Vida Jameson

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(September 10, 1916 – September 23, 1988)

Vida Jameson (later Cartmill, then Skinner) attended the First Worldcon with her parents, sf writers Mary MacGregor and Malcolm Jameson. She was by then 23 years old, so presumably she wasn’t merely a child in tow.

She served as a WAC during World War II. When she was demobilised, L. Ron Hubbard offered her a job as bookkeeper and business manager of “Madcap Enterprises,” a company that managed Jack Parsons’ businesses. Unfortunately, it collapsed about 1945, when Hubbard decamped with $20K of Parsons’ money, leaving Jameson destitute. Robert and Leslyn Heinlein invited her to stay with them, which she did until 1947.

She wrote some fiction; her story “The 13th Trunk” appeared in the same February 8, 1947, issue of The Saturday Evening Post as Heinlein’s “The Green Hills of Earth,” and was said to have been written while visiting the Heinleins. In Ember 33, Donn Brazier called Jameson’s storyUnknownish.

In a 1946 letter to his friend John Arwine, Heinlein described Vida as a “quiet, shy little grey mouse with great soulful black eyes and a habit of listening.”

She married author Cleve Cartmill, of atom bomb fame, in 1948; they had divorced by 1954. She later married William Dwight Skinner, with whom she had a daughter, Marianna Skinner, in 1955.

FindaGrave entry.

Person 19161988
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