- Lynn Wolf Gentzler
Swarthout, Gladys (25 December 1904?–07 July 1969), contralto, was born in Deepwater, Missouri, the daughter of Frank Leslie Swarthout, a janitor, and Ruth Wonser, a dressmaker. The family moved to Kansas City, Missouri, during Swarthout’s early childhood. At age thirteen she became the alto soloist in a Kansas City church choir. Her talent attracted the notice of a wealthy family who financed her studies at the Bush Conservatory of Music in Chicago, beginning in 1920. During her three years at Bush, Swarthout sang in area church choirs and undertook a successful midwestern concert tour with her older sister Roma. By interspersing studies and tours, Swarthout was able to repay her financial backers....