“But comedy likes him:” Week of December 6th, 1919

“Oh yes and he’s just as handsome off as on!”

One hundred years ago this week, Grace Kingsley introduced a newly-minted theater star to her readers:

So many matinee girls from 15 to 50 years of age are asking me about Edward Everett Horton, the new matinee idol now enshrined at the Majestic, that I just had to end the awful suspense. Here’s all about him.

He likes serious drama, but comedy likes him.

If there’s anything he does love it’s an argument, which proves something which isn’t so. For instance, he’s perfectly fascinated by that learned somebody who proved in a volume five inches thick that Francis Bacon wrote Shakespeare.

She mentioned that after graduating from Columbia University, he’d taught school, and “for five years he kept wondering how long it would be before the public got onto him and sent him back to learn some more about school-teachering,” but he’d had lots of success in Los Angeles so he was beginning to suspect he wouldn’t have to.

He liked riding his motorcycle, but “he says he has had eight accidents, three of which were fatal. Anyhow, he thought they were at the time.”

The surprise for classic film fans is that Horton once was a motorcycling matinee idol–he didn’t always look like the fretful characters that he played in so many talkies in the 1930’s-40’s. He really was hot stuff: on October 23rd, Edwin Schallert reported “Tuesday evening they hung a set of Edward Everett Horton’s pictures in the Majestic lobby, and yesterday afternoon as a sequel the actor had already received seventeen requests for autographed photographs—and this before he has even made his first appearance on the stage.”

Horton was born in 1886 in Brooklyn, and began his stage career in 1906. He came to Los Angeles in 1919 as part of the Wilkes stock company to star in Never Say Die, a farce, and Oscar Wilde’s An Ideal Husband. He was such a hit that he joined the company at the Majestic and stayed in Los Angeles. In 1922 he made his film debut in Too Much Business. Now he’s mainly remembered as Fred Astaire’s foil in five Astaire/Rogers musicals, and for his narration of Fractured Fairy Tales in the Bullwinkle show, but he played his fussy support role in everything from Trouble in Paradise (1932) to Arsenic and Old Lace (1944). He also continued his successful career in legitimate theater.

Horton, 1923

The part of Kingsley’s article that makes modern readers groan a bit is this:

As for his taste in girls. He likes blondes. Also brunettes. He like thin girls. Also fat ones. He likes intellectual girls. Also simps. In fact, to be frank with you, he likes girls…But most of all, he says, he likes a girl who can ask intelligent questions about his work, because, oh, how an actor loves to talk about himself. He isn’t married nor even thinking of marriage now.

Gavin Gordon

Mr. Horton couldn’t discuss his personal life in the newspaper without ending his career, but his longtime companion was actor Gavin Gordon. However, he was very good at deflecting that question. When he was 79 years old, Hedda Hopper asked him why he’d never married and:

“He shrugged. ‘I have a nice disposition. I have lovely furniture. I thought last leap year I’d a least have an offer, but nobody proposed.’”

He stayed active until just a month before his death from cancer in 1970.

Kingsley’s favorite film this week was another “brilliant comedy” featuring Bryant Washburn, It Pays to Advertise. Based on a popular play, it was screening at Clune’s Broadway:

where crowds looked and laughed at it all yesterday: and if you want to register more chuckles to the square inch than you’ve chuckled in a year, be sure and see it. “Thirteen Soap—Unlucky for Dirt” has brought more luck to actors and managers of the stage than almost any comedy of the past ten years. Now it’s bringing equal luck to Washburn, who, if any doubt existed before as to the fact that he is one of the foremost comedians of the screen, is thoroughly established in that happy niche.

Papa, you remember, turned his son out when he finished college and refused to work. Enter the girl, papa’s secretary, who was asked to make son go to work. She did, but not until papa had turned them both out, on finding they were engaged. It’s then, on suggestion of the son’s friend, the press agent, that a campaign of advertising of soap is entered upon. Papa falls for it, is made nearly insane by the unique ads of Thirteen Soap, which greet him at every turn. This is all done with the snappiest action, the smoothest flow of the story, and the most original subtitles.

Unfortunately it’s a lost film.

Eugene and Emma Zukor, 1923 passport

This week, a studio mogul’s son was behaving in such an atypical way, it needed reporting: Eugene Zukor (Adolph’s son) was engaged to marry Emma Dorothy Roth, a schoolteacher. Kingsley wrote:

Yes, passing all the dangers of chorus girls, not to mention the fascination of picture bathing girls, young Zukor apparently has made up his mind to marry as far out of the profession as possible. Papa Zukor admits he has long known the father and mother of his son’s fiancée, and that he thoroughly approves of the match. The romance had its beginnings so long ago as the San Francisco World’s Fair [1915], when the two young people met for the first time.

