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The Short Films of Alice Joyce, 1912 : Reviews

Mrs. Sims Serves on the Jury
The Russian Peasant
An Interrupted Wedding
A Princess of the Hills
An American Invasion
The Alcalde's Conspiracy
The Bell of Penance
Jean of the Jail
The Spanish Revolt of 1836
The Adventures of American Joe
The Mexican Revolutionist
The Stolen Invention
The Outlaw
The Gun Smugglers
(with viewing comments)
The Colonel's Escape
(with viewing comments and link to online video)
The Organ Grinder (viewing comments and link to online video)
Saved by Telephone
The Suffragette Sheriff
Fantasca the Gypsy
Freed from Suspicion
The Wandering Musician
Rube Marquard Wins
Saved from Court Martial
The Street Singer
The County Fair
The Strange Story of Elsie Mason
The Mystery of Grandfather's Clock
The Young Millionaire
(with viewing comments)
A Battle of Wits
A Daughter's Sacrifice
A Race with Time
The Finger of Suspicion
A Business Buccaneer

Mrs. Sims Serves on the Jury

Review from The New York Dramatic Mirror, January 17, 1912

Mrs. Simms and the Jury (Kalem, Jan. 10).--Types of advanced womanhood serving on the jury and the dreadful situation in which Mr. Simms found himself with his wife as "forelady" of the jury that tried him for automobile speeding while taking his stenographer joy-riding, constitute the humorous elements of this farce. There is wit in the plot and more wit in the effective manner in which the players present it. The best scene in the play of contrasting emotions when Mr. and Mrs. Simms discover each other's peculiar situation in the court room. And the verdict, too, is not without its humor. The stenographer is acquitted and Simms gets six months.

Review from Moving Picture World, January 6, 1912

MRS. SIMMS SERVES ON THE JURY.(Jan. 19)--Mrs. Simms, a prominent suffragette of San Francisco, helps win a glorious victory for the cause. Mr. Simms is not quite in accord with his ambitious wife, and the straw that breaks the camel's back arrives next day, when Mrs. Simms is called for jury service. The lady, however, determines to do her duty.

Mr. Simms disapproves of his wife's activity for Women's rights, and persuades his stenographer to help him in his plan to teach Mrs. Simms a lesson. To carry out his scheme Simms invites his stenographer for a ride in his automobile. The young lady likes to ride fast, and Mr. Simms is fond of showing off, and the result is they are arrested for speeding. Taken to court for trial, Mr. Simms, to his great surprise, finds he is to be tried before a jury of women, and that the forewoman is his wife. Simms demands immediate trial and gets it.

The verdict is handed in to the judge, who addresses the stenographer as follows: "Young woman, you are discharged. The jury is convinced that you are not to blame for this violation of the law." Turning to Simms, the judge continued: "And you, Sir, are sentenced to the county jail for six days. I am determined to put a stop to the reckless speeding of high-powered automobiles through our streets. Officer, remove the prisoner."

The Russian Peasant

Review from The New York Dramatic Mirror, January 24, 1912

The Russian Peasant (Kalem, Jan. 17).-- An ambitious subject is present in this film and it is done with commendable force, augmented by the restraint and good taste with which the story, or rather, exposure of conditions, is developed and directed. The somewhat tropical appearance of the California backgrounds, however, may not be quite convincing in a story of Russia. According to the picture the relation of nobles and peasantry in Russia differs little from that which existed in France at the outbreak of the first revolution--the nobles danced while the peasants starved. The grand duke or whoever the despot was, went hunting one day shot wild and hit an old peasant in the abdomen. As it was birdshot and the peasant some distance off, it might have been more plausible as well as dramatic to have made the shot take effect in the face and eyes. However, the noble showed no sympathy and even struck the old man's son when he latter protested. Later when the peasants revolted the young peasant ran to the mansion and warned the noble. He did this because the nobleman's daughter had previously protected him from a beating. So she prevailed on her father to grant the demands of the peasants, whom a priest had already held in check. Then the dance went on.

Review from Moving Picture World, January 13, 1912

THE RUSSIAN PEASANT. (Jan. 17)--Dimitri and his sister, Amuska, stopped before the gate of the Brokoff estate. Even the light of life, which knew not hunger and want was a relief to these impoverished peasants. With no thought of trespassing, they watched the gaiety of the land owner and his family. At that moment a cruel groom appeared and was about to strike the young woman, when Dimitri shielded her with is arms. The Princess Olga, Brokoff's daughter, happened to be riding by when she saw this heartless attack upon the two peasants and quickly came to their rescue, bidding the groom begone. This gained for her the eternal gratitude of the young Dimitri.

A few days later as Dimitri and his aged father were gathering wood, a stray bullet from the rifle of a nobleman engaged in a pigeon shot, wounded the old man. Dimitri rushed to the father's side and the young man's outcry of dismay brought the nobleman, who merely gave their victim a glance of contempt and passed by in the manner of the Pharisee.

When Dimitri had assisted his father to their cottage, he came upon the highway and met a large party of rebellious peasants, who had prepared a petition, demanding a living wage from the land owners. Prince Brokoff and his friends happened by, read the petition and scornfully refused to consider it. This caused a spirit of anarchy among the peasants who set fourth to take the Brokoff estate by storm In vain, Dimitri argued with them the futility of their attack. Finding he could accomplish nothing, he ran quickly to the nobleman's castle and forced his way into the banquet hall, where he endeavored to picture to Brokoff the horrors of the coming rebellion There was but one listening ear, that of a dignitary of the church, who went to the steps and by his presence, which always had a strong influence upon the peasantry, induced them to depart.

The Princess Olga had already been given an insight into the conditions of the people and now Dimitri's bravery appealed to her so strongly that she persuaded her father to give the peasantry an audience, which resulted in the institution of new conditions.

An Interrupted Wedding

Review from The New York Dramatic Mirror, February 7, 1912

An Interrupted Wedding (Kalem, January 29)-- There is nothing particularly new about this story, not even the expedients resorted to for bringing about the desired events. Nevertheless, the production is lifted above the mediocre by the earnest, truthful manner of the presentation. The actions appear real and human by force of realistic expression alone The girl's father wants her to marry a neighbor because the man, though shown to be a despicable character, is rich. The girl loves a cowboy, but the cowboy is induced by the girl's father to give the girl up so she can be comfortably fixed for life. The cowboy departs and in six months is sheriff somewhere. In his mail one day he gets a letter from the girl saying she will marry the rancher in four hours. In the same mail comes a notice of $5,000 reward for the arrest of a man described as this same rancher. So the sheriff rides away to win his double reward and gets there on time.

Review from Moving Picture World, January 27, 1912

AN INTERRUPTED WEDDING (Jan. 29)--Nell and Frank become engaged with the approval of Nell's parents. One week later Nell meets Will Sharp, the new owner of a neighboring ranch, and Nell's father urges her to accept Sharp on account of his money. Frank naturally becomes jealous of the stranger because of his attentions to Nell. Sharp proposes to Nell and is refused. Knowing that Frank is her accepted sweetheart, Sharp attempts to get him out of the way by a cowardly trick, but is frustrated.

Nell's mother becomes ill and the necessities of life are denied to the family. Owing to their poverty Nell's father begs Frank to give up Nell that she may marry Sharp and rescue them from their unfortunate position.

Frank makes the sacrifice for Nell's sake. Six months later Frank is elected sheriff and a few days after his election receives a warrant and description of Sharp. Proceeding to Sharp's house he serves the warrant just in time to prevent his rival wedding Nell.

A Princess of the Hills

Review from The New York Dramatic Mirror, February 7, 1912

A Princess of the Hills (Kalem, Feb. 2.)-This story of romantic Spanish type lacks convincing qualities more from the construction of the story than from the ability of the players to give it the proper atmosphere. The young Spanish Don comes home to his estates and falls in love with the shepherd girl he sees watching the sheep. To win her he dresses as a shepherd and pursues his love making, while very strangely, she remains in ignorance of his identity. The sister of the superintendent, who has had designs on the don, tells a peasant of the affair, had he works up an indignation meeting of the peasants, who assume that the don can mean no good to the girl. They have him tied to a tree for some unexplained punishment, when the sister of the superintendent, who had relented, comes with her brother to the rescue, after which the don takes the shepherd girl in his arms and declares himself. The early scenes are lamely managed in the manner of introducing the characters and their relations to each other. A row of telephone poles that appeared in one of the scenes looked odd for the period indicated.

Review from Moving Picture World, January 27, 1912

A PRINCESS OF THE HILLS (Feb. 2).--The old major domo receives word of the near arrival of Don Miguel Valdez, young lord of the estate. Valencia, sister of the major domo, is much in love with Don Miguel, but her advances are repulsed.

