​​​The Joan Crawford Chronicle 


Early January: Joan travels to Buenos Aries, Argentina.

January 8: Joan and the twins unveil a plaque in honor of Alfred Steele at the Albert Einstein Medical Center in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

January 8 (#2): Joan appears as a mystery contestant on the television game show "What's My Line?". Following her reveal, Joan introduces her daughters Cathy and Cynthia to the show's panel.​​

January 10: Joan and daughters Cathy and Cynthia attend the premiere of Shipstads and Johnson's "Ice Follies of 1961" at Madison Square Garden in New York City.

January 12: Joan appears on CBS in the television show "Zane Grey Theater"​ in the episode "One Must Die."

January 12 (#2): Joan co-hosts a cocktail party with actress Helen Hayes at the Commodore Hotel in New York City.
     The cocktail party is to ​benefit the New York Shakespeare Festival happening later in April.

Early February: Screen Gems producer, William Doizer, approves a new half-hour series called “The Joan Crawford Show” by Screen Gems in which Joan will play an savvy attorney. The series has a projected premiere date for the fall of 1961.

February 4: An intermediate estate accounting discloses Alfred Steele's estate as "insolvent" even though he left a gross estate of $607,128.​​
     ​The intermediate accounting determined that the principal asset of Steele's estate was $383,000 held in escrow by Pepsi-Cola because of a stockholder's suit.
     ​In a September 22, 1955 agreement, Steele was granted stock options, which the stock holder's suit maintained should be declared null and void as a "gift" that wasted the company's assets.

     The major claims against Alfred Steele's estate are as follows:
  • $93,500 tax claim by the federal government.​
  • $21,000 tax claim by the state of New York.
  • $21,750 claim by Steele's ex-wife, Lillian Steele.
  • ​$16,150 by Steele's son, "Sunny". 
  • ​$97,534 claim by Joan for a loan she made to Steele prior to his death.

​​March: Joan, along with Barbara Stanwyck, are considered for the role of "Jo Courtney" in the film  "Walk On The Wild Side."
     ​Barbara Stanwyck is later cast in the role. 

Mid-March​: Joan vacations in southern Florida.

April: Joan asks Billy Wilder to change the main character in his film "One, Two, Three" to a Pepsi-Cola salesman, rather than a Coke-Cola salesman.
     The last shot in the film is of James Cagney holding a Pepsi-Cola bottle, reportedly inspired by Joan's request.

Early- April: Joan attends a performance of "Advise And Consent" at the Cort theater in New York.​​

April 14: Joan's daughter, Christina, appears on the television show "Here's Hollywood." ​During her appearance, Christina discusses her plans for her career, and recalls stories of Hollywood from her childhood.

April 23: Joan serves as chairman for the second annual “Evening With Shakespeare” dinner and entertainment program at the Commodore Hotel in New York City to benefit the New York “Shakespeare Festival”. The dinner is attended by over 600 guests. (Other dates offered for this event are May 7th or 8th, however, April 23 is the correct date)

April 29: Joan attends Variety Club’s “Tent's International” event at the Fontainebleau Hotel in Miami Beach, Florida.
     ​Along with Joan, Gloria de Haven and Danny Kaye attend the event.

May 3: Joan attends Pepsi-Cola's annual stockholder's meeting in Wilmington, Delaware.
     ​​​Joan travels to the meeting by train, along with Pepsi-Cola president Herbert Barnet.

May 26: Joan leaves New York City to spend the weekend in the small village of Westhampton Beach.

May 30: The U.S. Tax Court denies Joan’s appeal that she suffered a $30,561 “loss” when she was unable to successfully sell a script she bought from Waner Bros in 1950.  (See the September 21, 1960 entry for the original court judgement)
     The court said in its ruling that Joan “did not suffer a deductible loss”. At the time of the appeal Joan still owned the Speers script “A Teacher’s Story” and “considers it good."

June: Hall Bartlett first contacts Joan regarding his script for "The Caretakers".​​

June: Joan attends a party at Earl Blackwell's apartment in honor of Noel Coward. Joan brings her personally-prepared meatloaf for the party's buffet. Other guests include; Eva Gabor, Mary Stevens, Linda Christian, Vala Byfield and Gloria Swanson.​​​

June 2: Joan travels to Europe to attend several Pepsi-Cola bottling plant dedications.​​

Early June: Joan attends the dedication ceremonies for Pepsi-Cola plants in Geneva and Lausanne, Switzerland.​​

Early ​June:
Joan spends a weekend in Paris, France.

