Think You know Who the Rat Pack Was? How about Bogart?
Okay, you have heard the name, "Rat Pack" for years and instantly thought of Frank Sinatra, Dean Martin, Sammy Davis, Jr., Joey Bishop and Peter Lawford back in the 1960s. Wrong. Sinatra hated the term "Rat Pack" and referred to his group as "The Clan". Norman Fell was a member briefly and mascots included Marilyn Monroe, Angie Dickinson, Shirley MacLaine and Juliet Prowse. The group was also called "The Summit" by its members. Only the press referred to them as the rat pack.
Sinatra did belong to a group called the rat pack back in the 1950s and after its founding member died, Sinatra took charge and renamed the group.
A group of celebrity friends were first given the reference of rat pack in 1955. Humphrey Bogart was the focal point of this group. One of their main meeting places over the years was at Bogart's home in Holmby Hills, California which by some accounts is where the name came from. Bogie's home was often referred to as the Holmby Hills Rat Pack.
Another story goes that after partying in Las Vegas with Judy Garland, Judy's husband Sid Luft, Frank Sinatra, David Niven, Angie Dickinson, restaurateur Mike Romanoff and his wife, Bogart's wife Lauren Bacall took one look at them and said, "You look like a __ __ rat pack!" In Beverly Hills at Mike's restaurant, Romanoff's, the name became official and titles were given to the founding members.
Members included Humphrey Bogart, Lauren Bacall, Frank Sinatra, George Cukor, Cary Grant, Sid Luft, Jimmy Van Heusen, Rex Harrison, Nathaniel Benchley, David Niven, Swifty Lazar, Katherine Hepburn and Spencer Tracy.
There were others referred to as Visiting Members that included Mickey Rooney, Cesar Romero, Nat King Cole and Errol Flynn.
Sid Luft (Judy Garland's Husband)
Rat in Charge of Public Relations
Recording Secretary and Treasurer
Jimmy Van Heusen