It’s Time To Write The Book!

my father & mother 1945
my father & mother 1945

I have put a lot of time and effort into finding out all I could about my father.  I was only three when he died and I basically have no memory of him.  He was 30 years older than my mother and they were only married for five years.  During my research I have found out my mom knew very little about the man she married, or, what she told me was very little.  Eddie was an actor, a songwriter, a singer, a restaurant owner, a dancer, a movie producer, a movie star, a radio personality and I could go on, but I won’t.  The thing is, I have only learned most of this information in the last four years, mom never told me half of this stuff.  I figure since she was only in her early 20’s when she married Eddie and he had money at the time, their life was too busy for her to worry about what he had done before she met him.  They traveled and gave “soirees” and went to nightclubs all the time, and had me, so mom only knew what was going on from the time she married Eddie.

My problem now is that I have almost no information on my father’s early years.  I know where he was born, that he was extremely poor and that he left home at about nine years of age.  I know that he taught himself to read and taught himself magic tricks and became the “Boy Magician” traveling around Baltimore putting on shows in churches and halls.  And that is about it.  He was born in 1891 and I have been told his birth certificate no longer exists.  I have his parents names (finally) but cannot find them in any census.  I want to start my book but I hate to begin the book with sketchy information, and the longer I put if off, the more I feel that I am procrastinating.

My really good information starts when Eddie wrote his first song.  According to the Catalogue of Copyright Entries, Eddie copyrighted “A Good Man Is Hard To Find” on December 28, 1917 in Chicago under his given name, Edward Green.  He sold it a year later, but continued to perform the song in places like the Booker Washington Theater in St. Louis until 1920.

A Good Man Is Hard To Find

Pace and Handy Building, 232 West, 42nd ST., New York
on sale at Pace & Handy Co., Inc., Publishers. Price 15 c. Composed by Eddie Green.

From there it is easy to trace Eddie because his name stays in the paper as his career and his entrepreneurial life grows.  As a matter of fact, his name was in the paper so much, I was beginning to wonder if he was paying someone to see that it was.

Anyhow, I am going to start my very first book writing adventure for the new year and I hope to take you along with me.  I will use my blog as a place for updates of my progress and to ask for suggestions or words of encouragement, while continuing to post what I think are inspirational posts from myself or others, inspirational poetry if I find any, or information on motivational blogs I run across.  And speaking of inspiration and motivation, I know that my father started out with nothing, very little schooling and entered into a world that, in the early 1900’s was a truly difficult world for people of color, but Eddie took the bull by the horns and ran with it and became an upstanding man who was well-liked by those who knew him, both professionally and personally and always got asked back.  I am very proud to be his daughter.  Thanks for stopping by.



For four years now I have been researching my father’s life.  Basically before I began my research, the only information I had about my father, was that he married my mom in 1945, he had a little money (mom said he was one of the few people who had a refrigerator as opposed to an icebox), he had written a song that had become a hit, that he was a fanatic about short wave radio and that he had been an old time radio star.   I only had one (1) picture of Eddie, a head shot, that my mother gave me when I turned 40 years old.  And I had seen my father in a movie once when I was eight, he played the waiter in the movie which was also the part he played in the radio program “Duffy’s Tavern”.

What I have discovered in the past four years is that the more information I find, the more information I find.  For instance, this past month I read two articles that mentioned Eddie Green being in the Army around 1942.  Well, even though I had not found any information on Eddie being in the Service, I really did not think these articles were talking about my father, since  Eddie was a bit old to be in the Army during WWII.  But I wrote myself a little note and a few days later, I got on the net and looked up my father’s name in the WWII draft registration cards and his name was there on the screen.

Eddie had at some point and time decided to change his birth year from 1891 to 1896.   The good thing about this discovery is that the birth date of the draft registration card matched the date on Eddie’s Social Security Card Application which I had just received in the mail.  And the signatures matched.  So now I know his real age.  What I don’t know is why he would be signing up for the draft at 50 years of age.  Being curious, I went on-line and queried WWII and that is how I found out about the “old man’s draft”.  The government decided to have a registration in April of 1942 and to sign up all men of a certain age, not to fight, but to be available, just in case.

There was one other thing the draft registration card gave me,the address of Eddie’s place of business, which was the same address listed in a 1942 Pittsburgh newspaper article which stated “Eddie Green Opens Musicians’ School”.  I had found the article about a year ago, but I needed verification and now I had it.

My research is paying off big-time.  There is nothing I would rather be doing.  I am getting another chance to meet my father, a man I only remember as a vague somebody who would sit me on his lap.  Who are you thinking about researching?