logo

This pioneering Black actress and comedienne was reportedly forced to marry older man as a teen

Cynthia Rita
Aug 14, 2018
10:26 P.M.

Loretta Mary Aiken, better known by her stage name, Jackie "Moms" Mabley, had a pretty hard childhood. Despite having no interest in men, she was forced to marry an old one being a teenager. However, she found the way to laugh and make others laugh with her sense of humor.

Advertisement
Credit: Wikimedia Commons Images

Credit: Wikimedia Commons Images

Moms Mabley was one of the greatest figures in the history of stand-up comedy. However, few people knew about her or her shows until a few years ago, when Whoopi Goldberg released the documentary "Whoopi Goldberg Presents Moms Mabley" film which first aired on HBO in 2013.

The comedienne didn't have a nice upbringing. The granddaughter of freed slaves, she grew up in poor conditions and her parents were killed in two different accidents while she was a child. By 15, she had been raped twice, first by an elderly black man at age 11, and then by a white sheriff at 13. She got pregnant on the two occasions and had to give up both babies for adoption.

Credit: Wikimedia Commons Images

Credit: Wikimedia Commons Images

Advertisement

She was forced to marry an old man and even then, lived in the worst conditions. Eventually, urged by her grandmother, Mabley escaped to Cleveland, where she joined a minstrel show singing to entertain the audience.

Aiken took her stage name, Jackie Mabley, from a former boyfriend of whom she said: "He took a lot off me and the least I can do is take his name." The nickname Moms and the characterization she adopted on stage, came from her grandmother, who was the dearest figure from her childhood.

Advertisement

Mabley came out as a lesbian at 27, becoming one of the first openly gay comedians.

Taking advantages of her "sweet elderly" image, she tackled controversial themes like racism, homophobia and made fun of politicians on her stand up shows. One of her recurrent jokes was about not being interest in old men, as she said the "Only time you see me with my arms around some old man. I'm holding him for the police."

Advertisement

Although not as mentioned by other comedians in our times, Mabley was part of that first wave of black comedians along with Redd Foxx and Dick Gregory that reached a mainstream audience and started to open the doors for other entertainers of color in a still-segregated America.

Advertisement
info
Please fill in your e-mail so we can share with you our top stories!
By subscribing, you agree to our Privacy Policy
Advertisement
Related posts

Dolly Parton's Sister Came to Her Defense as Singer Was Criticized for Her Recent Outfit: 'Shame on You Not Her'

November 30, 2023

‘Totally Gorgeous’: Sharon Stone Stuns in Sparkling Metallic Dress in Recent Red Carpet Photos

November 22, 2023

5 Celebrities Who Cut Their Kids Out of their Wills

January 30, 2024

Spotlight on Five Celebrities Who Rock Their Locs

February 14, 2024

How Dolly Parton's Unfamous Husband Reacted to Her Jaw-Dropping Cheerleader Outfit Appearance

January 26, 2024

This Girl Slept in the Underground Yet Became a Famous Actress Who, at 90, Is Happy with Her Younger Husband

December 01, 2023

Mom Fed up with 13-Year-Old Son's Rudeness Leaves Him a Note — He Storms Out of Home upon Seeing It

December 19, 2023

Mama June's Daughter Secretly Married Before Dying at 29 & Spouse Stayed with Her Until Her Last Breath

December 12, 2023

Shelley R Bonus Was Richard Pryor's Wife in the Late 60s – More about Her

January 15, 2024

Joan Lin Is Jackie Chan’s Wife of over 4 Decades Who Was Also an Actress

December 22, 2023

Bride Doesn’t Want Her Dad in Wheelchair to Walk Her Down the Aisle until She Sees Him on TV — Story of the Day

February 02, 2024

Why Is Prince Harry's Ex, Cressida Bonas, Still Close to the Royal Family?

February 16, 2024

Old Man Sits in the Same Corner for 10 Years Waiting for Daughter Who Kicked Him Out of the Car — Story of the Day

February 15, 2024

This Woman Slept on the Floor of Intense Care to Be near Her Hollywood Star Husband - They Wed in 15 Minutes & Made It to 61 Years Together

November 03, 2023