Friday, February 14, 2014
Earl Cavanaugh -- Home Again!
Formerly of the vaudeville team "Cavanaugh and McBride," the 33-year-old comedian had been out of work for four months when, on September 16, 1926, he sent his wife and their 6-year-old daughter to a birthday supper at a local restaurant in the girl's honor. Alone in their apartment at the Hotel Alpine in New York City, Cavanaugh brooded over the fact that he did not have enough money to buy his daughter a present or to visit his dying mother in Chicago. When wife and child returned hours later, they found his pajama-clad body face down in bed. Cavanaugh had strangled himself by tying a valise strap around his neck and fastening the other end to the bedpost. Cavanaugh's wife denied that he had killed himself, insisting instead that the unemployed vaudevillian had died accidentally while rehearsing a new comedy skit called "Home Again!" in which an estranged husband tries unsuccessfully to hang himself with his belt.