Throughout her long career on stage and screen, Vera Gordon portrayed Jewish mothers in a positive light—with warmth and deep emotion. Gordon began acting at age eleven in Russia and married Nathan A. Gordon, director of the Ostoffersk Acting Company, in 1904 before immigrating to the US in 1905. Once there, Vera Gordon’s career stalled, both from her lack of English and her refusal to join the Yiddish Theater Union. She performed in small venues for several years before moving to England in 1916, where she performed both in vaudeville and mainstream theater. Having rebuilt her career overseas, she made her American film debut in Humoresque in 1920 to rave reviews, playing a mother struggling to raise a family on the Lower East Side. For the next thirty years, she averaged a film a year while continuing to perform on stage, regularly cast as a Jewish mother both in movies and in plays. Her last film, in 1946, was Abie’s Irish Rose.
How to cite this page
Jewish Women's Archive. "Vera Gordon." (Viewed on March 4, 2021) <https://jwa.org/people/gordon-vera>.