A nonprofit publication of the Kentucky Center for Public Service Journalism

Thursday NKY History Hour to explore life of small-town KY girl turned movie star Rosemary Clooney

One of America’s most beloved entertainers, Rosemary Clooney had a warm velvety voice that was instantly recognizable. Born in Maysville, KY, Clooney made her singing debut on the Cincinnati radio station WLW in 1941 at the young age of 13.

Her 57-year show business career included No. 1 hit records such as “Come On-A My House” and “Mambo Italiano.” Her most memorable film was White Christmas, starring alongside popular entertainers, Bing Crosby, Danny Kaye and Norwood, Ohio native Vera-Ellen.

Rosemary Clooney (Photo from BCM)

Since Clooney’s passing in 2002, her Augusta, Kentucky, home has been transformed into the Rosemary Clooney House Museum, dedicated to her life and legacy. Founded by designer and former Miss America 2000 Heather French Henry and her husband and former Lieutenant Governor Steve Henry, the museum includes collections from four of the five movies she made with Paramount Studios: The Stars Are Singing, Red Garters, Here Come the Girls and White Christmas.

Join Heather French Henry, as she shares her relationship with Clooney and her passion to help preserve her critically-acclaimed career during the next virtual NKY History Hour at 6:30 p.m., Wednesday, November 16. Registation and participation to virtual presentation is available online via Zoom.

Information on how to connect to the Zoom session will be sent after registration. The event will also be streamed live on BCM’s Facebook page.

Heather French Henry (Photo from BCM)

Henry grew up in Augusta, with many of the Clooney family members, but became friends with Rosemary during her year of service as Miss America, seeing her often in New York City. She is a graduate of the College of Design, Architecture, Art and Planning at the University of Cincinnati with an undergraduate degree in Fashion Design and a Masters in Design. Many of her family members are from the Tri-state area.

NKY History Hours take place every other Wednesday evening. The sessions are currently free to the public but may become a BCM members-only benefit in the future. To support NKY History Hour and access many other entertaining and thought-provoking programs for free, join BCM at bcmuseum.org.

Irving Berlin’s White Christmas: The Exhibit, is now on display through Jan. 8 with costumes created by legendary designer Edith Head and worn by Kentucky legend Rosemary Clooney, Bing Crosby, Vera-Ellen, Danny Kaye, among other stars. Studio props, sheet music, cast members’ memorabilia, and more will be on display. Learn more at bcmuseum.org/holidays.

Behringer-Crawford Museum

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