World Library  
Flag as Inappropriate
Email this Article

Philip Loeb

Article Id: WHEBN0002129601
Reproduction Date:

Title: Philip Loeb  
Author: World Heritage Encyclopedia
Language: English
Subject: The Michelangelo, Hollywood blacklist, McCarthyism, List of suicides, 1955
Publisher: World Heritage Encyclopedia

Philip Loeb

Philip Loeb
Philip Loeb
Born (1891-03-28)March 28, 1891
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, United States
Died September 1, 1955(1955-09-01) (aged 64)
New York, New York, United States
Spouse(s) Jeanne La Gue

Philip Loeb (March 28, 1891 – September 1, 1955), was an American stage, film, and television actor. He was blacklisted under McCarthyism and committed suicide in response.


Loeb as Jake Goldberg on the CBS television show, The Goldbergs, in 1949.

Born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, Loeb first performed in a high school production of Lady Gregory's The Workhouse Ward. He served in the Army, then worked as stage manager of The Green Goddess. His stage career gained strength in the early 1920s when he became associated with the newly formed Theatre Guild in New York City. He worked in a number of plays throughout the decade. His stage work lessened in the 1930s, while he worked with Actors' Equity Association. (It is his work with Equity that is thought to have prompted the charges of Communist leanings.)[1]

In 1948, Loeb portrayed the role of Jake Goldberg on Broadway in Gertrude Berg's play Me and Molly which was based on Berg's long-running radio show The Goldbergs. After the play, he reprised the role on the television adaptation of The Goldbergs on CBS. Loeb became a viewer favorite as the sometimes exasperated but always loving husband Jake to Berg's sometimes meddlesome but always bighearted Molly Goldberg, and it looked as though he would become a television fixture.


In June 1950, Red Channels: The Report of Communist Influence in Radio and Television, named Loeb as a Communist. Loeb denied being a Communist, but the sponsors of The Goldbergs, General Foods, insisted that he be dropped from the show's cast due to his "controversiality".[2] Berg (who had created the show and owned it on both radio and television) refused to fire Loeb, but Loeb soon resigned, accepting a settlement which was estimated at $40,000.[3] Loeb's last acting job was in the 1952 Broadway production of Time Out For Ginger and its subsequent Chicago production in 1954.[4]


In his memoirs, Inside Out, blacklisted screenwriter Walter Bernstein describes Loeb as being disconsolate and depressed as a result of the blacklisting. Loeb was the sole support of a mentally disturbed son, and was burdened with money worries. Bernstein was part of a circle of friends including Zero Mostel, and said "I never saw Loeb smile, even when Zero was at his hilarious best."[5]

The following year Loeb committed suicide by taking an overdose of sleeping pills in the Taft Hotel in midtown New York City on September 1, 1955. No note was found.[1] Loeb was buried in Mount Sinai Cemetery in his native Philadelphia.


Loeb's suicide was reflected in the character Hecky Brown, played by his real-life friend Zero Mostel (himself a blacklisted performer), in Martin Ritt's 1976 film examining the Hollywood blacklist, The Front (also starring Woody Allen). The screenplay of the movie was written by another friend from that era, Walter Bernstein.

Loeb's case is also noted in the Philip Roth novel, I Married a Communist.

The American Academy of Dramatic Arts—where Loeb was an instructor—awards an annual scholarship in his memory. Equity briefly issued the Philip Loeb Humanitarian Award.


  1. ^ Actor Is Dropped From Video Cast, The New York Times, January 8, 1952 link
  2. ^ "Ousted Video Player Gets 'Goldberg' Fee", The New York Times, January 25, 1952 link
  3. ^ Image of Playbill for Chicago show available on Steve McQueen fan site
  4. ^ Inside Out: A Memoir of the Blacklist, by Walter Bernstein, Alfred A. Knopf, 1996, p. 185

External links

This article was sourced from Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License; additional terms may apply. World Heritage Encyclopedia content is assembled from numerous content providers, Open Access Publishing, and in compliance with The Fair Access to Science and Technology Research Act (FASTR), Wikimedia Foundation, Inc., Public Library of Science, The Encyclopedia of Life, Open Book Publishers (OBP), PubMed, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Center for Biotechnology Information, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health (NIH), U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, and, which sources content from all federal, state, local, tribal, and territorial government publication portals (.gov, .mil, .edu). Funding for and content contributors is made possible from the U.S. Congress, E-Government Act of 2002.
Crowd sourced content that is contributed to World Heritage Encyclopedia is peer reviewed and edited by our editorial staff to ensure quality scholarly research articles.
By using this site, you agree to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy. World Heritage Encyclopedia™ is a registered trademark of the World Public Library Association, a non-profit organization.

Copyright © World Library Foundation. All rights reserved. eBooks from Hawaii eBook Library are sponsored by the World Library Foundation,
a 501c(4) Member's Support Non-Profit Organization, and is NOT affiliated with any governmental agency or department.