The Golden Age of Hollywood

Where’s the snow, Miss Hepburn?

on December 10, 2012

Apparently, the day after I left England to return to the Unites States earlier this week, it snowed over there! What’s with that!? It seriously had to wait until I left the country before huge, white, fluffy snowflakes were released over the English towns and countryside?! Unjust!

So now I’m looking out on a wet, grey, not-quite-cold-enough, Pennsylvania day and dreaming of a white Christmas. When we moved up here from Virginia I expected to see snow on the ground from November onwards! Alas, it was not to be. I am hoping that these pictures of Katharine Hepburn’s winter-weather escapades will encourage the powers that be to dump a load of the white stuff on my doorstep. Please and thank you.

(Above) “Fenwick in mid-February. Kate emerges from her morning dip in the Long Island Sound, tiptoing across the ice and snow. The thermometer outside the kitchen door registers 5 degress, and her brother Dick reports the windchill is 20 degress below zero. She has been making these swims since she was five. “Not everyone is lucky enough to understand how delicious it is to suffer,” she says. It is part of the old Yankee tradition handed down from her father. In warm weather she takes an ice-cold shower each morning.” (John Bryson, The Private World of Katharine Hepburn)

Katharine Hepburn as Jo in George Cukor’s LITTLE WOMEN (1933)
slides past the Laurence residence on her
way home from work at Aunt March’s
Katharine Hepburn as Jo in George Cukor’s LITTLE WOMEN (1933)
Baby Katharine all bundled up
Mini Katharine Hepburn and her big brother Tom 
go sledding at their home in Hartford, CT

“Can you imagine that Dr. Thomas N. Hepburn, my father, used to drag us on sleds behind his car through the streets of Hartford, Connecticut after a snowstorm – Hawthorn to Forest out Farmington to Woodland to Asylum to Elizabeth Park? Or straight out Woodland to Kenney Park. A long rope played out off the backseat. All cars were open – at least I believe so. Anyone who wanted to could hook on. Anyone who could stay on. Dad would try to sling us off speeding around every corner. He never did get rid of me. Great fun.” (Katharine Hepburn, Me: Stories of My Life)

Katharine Hepburn’s childhood home at 133 Hawthorn in Hartford, CT

 “At the front of the property the driveway was a big circle to the front door. The house was about seventy feet from the street. In the winter when there was a heavy snow, we’d enclose the circle in a high wall of snow, very thick. Terrible battles would ensue. It was like a fuedal town.” (Hepburn, Me)

“Turtle Bay in the winter, shovelling snow
off the roof so it won’t leak.” (Bryson)
Katharine Hepburn’s got skills.
Let it snow! Let it snow! Let it snow!

6 responses to “Where’s the snow, Miss Hepburn?

  1. Alyssa LM says:

    Hope it snows for you. Coming from Australia I've never seen it snow and it always seems so magical to me. Loved your post.

  2. That's so sad! But, of course, I've never seen a kangaroo or a wallaby. Thanks for stopping by!

  3. says:

    Another international opinion here:I have never seen snow here in Brazil. For sure Bing Crosby glamourized it and made me be cuious about, but being not a fn of cold weather made me chill only with Kate's pictures, so imagine how I'd be with snow around me!Kisses!

  4. Snow is like my most favorite thing in the whole world! But then, I do like cold weather. I don't like sunshine – it burns!

  5. Now I'm confused: Are you English or American? Kate is perfect. Skating Kate is even more perfect. Overwhelmed by the baby pictures. Thanks for this, Maggie.

  6. Haha! Good question. I am American but I have been to England a number of times, and last week I returned from living in England for the past six months. Glad you liked this post!

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