Science Fair Project Encyclopedia
Sidney Coe Howard, born June 26, 1891 in Oakland, California, United States – died August 23, 1939 in Tyringham, Massachusetts, was a playwright and screenwriter who became the first person to win both a Pulitzer Prize and an Academy Award.
He graduated from the University of California, Berkeley in 1915 and went on to Harvard University to study the art of playwrighting under George Pierce Baker in his renowned "47 workshop." Along with other students of Harvard professor A. Piatt Andrew , Sidney Howard volunteered with Andrew's American Field Service, serving in France and the Balkans during World War I. Gifted with language understanding, after the War, Howard translated a number of literary works from French, Spanish, Hungarian and German.
Beginning in 1921, Howard wrote his first Broadway play. A prolific writer, and a founding member of the Playwrights' Company , he wrote or created more than seventy plays plus he directed and produced a number of works. In 1922 he married actress Claire Ames (1896-1930) with whom he had a daughter, Jennifer Howard . He won the 1925 Pulitzer Prize for Drama for "They Knew What They Wanted" which was was turned into a film three times in 1928, 1930, and 1940 and later was adapted into a Broadway musical titled "The Most Happy Fella. "
Following the unexpected passing of his wife in 1930, Sidney Howard eventually remarried to Polly Damrosch with whom he had three children.
Hired by Samuel Goldwyn at MGM, Howard worked in Hollywood, writing a number of very successful screenplays and in 1932 was nominated for an Academy Award for his adaptation of the Sinclair Lewis novel Arrowsmith, and again in 1936 for Dodsworth. Posthumously, he won the 1939 Academy Award for Writing Adapted Screenplay for Gone with the Wind.
A lover of the quiet rural life, Sidney Howard died while working on his Berkshire County, Massachusetts hobby farm after his tractor rolled over on top of him.
Sidney Howard was buried in the Tyringham Cemetery, in Tyringham, Massachusetts.
In 1950, Howard's daughter Jennifer (1925-1993) married Samuel Goldwyn, Jr. with whom she had four children including actor Tony Goldwyn and studio executive, John Goldwyn .
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