Virginia Katherine McMath was born on July 16, 1911 in Independence, Missouri. Her nickname, “Ginger,” originated from her younger cousin Helen who pronounced “Virginia” as “Ginja.” Family and friends continued to call her this, and later theatre men who understood the name to be “Ginger” billed her as such on their marquees.
Did You Know?
-Ginger’s grandmother on her mother’s side was a relation of George Washington.
-She was given the name “Ginger” by her little cousin who couldn’t pronounce “Virginia” correctly.
-She did not drink: the bar at her house was stocked with ice-cream sodas.
-Ginger brought her cousin Helen Brown to Hollywood, renamed her Phyllis Fraser, and guided her through a few films.
-Miss Rogers was an accomplished artist and excelled at both sculpting and painting, but could never bring herself to sell any of her work.
-She enjoyed tennis, golf, swimming and skeet shooting and held several tennis cups and some high-card records at skeet.
-The first Rogers and Astaire teaming, ‘Flying Down To Rio’, was her twentieth film appearance and only Fred’s second.
-Ginger turned down lead roles in To Each His Own and The Heiress, both roles were made famous by Olivia de Havilland.