Appleton's Cyclopedia of American Biography, edited by James
Grant Wilson, John Fiske and Stanley L. Klos. Six volumes, New York: D. Appleton
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DAUVRAY, Helen, actress, born in San Francisco, California, 14 February 1859. Her true name is Gibson, and she was also known as "Little Nell, the California diamond." During her childhood she resided in Virginia City, Nev., and made her first appearance on the stage in San Francisco, playing Eva in "Uncle Tom's Cabin." Afterward she appeared as the Duke of York in "Richard III.," as the child in "The Scarlet Letter," with Matilda Heron, and in other r61es. About 1869 she was announced as a child star, and her first tour, opening in the west. was made in protean plays, such as "Fidela," "No Name," and "Katy Did." She continued eastward, meeting with indifferent success, reached New York in June 1870, appearing at Wood's museum, where she played twice a day in " Popsey Wopsey," and also appeared in " Andy Blake." She again went west, and later sailed for Australia. After playing in that court-try for some time, she returned to the United States, and. withdrawing from the stage, went to Europe, where she acquired the French language. Her old fondness for the stage reviving, she determined on an appearance abroad. Paul Ferrier adapted for her a French version of "Nan the Good-for-nothing," which he called " Miss Maggie," and on 1 September 1884, she acted at the Polies Dramatiques in Paris, under the name of Mlle. Helene Dauvray. Her engagement lasted over three months, after which she returned to the United States. The novel of "Mrs. Geoffrey" was adapted for her, under the name of "Mona," by Felix Morris, and she took the titular character in the Star theatre, New York, 27 April 1885, but without success. Miss Dauvray had forsaken her old soubrette parts, and was ambitious of winning distinction in serious roles. She then attempted comedy, and Bronson Howard wrote for her "One of our Girls," which was originally produced in the Lyceum theatre, New York, 10 November 1885. This play ran for several months, and proved a great success. A year later, Mr. Howard prepared for her "Met by Chance," which was first played on 11 January 1887, but was not successful.
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