1. Tracy first discovered his talent for acting while attending Ripon College, and he later received a scholarship for the American Academy of Dramatic Arts.
2. He spent seven years in the theatre, working in a succession of stock companies and intermittently on Broadway.
3. After a successful film debut in Up the River, Tracy was signed to a contract with Fox Film Corporation.
4. His five years with Fox were unremarkable, and he remained largely unknown to audiences after 25 films.
5. His career flourished with a series of hit films, and in 1937 and 1938 he won consecutive Oscars for Captains Courageous and Boys Town.
6. In 1942 he appeared with Katharine Hepburn in Woman of the Year, beginning a popular partnership that produced nine movies over 25 years.
7. Tracy left MGM in 1955 and continued to work regularly as a freelance star, despite an increasing weariness as he aged.
8. Tracy became estranged from his wife in the 1930s, but never divorced, conducting a long-term relationship with Katharine Hepburn in private.
9. Towards the end of his life, Tracy worked almost exclusively for director Stanley Kramer.
10. He was the second son of Caroline Brown , a truck salesman.
11. His mother was a Presbyterian from a wealthy Midwestern family, and his father was of Irish Catholic background.
12. With little care for his studies and “itching for a chance to go and see some excitement”, Tracy enlisted in the United States Navy when he turned 18.
13. He entered Ripon in February 1921, declaring his intention to major in medicine.
14. He was offered a scholarship to attend the school after performing a scene from one of his earlier roles.
15. Immediately following graduation, Tracy joined a new stock company based in White Plains, New York where he was given periphery roles. In November 1923 he landed a small part on Broadway in the comedy A Royal Fandango, starring Ethel Barrymore.
16. Reviews for the show were poor and it closed after 25 performances; Tracy later said of the failure, “My ego took an awful beating.”