People: Arthur Byron
Arthur Byron (1872-1943)
Among the many acting families that spent their summers at the Jersey Shore were the Byrons. Oliver and Kate Byron were immensely talented and beloved entertainers who were at their best when performing together. The couple raised their son, Arthur, at their home in Long Branch. Eventually, Arthur became a successful actor in his own right, making a name for himself on stage and then on screen, in the early days of the movie business.
Following in the family tradition, Arthur and his wife, Kathryn, often performed together. In 1932, they co-starred with Boris Karloff in The Mummy. By then, Arthur and Kathryn had moved from Long Branch to Highland Beach. They gloried to the sunrise over the ocean each morning, and watched the sun set behind the Twin Lights every evening.
The Byrons brought with them the re-white-and-blue 8x12 structure known as the Garfield Hut, which the family constructed out of railroad ties that had been laid in 1881 for the special train used to take wounded President Garfield to a private home in Long Branch, where he later died. The Byrons' Highland Beach house is long gone, but the Garfield Hut has been preserved at the Church of the Presidents in Elberon.
In 1913, Arthur Byron was among the influential performers who formed Actor's Equity. He served as its president in the 1930s.