Mid-June: Joan travels to Milan, Italy for a week’s stay to attend the dedication of a new Pepsi-Cola bottling plant.

June 16: Joan returns to New York from Europe.​​

July: Joan appears in the July edition of "Holiday" Magazine (Vol. 30 No. 1) wearing a green gown by designer Scaasi.
​The photo is from a photoshoot taken in Joan's "Fifth Avenue" apartment​ earlier in the year.

July: Upon Joan's insistence, filmmaker Robert Aldrich buys the book rights to "What Ever Happened To Baby Jane?" for $17,500 with Joan
​and Bette Davis in mind for the leading roles.​​

Early July: Producer William Nichols signs Joan to narrate and host “The Ziegfeld Touch” on the “Dupont Show Of The Week”, scheduled to air on Sunday, November 26, however, the show airs on Sunday, October 28 1961.
     ​(The program is slated to be filmed in color, however, is ultimately filmed in black and white)

July 12: Joan returns from Pepsi business trips in Europe.

Mid July: Joan accepts an Invitation to be one of the Miss America Pageant judges in September.

September: Robert Aldrich sends Joan the first draft of "What Ever Happened To Baby Jane?"​​

September: Joan attends artist Mortimer Hays' art exhibit of his collection consisting of color photographs in the African Art. The exhibit is held in the ground floor lobby of the Pepsi-Cola building on Park Avenue in New York City.​ The exhibit runs from early September until October 1st.

September 6-8: Joan serves on the panel of judges for the 1962 Miss America Pageant at Convention Hall in Atlantic City, New Jersey.

September 10: Family Weekly magazine publishes the article "My Mother's Discipline Helped Me After All!"​ The article is written by Peer J. Oppenheimer, and it was told by Joan's daughter, Christina.

September 12: Joan hosts a special gala preview for artists Margaret and Walter Keane at 798 Madison Avenue. ​​
The collection is open to the public to view beginning September 13th.​

Mid September (#1): Joan attends a performance of the musical "Carnival"​​ at the Imperial Theater in New York. After the show, Joan telephones the show's star, Anna Maria Alberghetti​, to congratulate her on her performance.

Mid September (#2): Joan's daughter, Christina, films a guest-starring role of the television show "Dr. Kildare" ​on stage 11 on the MGM studio lot.

September 23-24: Several English and French furniture pieces previously owned by Joan are auctioned at the Parke-Bernet Galleries in New York.

Late-September: Joan vacations for one week in Bermuda.

October: Joan and co-author Jane Kesner Ardmore complete the manuscript of "A Portrait of Joan".​​

Early-October: Joan travels to New York City following her one-week vacation in Bermuda.​​

October 2: It’s announced Joan is expected to sign-on for Robert Aldrich’s “What Ever Happened To Baby Jane?

October 9: Joan attend the annual meeting of the Pepsi-Cola board.

October 21: Joan travels from New York for St. Louis, Missouri. ​

October 23: Joan appears on the television game show “I've Got A Secret”.​​

October 25: Joan arrives in New York.

October 26: Joan attends a Pepsi-Cola board meeting in New York.​

October 29: Joan appears on "The Ziegfeld Touch" in “Dupont’s Show Of The Week."

Early November: Joan travels to Los Angeles.​​, California.

Early November: Joan begins discussions with acting coach, Jack Manning, in regard to creating a chain of "Joan Crawford acting schools", with financing by entertainment-industrialist Ed Lowe.

November 11-12: Joan attends the Pepsi-Cola bottlers convention in San Francisco, California.​​

November 15: Joan returns to New York from California.​

November 18-19: Joan spends the weekend in the country.​​

November 15 (#2): It’s reported that 20th Century Fox producer, Jerry Wald, originally envisioned a “mature actress” for the female lead of “Wild In The Country”, and approached Joan, among other actresses, to portray the character of "Irene Sperry" before Hope Lange was hired.
     (“Wild In The Country” was the first motion picture project of Joan’s daughter, Christina)

Late November: Joan hosts an opening for artist Margaret Keane in New York where Keane unveils her oil painting of Joan.
     ​Joan had commissioned Keane to paint the portrait for $7,500.

November 30: Joan leaves on Pepsi-Cola business, traveling to Buenos Aries, then on to Lima, Peru and Bogota, Columbia.

December 22: Joan returns to New York from Pepsi-Cola trips throughout South America.​​

December 25: Joan spends Christmas with her daughters, Cathy and Cindy, in the West Hamptons.​​


© All original Joan Crawford research and original text herein is property of Webmaster Bryan Johnson and is copyright protected by the United States Copyright Act of 1976. Copyright © Bryan Johnson