Sara Viola Warmbrodt
August 21, 1895
Arkansas City, Kansas, U.S.
|Died||September 11, 1994 (aged 99)|
Palm Springs, California, U.S.
|Resting place||Westwood Village Memorial Park Cemetery, California, U.S.|
|Known for||Being Elizabeth Taylor's mother|
(m. 1926; died 1968)
|Children||Howard Taylor (1929-2020)|
Elizabeth Taylor (1932–2011)
Life and career
Sothern was born Sara Viola Warmbrodt in Arkansas City, Kansas, the daughter of Elizabeth Ann (née Wilson; February 10, 1864 – February 7, 1932) and Samuel Sylvester Warmbrodt (October 8, 1861 – January 6, 1948). Her paternal grandfather, Samuel Warmbrodt, was from Switzerland.
Sothern was a seasoned actress by the time she made her Broadway debut in The Dagger (1925), followed by Arabesque and Fool's Bells that same year. She next appeared in Mama Loves Papa (1926). During this time, she acted in plays across the U.S., including the theatre venues of downtown Los Angeles. She married art dealer Francis Lenn Taylor in 1926 in New York City. They were the parents of Howard Taylor (27 June 1929 – 31 August 2020) and the movie star Elizabeth Taylor (1932-2011).
After marrying, Sothern retired from the stage and never acted again. After living in England several years, where her children were born, they returned to the United States. Living in Los Angeles, California, she devoted herself to her family and the movie career of her daughter. Sothern died at age 99 in Palm Springs, California. She is interred in Westwood Village Memorial Park, Los Angeles.