Tuesday, March 26, 2013

March 26 - Tennessee Williams

Author and playwright Thomas Lanier "Tennessee" Williams was born on March 26, 1911, in Columbus, Mississippi, but grew up in St. Louis from age 8 through his college years. He referred to the city as “St. Pollution.” His overbearing mother searched continually for a St. Louis address she considered appropriate, a task made difficult by his father's drinking and violent conduct. Williams’ first address was 4633 Westminster Place, which he described as a "perpetually dim little apartment in a wilderness of brick and concrete." This was, in part, the setting of his first hit play, “The Glass Menagerie” (1944). His dysfunctional family life and tortured emotions are reflected in the play’s tender but disturbing story of a young man, Tom, his disabled sister, Laura, and their controlling mother. Contrary to his expressed wishes, Williams was buried in St. Louis’ Calvary Cemetery (pictured) when he died of apparent substance abuse in 1983.

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