Zukor and Roth got married in Chicago on May 6th, 1920. There’s something to be said for marrying someone with a normal job: they were together for 73 years, until Emma Zuckor died in 1994.



Too Little Time: Week of October 11th, 1919

Mayor Snyder, Queen Elisabeth, King Albert

One hundred years ago this week, Grace Kingsley reported that Hollywood was preparing for some royal visitors:

In fact, there are three greatly thrilled picture stars in town today. They are Douglas Fairbanks, Charlie Chaplin and Mary Pickford. And no wonder. For all are to entertain no less a person than King Albert of Belgium.

His Majesty, it seems, delights in doing the unexpected. Yesterday [Tuesday, the 14th] a member of the royal party got Fairbanks on the phone from Santa Barbara and asked if it could be arranged for Fairbanks, Mary Pickford and Charlie Chaplin to meet the royal party at Fairbanks’ Beverly Hills home tomorrow. Of course, the world’s most famous smiler smiles his best and said, “Oh yes, indeedy!” and at once started making arrangements for entertaining the royal visitor and his party.

This would have been totally unexpected for the mayor’s General Reception Committee: they had given the newspaper an outline of their plans for the King’s visit on October 10th, and there were no stops in Beverly Hills on it. Plus, they weren’t even due to arrive in Los Angeles until Friday, not Thursday! However, if you were a king or queen, isn’t that exactly who you’d want to meet in 1919?

Another studio told KIngsley they were getting ready, too:

The royal party will be guests of honor at the Lasky studio Friday morning, according to the plans of the committee in charge of the programme. In honor of the occasion, Houdini, king of magicians and one of the galaxy of stars now at work at the Famous Players-Lasky headquarters, will stage his famous underwater extraction trick in the studio tank.

Everyone at the studio was anticipating the visit; leading man Thomas Meighan was working on Why Change Your Wife and he was in a big hurry to finish his scenes as a recovering accident victim, because he didn’t want to meet the King and Queen while wearing pajamas with a bandaged head.

Unfortunately, Meighan didn’t need to worry; King Albert, Queen Elisabeth and Crown Prince Leopold only got to spend five hours in Los Angeles on Friday so they didn’t get to meet the three biggest stars of the time or go to Lasky, and they had to make do with a stop at the Ince studio. It seems like what they told Kingsley was just wishful thinking.

The royal family

The King and Queen of Belgium were touring the United States to thank everyone for their support during the war, and to interest American businesses in investing in their country (the Times even helpfully published a list of opportunities). But they also took in some American sights, including San Francisco and Yosemite. They were greatly admired: during the war he had fought on the front with his troops, and she had worked as a nurse.

Along the parade route

On Friday, October 17th, the royal train arrived at the Southern Pacific Depot at 9 am (they were already half an hour behind schedule). Both Mayor Snyder and the King gave speeches, a choir sang the national anthems “America” and “La Brabanconne”* and Queen Elisabeth to give medals to six women who raised money for Belgian relief. Then they had a parade through downtown, with the royal party at the head of it and the Ninety-First Division plus returned soldiers behind. After that, they began their driving tour of the city.

Their first stop was at the Ince Studio, and Thomas Ince had prepared a short program to fit the limited amount of time they had. However, the King was quite interested in re-starting the Belgian film industry, and the Times reported:

Though King Albert and his party were scheduled to stay at the film studio but twenty minutes, they remained there almost an hour.

During his visit at the studio the King saw a man jump from the railing of a steamer into a frothing sea; he saw a quarrel between two lovers who were finally reconciled with a kiss—for the King’s benefit; he saw another woman plead with a vampire for her husband who had been stolen by the vamp; he saw anther act staged in a barn; he saw a submarine crew die in a wreak. During the tragic submarine death scene, Queen Elisabeth displayed more interest in a small, hairless pup that was snoozing on the sidelines.

King Albert asked no questions about the emotional stunts of the actors, but when he was escorted into the mechanical rooms, the cutting and the drying and developing rooms, immediately he fired many questions at his guides. He was interested and he wanted to know everything about the constructive side of film making.

Motion Picture News said that they saw Douglas MacLean and Doris May work on Mary’s Ankle, Herbert Bosworth in the submarine movie Below the Surface, and several scenes with Charles Ray. He was making Paris Green at the time.

Charles Ray

Next they went to Chaplin Field, where they saw some aerial maneuvers. Then they toured more of the city, stopping to visit some school children, and then it was already time to go. They got back on their special train and went to the Grand Canyon, skipping a lunch held in their honor in Pasadena. The Mayor went, but the 5,000 attendees were disappointed (the Belgian ambassador to the U.S. later sent an official expression of regret to the Pasadena and Glendale mayors).

