Bring back some good or bad memories


May 29, 2023

Margaret Gibb Gets a Kiss From Her Betrothed, While Her Conjoined Sister Mary Looks on Awkwardly, Ca. 1940s

Siamese twin Margaret Gibb become engaged in 1929 to Carlos Daniel Josefe of Mexico City, whom she met while appearing in New Orleans. They applied for a marriage license, but no wedding ever occurred. The sisters continued to perform into the 1930s, traveling with the Barnum and Cole Brothers Circuses as “America’s Siamese Twins”, appearing in Paris, Germany, and Switzerland and across the United States. In 1942, they retired from the stage and returned to Holyoke.

Margaret and Mary Gibb were born in Holyoke, Massachussetts on May 20, 1912. They had one younger sister, Dorothy. Their parents refused separation for the twins on two different occasions during their early childhood. Although Mary and Margaret would enter the showbusiness circuit, dancing and playing piano, they never did gain the same notoriety as the glamorous Hilton sisters.

The Gibbs raised the girls at home, in relative seclusion, and brought in private tutors to educate them. At the age of 14, the sisters struck out on their own, moving to New York City to pursue a vaudeville career. There was much speculation in the press about their separation on several occasion, when Mary was sick of influenza and later, in 1928 when Margaret declared to have a suitor. Dr. Francis P. Weston, a prominent surgeon, was supposed to operate. Everything was canceled.

For the remainder of the decade and on into the 1930s, the Gibb twins remained in the public eye as vaudeville and circus stars. They traveled with the Barnum and Cole Brothers Circuses as, appearing in Paris, Germany and Switzerland as well as all over the United States.

In 1942 they returned to Holyoke and opened the Mary-Margaret Gift Shoppe, selling cards, novelties, vases and baby clothes they had made. The shop stayed in business until 1949 when the twins retired from public life altogether. After this they were rarely seen except when traveling to and from church. Their main interests were said to be knitting and watching television.

In 1966 it was discovered that Margaret had cancer in her bladder, which, over the next year, spread to her lungs; however, the sisters still adamantly refused separation. On August 29, 1967, Margaret died, and Mary died two minutes later.


Post a Comment



Browse by Decades

Popular Posts


09 10