• Entry type: Person
  • Entry ID: AWE3706

Kelly, Ethel Knight

(1875 – 1949)
  • Born 28 January, 1875, St John New Brunswick Canada
  • Died 22 September, 1949, Darlinghurst Sydney New South Wales Australia
  • Occupation Actor, Author


Ethel Kelly graced the stage at St John in Canada in 1893, to great acclaim. She was married young, but widowed shortly afterward, and used her maiden name in subsequent acting work in the United States. She arrived in Sydney in 1903, and, after touring with a production of Are You a Mason?, married metal merchant Thomas Herbert Kelly. An energetic woman, Ethel Kelly organised fancy-dress balls, acted in matinee productions to raise money for hospitals, wrote her own plays, took on work as a journalist for Smith’s Weekly (she conducted the woman’s page from 1922-23), and wrote two novels – Why the Sphinx Smiles (1925) and Zara (1927) – and a memoir, Twelve Milestones (1929).

Published resources