On This Day in Jewish History: June 19th, 1897

Moses Harry Horowitz, aka Moe Howard, actor and comedian best known as the ring-leader of “The Three Stooges” was born in Brooklyn New York. . .

Howard’s first licks in show-business came in 1914 when he joined a minstrel show troupe on a showboat on the Missisippi River. This was followed by joining Ted Healy in a vaudeville routine in 1921. Two years later, Howard saw his brother Shemp in the audience one night and shouted at him from the stage. Shemp heckled Moe in return, leading to humorous back and forth and Healy’s immediate hiring of Shemp, giving him a place in the act. . .

It was during rehearsals for A Night in Venice in early 1929 that Moe, Shemp and Larry Fine formed their trio. Afterwards, they went on tour. Initially as “Ted Healy and His Racketeers” and subsequently as “Ted Healy and His Stooges”. The four stayed together for another two years. . .

After Shemp parted ways with the group in the summer of 1932, Moe offered his younger brother, Jerry (Curly), the opportunity replace him. While Healy was not initially taken by the proposition, he was swayed by Jerry’s eagerness to join which included him running on stage in the middle of his routine. . .

Healy left in 1934. What started out as his Stooges became “The Three Stooges.” They signed a contract with Columbia Pictures, their home for 23 years where they would make some 190 comedy shorts. Moe took on Healy’s role as the leader and excelled. Shemp came back after Curly suffered a stroke in 1946, on the condition that he would leave once Curly had recovered. But he never did, despite being healthy enough to have a cameo in Hold That Lion! (1947)—the only film to feature all three brothers.


Today we remember and celebrate the birthday of this comedic genius.


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