So one should plan on staying for more than five hours if you want to see L.A.! If you’d like to know more about the royal visit, check out the Homestead Museum blog post and Marc Wanamaker’s post for the Culver City Historical Society


This week there was a tie for Kingsley’s favorite film. She enjoyed “a buoyant, refreshing tale” with Tom Mix and Frankie Lee:

Just you wait until you see him in Rough Riding Romance at the Symphony this week, and you’ll decide, with me, that if he keeps on getting stories like this he’ll have all the other India rubber heroes on the run.

“There ain’t no such thing as romance,” says Tom, but Frankie just at that minute points out a mysterious lady, who has stopped off at the train stalled at Cow Hollow, and whom Tom then and there picturesquely rescues from the attentions of the Hollow’s worst bad man.

But oh, what a joyous time that large audience had! I don’t know when I’ve heard and seen a crowd of people enjoy themselves more than when Tom, having grabbed an heirloom saber off the wall, drives Tony [his horse] down among that crowd of plain and assorted villains, and just naturally scares the pie out of them!

Rough Riding Romance has been preserved at the Library of Congress.

Why Smith Left Home

However, Kinglsey also had a very good time at quite a different movie, a jazzed up bedroom farce called Why Smith Left Home with Bryant Washburn and Lois Wilson. She observed how times had changed: “Now-a-days, to keep up with the stage boudoir plays, we’re taking all those old farces with their coy references to sleeping quarters, and putting ‘em in pictures with the beds all freely shown as the dining room table.” My goodness!

The “very hilarious hour of entertainment” involved a sturdy running gag:

The hero and heroine decide to wed, despite the farcical objections of the heroine’s aunts. But the bridegroom remains kissless, though willing and anxious, right up to the last foot of film. It is the constant efforts of these two to get a chance to be alone, a purpose thwarted by everything and everybody, including hotel fires, train wreaks, earthquakes, blackmailing maids and irate things-in-law, which make the comedy.

Why Smith Left Home has also been preserved at the Library of Congress, but it’s missing its third reel.

Salome vs. Shenandoah

Kingsley also had some important costume news:

Concerning next week’s premiere showing of Mack Sennett’s latest special production, Salome vs. Shenandoah, comes a bit of news that should immensely please devotees of laughter. Charlie Murray is going to present an act in conjunction with the production, in which fourteen comedians will appear dancing, all garbed in the same attire as that which Phyllis Haver wears as Salome in the film. In addition to this, Murray, Ben Turpin and Charles Conklin will wear the same costumes as in the film and will sing and play on the lyre an original song composition of Murray’s.

Charlie vouches for the information that Ben Turpin will positively wear nothing but a tiger’s skin and a shepherd’s staff. As for himself, his innate modesty forbade him making any statement regarding his own appearance further than to state he will wear something.


What a show! According to Brett Walker (Mack Sennett’s Fun Factory), the two-reeler is set in a small-town theater, where a troupe attempts to stage a Biblical tale and a Civil War epic simultaneously, with Ben Turpin cast as both John the Baptist and a Confederate spy. It was similar to Sennett’s earlier successes that made fun of melodramas, East Lynne with Variations and Uncle Tom Without a Cabin. Even though they were shorts, they were the main attraction on their theater bills. That was true in Los Angeles; Salome vs. Shenandoah played with In Mizzoura, a Western about a sheriff with romance troubles and a highwayman on the loose that didn’t get much notice.


If Sennett’s ad is at all true, it was a terrific movie.



“Advance Agent of Belgium’s Royal Pair,” Los Angels Times, September 7, 1919.

“Approve Plans For Welcoming Royalty,” Los Angeles Times, October 10, 1919.

“Belgian Royalty See Pictures in the Making on the Ince Lot,” Motion Picture News, November 29, 1919, p. 3952.

“Belgian Rulers to Come Here,” Los Angeles Times, September 24, 1919.

“Child Army Acclaims Hero King,” Los Angeles Times, October 18, 1919.

“City To Greet Royal Visitors,” Los Angeles Times, October 17, 1919.

“Southland Lavishes Its Warmest Hospitality Upon Regal Visitors,” Los Angeles Times, October 18, 1919.


*”La Brabanconne” is still Belgium’s national anthem, but “The Star Spangled Banner” didn’t become the United State’ anthem until March 3, 1931, after the Veterans of Foreign Wars petitioned Congress for it.


Fairbanks’ Itchy Feet: Week of September 6th, 1919


One hundred years ago this week, Douglas Fairbanks again felt the need to tell Grace Kingsley his travel plans, which included:

a trip to New York in November, whence, after making a picture in the East, he will go to Europe, visiting England, France, Switzerland, Italy and even Sweden and Denmark and the smaller nations.

He wanted to bring along Douglas Fairbanks, Jr., who had been visiting him all summer but had returned to school (there was no mention of what his ex-wife thought about it). He thought he might make some films while he was abroad, too.

