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Shields, Ella [real name Ella Catherine Buscher] (1879–1952), music-hall performer and male impersonator, was born on 26 September 1879 in the Canton district of Baltimore, Maryland, USA, the daughter of Timothy Edward Buscher (d. in or before 1906), victualler; details of her mother, who was of Irish descent, are unknown. Precisely when and why she adopted the performing name ...

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Ella Shields (1879–1952) by unknown photographer, c.1910 © Getty Images