Don Miguel sees the shepherdess and, unconsciously surrenders his heart to her keeping, and he confides to his friend his intention to woo the girl in the garb of a shepherd.

Valencia, suspicious of the young lord, follows him and witnesses his meeting with Camilla. In a mean spirit of revenge, Valencia tells Pedro that the don's attentions are not honorable. This story being repeated to the peasants of the Pueblo they determine to take the law into their own hands.

When she sees the trouble she has started, Valencia, remorseful over what she had brought about, enlists her brother's aid and when almost too late the young lord is rescued.

An American Invasion

Review from Moving Picture World, February 10, 1912

AN AMERICAN INVISION (Feb. 12).--In 1826 came into California by way of New Mexico and Arizona, Sylvester Pattie, a Kentuckian, his son James, and one other man. Though they had passports from the American authorities, Gov. Echeadia received them with great harshness, tore up their passports and threw them in prison. They were liberated after one year mainly through the influence of Donna Ysidora Sepulveda, whom James Pattie afterwards married.

The Alcalde's Conspiracy

Review from The New York Dramatic Mirror, February 28, 1912

The Alcalde's Conspiracy (Kalem, Feb. 19).--One finds this an agreeable and entertaining picture, quite adequate in all essential particulars, though not fraught with that intensity that one would naturally expect to find in such situations as are presented. The villain's pursuit of the heroine is quite according to stage tradition. He is the Alcalde who is conspiring against the government. He meets Melitta with her carpenter lover and becomes infatuated with her. Forthwith he summons her to his presence by a false note, telling her that his sister needs her. Then he assaults her, but she escapes him by seizing a sword from the wall. In revenge the Alcalde decides to implicate her lover, Basilio, in a conspiracy against the government by bringing him to a certain deserted ranch, where the conspirators were wont to meet. His cupidity however, was discovered by padre, who with his sister, caused him to confess. The costumes and settings have distinct quality and tone.

Review from Moving Picture World, February 17, 1912

THE ALCALDE'S CONSPIRACY. (Feb. 19)--Basilio, the carpenter, is at work at his bench. Melitta, his sweetheart, is playing the guitar and singing. While the sweethearts are oblivious to occurrences about them, the Alcalde and his sister stop at the shop and ask for a drink of water. It is very apparent the Alcalde is much attracted by Melitta's charms, but in her eyes there is no one like Basilio.

The Alcalde sends a note to Melitta, saying his sister is sick, and wants Melitta to come to her. Arriving at the house, Melitta finds she has been tricked. Grasping a sword she repulses the Alcalde's advances and effects her escape.

A month later, to revenge himself on Melitta, the Alcalde schemes to connect Basilio with a party of revolutionists, and is partially successful. The next day the Alcalde's plot is discovered, and threatened with exposure, he obeys his sister's and the Padre's order, confesses his guilt and apologizes to Basilio and Melitta.

The Bell of Penance

AJ as Dona Josefa, with Carlyle Blackwell. Reissued 1915.

Review from Moving Picture World, February 24, 1912

THE BELL OF PENANCE (Feb. 26).--Henry Fitch, a young American, arrives in Spanish California in the year 1820, but hardly arrived when it was his good fortune to rescue two young ladies from a band of ruffians. Refusing to pose as a hero he goes on his way and presents a letter of introduction to Joaquin Carillo, and much to his surprise again meets the young ladies he had so recently protected.

He is much impressed with the younger one, Donna Josefa, and as time goes on presses his suit, which is encouraged by the Spanish Don. That the young American is not to have a free field in his love adventure is soon demonstrated. Junipperro Serra, a Spaniard of means, is also enamored of the fair Josefa. Serra learning that Donna Josefa is about to marry the American, attempts to prevent the ceremony by underhand methods. His schemes are frustrated and the sweethearts elope and are married.

A year later Fitch and Josefa return to Josefa's home, where upon Serra's instigation, Fitch is arrested and tried for violation of the laws of the church and territory, and condemned to imprisonment and banishment, unless he will produce penance and reparation that can be noticed through the whole of the Pueblo. Good father Vincente suggests to Josefa that Fitch secure a bell to place in the empty tower of the church as the original one had been stolen many years before. A month later Fitch stands before the three judges. A sudden commotion goes through the whole court; everyone is listening to an unexpected sound. The bell that was silent now rings again. Young Fitch, addressing the court, says: "This is my penance and reparation, which I offer to the church. It's voice can be heard and noticed throughout the Pueblo, and will, in time to come, proclaim the wisdom and clemency of this court.

Jean of the Jail

AJ as Jean, with Carlyle Blackwell, Knute Rahm, Paul C. Hurst, William H. West, Jane Wolfe. Reissued 1915.

Review from The New York Dramatic Mirror, April 10, 1912

Jean of the Jail (Kalem, April 1).--A general lack of vigor in interpretation and expression fails to lift this picture above the commonplace, nor does the story diverge much from the straight and narrow precedent established in the turning out of motion pictures stories by yard and measure. A notorious bandit is captured and confined in the jail, and while the old jailer is stricken with apoplexy he escapes by the aid of an accomplice out a side window. The daughter discovers his escape, and after shooting the woman accomplice tells her lover that she will be his if he brings back the outlaw. The lover does so, after a chance and fight of no particular novelty, and thus saves the old man's reputation and wins himself a bride.

Review from Moving Picture World, March 30, 1912

JEAN OF THE JAIL --It was the boast of Pedro, the enfeebled old jailor, that in his many years of service he had never lost a prisoner. His success was in a large measure due to the co-operation of his daughter, Jean.

Jose, a dashing young Spaniard, who was in love with Jean, sought her hand, but the young woman coquettishly postponed her answer from day to day.

At length there came to the jail a party headed by the Alcalde, which had as a prisoner Garcia, a noted bandit. He was placed within a cell and, as usual, Pedro announced that he would be kept securely until the time of trial.

The old jailer did not seem to understand that the years were pressing down upon him and shortly after the arrival of the bandit, the old man was stricken with an attack of sickness. Jean ministered to him faithfully. Neither saw the approach of Luisa, a Spanish girl and confederate of Garcia, who crept to the prisoner's window and passed him a file, which he penetrated the bars and effected an escape. Hearing a commotion, Jean rushed to the cell just in time to see the couple escaping on one horse, and a misdirected shot from her pistol brought Luisa to the ground. The bandit, assuring himself that his companion was dead, took to the hills.

Soon the Alcalde would arrive and take the prisoner, and Jean was almost overcome with apprehension. She told Jose that here was a chance to demonstrate his worth. If he would capture the outlaw, she would give him her hand. With such an incentive, Jose followed the fleeing Spaniard over crag and torrent. Through the rough country sped pursued and pursuer. Abandoning his horse, Garcia climbed a cliff but Jose, close at his heels, overcame him and after a desperate struggle, brought the prisoner back to the jail.

Meanwhile the Alcalde had arrived and was censuring the fast failing Pedro for his inefficiency. Jean, having confidence in her lover, pled for time and at last Jose arrived with his captive. But the shock had been too much for the old jailor, and his years of service were at an end. As the prisoner was conducted from the room, Jean and Jose knelt at the bedside and offered a prayer that their lives might be as honorable.

The Spanish Revolt of 1836

Review from The New York Dramatic Mirror, April 10, 1912

The Spanish Revolt of 1926 (Kalem, April 3).--Perhaps the chief difficulty with this film is its lack of dramatic form. It moves by fits and starts in jerky sequence, attempting to pick up what it has lost be frequent explanatory titles, making things just happen without proper reason or development. The actors meet the requirements, but hardly play with much depth, sympathy, or expression. The governor, in fact, seemed rather an irate old gentleman than the cold, hard, tyrannical person he was credited with being. The life of the times is well suggested. Because the alcalde's daughter would not kiss him the governor had the alcalde removed from his position, while a revolution was headed by the young lover of the girl. The alcalde was arrested by the governor as a conspirator, but was freed when, in a lively attack and battle, the governor's forces were overcome by the revolutionists headed by the lover. Then at the conclusion of this fight women rush in from somewhere, when one would naturally expect them to be at home, and make a final motion picture tableau.

Review from Moving Picture World, March 30, 1912

THE SPANISH REVOLT OF 1936 (April 2).-- Juan Alvarado, a California, found himself deeply in love with Isabella, daughter of Galves, the Alcalde. When he made it known that he wished to pay court to the young lady, she announced that no ordinary man could win her hand.

Alvarado was not the only one attracted by the fair Isabella. Chico, the cruel and irascible Governor, became infatuated with the Alcalde's daughter and openly insulted her by his advances. When she spurned him, Chico, seeking vengeance, removed her father from office, falsely stating that he was grossly incompetent.

