Mary Miles Minter: Waving the Tomahawk and Dancing the War Dance


As Told By


To Send Bullets to Huns.

I guess I’m a bit emotional or temperamental on this subject of Liberty Bonds and my reasons for buying them, and generally get worked up mightily over it. When it comes to any subject touching upon the protection of American or American ideals or dealing with the atrocities of the Germans I just can’t help waving the tomahawk and dancing the war dance a few measures.

I buy Liberty Bonds because the government won’t sell me a cannon and let me take it across to Germany and use it myself on those nasty baby-killers. If they’d let me do that, I wouldn’t buy a Liberty Bond because a Liberty Bond means that I’ll get my money back some day with interest on it and the way I fell about it, I don’t want anything back that I can send to the Germans! They’re welcome to all I’ve got in the shape of shells and bullets, but since a girl is not allowed to do this then I must do the next best thing and make it possible for someone else to take the cannon and the bullets over there.

Honestly, my reason for buying every bond I can stagger under is not because they are the best investments in the world, because they have all the safety of hte greatest security behind them or because they pay good interest and are free from most forms of taxation (which is reason enough, goodness knows, for the fellow who squeezes the dollar) but I buy them because I have a mother and a sister and a grandmother; I buy them because I know a little year-old baby that lives next door; I buy them because I have a sw–(but that’s nobody’s business) and everytime I look at them I say, “Just because your’re mine and I love you doesn’t make you  any different before God from the mothers and sister and grandmothers and babies and –” you know, everything that lived in Belgium and France when the war started, and every time I look into their eyes, I can imagine that it wasn’t Belgium at all that was raided, but America, and I can see those blood-soaked Germans doing to my people what they did to others and I — but there, there, I’m getting excited. All the same, I feel that if it hadn’t been for those poor people who were sacrificed it might have been my own people — that even yet if the Germans aren’t wiped off the face of the earth there is still a chance of its being my people — my people — the people I know and love and live with, and I see red!

I’m a baseball fan. Aren’t you? Ever since I was knee high to a duck and ran away from home and played with the boys on the vacant lots I have loved baseball. We used to buy bats for a quarter each — not very good bats — but good enough. I remember I had a sweetheart then who was the best batter inthe lot. I bought him a bat — he hit the ball with it so hard that it broke my nice shiny red club and I cried but he knocked the ball so far we made four home-runs in a row and I was so happy I kissed him even while I cried over the bat. I often wish I could buy baseball bats instead of bonds and hit the Germans with them so hard I’d break every bat over their heads and drive them clear off the lot. Somebody told me that every quarter now-a-days paid for five bullets. That’s the real reason I buy bonds.

The Pittsburgh Press – Oct 3, 1918

City of Orange, CA (Image from

From the City of Orange website:

At the time of World War I, Orange residents supported the war effort with many Liberty Bond rallies. One of the bond parades at the Plaza was filmed and featured the movie star Mary Miles Minter, the war tank “Victory” and Company 76. A Peace Parade and Program for returning soldiers and sailors was held on Christmas Day 1918 in the Plaza.

Taylor and Minter (Image from

Cold Case Crimes Los Angeles has an interesting piece regarding the murder of William Desmond Taylor.  Evidently, Mary Miles Minter had  a relationship with him at one time. You can read  the theories of “who done it”  at this LINK.

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