Born On This Day ~ March 22 ~ Chico Marx ~ Oldest sibling of the famous American family comedy act, the Marx Brothers.

Born: March 22, 1887 (New York City, New York)
Died: October 11, 1961 (Hollywood, California)

Famous For/Known For:
Oldest sibling of the famous American family comedy act, the Marx Brothers.

A Little About Chico Marx:
Born Leonard Marx to Jewish immigrants Sam “Frenchie” and Minnie (Schoenberg) Marx.

Obtained the nickname of Chico from the slang word Chicko, which means a man who loves women.

From an early age Chico was a chronic gambler, losing money often in local crap games or poker games. This became a lifelong addiction.

Chico was the only one of his siblings to graduate the 6th grade.

In 1914 he joined his brothers, Adolph aka Harpo, Julius aka Groucho, Milton aka Gummo and Herbert aka Zeppo and soon they became known as the Marx Brothers.

In 1917 Chico was the first of the brothers to marry, taking Betty Karp to be his bride. It’s rumored that Marx cheated on his wife during the honeymoon.  The couple had a daughter, Maxine.

The Marx Brothers performed in comedy vaudeville acts, Broadway shows and movies such as The CocoanutsAnimal CrackersNight At The Opera and A Day At The Races. 

While his brothers lived comfortably on the millions they had made, Chico struggled to make ends meet due to his gambling addiction.

In 1980 Marx’s daughter, Maxine published a book about her father, Growing Up With Chico.

Chico Marx died from arteriosclerosis at the age of 74.

Books About/Written By Chico Marx:

Growing Up With Chico

Groucho, Harpo, Chico and Sometimes Zeppo: A History of the Marx Brothers and a Satire on the Rest of the World

The Marx Bros. Scrapbook

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