The people arose in indignation and demanded that Chico resign from the office of Governor. This he refused and when the people became threatening, he ordered Galvez, the Alcade [sic], thrust into prison and then asked that he pacify the Californians by appealing for the Governor--a proceeding which the Alcalde refused to consider.

The people looked to the young Alvarado as their leader and it was to him that Isabella came, asking that he liberate her father and deliver them from the tyranny of Chico. As the Governor refused all audiences, the open revolt began and the presidio was bombarded. The Californians had secured possession of several cannon and the governor's soldiers were unable to withstand the fierce assault. The tyrant was forced to abdicate, the Alcalde was released and Isabella, finding that Alvarado was a hero in every sense of the word, gave him her promise.

The Adventures of American Joe

AJ as Guadelupe Ortega, with Carlyle Blackwell

Review from The New York Dramatic Mirror, April 24, 1912

The Adventures of American Joe (Kalem, April 17).--If this picture is intended for a burlesque upon one of Stevenson's fantastic tales of piratical sea life, it might be called a success; but if, as is more probable, it is offered to photo-playgoers as a legitimate melodrama, it is open to much criticism for its numerous absurdities. Even that elastic word, "adventures," used in the title does not palliate the many sins committed against congruity and historical correctness in this tale of the Californian coast. That a band of presumably crafty pirates should send to an inland ranch a man of whom they knew nothing and whose fidelity they had never before put to the test appeals to the average spectator as foolhardy. The incident of the rescue of the ranch owner's daughter is both vague and unconvincing, while the furious and superhuman manner in which the same sailor tosses around ten herculean pirates, sets us to wondering how he could ever have been so overcome previous to that by the sea. The dress of the pirates would indicate that the time of the play is a hundred years ago, yet in face of this they are the possessors of a freshly-painted modern lifeboat and prefer breechloading rifles to cutlasses and muzzle-loading blunderbusses. In brief: An American sailor shipwrecked on the coast of California is picked up by a pirate band, who later dispatch him to a nearby ranch to learn if there are any valuables on the place. The sailor naturally does not obey orders, but instead apprises the occupants of the ranch of their danger. Incidentally, he rescues the daughter of the ranch owner from a not very apparent peril and gains the gratitude of the family. The pirates attack the ranch, but are repulsed with great losses, which do not appear, however, to weaken their numbers. Later they capture Joe, and are on the point of hanging him, when a posse lead by the ranch owner's daughter rushes on the scene and disperses the cutthroats. Alice Joyce plays the part of the daughter, and Carlyle Blackwell is the sailor in this picture, much below the Kalem plane of excellence. In fact, one wonders how such an inferior film can have been produced by the same company which is responsible for those charming pictures of Irish life and Irish scenes.

Review from Moving Picture World, April 13, 1912

THE ADVENTURES OF AMERICAN JOE (April 17).--Joseph Chapman, known in Southern California as Jose de Ingles, is shipwrecked and picked up by Bouchard, the pirate, who forces the young man to join the crew. As they approach the shore, the pirate instructs Joe to go inland, look over the Ortega Ranch and make it an effort to locate the reputed treasures.

Joe meets the daughter of Ortega and warns her of the pirates' plan to attack and rob her father. Bouchard hears of Joe's treachery and swears vengeance, but the young American, once free from the privateers, succeeds in driving them from the country.

Joe having decided to stay with the Ortegas, institutes many progressive measures and builds the first mill in California. But he was not destined to live in peace. Bouchard's spy, disguised as a beggar, visits the ranch, discovers Joe's popularity and the prosperous conditions of the locality, and hastens to inform his chief.

Smarting under his previous defeat, Bouchard plans to even matters with the American, whom he decoys and makes a prisoner. Guadalupe, the pretty daughter of Ortega, learns of the capture of "American Joe" and effects his rescue, after a strenuous attack on the privateers' stronghold.

The Mexican Revolutionist

AJ as Marcella. Directed by George Melford. With Carlyle Blackwell, William Herman West. A copy of this film is available at the National Film and Television Archive, London.

Review from The New York Dramatic Mirror, May 1, 1912

The Mexican Revolutionists (Kalem, April 24).--It would seem as if the producer might have brought a little more vigor and originality to bear upon the production of this picture, for the general plot is little else than commonplace; nor does the acting bring much freshness or spontaneity. The battle scenes between the two opposing forces are without doubt the most interesting portions of the picture, but assuredly the rest of the film would have contained like interest had the incidents been fraught with more novelty. It is the story in which the young hero comes as spy and saves the fair damosel from the barefaced attack of the Mexican--one so frequently witnesses in pictures. He is recognized and seeks shelter in the home of the girl's father, but is captured, after hiding in the fireplace, and confined in the jail, with the girl and her father in an adjoining cell. By some unexplained process he had an implement in his boot leg, which the guard had neglected to find, no search having been made. With this he was enabled to tear away the mortar from the bars of his prison window and thus escape. His colleagues informed, he returns after a vigorous battle and rescues the girl and her father in the jail.

Review from Moving Picture World, April 20, 1912

THE MEXICAN REVOLUTIONIST (April 24)-- Juan, a Mexican revolutionist, encamped with his compatriots outside of Guadalayara, volunteers to enter the Federal camp and learns the enemy's numbers. While on hostile ground Juan protects Marcella, a pretty Mexican girl, from the attack of an intoxicated Federal soldier. The latter is not so far deprived of his senses, however, but that he recognizes the revolutionist and gives the alarm. Juan fleeing from the Federals, seeks shelter in the home of Marcella's father, Felipe, but he is apprehended and his two friends are taken with him, charged with being sympathizers.

During the night Juan escapes from prison and joins his party, who proceed in force to Guadalayara, capture the city and liberate Marcella and Felipe. Juan's life is now beset with many dangers but he does not forget the charming girl who has shared his trials and two months later he is rewarded with her hand.

The Stolen Invention

AJ as Gladys Conrey, with William H. West, Jane Wolfe and Carlyle Blackwell

Review from The New York Dramatic Mirror, May 8, 1912

The Stolen Invention (Kalem, April 20).--It is regrettable that a drama which is so well staged as this one should possess such a faulty plot. The scenic backgrounds have been chosen with taste, the acting on the whole is excellent, but the story itself and the objective action of several principal persons in the story are illogical. The spectator feels that the characters are treated in an arbitrary manner, that the portrayal is not true to life, as he knows life, and in consequence the illusion for him is shattered. That a keenly perceptive inventor should take a man into his employ as assistant, on the strength of a recommendation from a scheming promoter, whom the inventor knows to be his arch professional enemy, appeals to one as foolhardy. A grosser violation of the congruities may be observed, however, in the charity (shall one term it that?) which the inventor's family displays in inviting into their home the treacherous assistant, who just the day before was detected by Gladys, the inventor's daughter, in the act of trying to force a window to the parlor. The agitation and suspicion which the family had felt over this discovery seems to be unduly momentary, for they not only invite this wolf in sheep's clothing into their home but smile with unconcealed approval on his attentions to their daughter. Eventually, Hunter, the mechanic-assistant to the inventor and the accomplice of the promoter in the nefarious undertaking of capturing the plans to the inventor's new device, gains possession of the drawings, but does not escape with them. Floyd, Gladys' jilted lover, chances to be in the neighborhood of the house, and not only perceives the their at work, but pursues him and effects a trilling capture. Then he restores the plans intact to the inventor, and by his act reinstates himself in the affections of Gladys. William H. West plays the part of the inventor, and Jane Wolfe his wife; Alice Joyce portrays the character of the daughter with her accustomed charm and winsomeness, and Carlyle Blackwell acquits himself with his usual ease in the role of the suitor.


Review from Moving Picture World, April 27, 1912

THE STOLEN INVENTION (April 28).--Rawley, a promoter, endeavors to obtain the plans of an invention which Conray has made but without success. He then resorts to underhand methods and succeeds in establishing his confederate, Mark Hunter, in the Conray household.

Mark finds his early efforts frustrated, when he attempts to gain possession of the coveted plans, and he determines to pay ardent court to Gladys, Conrey's charming daughter, hoping to have more liberty in the house. Floyd, Gladys' lover, sees the couple together and when the young woman notices that she is being watched, she decided to make Floyd jealous and pretends to listen to Hunter's words of love. Floyd, concluding Gladys no longer cares for him, prepares to leave the neighborhood.

Through the carelessness of the investor, the Conrey work shop is set on fire. There is a general rush to extinguish the blaze and hunter, seeing his opportunity, enters the house and makes away with the plans. Just at that time Floyd passes, and surmising what has taken place, follows in pursuit.

