Frances grew up in West Seattle. Her address was 2636 47th St. SW. Her parents divorced when she was a teenager. Her mild-mannered attorney father proved no match for her bossy, social activist mother.
Frances first became known as “The bad girl of West Seattle” when her atheistic essay won a contest from Scholastic Magazine.
Her piece, “God Dies” made headlines (“Seattle Girl Denies God And Wins Prize”) and the 18-year old Frances learned fast that she would have to plan an escape from her provincial surroundings. She got this chance as a UW drama student when she won a 1935 trip to Russia. When her ship returned to New York, she cashed in the return bus ticket to Seattle and sought lodging and stage work in Manhattan. (I've always admired people who follow their dreams no matter what) Within weeks she was discovered by a talent scout and offered a 7-year contract with Paramount Studios. She was 22 years old. California was a nice change from rainy Seattle and she tried her best to follow studio orders.
|Frances in 1938|
|Farmer Home in West Seattle|
|At Police Station|
|The remains of Western State today.|
|Doctors performing a lobotomy|
|Hosting Frances Farmer Presents|
Contrary to popular belief, Frances Cobain was not named after Frances Farmer. She was named after Frances McKee of the Scottish Alternative band, The Vaselines. Just sayin'.