light since deaths, of MacDonald in 1965 and Eddy in 1967, that this may not have been the case. In her 2001 biography about Eddy and MacDonald, Sweethearts, writer Sharon Rich claims that the duo were involved in an affair from 1933 until MacDonald's death in 1965. Rich used MacDonald's sister, Blossom Rock, as her primary source for her claims of the romance between Eddy and MacDonald. Rich even goes so far to say that, MGM studio boss, Louis B. Mayer, arranged for MacDonald to marry her husband Gene Reynolds, to prevent her from marrying Eddy. These allegations of an Eddy-MacDonald romance have also been made in another book by Jane Ellen Wayne, called The Golden Girls of MGM.

    • The singing duo of Jeanette MacDonald and Nelson Eddy were lampooned in the musical,A Day In Hollywood/A Night In The Ukraine. An actress dressed as MacDonald in a period costume was seated near a mannequin dressed in a Canadian Mounted Police uniform. The actress was singing a song (in operatic lament) called, Oh, Nelson, What You Are Putting Me Through. The premise of the skit was in reference to Eddy's reputation for being so wooden in his acting.

    • Nelson Eddy was distantly related to United States President, Martin Van Buren.

    • Nelson Eddy was an accomplished sculptor. He was fond of crafting bronze statues of the directors and co-stars of his films. One such bronze statue, of the actress Susanna Foster, was used in her 1943 film, Phantom Of The Opera.

    • Nelson Eddy acquired several nicknames while in Hollywood. They were, Nels, The Baritone, and one not so nice one that was decreed by negative critics, The Singing Capon.

    • Nelson Eddy was a member of Phi Mu Alpha Sinfonia, a national music fraternity.

    • Nelson Eddy has a street in the Hollywood Forever Cemetery named for him. Eddy was interred in the Hollywood Forever Cemetery following his death from a stroke on March 6, 1967.

    • Nelson Eddy has a star on the Hollywood Walk Of Fame. Mr. Eddy's star is located at 6311 Hollywood Blvd. Nelson Eddy is one of the few stars who has three stars on the Hollywood Walk Of Fame. He was awarded one for radio, recording, and film.

    • Nelson Eddy was married once to Anne Denitz Franklin from 1939-1967. While Anne had one son from a previous marriage, Eddy and she had no children together. Nelson Eddy had a son, Jon, with former companion Maybelle Marston, born in the 1930's.

  • Quotes

    • (Nelson Eddy made this remark in jest of himself, after seeing himself made-up and costumed elaborately for one of the period piece films that he made.)
      Nelson Eddy: Take him. Ain't he purty.

    • (Nelson Eddy in a 1957 quote on the status of his relationship with singing partner, Jeanette MacDonald)
      Nelson Eddy: I still don't know why people want to believe that Jeanette MacDonald and I were a couple off the set. There is no truth to that rumor, at all. She is happily married to Gene Raymond and I am happily married to Ann. I guess people want to believe what they see on screen is reality, while in actuality, it is just a movie.

    • ( Nelson Eddy quoted on why he never watched his own films.)
      Nelson: I was too ashamed of them.