Samuel Horwitz
Burial Location Visited
East Los Angeles, California August 2008


Shemp Howard is interred in the same cemetery                          It is a good thing that we asked a worker
as his brother Curly, although Shemp's remains                           where Shemp is interred, otherwise we
are located inside a mausoleum.                                                never would have found him in the giant
                                                                                              maze of crypts.


As is typical at the graves of celebrities,                                      My father reenacting a familiar Three
momentos have been left on the ledge below                              Stooges move, in which a person puts
Shemp's grave.                                                                        his/her hand vertically in front of his/her
                                                                                              face in order to avoid a two-fingered poke
                                                                                              to the eyes.

                                       *** Interesting Facts ***

* The story behind the eldest stooge's bizarre nickname took place during his childhood. His mother had a very strong Litvak accent, and when she called out his name, Sam, it sounded like "Shemp." Thus, people decided to give him the moniker of Shemp.

* Amongst his friends and family, Shemp was known to be a very superstitious person. He feared numerous things, most notably automobiles, due to an accident he was in during his younger days. Shemp was also afraid of dogs, in contrast with his brother Curly who could never get enough of them.

* Many consider Moe, Larry, and Curly the original incarnation of the Three Stooges, with Shemp replacing Curly in 1947. However, Shemp was actually a charter member of the trio, not his youngest sibling. He left the group in 1932 after a longtime feud with Ted Healy, a friend of Moe's who brought the act together. It was after this that Curly joined the act, so he actually replaced Shemp.

* On November 22, 1955, Shemp and a close friend attended a boxing match in Hollywood and then grabbed a taxi to ride home in. Shemp was in a good mood and was telling funny stories as usual. In the middle of one joke, Shemp lit his cigar and suddenly slumped over into his friend's lap. His friend thought that it was part of the joke, but this was no gag. Shemp Howard was dead of a heart attack.

* Following Shemp's death, Columbia Pictures was in a bad spot. They made an agreement to film eight pictures to be released the following year, and at the time of Shemp's death only four were completed. The studio did not have time to hire a new stooge for the act, so they decided to bring Shemp back. Using footage from old short films, Shemp returned to the silver screen. In cases when new footage was absolutely necessary, the studio used an actor named Joe Palma who slightly resembled Shemp. When the camera was rolling, Palma was seen only from the back or side, that way the studio was not blowing their ruse entirely.

Spouse: Gertrude Frank Howard (      -      )

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