Sixteen-year-old Ethel Lytle
was in the chorus of Mr. Bluebeard.
Information about her is skimpy and disappears after
1921. Possibly Lytle was a stage name.
Ethel's mother worked in
costumes and traveled with the theater company.
When the cast was on route from Chicago back to New
York and between trains in Pittsburgh, a newspaper
reporter interviewed Ethel. She said she was
on the fifth floor of the dressing rooms when the
fire broke out, her mother on the stage floor.
Her mother went up to the fifth floor to alert her
and Edith fled with other dancers, all of them barefoot and
clad in ballet costumes.
At age nine Ethel Lytle (1888-) sold
enough newspaper subscriptions to win a bicycle.
The Lytle's lived in Allegheny, Pennsylvania,
later moving to New York City to advance Ethel's
At age thirteen she became a chorus girl.
At age fifteen she performed at the Pan-American
Exposition in the "Trip to the Moon" exhibit.
At age sixteen she danced in
Mr. Bluebeard and survived
the Iroquois Theater fire, along with her mother.
The Pittsburgh newspaper reported that Ethel was
one of the
aerial dancers but that conflicts
with other information. Elsewhere the
aerialist dancers were said to be from Europe.
Ethel's name was not a member of the Pony Ballet
dancers so she might have been in the chorus and
training to become an aerialist. Her
mother, Mrs. L. J. Lytle (maiden name Moore),
traveled with the company and helped with Pony Ballet costumes.
At age twenty her mother prevented
Ethel from marrying Frank Perley, an accountant
for a theater producer, by her
mother, who did not want her to marry someone in the
At age twenty-five she performed in her fifth, and
perhaps last, Broadway play.
At age twenty-six she performed
at Churchill's Cabaret in New York City.
At age twenty-nine she performed
as a vaudeville comedienne with Gus Shy's
Passing Parade Musical Comedy Company.
At age thirty-three she became engaged to Frank Perley,
manager of East is West.
There were two men named
Frank Perley in the entertainment industry.
Perley (using a middle initial, "L") was a well
known producer and theater manager. He was a London native who
began his career in the circus industry, later
switching to acting and talent management, including
Nielsen, and theater management, including the
Knickerbocker in NYC. His brother,
Herman Perlet, directed musical comedies.
Perley (without the middle initial L.) Ethel
Lytle's fiancé, entered the industry as a
performer and moved into management of traveling
Margaret Buehrmann and
Annie Jones and Warner Saville
Illinois state senator
Albert Clark helped triage Iroquois Theater victims
Eger, Bloom and Reiss
families lost 5 to Iroquois
If you have additional
info about an Iroquois victim, or find an error, I would like to
hear from you. Chaos and communication limitations of 1903
produced many errors I'm striving to correct and welcome all the help I can get. Space is provided at the
bottom of stories for comments, or