May Allison was born on 14 June 1890, in Rising Fawn, Georgia. She was the daughter of Nannie Virginia Wise Allison and John Simon Allison. She had four siblings. In 1914, May Allison made her Broadway debut in Apartment 12-K. She then settled in Hollywood, California. In 1915, May Allison made her film debut as the Wife's Sister in A Fool There Was opposite Theda Bara (29 July 1885 - 13 April 1955). Directed by Frank Powell. The film made Theda Bara a star, but May Allison had to wait until Harold Lockwood (12 April 1887 - 19 October 1918) came by. They were the perfect match and starred in 22 films together. Also in 1915, she starred in The Tragic Circle, The Governor's Lady opposite Theodore Roberts, Grace Wilson in The End of the Road, The Secretary of Frivolous Affairs opposite Harold Lockwood and Carol Holloway, as Martha Hobbs in The House of a Thousand Scandals, The Buzzard's Shadow, Pardoned with Harold Lockwood and Eugenie Forde, The Great Question, Marv Blake in David Harum and Alice Corbett in The Buzzard's Shadow. In 1916, in The Secret Wire, The Man in the Sombrero, Lillo of the Sulu Seas, The Gamble, The Broken Cross, as Rosalind Chalmers in The River of Romance, Diana Wynne in Pidgin Island, The Other Side of the Door opposite Harold Lockwood, Patta Heberton in The Come-Back with Harold Lockwood, Jill Jamison in The Masked Rider, Lady Kitty Bristol in The Marriage of William Ashe, Helen Keating in Life's Blind Alley and Isobel Malvern in Big Tremaine with Harold Lockwood as John Tremaine. In 1917, as Lois de Contrecoeur in The Hidden Children and Ethel Manton in The Promise. Her partner in film, Harold Lockwood died on 19 October 1918. He was buried at Woodlawn Cemetery. In 1918, May Allison appeared as Beatrice Buckley in The Winning of Beatrice, Mildred Vane in The Testing of Mildred Vane, Virginia Houston in The Successful Adventure, Leonore Fielding in Social Hypocrites, Mary in the Return of Mary and Kate Kendall in Her Inspiration. In 1919, Hortense Troutt in The Uplifters, Peggy Ensloe in Peggy Does Her Darndest, Maide Waring in The Island of Intrigue, Helen Corning in In for Thirty Days, Laura Bartlett in Fair and Warmer, Fortuna Donnelly in Castles in the Air and Adrienne Le Blanc in Almost Married. May Allison married Robert Ellis in 1920. He was an actor and writer. In 1920, she starred as Kathleen Rutherford in The Walk-Offs, Mary Manchester in Held in Trust, Lilly Meany in The Dream Cheater and Teddy Hayden in Are All Men Alike? In 1921, Elsie Kirkwood in The Last Card, Nancy Vane in Extravagance and Eleanor Winthrop in Big Game. In 1922, Eva Lee in The Woman Who Fooled Herself. Allison and Ellis were divorced on 5 December 1923. In 1923, she was Mary Ellen Haley in The Broad Road. In 1924, Molly Malloy in Youth for Sale and Claudia Bigelow in Flapper Wives. In 1925, Lael Satori in I Want My Man and Rene Jordan in Wreckage. May Allison married her second husband, James Quirk in 1926. He was the editor of the magazine Photoplay. In 1926, she starred as Belle in Mismates, Corinne in Greater Glory, Clare Pitt in Men of Steel and Elinor Voorhees in The City. In 1927, May Allison appeared in Her Discretion, as Lina Travers Parks in One Increasing Purpose and Grace Robinson in The Telephone Girl, opposite Madge Bellamy and Warner Baxter. In 1927, she retired from acting. Her husband, James Quirk died on 1 August 1932. She then worked in his magazine Photoplay. May Allison married her third husband, Carl Norton Osborne in 1941. Carl Norton Osborne died 4 May 1982. May Allison married her fourth husband, Colonel J.L. Stephenson in 1983. Allison and Stephenson were divorced in 1988. May Allison died of respiratory failure aged 98, on 27 March 1989, in Bratenahl, Ohio. She was interred at the Gates Mills South Cemetery, in Gates Mills, Cuyahoga County, Ohio.
"I love all beautiful things in life, treasure the time I spend with the ones I adore; to travel, to explore, to ease my passion for history and knowledge. I am the one with a big bag, a camera and a notebook - searching for traces from ancient eras. I believe we must learn the past, to understand our time. Centuries changes - not human nature." Ann de Laurén