Returning from the fire, Conrey, receives a liberal offer for his invention, only to find that his valuable plans have disappeared. He and his family are at a loss what to do when Floyd and an officer return with the two criminals and deliver the valuable papers. Gladys, who is now quite repentant of her folly, makes things clear to Floyd and all ends happily.

The Outlaw

Review from The New York Dramatic Mirror, May 15, 1912

AJ as Mary? Directed by George Melford, with Carlyle Blackwell, Paul Hurst. A copy of this film is held at George Eastman House (unpreserved 16 mm)

The Outlaw (Kalem, May 6).--The evolutions of this story are hardly natural enough to arouse much enthusiastic interest in the minds of the average spectator, and the acting is likewise rather indifferent, though the leading man is possessed of much intelligence, and may be excused on the ground of what he is made to do. Jim discovers gold in a certain spot in the creek, and informs his sweetheart of the news. A stranger then appears, and Jim offers to take him as a partner, if he will play square. Jim is evidently a rather guileless youth, for in spite of the fact that the man instantly asks for a razor to shave off his beard, he in nowise alters his intention to accept him as a partner, and later he shows a bad characteristic in protecting him from the sheriff. After this it is indicated by titles that the fellow steals both his gold and his girl. The action is suggested by two blunt scenes, up to which there had been no dramatic approach. Jim then rushes back to the cabin, bent on killing the man, though it would seem that any healthy, normal-minded youth would have sought revenge, if revenge it be, by going direct to the sheriff and having the man arrested. But Jim raises the dagger aloft, sees the picture of his mother evidently and fails to stab, nor does he even show to the other man the next day he knows he is an outlaw. At this point the situation occurs for which the picture was presumably made to fit. While the outlaw was at work below on an embankment, the sheriff passed by above and caused a landslide, which buried the outlaw alive. He dies soon after his exhumation.


Review from Moving Picture World, May 4, 1912

THE OUTLAW (May 6).--After many months of prospecting, Jim finally locates a deposit of gold and stakes out his claim. He makes the acquaintance of Mary, a charming girl who lives nearby, and they becomes sweethearts.

One day a stranger appears and asks for work. Jim welcomes him to his humble home and a compact is entered into, whereby the newcomer is to work on the claim in payment for his board. The stranger loses no time in shaving off his beard, which, however, does not arouse Jim's suspicion until the sheriff appears one day with a picture of a noted outlaw who is wanted. Jim recognizes the likeness as that of his partner and throws the official off the trail.

As time progresses, Jim finds that the stranger is paying court to Mary and later it is discovered that the outlaw is systematically robbing his host of the gold dust which as been gathered. Jim, unable to control his anger, is about to kill his unscrupulous partner when an accident prevents him from the deed.

A few days later the outlaw is caught in a landslide and perishes. Jim and Mary find the body and bury it. The sheriff passes and Jim is able to assure him that the unfortunate man has passed away.

The Gun Smugglers

Directed by George Melford, with Carlyle Blackwell, C. Rhys Price. A copy of this film is available at the Library of Congress (35 mm., badly deteriorated) and the National Film and Television Museum, London.

Review from The New York Dramatic Mirror, June 19, 1912

The Gun Smugglers (Kalem, June 12).--There are many strong, dramatic possibilities in this film, because the main situation is a particularly acute one but the producer has rather lost out on the dramatic end at least by not giving the story proper dramatic treatment either development or acting. The film, however, has its exciting moments in the struggle between the Mexican troops and the smugglers, and the producer has selected some very fine background in which to tell his story. The father, unknown to his son, is a gun smuggler. The son is in love with the colonel's daughter who, when he receives notice of the work of the smugglers, sets out to capture them. In the ensuing fight, the young man's father is killed. At the prison he is informed by his father's accomplice that the colonel has killed his father. He determines upon revenge. One of the smugglers who has escaped is determined upon a like revenge. The young man appears before the colonel before the other, is overcome, and dissuaded from his purpose. After he leaves the smuggler arrives, and kills the colonel. The young man is blamed for the crime, though it is not altogether clear just how the evidence is placed upon him from the way the story is told. The wife of the murderer appears before the authorities and confesses the truth of her husband's crime, and thus frees the young man.


Review from Moving Picture World, June 8, 1912

THE GUN SMUGGLERS. (June 12)--Steven Jurrow, engaged in smuggling arms across the border, keeps the secret from his son, Logan. Valdez, the Mexican colonel, in charge of the Federal troops stationed there, has a very pretty daughter, with whom Logan is deeply in love. A gun smuggling expedition is planned. Federal headquarters receive warning and Colonel Valdez determines to annihilate the smugglers. During the action Logan's father is killed and it devolves upon Col. Valdez to convey the sad news to Logan. The young man, not knowing of his father's career, and believing his death was caused by unfair means, swears vengeance against his sweetheart's father. However, he is saved from becoming a murderer by the cool-headedness of the brave colonel. John Bridge, one of the smugglers who managed to escape, is crazed by the death of his comrades and seeks to avenge them by taking the life of Colonel Valdez. Logan is arrested for the crime, but it is cleared through the instrumentality of Bridge's wife.

Viewing comments

Subtitled: "An incident of the Mexican Rebellion." Much of this film suffers from very heavy deterioration, making it nearly unwatchable in parts. At least one crucial scene is missing. This contributes to the confusion in the plot, since it is now not apparent that the mysterious man in the cabin kills Colonel Valdez, and accounts for Joyce's apparently inexplicable sadness at the end of the film when reunited with her lover. The handsome Carlyle Blackwell plays the lead. Joyce looks picturesque in her dark frilly gown, with her hair down and a flower in it.
Print viewed: 35mm reel at the Library of Congress.

The Colonel's Escape

Directed by George Melford, with Carlyle Blackwell, C. Rhys Price, Karl Formes, Jr., Knute Rahm. A copy of this film is available at the Nederlands Filmmuseum, Amsterdam (35 mm., 273 meters) and is available online on youTube with English intertitles and
on the EYE youTube channel with Dutch intertitles

Review from Moving Picture World, June 22, 1912

THE COLONEL'S ESCAPE (June 24).--Rhys Pryce, a soldier of fortune, finds James Boyd, a Mexican Custom officer, who has been thrown into a cave by a band of smugglers. A few days later Boyd receives word to intercept arms and ammunition that are being smuggled across the border into Mexico by the Insurrectos, whom Pryce has incited to fight for the freedom of their country. Pryce, being hard pressed by the Federals, seeks shelter in Boyd's house. Boyd readily recognizes the fugitive as the man who befriended him while in distress, and in gratitude he helps Pryce to escape. Boyd's action, however, has been witnessed by a Federal spy, who reports the affair to the commanding officer. He is court-martialed and sentenced to be shot. Before the execution can take place, however, Boyd's sister ride with all speed to the Insurrecto camp and urges Pryce to save her brother. In answer to her entreaty, Pryce, at the head of a strong part of insurrectos, arrives just in time to save Boyd and defeat the Federals.

Viewing comments

Another Mexican war film from Kalem. C. Rhys Pryce (apparently playing himself) is a soldier who is on the side of the Mexican rebels. He rescues Carlyle Blackwell, apparently on the side of the Federales, and takes him to a house where Alice Joyce gives him some water. When the rebel man is chased and hides in Alice's house, Blackwell recognizes him and lets him go (with an interesting shot of them watching the escape through a window. Unfortunately the federales arrest Blackwell and are about to execute him for treason when Alice rides to the rebel camp and informs the man, who leads the rebels in an attack on the federales, in a large confusing battle with lots of men and gunpowder. Apparently Blackwell then changes sides and they go back to Alice's house. Interesting that Kalem films side with the rebels in the Mexican war, and that this film stars a soldier of fortune appearing under his own name.

The Organ Grinder

AJ as Pepina. Directed by George Melford. With Carlyle Blackwell, Knute Rahmn. A copy of this film is available at the Nederlands Filmmuseum, Amsterdam (35mm., 268 meters) and is available online

Review from Moving Picture World, July 6, 1912

THE ORGAN GRINDER (July 8).--Pasquale, an old Italian inn-keeper, is secretly in league with a party of bandits, but is extremely diplomatic in keeping his guests from becoming suspicious. His daughter, Pepina, is in love with Bariola, an organ grinder, who often serves as guide for the tourists and she takes good care of the young's man's savings in anticipation of their coming marriage.

One day Bariola is attacked by brigands and is rescued by an American who is on his way to the inn with his wife. This timely assistance earns the Italian's gratitude and he is later in a position to demonstrate his appreciation. The bandits inform Pasquale that wealthy Americans are stopping at his place and a plan is made to roll them. Pasquale permits himself to be bound in a chair that he may not be suspected of complicity.

