Wednesday, November 22, 2006

Bobby "Uke" Henshaw Kin Stops By

I received a nice email today from Alan Gordon:

Greetings, Gary,

I googled "Uke Henshaw" today and found your interesting article. The reason I googled it is because my father-in-law is Robert K. Henshaw, son of "Uke," which would appear to be an unknown fact in most of the Ukulele world.

Uke was married to Doris Harding (later remarried to Engstrom), and Robert was born in Hoboken, NJ, in 1935 while Uke was touring there. Doris was also a singer, and apparently she and her sister were the featured voices in the first state-to-state radio transmission... but that's another story.

Uke was an "estranged" father, so I don't know many details (this is why I googled). When Robert was about 5, 6, or 7, they took Uke to the docks for a ship he was taking to Australia. Unbeknownst to him, that was his parents splitting up, and he saw him sparsely later in life.

I've talked to my wife about it, and she remembers him visiting a couple times when she was younger (he died when she was 13). I have NOT talked to Robert about it, yet (I sent him a link to your page), so I'm not sure how he would feel about the info being a part of Ukulele history, but I wanted to see what was out there... and let you know that there could be more ot the story.

I know he has a collection pictures signed by the likes of Bob Hope and Bela Lugosi that are signed "To Uke..." etc. He also has more pictures of him, and a big picture of a marquee signed by Uke, himself. Robert is the spitting image of Uke, too, so there's no mistaking it.

Thanks for your time, and I look forward to seeing Robert's reaction to his dad being on different internet sites. If you have any more info to offer from your perspective, or would like to know more things from this perspective, just let us know.

Have a good Thanksgiving.

Alan Gordon
Fullerton, CA
If any of you Uke Henshaw Historians out there have any info that you'd like to share with Alan, drop me an email and I'll put you in touch!

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