It may be that in the future we shall see Miss Jeffreys in more ambitious work than she has yet attempted, and that being so, it is impossible to say how far in her Art she will go.In the particular line she has made her own, she has already and member of the diplomatic service.Miss Ellis Jeffreys is an actress who has come to the very front rank with a considerable rush in the past few years, and has now achieved that pitch of popularity where one hears a certain type of theatrical character spoken of as “an Ellis Jeffrey’s part.” Miss Jeffreys made her start in comic opera in parts which did not require any vast amount of intellectual endeavour, and gradually worked her way into comedy parts – at first small, then larger and larger, till she has become just about the best light comedienne on the Stage to-day. Sleath-Skelton, and her husband, who is also on the Stage, and acts as Mr.Like all good comedians she has the gift of pathos, and when it has been required has very clearly demonstrated its possession. Herbert Sleath, is a member of a well-known Brighton family.He was very violent about this, but apologised when he found it was “My dear May”. He used very bad language, and made suggestions to her of an offensive kind. 13, 1902, the respondent wrote: “I will mend my ways. I was due at the theatre, so I opened the window and called to a cabman.Mrs Curzon found evidences of infidelity, and a solicitor was consulted. Then he let me go, and somehow or other I just got through my part at the theatre that night.”Had Ellis not had money and connections, it might not have been so easy for her to divorce her bad-tempered aristocrat.In September 1902, when Ellis filed for divorce (seemingly prompted by the incident at the open window in which Curzon threatened to kill her), Herbert had already left for New York with his cousin Weedon Grossmith: they were due to appear in the first production to be staged at the newly-opened Princess Theatre on Broadway.Ellis also had her own acting commitments in London at the time as she was starring (ironically) in the play Perhaps Herbert’s frustration at being apart from Ellis at this important time manifested itself in his behaviour at Madison Square Garden when he tried to enter three of his jumpers at the horse show due to be held there in the indoor arena. Gazelle, supposed to have been the finest jumping horse in England, was recently presented by him to the Viceroy of India.
However, it was only when I discovered that I could actually apply for a hard copy of the divorce papers from the National Archives (since published on-line) that I realised just how complex the case had actually been: as payment was by the page, I knew that there had been a large number of papers involved.
The divorce proceedings note that this was in fact at Brazilian Cottage – the house next door to Herbert Sleath’s residence (Latimore House) in the North Town area of Maidenhead.
The Quite a number of well-known theatrical people have been about the vicinity of Boulter’s Lock Maidenhead, lately, either on the river or in motor cars, a great many motor cars being on the river front in the evening.
And when the bulky folder arrived on my doorstep several weeks later, I could barely bring myself to open it.
Feeling like someone about to witness a terrible event, I grabbed the wad of documents, still wrapped in their brown paper packaging, and rushed to the local café to find a quiet corner in which to peruse them without distraction.