Vivian Shirley climbing the Tacony-Palmyra Bridge (under construction)

Historical Images of Philadelphia Philadelphiana
Vivian Shirley climbing the Tacony-Palmyra Bridge (under construction)

Item Info

Item No: pdcp01074
Title: Vivian Shirley climbing the Tacony-Palmyra Bridge (under construction)
Additional Title: "Stunt reporter" for the Evening Public Ledger
Creation Date: 6/28/1929
Historic Street Address: 1300 NJ-73, Palmyra, NJ
Historic Street Address: PA Route 73-NJ Route 73
Media Type: Photographic Prints
Source: Print and Picture Collection

Born Elizabeth Malcolm, in 1898, in Lynchburg, VA, this intrepid “stunt reporter” went by the name of Vivian Shirley, when reporting for Philadelphia’s Evening Public Ledger, from the late-1920s until 1933.  Her student degrees from Longwood University (Farmville, VA) and the University of South Carolina prepared her for an academic and literary career, and she did teach and publish poetry and other writings; but she became popular for her adventurous reporting in the Ledger, willing to try anything to make a story interesting.  This 1929 photograph in the Ledger shows Shirley climbing up the Tacony-Palmyra Bridge, still under construction. 

It should be noted that in 1932, Shirley’s stunts were curtailed by the Ledger, due to concerns that they endangered the paper’s insurance.  Shortly thereafter, in 1933, she married her editor, Harry Nason.  They moved to New York, where he became an editor for the New York Post, and she did freelance reporting and radio spots for a decade or so.  Shirley died in 1987, at the age of 89, her name appearing in an obituary as Vivian Hinternhoff.

Geocode Latitude: Geocode Longitude:-75.041963
Geocode Latitude:40.010737

Creator Name: Evening Public Ledger - Photographer