|Allen Driver Stafford
|Allen Driver Stafford was Dorothy's first husband, and
according to one magazine article, her high school sweetheart.
They were married in Birmingham Alabama by Rev. J.R.
Partridge on Tuesday evening November 9, 1920.
Afterwards they went to New Orleans for their honeymoon.
|Al was 21 and Dorothy was 18 at the time of their marriage according to their marriage license. That would
make her birthday April 26, 1902. After returning from their honeymoon they settled in an apartment in
Birmingham. Al worked his way up to management, treasurer and owner of the family business - The White
Swan Laundry in Birmingham.
|A 1931 film magazine story tells how in time the couple had to move in with
Al's mother who was dependant on her son for care. The stress of living
with a dependant mother-in-law was too much and Dorothy needed Al to
choose who his priority was. Whether this version is true or not remains to
be seen since Al's father passed away in 1934.
This version of the break-up of Dorothy's first marriage was printed after
her very public second marriage. The story is in stark contrast to her
February 1924 divorce decree, according to which, she was in fear of her
'life and health'.
|No mention of Al was ever made until his existence was revealed when
Dorothy filled out a marriage license application to marry William Boyd
in 1930. The press got hold of that marriage license but Dorothy refused
to name her first husband and someone wrote "Do Not Publish" on the
official copy of her first marriage license so it would not be released to
|On November 12, 1926 Al married Margaret Johns and they had a son
named Edwin who was born August 17, 1927. In 1928 Margaret gave
birth to twins who sadly died at birth.
Al and Edwin were in business together in Houston, Texas when Al
passed away on April 6, 1952. On the right is his obituary that tells a little
more about his life but it fails to mention that he graduated the
University of Alabama in 1921, had been active as secretary to his former
fraternity Phi Gamma Delta and was a 2nd Lieutenant while in the
|Many thanks to Warren Reed for letting my use his pictures of the White Swan Laundry.
Check out his wonderful website with over 500 vintage postcards from Birmingham Alabama.
|What ever became of the White Swan Building seen in the postcard above?
Here are two 2007 photos, the building now houses a window company called
J. F. Day Company. The picture below shows the interesting brickwork.