J. Edgar & Me

December 27, 2011


Donna and I attended the J. Edgar movie on opening day.  We both thought the movie was very well done. 

I was born in Washington in 1932 and lived here all my life except for four years in college at the University of Utah and two years in the U.S. Navy.  I grew up hearing about J. Edgar Hoover and the G. Men.

In 1939, my dad bought his first Cadillac and as a little boy I would travel with him to the Cadillac dealer to have his car serviced.  I remember seeing Hoover’s limousine in the garage.  While I looked inside, I saw machine guns fastened to the back of the front seat – very cool view for a six-year-old. 

Dad knew Hoover somewhat, but was a good friend of Sam Cowley with whom we attended church.  Sam was the FBI agent who was killed in a shoot-out with Baby Face Nelsen, a notorious gangster in the 30’s.  Cowley was able to kill Baby Face in the shoot out.  When my dad passed away, there was a letter in his old file from Hoover, who wrote my dad that Sam Cowley was the bravest man he ever met. FBI director J Edgar Hoover

Hoover and our family shared the same doctor and I was able to meet him one day in the doctor’s office.  I was in my 30’s and J. Edgar was very friendly and warm to this young man.

When we assumed the management of the Mayflower hotel in Washington, the staff was anxious to show me the booth where J. Edgar Hoover had lunch every day when he was in town.

Throughout my young life in Washington, J. Edgar Hoover was a powerful force.  Many Presidents came and went, but Hoover stayed on and seemed to be invincible and able to survive each and every new President.  He was quite a man. 

Leave a comment on J. Edgar or any movie that you recommend seeing. 

I’m Bill Marriott and thanks for helping me keep Marriott on the move.

Listen to blog J. Edgar


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I can't wait to see Hoover now that you've mentioned it. The John Adams (HBO) miniseries on Blue Ray is fantastic. Have you seen it?
Paul Giamatti was great as Adams. There is a sequence near the end when Quincy is walking with to his ailing father near the end of his life and John Sr. falls to his knees and picks a flower, and sees something otherworldly in that flower, as though his creator was inviting him home after what must have been an exhausting life of service to his country.
Two DVDs worthy of owning: John Adams (series) and Oh Brother Where Art Thou. Oh Brother.. is an Americanized Homer’s Odyssey. Its sound track earned a Grammy. It's a comedy but it's pure genious. I rent stuff, but I own these.

I too am a Washington native, born only 8 years after you. Although I never got to meet J.Edgar or see his limo, one of my fondest memories of growing up in DC in the 1940s was going to the Hot Shoppe at 14th St. and Rhode Island Ave., where I always got the turkey dinner. It cost about $1.50, and my father left a tip in change for the dinner for 3 of us--10% in those days. How times have changed!

Great to see, and hear, you are enjoying your retirement!
This movie sounds like it would be very good, and how cool it is for you to have had such an awesome connection to J. Edgar!

I just recently discovered that selected movie theaters show 'Live from the Metropolitan Opera'! Don't know if you are a fan, but what a wonderful way to see the 'Met' in your home town, with a bucket of popcorn!

While movies and the theater are out of my budget, I hope to return to work with a Marriott property soon! And, I hope that you keep blogging Mr. Marriott!

Great share Mr Marriott! I enjoy time pieces! The last great one - saw was THE KINGS SPEECH!
Thanks again!
PJM las Vegas

You've had an amazing life.

Thanks for your blog! My wife and I saw "The Descendants" over the weekend. I thought it might be a comedy, but it was really about a family coming together after a tragedy. It was one of the better movies I saw in 2011.