The community publication Current in Fishers recently published an article by John Cinnamon about Elaine’s Salon and the movie script about Elaine Townsend – the salon’s namesake – set to be written by Pamala L. Hall.
The article focuses on the discovery by Robin DeTrude, owner of Elaine’s Salon in Fishers, that her great aunt (her paternal grandmother’s sister) led the kind of life that you read about in People magazine – or see in the movies.
Based on research conducted by Robin and her husband Kevin, it became clear that Robin’s great aunt, who changed her name from Margaret Helgerson to Elaine Townsend, was not only a successful entrepreneur in the post-Pearl Harbor era in Hawaii and the pre-Revolution era in Cuba, but she may also have been a double-agent for both the U.S. and Cuban governments. As the operator of a casino in Havana during the 1940’s, Townsend rubbed shoulders with the famous and infamous alike at very high levels.
The DeTrudes also discovered that a Hollywood movie based on Townsend’s life actually began production in the late 40s, but the project was suddenly halted for an unknown reason. They hope to resurrect that project with Ms. Hall’s new script treatment.
The Current in Fishers article is yet another example of the intrigue that still surrounds the mysterious life of Elaine Townsend. Stay tuned for the next chapter.