While the bandits are attempting to force the tourists door, the American is attracted by strains of music underneath the window, where Bariola sits with Pepina in the moonlight. The tourist hastily drops a note through the shutters. This is picked up by Pepina who takes the grind organ and continues the music while Bariola hastens for help. The organ grinder gathers several officers who hasten to the inn where a desperate struggle takes place, the bandits being overpowered and conducted to jail. In liberating Pasquale, one of the officers, who has been suspicious of the landlord, warns him to keep out of bad company. Several weeks later we see Bariola and Pepina in a cozy home which has been provided by the generous Americans.

Viewing comments

Fanciful costumes, very well dressed peasants, and the bandits make themselves as conspicuous as possible. The tourists sure picked the wrong place to visit. The film ends not with a cozy home as described above, but with pretty picture of Blackwell and Joyce sitting outside next to a small waterfall. Dutch intertitles. Print viewed: (online video on the EYE youTube channel)

Saved by Telephone

AJ as Mrs. Lawson. Directed by George Melford, with Carlyle Blackwell, William Herman West. A copy of this film is available at the National Film and Television Archive (London)

Review from Moving Picture World, July 6, 1912

SAVED BY THE TELEPHONE. (July 12).--Mr. Lawson is about to go to the bank to deposit a large sum of money. An important business matter requires his attention and when he finally prepares to leave the office he finds to his annoyance that it is after banking hours and he will be obliged to take the money home for safe keeping over night. Just at that moment Blinky Morgan, a vagabond, forces his way into the office, begging the price of a meal. Lawson hands the beggar a coin and inadvertently displays the roll of bills.

Morgan sees that Lawson is taking the money home and resolves to secure possession of it. Having learned Lawson's name from the sign on the door, he secures the address of his residence from a telephone directory and then seeks his pal, Shiner Kelley, to whom he discloses his plans. Lawson arrives home and places the money in a safe.

That night Lawson is obliged to go to the office and as the maid has the evening off, Mrs. Lawson is left alone. Kelly and Morgan gain entrance into the house and demand the money. Mrs. Lawson bravely holds them off and tries to telephone to her husband, but the crooks knock the instrument from her hand. Kelly stands guard over Mrs. Lawson while Morgan attempts to open the safe.

Finding that he will be detained, Lawson decides to telephone to his wife and central tells him "I cannot get your number. The receiver must be down." While he is waiting for the connection Lawson hears his wife pleading wiath the crooks. He hurries from the office and with two policemen speeds to his home in an automobile in time to capture Morgan and Kelly. When Mrs. Lawson has recovered from her fright she asks her husband how he knew of her danger and in response he picks up the telephone and adjusts the receiver.

The Suffragette Sheriff

AJ as Bill's wife, with William H. West, Jane Wolfe, Carlyle Blackwell. Reissued 1915.

Review from The New York Dramatic Mirror, July 24, 1912

The Suffragette Sheriff (Kalem, July 17).--The conception of this farce is undeniably funny, and while there is a tendency to overexaggeration, it has been presented with a deal of humor and fun. The wife's old maid aunt arrives out West. She is a suffragette, and immediately begins to arouse her niece and the female population of that district into her way of thinking, so that poor Bill, the husband of the niece, is compelled to do the cooking and mind the baby. After the aunt's valiant efforts it is decreed that woman shall have the right to vote and hold office. At a meeting Bill's wife is elected to the office of sheriff, while the aunt comes in as one of the deputies. The husband conceives a notion, whereby he may make his wife give up the office. He arranges with the boys that he shall shoot Simple Sam, and be tried for murder and sentenced. The doctor and the judge are let into the secret, and agree to follow out the plot. In amusing farce scene Simple Sam consents to be shot, and the lady sheriff is summoned. She returns for her hat, but one is not able to determine from the actress's actions whether or not she saw that the men were fooling her. It was an essential point of the drama, and the doubt rather spoilt the effect of the whole picture. Her wild peering over the bar door might be concluded to be taken for discovery, but she was not seen at the door in the subsequent scene, when she entered for her hat. The female posse set out for the supposed murderer, who at length submits to his capture. He is tried in at the window, where his discovery would seem to be imminent, but he was not seen, nor was the fact that a funeral and burial as well as an examination of the corpse apparent, though it would seem to be a necessary thing under the circumstances. When the sentence was pronounced the sheriff showed herself as only too willing to carry it out. The husband was taken out to be hanged, and when Simple Sam appeared to prove it was all a joke, they were both dumped into a tank below. Much more humor might have been extracted from the role of the wife.


Review from Moving Picture World, July 13, 1912

THE SUFFRAGETTE SHERIFF (July 17).--Rattlesnake Bill and his industrious wife enjoyed the simple life until the arrival of Bill's old maid sister. The latter was an ardent suffragette, and so convincingly did she expound her doctrines that the good wife became dissatisfied with her lot, and left the kitchen to enlighten those of her sex who dwelt in darkness.

Bill, unaccustomed to work of any kind, fund the household duties decidedly irksome. When his wife was elected to the office of sheriff he saw it was up to him to do something desperate and gathering together several of his cronies, he unfolded the deep-laid plot. It was agreed that he should pretend to kill a man. Then it would devolve upon the sheriff to bring the supposed murderer to justice--a proceeding which Bill inherently felt would be impossible with his better-half. Old Judge Soft was duly advised of the plan and the little drama began to enact itself. The principals, however, were not aware that the resourceful sheriff had overheard the plot.

The trial was a weird affair. Bill could scarcely control his laughter and the judge more than once forgot his dignity as he beheld the spectacle which the lady officials presented by their earnestness. The magistrate calmly issued the command, "sheriffess, carry out the execution!" and Bill, to his horror, could discover no change of heart in his wife's determined expression. To the scaffold the conspirator was led summarily. The sheriff attended to the adjusting of noose and trap with unusual dexterity.

Bill's cry of "This has gone far enough! was ignored. The trap was sprung and the schemer fell--not into oblivion, but into a tank of water which had been installed by the sheriff and her deputies.

Fantasca, the Gypsy

Review from The New York Dramatic Mirror, July 31, 1912

Fantasca, the Gypsy (Kalem, July 24).-- The film has been played with a deal of spirit, creating excellent atmosphere among the life of the gypsies--if one can forgive the operatic stage clothes of a few of their number--and results in a series of artistic and pleasing pictures. The character of Fantasca is one of the best portrayals which Miss Joyce has given for some time. She does a characteristic little dance during the process of the picture. The plot is perhaps rather obvious, especially as it is one frequently resorted to in a story of this kind. A young married man with a child visits a gypsy camp for some reason, where he meets Fantasca. At a fete on his lawn she falls in love with him. Her gypsy lover becomes jealous of her love for the man and Fantasca herself becomes enraged when he refuses her advances. The man's child is kidnapped by the gypsies. When Fantasca sees the child she at first refuses to aid it, but later steals away with it. She is shot by one of the tribe, but continues her journey. Then the title tells us that the gypsy gives her life for Melville's child, and a picture follows showing just how she did it.


Review from Moving Picture World, July 20, 1911

FANTASCA, THE GYPSY (July 22).-- John Neville visits the gipsy camp to secure entertainers for his lawn party the following day. Fantasca, the young and pretty gipsy queen, while performing for the entertainment, falls in love with Neville. When the lawn party is over the retuning gipsies try to lead away Neville's little girl, but one of the servants frustrates their plans.

While making a short cut through the woods the next day, Neville meets Fantasca, who informs him of her love and is repulsed. Later the gipsies move to a new camp, but before leaving, a plot is arranged to kidnap Neville's child and the plan is successful. Although Fantasca's love is unrequited, she realizes the pain the loss of the child will cause Neville and she determines to return the child to its parents. That night she leaves the camp with the child while all the rest are asleep. Her departure is detected and a gipsy fires after her. Although dangerously wounded, she succeeds in reaching Neville's home and expires after delivering the child to the distracted parents.

Freed from Suspicion

Review from Moving Picture World, August 3, 1912

FREED FROM SUSPICION(Aug. 7). -- On her birthday Mary receives a photograph of her college chum, which bears on the back the inscription "Love from Billy." Her sweetheart, Tom, discovers the inscription, which he misinterprets, and Mary, coquettishly playing upon his jealousy, prevents him from seeing the likeness of her chum. That night, Tom, determined to see who his rival may be enters Mary's home and is greatly humiliated when he learns that "Billy" is a girl. He hastens away, but the noise of his departure awakens Mary's father, who comes down stairs.

In the meantime a maid has stolen Mary's purse and in the search which ensues Mary discovers the imprint of Ton's seal ring on an oil painting which she has recently completed. Mary suppresses the evidence against her lover and the young man is horrified when he learns next day that a robbery has taken place. He does not wish his sweetheart to know of the rash act which his jealousy incited and she, in turn, hesitates to ask Tom concerning the evidence against him.

Through a chance discovery Tom learns that the maid is guilty. He forces her to return the purse and is restored to the good graces of his sweetheart.

The Wandering Musician

Directed by George Melford, with AJ, Carlyle Blackwell. A copy of this film is available at the National Film and Television Archive, London

Review from Moving Picture World, August 3, 1912

THE WANDERING MUSICIAN.(Aug. 9) --Little Evelyn invites the old musician into her home. As her father and mother gather around, the old man relates the story of his life.

We see him as a promising young man, entertaining his wife and child with selections on the violin. The mother takes the child to bed and a party of friends drops in to invite the musician to accompany a hunting expedition next day. When his friends have departed he begins to clean his rifle, which accidentally discharges, the bullet penetrating the ceiling and killing his wife in the room above. Crazed by grief the musician is committed to an asylum, where his is confined for twenty years. hen he is finally released he visits his old home, only to find there is no trace of his child.

As the old musician completes his sad story, little Evelyn's mother starts to her feet, and exclaims: "Father! Don't you know me? I am your little girl of long ago!"

Rube Marquard Wins

AJ as herself, with Rube Marquard.

Review from Moving Picture World, August 24, 1912

"Rube" Marquard Wins (Kalem).(Aug. 24).--"Rube" Marquard invites Miss Alice Joyce to the morning practice of the New York Giants at the Polo Grounds and there he shows her the effective deliveries which enabled him to break all records by winning nineteen consecutive games. Miss Joyce, by the way, is an enthusiastic "fan" and we see her with her girl friends at the Polo Grounds greatly interested in the Giants' struggle for the pennant. A party of sharpers, anxious for New York to lose a decisive game, endeavor to bribe Marquard. Finding their plans have miscarried, the sharpers become desperate and through a ruse decoy Marquard to an office in the tower of the Metropolitan Building, nearly six hundred feet above the ground. "Rube," imprisoned in the room opens the window and endeavors to attract the attention of some passer-by, but finds that he cannot be heard at that great height.

As Miss Joyce starts from her hotel for the game and glances at the clock in the Metropolitan tower and sees the figure of a man in a window on the fortieth floor, wildly waving his handkerchief. Picking up her opera-glasses she discovers the man to be Marquard and she immediately surmises that something is wrong. She hastens to the building in her automobile, and with the assistance of a janitor, liberates "Rube." Away they speed for the Polo Grounds. The New York team rallies and scores a narrow lead of one run, Marquard arrives in time to hold down the opposing team and prevent further scoring. That night Miss Joyce receives a handsome token of appreciation from the Giants.

Saved from Court Martial

Review from Moving Picture World, August 24, 1912

SAVED FROM COURT MARTIAL (Aug. 31).-- Undine, known in her neighborhood as "the water witch," receives the following letter"

"Through ill fortune my friend, Ned Ferry, at the supply camp near you, is likely to be court-martialled. Only a brilliant exploit will save him.

Your loving brother."

Undine, a strong patriot and naturally tender-hearted, realizes the predicament of her brother's friend and determines to save him. The next day she forms a plan to destroy a Federal gun-boat anchored in the river and presents her idea to New [sic]. That night at the risk of her life she swims to the gun-boat, reconnoiters and makes it possible for Ned to lead a company of Confederates, who succeed in destroying the gun-boat after a spectacular attack.

Two days later Ned is reinstated in the good graces of his commanding officer and, realizing his present good fortune is all due to the heroic action of his old chum's sister, he promptly proceeds to lose his heart to the fair water witch.

The Street Singer

AJ as Papita. With Adelaide Lawrence, Earle Foxe and Mayme Kelso. Reissued 11 Sep 1915 as The Little Singer

Review from The New York Dramatic Mirror, September 19, 1912

The Street Singer (Kalem, Sept. 13).--There is good dramatic interest sustained throughout this film. It has been put on with both discretion and truth. When the players do not become too aesthetic with their slow-timed acting and other long-drawn out features, the film is well acted. The actress playing the fashionable Mrs. Burleigh is quite the type, but a much accentuated one. Alice Joyce does some of her best work. The young man playing Karl strikes a true note in the way of character, but also is prone to the sentimental, and one wonders that he fails to show any maturity as time goes on, for after a period of thirteen years his appearance is virtually the same. He takes home with him Papita, a small street singer, whose blind grandmother dies suddenly in the street. He discovers that she possesses an extraordinarily fine voice, and ten years later takes her to a noted teacher. Here she meets a certain Mrs. Burleigh, who takes her abroad for three years to study music. Just why the girl does not keep in communication with Karl during this time is not recorded, but at the end of three years one sees him outside a theatre, learning for the first time she is to appear in an opera. He visits the theatre, where Mrs. Burleigh prevents him from seeing the girl. Papita, however, seeks him out at last, and there is a uniting in spite of the evil intent of Mrs. Burleigh.


Review of reissue from Moving Picture World, September 11, 1915

THE LITTLE SINGER (An Alice Joyce Re-Issue Sept. 10).-- The cast includes Adelaide Lawrence, Alice Joyce, Earle Foxe and Mayme Kelso. Papita, a little street singer, is orphaned when her father dies of heart failure. Karl, a young musician, is attracted by the child's remarkable voice and induces his mother to adopt Papita. The child's voice continues to improve with the passing years. Karl finally decides to take her to a famous vocal instructor. The marvelous quality of Papita's voice fills the teacher with delight and he accepts her as a pupil.

The girl is given an opportunity to sing at a concert which takes place in the home of a rich patron of music. Mrs. Burleigh, a woman of wealth, is in the audience. The society woman offers to give Papita a musical education abroad. After years of study in foreign lands, Papita returns to America where she is to appear at the Metropolitan Opera House. On the night of the prima donna's debut, Karl visits the opera and sends his card in to Papita. Mrs. Burleigh intercepts it, however, and informs Karl that Papita does not care to see him. Brooding over the girl's apparent ingratitude, Karl becomes ill. Although she scores a tremendous success, the operatic star misses Karl and his mother and goes in search of them. Arriving at the former home of her old friends, Papita learns that Karl had left the place shortly after his mother's death.

Deeply touched, Papita returns home. Shortly afterwards, the sound of a violin playing her favorite air, attracts the prima donna's attention. Turning towards the house from when the music comes, she enters. A minute later, she confronts Karl and the latter learns that Papita's heart is true.

The County Fair

AJ as Mary, with James B. Ross, Hazel Neason, William McKey, Miriam Lawrence, Earle Foxe. Reissued 1915 as The Country Girl.

Review from The New York Dramatic Mirror, October 30, 1912

The County Fair (Kalem, Oct 21).--Jim Burke, a side showman, is apparently in love with Lazelle, another of the members of the cast, but later shows that he is of a fickle nature when John, a country youth, brings his sweetheart, Mary, down to see the show. Alice Joyce, who plays the part of Mary, is as usual very attractive, and acts with much vivacity. Miss Joyce, however, shows that she was not brought up in the country, at least she has never milked a cow, but she makes the attempt and perhaps to the casual eye she got away with it, but to a close observer it was apparently that she was an amateur. She is immediately taken with him when he "favors" her with a glance, and after that she has no use for John, who treats her with great kindness. Jim sends her a note by one of the "barkers," in which he requests that she meet him at the fair the next day, and to this she agrees and at the time appointed she meets Jim, and as they wander away they are seen by Lazelle, who follows and hears him ask Mary to elope with him, and reports it to John, who immediately tries to locate her parents, but finds that they are at the fair and gives chase himself. Meeting the father and mother coming back, and as soon as his story is told, they whip up the horse and arrive a the station just at the time that the train is due. Mary rushes to her mother's arms and Jim tries to interfere, but is taken strenuously in had by Lazelle, who shows him in 18th century style by pulling off his hair and other adornments until he is happy to jump on the departing train for parts unknown.


Review from Moving Picture World, October 19, 1912

THE COUNTY FAIR(Oct. 21).-- Jim Burke, a side-showman, is attracted by the pretty face of Mary, a country girl who has come to visit the fair. He sends her a note proposing a meeting. The inexperienced country girl, flattered by the attention of the showman, joins him and they arrange to elope. Lazelle, the sweetheart of Burke, overhears the proposed elopement. John goes to warn Mary's parents but finds they have gone to the fair. Running down the road, John meets Mary's father and mother on the way back from the fair. He tells them of Mary's proposed elopement and states that a strange buggy has just driven down the road toward the depot.

A woild [sic] ride toward the railroad station takes place and Mary's parents arrive just as the young girl is about to board the train. The error she is about to make is impressed upon Mary and she agrees to return home. Just as the train is pulling out, Burke arrives and seeing his plans have been frustrated, he boards the last car. Realizing her fortunate escape, Mary concludes John is a safer companion than a travelling showman.

The Strange Story of Elsie Mason

AJ as Elsie Mason/Christine Hastings Directed by Edmund Lawrence, with Tom Moore, Lucille Young. A copy of this film is available at the National Film and television Archive, London

Review from Moving Picture World, October 26, 1912

THE STRANGE STORY OF ELSIE MASON(Oct. 30).-- Little Elsie, scarcely two years of age, awakens one morning and crawls out of the house, dragging her doll. The little tot creeps to the nearby railroad station and resumes her nap in one of the flower beds.

Mrs. Hastings, a wealthy widow, is taking an early morning train, after having spent several weeks at an eastern summer resort. She reaches the station before train time and while strolling about, she discovers little Elsie. While she is fondling the little one, the train arrives and Mrs. Hastings, who has no child of her own, cannot master the temptation to take this baby with her.

Upon arriving in the west, Mrs. Hastings learns from a newspaper of the strange disappearance of Elsie Mason. Her first impulse is to communicate with the Masons, but she destroys the letter and preserves the news item.

Twenty years later we see that Elsie has grown to young womanhood and now bears the name of Christine Hastings. She leads a happy life with her foster mother, who all these years has kept her secret. During an afternoon tea, Mrs. Hastings nephew, Jack, arrives on the scene and soon falls in love with the charming young woman.

Mrs. Hastings is taken seriously ill and her secret prays upon her mind. She calls Christine to her bedside and shows her the old news item. Soon afterward she dies and Christine, believing her place is with the parents, leaves a note for Jack and returns to her eastern home, where she takes up the simple life on the farm. But Jack cannot forget. When he finds the note he journeys to the east and gains Christine's promise.

The Mystery of Grandfather's Clock

Review from Moving Picture World, November 2, 1912

THE MYSTERY OF GRANDFATHER'S CLOCK(Nov. 6).-- George Morse pays the last instalment on his farm and receives his deed. Thirty years later we find that the old farmer has passed away and his son has become a successful business man in the city. Morse, Jr. has furnished his house with several articles which belonged to his father, including an old clock, in which he takes a great deal of pride.

The clock becomes out of order and Morse instructs a young clockmaker to attend to the necessary repairs. When the young man calls he establishes a bond of friendship with Morse's daughter, Nellie. In the succeeding weeks Nellie stops the clock on several occasions, in order that the young man may call.

Morse, however, has other plans for Nellie and wishes her to marry one of his business acquaintances. James Cleveland, an attorney. Cleveland learns of the frequent stopping of the clock and becomes suspicious when he oversees the pleasant relations between Nellie and Westcott, the young repair man. He, therefore, induces Morse to engage an old clockmaker to make the repairs.

Morse wishes to dispose of the old farm, but is unable to locate the deed. Cleveland informs him that the papers must be found without delay, but their search is fruitless.

One evening Nellie gives a party and Wescott, who has not been invited because of Morse's prejudice, appears on the scene. Hearing her father's voice, Nellie has Wescott hide in the clock. The affair is seen by Wescott [sic?] who informs Morse. Wescott holds the door of the clock and when Morse endeavors to extricate the young man, the old clock falls over. The long lost deed falls out of a little hidden door at the top of the clock. Delighted at the recovery of the valuable papers, Morse consents to Nellie's marriage to Wescott.

The Young Millionaire

AJ as Anna Newton, with Tom Moore. A copy of this film is available at the Library of Congress (35 mm., lacks opening title)

Review from The New York Dramatic Mirror, November 20, 1912

The Young Millionaire (Kalem, Nov. 13).--Disgusted with the fact that society is shallow, that all his friends cater to him simply for his money, a young crippled millionaire circulates the rumor that he has lost his money and takes quarters in a tenement, hoping to discover true friendship among the poor. Prior to this has broken his engagement with a young lady, who he learned was also attracted to him for his money and secretly made sport of his affliction. While living in the slums the young man is brought into contact with Anna Newton, a benevolent young authoress, who has taken up her above in that section for the purpose of securing atmosphere for an article she is writing. Neither of them are aware of the other's identity. In defending the young woman from the insults of the house agent the millionaire is hurt. On his recovery he leaves the tenement, to return soon and informs the girl that he has a position as a secretary in a household that needs a governess. He induces her to accompany him to his home, where each discovers the other's secret. The adventure culminates in a visit to a nearby parsonage. There is some effective acting done by the Kalem's leading man in the role of the millionaire bored with life. Several of the scenes are a trifle overdrawn, one of which is the clubroom where the young man is repulsed by his friends. Also it seems a bit improbable that an accident could cause the cure of the boy's leg where the skilled hand of the doctor no doubt had failed before. As a whole, however, the drama is well put together and entertaining.


Review from Moving Picture World, November 9, 1912

THE YOUNG MILLIONAIRE (Nov. 13).--John Harris, a crippled young millionaire, breaks his engagement with Sarah Curtis when he discovers that she has been attracted by his wealth and covertly mocks him because of his affliction. Harris determines to put his club friends to the test and has an article published to the effect that he has lost his fortune. When the article appears Harris' former friends desert him. Disgusted with the shallowness of society Harris takes quarters in a tenement, hoping to discover true friendship among the poor.

In the meantime Anna Newton, a benevolent young woman of means, decides to write an article on tenement life and finds a room in the same building. The agent who conducts her to her quarters wishes to become better acquainted, and forces his attentions on the young woman. Her cries attract Harris who hastens to the scene. But the crippled millionaire is no match for the rough agent, who throws the young man to the floor and stuns him.

Anna secures help and bears Harris to his room. She secretly engages a doctor, who finds some time later that Harris' accident permits his broken limb to be reset.

Harris leaves the tenement upon his recovery but he cannot forget his kind friend. He returns just as Anna has completed her story and is about to leave the tenement. Harris tells her that he has secured a position as a secretary in a household which also needs a governess and he induces her to accompany him. Anna does so, feeling that she must now confess that she has deceived the poor (?) young man. When they arrive at the Harris mansion the butler addresses his master before the millionaire can warn him and his secret is discovered. Anna now has a confession to make and the adventure culminates in a visit to a nearby parsonage.

Viewing comments

The performers make this a likable film, despite its improbable plot twists. Joyce plays a capable and self-assured young woman, though like most movie heroines she is reduced to cowering in terror while the men do the fighting. Her acting is excellent, as is that on Tom Moore, who is more handsome in 1912 than he was a decade later. This film lacks its opening title and the opening shot is partially repeated.
Print viewed: 35mm reel at the Library of Congress.

A Battle of Wits

AJ as Sue Elwood, with Logan Paul, Tom Moore, Earle Foxe, Stuart Holmes. Reissued 1915.

Review from Moving Picture World, November 23, 1912

A BATTLE OF WITS(Nov. 25).--Two surveyors, Tom Edwards and Frank Anderson, meet Sue Elwood while at work in the hills. Tug Weaver, a neighbor of Sue's who is anxious to win her hand, is jealous because of her friendship for Tom. Weaver inflames Sue's father against the surveyor and the old man will not permit Tom to visit the premises.

Some time later Weaver is given mail for the Elwood cabin and noticing a letter addressed to Sue he opens and reads: "Dear Sue, I was surveying for a railroad which will run through your land. Do not sell until you see me. Meet me at the old place Friday afternoon at three o'clock." Weaver retains the letter and meets the promoter when he arrives, representing himself as Elwood's son-in-law and giving an option on the land for ten thousand dollars. When tom arrives in the village and meets the promoter, he learns of the transaction and hastens to the cabin.

Weaver overpowers Tom and with Elwood's assistance places him in an outbuilding. Sue, who has been locked in her room because she will not consent to marrying Weaver, manages to escape and sees the two men imprisoning her lover. She liberates the young surveyor and the two start for the village. There they meet the promoter and explain the situation. The treachery of Weaver is exposed and Tom and Sue become betrothed.

A Daughter's Sacrifice

AJ as Alice Wells, with George Middleton, Tom Moore, Stuart Holmes, Hazel Neason. Reissued 1915.

