Hotel del Coronado, Hour 2 Preview | Joan Crawford Archive, ca. 1940 | ANTIQUES ROADSHOW | PBS


APPRAISER: Obviously, we have here a signed
photograph of Joan Crawford, but what is this other piece, and how did you get these? GUEST: So this other piece is a schedule that
Joan Crawford wrote out. So my grandmother — which is my father’s mother —
for a brief period in 1940s, was actually Joan Crawford’s nanny. I don’t know if you ever saw that movie “Mommie
Dearest,” or anything like that, she was actually kind of a witness to that. And this was the schedule that she had to
follow very closely. She couldn’t deviate from the schedule, and
this was something that I came into possession with because my father passed away a few years
ago, had it in the house that my grandmother had been the nanny, but we didn’t ever really
know where this stuff was. So when he passed away, we were going through
all the stuff he had hoarded over the years, and we finally found this. APPRAISER: Wow. Well, Joan Crawford was a very generous signer. So being someone who works in this world,
I’ve seen a lot of Joan Crawford handwritten documents, letters. She wrote a lot of letters to people, thanking
them for things. GUEST: Yeah. APPRAISER: And she was very generous with
her signature, so we see a lot of photographs. She was not, however, so generous, perhaps,
in her home life, which is a controversial topic. GUEST: Yes. APPRAISER: When her daughter Christina wrote
the book “Mommie Dearest,” a lot of people came out in Joan Crawford’s defense and said,
“That’s not true, I know Joan Crawford, it couldn’t have happened.” Her first husband was in support of it, Katherine
Hepburn stood behind her. And then there were some people in Hollywood
who came out and said, “No, I think that a lot of the stuff in the book was true.” And there’s been a lot of debate, and I think
what the most interesting thing to me about your documents are, they are a firsthand record
of someone who witnessed what went on in that household in intimate detail. GUEST: Yes. APPRAISER: The fact that Joan personally typed
this herself shows what an extraordinary control freak she was, and left nothing to chance. And the most shocking thing to me in this
entire schedule, which outlines exactly when the children were to be awoken, when they
would eat, when they would be dressed, when they would be sent to do their “duty in the
bathroom,” as she puts it. GUEST: Yes. APPRAISER: But the most shocking one here,
talking about the baby, “then tie him in his play chair while his room is being cleaned.” GUEST: Yes. APPRAISER: So in my mind, this is the first
evidence, absolutely hard-fast, no question about it, someone on the scene, Joan Crawford
telling her nanny to tie up her child in a chair. APPRAISER: Which, one of the things that we
saw in the movie, he was tied to the bed so he wouldn’t kick his feet about. GUEST: Right. APPRAISER: You had some other handwritten
notes that mentioned something about that, as well. GUEST: Yes, yes. APPRAISER: So to me, it’s very interesting
on that front, because this is absolutely black-and-white. GUEST: Right. APPRAISER: She’s telling her nanny to do this. GUEST: Yes. APPRAISER: Because this is something we see
a lot of… GUEST: Yeah. APPRAISER: The photograph, when these come
up — this is a really beautiful one — but when the photographs come up, they sell for
about $300. GUEST: Yeah. APPRAISER: Regularly. But I think when you put this in the context
of everything that you have– the notes, and this schedule– the whole group would be in
the $4,000 to $6,000 range at auction. GUEST: Wow, very cool. APPRAISER: It’s interesting because your grandmother
was also interviewed for the book “Jazz Baby.” GUEST: Yes. APPRAISER: And she says in that, that interview
in the book that, “I saw what happened and everything in that book is absolutely true. ‘Mommie Dearest’ is true.” GUEST: Yeah. APPRAISER: She mentions that she has some
notes and documents that she thought supported Christina’s claims. GUEST: Yeah. APPRAISER: And this is the first we’re getting
a peek at them. I don’t think anyone’s ever seen these before. GUEST: Wow, yeah.

9 Replies to “Hotel del Coronado, Hour 2 Preview | Joan Crawford Archive, ca. 1940 | ANTIQUES ROADSHOW | PBS”

  1. I look at the Joan Crawford schedule as a mother who is protective and doesn’t want to chance anything. Very organized. The word “tie” back then meant “secure” , and is therefore, protecting the child while the nanny is busy cleaning so the child is kept safe. The presenter takes great liberty here.

  2. Momma dearest is true, look at old YouTube videos of some of the Hollywood stars who said she was cruel and it was witnessed. Control freak is correct.

  3. Amazing to hear people try to make excuses for what is clear evidence of child abuse. The Nanny said as much in an interview, that she saw the child abuse..

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *