Fanny Davenport

Actress Fanny Davenport
Photograph by Napoleon Sarony

Fanny Davenport*

Born in London, Davenport made her New York debut in 1862. Augustin Daly saw potential in her and asked her to join his theater company. According to his brother, what Daly saw in her "besides her dazzling beauty, splendid presence and blooming health were confidence and self-possession."5 Davenport chose to focus on dramatic productions rather than comedies and played many roles first made famous by Sarah Bernhardt in Paris. Davenport was loved by the public, but had a cold but respectful relationship with her fellow performers.

*Dreiser uses the spelling 'Fannie'

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