Review from The New York Dramatic Mirror, December 11, 1912

A Daughter's Sacrifice (Kalem, Dec. 4).-- Without bringing out any new possibilities in the development of a photoplay scenario, the author of this script has worked along well-tried lines with satisfactory results. It is a drama calculated to arouse sympathy and hold the interest, and in view of these facts some improbabilities may be overlooked. We have Martin, the honorable lover favored by the girl, and the other man who is willing to sacrifice square dealing for the sake of getting her. He happens to be their landlord, and when Tom Wells, the aged father, is unable to pay the rent, they are threatened with eviction. It is not at all likely that even under these conditions such a man would attempt to seal a horse hitched on the village street, but that is the act credited to Wells and he is caught redhanded by the landlord. When offered the choice between exposure and consequent disgrace or promising his daughter as a bride Wells chooses the latter course, and the daughter makes the sacrifice. The disappointed lover leaves the village, and the girl lives an unhappy life with the landlord, who is a good deal of a brute. It appears that when Wells is too old to be of use on the farm he is turned out to become a wanderer. He sends a note to Martin, asking him to come to the aid of his daughter, although it is not clear in what form he expected the assistance to be given. It all ends with a fight between the two men, in which the husband is accidentally shot by a discharge from his own revolver. This leaves the way clear for the marriage that should have been solemnized in the first place. The most impressive acting is provided by Alice Joyce and George Middleton.


Review from Moving Picture World, November 30, 1912

A DAUGHTER'S SACRIFICE (Dec. 4).--Old Tom Wells is a victim of drink and is unable to pay the rent when Steve, the young landlord, appears on the scene. Steve's stormy interview is broken by the appearance of Alice, Tom's daughter, whom the landlord has made many unsuccessful efforts to court. Alice, who has given her promise to Martin, an industrious young farmer, entreats him with her father to overcome his weakness.

Wells, knowing he will be dispossessed, becomes desperate and starts for the village to secure money. He is tempted to steal Steve's horse, but is discovered by the landlord, who declares that he will have the old man imprisoned if he does not force Alice to consent to the marriage.

The unhappy father therefore refuses to permit Martin to visit Alice to whom he explains that he is in the power of the landlord. Alice sacrifices her happines [sic] and marries Steve.

Wells makes his home with the young couple but finds that he is in the way. Steve is harsh and oftentimes cruel and the old man is finally obliged to leave the farm.

Meanwhile, Martin, heartbroken, leaves for the village as he is unable to bear the sight of the old places where he has known so much happiness. Wells, in his journey, falls by the wayside and dispatches a note to Martin, beseeching him to look after the unhappy daughter.

Steve meets a young woman with whom he determines to elope and he returns home to secure his money. He discovers Alice weeping over an old photograph of Martin and he attacks her. Martin, fulfilling his trust, arrives on the scene and is confronted with Steve's revolver. In the struggle the pistol is accidentally discharged and the unfaithful husband is killed.

As the days pass, Alice forgets her unhappiness in the true love of Martin.

A Race with Time

Directed by Edmund Lawrence, with Tom Moore, Stuart Holmes. A copy of this film is available at the National Film and Television Archive, London

Advertisement from The New York Dramatic Mirror, December 1912?

A RACE WITH TIME (Length 875 feet)
The O.R. & N.R.R. Co. is fighting for a mail contract. A plucky girl, driving an engine at death-defying speed, defeats the conspiracy of a rival railroad and cinches the contract. One and Three-Sheet Four-Color Litho Posters. Released Monday, Dec. 9th.

Review from Moving Picture World, December 7, 1912

A RACE WITH TIME (Dec. 9.).--President Manson of the O.R. & N.R.R. is advised by the acting Postmaster General that a test for the mail contract will be held December 17th and that a pouch must be delivered at Stevenson at two o'clock or the contract will be forfeited in favor of the Union Central R.R. The next day at the office of the superintendent of the Union Central word is received that the O. & R. is likely to secure the contract, and Thomas, the vice-president, wires to the superintendent of the Union Central that he must stop at nothing to thwart the competitor. The superintendent of the Central calls in one of the tough section hands, who schemes to disable the engine on which the trial mail pouch is to be carried. The station agent's daughter discovers the plot and taking the mail pouch from the wrecked engine, runs to a nearby locomotive and sets forth to complete the journey. A wild ride takes place but just as the clock is striking two, the plucky substitute arrives at Stevenson and delivers the mail.

The Finger of Suspicion

AJ as Kathleen, with Hazel Neason, Tom Moore. Reissued 1915.

Advertisement from The New York Dramatic Mirror, December 1912

THE FINGER OF SUSPECION Kathleen refuses the proposal of the young attorney, believing her duty is with an invalid sister. The mysterious death of the invalid causes suspicion to be directed toward the attorney. Through a startling denouement the lovers find happiness. One and three-sheet four-Color Posters. Released Monday, Dec. 16.

Review from Moving Picture World, December 14, 1912

THE FINGER OF SUSPICION (Dec. 16).--Robert Wallace, a promising young attorney, writes to his fiancee, Kathleen, informing her that he has secured a position in the west and that she must hurry her preparations for their wedding, in order that they may leave at once. Kathleen, who lives with her invalid sister, Adele, finds that she must make an important decision. She finally decides that her duty is with the sister and she therefore writes to Robert as follows: "You know that I love you, but my duty is with Adele. This is your great chance. Go and God bless you" That night Robert comes to the little cottage and meets Kathleen on the porch. He draws forth the note and asks if her decision in final. When he finds she cannot be moved he exclaims, "Only your sister stands between us."

In the little sitting room Adele hears to exclamation of her sister's sweetheart and is heartbroken. Robert, informing Kathleen that he will leave at once, enters the sitting room to say goodby to Adele. The housekeeper, passing through the room sees the young attorney leaning over the invalid's chair and nervously fingering a glass on the table.

When Robert leaves, Adele is found dead. The housekeeper calls attention to what she has seen, and, despite the protests of Kathleen, a police officer is summoned, with the coroner. Robert is arrested.

At the trial it is found that the circumstantial evidence is not strong enough to convict Robert. He writes a note to Kathleen saying that although he has been acquitted many think him guilty and he is leaving for the west on the afternoon train.

In her sorrow, Kathleen takes from the bookcase a book of poems which she has been in the habit of reading to her sick sister. In the book she finds a note reading. "You have faithfully fulfilled the promise you gave our mother and I am going to set you free. The little powder I have kept for months gently shows the way. Adele." Kathleen hastens to the station and overtakes Robert, who now finds that his name has been cleared forever.

A Business Buccaneer

AJ as Agnes, with Tom Moore. Reissued 1915.

Review from The New York Dramatic Mirror, January 1, 1913

A Business Buccaneer (Kalem, Dec. 27).--Overlooking melodramatic improbabilites and an arrangement of situation too obviously devised for theatrical effect, this picture has commendable features. At least, it is ingenious in the manner that a young man and his sweetheart outwit three safe breakers and succeed in bringing about their arrest. With a cigar caught between his teeth the man burns the rope binding the girl's hands, then she frees him, they send a call for help on a dictagraph record tied around a dog's neck, and the father accompanied by policemen, comes to their rescue. The novelty found in the picture would be more effective if developments were made more plausible. As for the plot, it is conventional. The son of the president of a large rubber concern returns from South America with a formula for the manufacture of rubber that will mean a fortune. A rival manufacturer learns of the discovery, and sets about to secure the papers describing the process. Other means failing, he engages a couple of safe breakers, enters the offices at night, and is prevented from robbing the safe by the son and his sweetheart.


Review from Moving Picture World, December 21, 1912

A BUSINESS BUCCANEER (Dec. 27).--Agnes is the trusted secretary of the president of the Hopewell Rubber Company and is in love with Tom, the president's son. Tom returns from South America with a new formula for the manufacture of rubber. Newspaper reporters visit the vessel when it arrives in Quarantine but succeed in securing little information from the young manufacturer. However, from advices they have gathered, they take it upon themselves to publish an article calling attention to Tom's possession of the new formula.

When the article comes to the notice of Hastings, the manager of a rival rubber company, he becomes alarmed and determines to secure the formula by strategy. He is given a cold reception when he attempts to bribe Agnes and therefore, resorting to desperate means, he employs two accomplices to assist him in entering the office of the Hopewell Company

That night Agnes and Tom go for a drive and take her pet dog along with them. As they pass the office building they notice a light in the window and go up to investigate. They discover Hastings and his men busy at the safe and they are made prisoners in the private office. Tom and Agnes succeed in removing their bonds and attempt to write a note beseeching help. They can find neither pencil nor pen and fear that the noise of the typewriter will alarm the robbers. Agnes therefore places a blank record on the phonograph, dictates a cry for help, and the cylinder is placed around the dog's neck. The dog, lowered from the window, runs to the Hopewell home.

Hopewell's butler discovers the phonograph record and places it on the machine. He arouses his employer and both hasten to the office, accompanied by two policemen, in time to liberate Agnes and Tom and effect the capture of the criminals.

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