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Saint James Cemetery Kenosha, Kenosha County, Wisconsin, USA
Genevieve Augustine (1908 - June 1, 1937) was an art student and teacher who committed suicide at 29 years old at the house of Gypsy Rose Lee in Upstate New York. It has been suggested she was the lover of Lee's mother, Rose.
Born in Kenosha, Genevieve Augustine was the daughter of Charles O. Augustine, who lived at 7428 22nd Avenue and then 1805 Fifty-fourth street, Kenosha. Educated in Kenosha, first at the St. Clara's Academy (a boarding school run by nuns in Sinsinawa, Wisconsin) and then the Kenosha High School, she had won wide recognition for her art work and was awarded a scholarship to carry on her studies. She completed her art course at the Chicago Art Institute (she was given the Friday Club scholarship for excellence in composition and the Frederick Magnus Brand Memorial prize; she was also elected president of the Art Students' League for 1932) before temporarily moving to Chattanooga.
The Academy of Fine Arts, a school of art, was organized in Chattanooga with the purpose of Instructing classes in a varied curriculum of arts, at prices which could be met by every one with talent and a real desire to work. The faculty members were: Genevieve Augustine, Chicago; Guiliano de Stefano, Rome, Italy; C. B. Hatfield, Chattanooga; Malcolm Chisholm, Chattanooga, and Margaret Severance, in whose Fort Wood residence the school was housed. Augustine, fresh from the Art institute, of Chicago, came with excellent recommendations and references and was said to be thoroughly capable and efficient in all her work and up to date in her method of teaching. She devoted her entire time to the school. Her classes were history of art, anatomy and still life.
Augustine taught art classes in New York, at the Irving Textile High School, while continuing her studies. She shared an apartment with Kay Ray, designer of women's clothing and hats. On New Year's Day 1937, she first attempt suicide, was hospitalized and probably for this reason lost her teaching job. She then went to live with Rose Thompson Hovick, Gypsy Rose Lee's mother, acting as her chauffeur.
Genevieve Augustine was found dead with a bullet wound in her head at the Highland Mills, NY, home of Gypsy Rose Lee, where she had been staying for the past 7 weeks. Other than Rose, at the house were guests Marie V. Payne, famed to be the only woman taxi driver in New York; Juanita Lopez, a dancer; Pearl Brooks, a former show girl; Mme Martha Baccardi, former wife of Jose Baccardi. Lee was not in the home at the time, but in California.
The Coroner Edward Garrison said Augustine shot herself in the temple with a rifle after returning from a hike.
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