This resembles his travel plans from early August, and Kingsley remembered to ask about them:

Concerning the trip to South America which Mr. Fairbanks and Charlie Chaplin contemplate taking together, the two have decided to put that off until after Fairbanks’ tour abroad.

Kathleen Clifford

He really wanted to get out of town, even though he was in the middle of casting his next film. He had chosen a leading lady, but he wasn’t ready to tell Kingsley yet (it was Kathleen Clifford, and the film was When the Clouds Roll By).


Unlike the South America trip, he actually did go to Europe the next year and visited everywhere on his list, substituting the Netherlands and Germany for the Nordic countries. However, he had a different companion. He married Mary Pickford on March 28, 1920 and on June 12, 1920 they set off on their honeymoon, sailing to Southampton, England. British Pathe Newsreel filmed their arrival and the crowds that swarmed them:

Mobs of fans followed them wherever they went, making seeing the sights impossible, with one exception. According to Fairbanks biographer Tracey Goessel, they got a break in Germany—their films hadn’t been shown there during the war, so they weren’t noticed except in American-occupied Coblenz. But after a day without being recognized, Pickford realized she didn’t like it and said “Let’s go someplace where we are known. I’ve had enough obscurity for a lifetime.”

British Pathe caught up with them again at their last stop in Paris, and you can see that obscurity was not a problem there:

I feel claustrophobic just looking at the newsreels! They arrived back in New York on July 29th.


Kingsley’s favorite show this week was at Grauman’s, where Mack Sennett’s Uncle Tom Without a Cabin and Love Insurance with Bryant Washburn were playing; she said, “let’s stipulate right from the outset that these two form a combination that assay more laughs to the square inch of film than any program it’s been our joy to witness in many a long day.”

She described Love Insurance as

“a sprightly and ingenious story, this, involving an English lord engaged to marry a wealthy American girl, but who is afraid of losing her, and therefore takes out insurance in Lloyd’s against such a mishap. Bryant is the boy sent to watch over the interests of the insurance company and see that the marriage comes off according to schedule. There is a mounting comic interest in the march of events—and at least two big surprises at the end! It’s these really brilliant little screen comedies which are lifting the screen above the slush and mush.”

This version is lost, so I’ll spoil the surprises: he wasn’t really a Lord, and the girl ends up with Washburn. It got remade twice more, once with Reginald Denny as The Reckless Age (1924) and once as One Night in the Tropics (1940) with Allan Jones and Abbott and Costello.

She really enjoyed the two-reeler on the program, too:

Uncle Tom Without His Cabin is the funniest kind of burlesque on barnstorming companies, and must be seen to be appreciated. It hits off the mannerisms of actors behind the scenes in a way to amuse both the profession and outsiders, and drolly satirizes the trials and tribulations of the barnstormers.

The short did so well at this theater, Sennett made an ad out of it!


Brett Walker, in Mack Sennett’s Fun Factory, wrote that it was one of their best remembered and most popular films, and it helped make Ben Turpin a star.

Dorothy Gish in Nobody Home

Kingsley also really enjoyed seeing Dorothy Gish in Nobody Home, which was “a fresh, brisk little comedy, about a superstitious girl who won’t make a turn in life without consulting the cards.” She gave Gish quite an unusual compliment:

Dorothy ‘s hand and feet are funny; she can get more comedy over in the crooking of a finger-tip, the twinkle of a heel, than most comediennes can throughout the playing of a whole humor feature.

Unfortunately, it’s a lost film.


Week of June 15th, 1918

Mary Pickford and Cecil B. De Mille, doing their bit

One hundred years ago this week, Grace Kingsley wrote about the film industry’s continuing enthusiastic support for the war:

At last Thursday’s meeting of the Photoplayers Equity Association, an organization consisting of some 700 members and including many of the leading picture actors of the western film colony, that organization made an important resolution in regard to doing its bit financially in respect to war work.

By resolution, which was practically unanimously adopted, the association members voted to devote 5 percent of their incomes derived from picture work to the war work of the Motion Picture War Service Association, it being understood that any member who refused to abide by the resolution was automatically dropped from the association. There was no opposition to the measure, however.

Automatic expulsion—that seems harsh. The Association estimated that they’d raise between $3-4000 per month.

The Motion Picture War Service Association had only recently been formed. Their first meeting was on May 26th at Clunes Auditorium. People from every branch of the industry were there, and D.W. Griffith, Lois Weber, Cecil B. De Mille and Mary Pickford all gave speeches. The organization’s goal was to build a hospital that they would give to the government. Even though they raised $37, 150 just at that first meeting, the war ended before they could begin planning the hospital. The fund was dissolved in February 1919 and the money returned to the donors, according to screenwriter Frank E. Woods in Moving Picture World.



The Photoplayers Equity Association was an early actors’ union. Modeled on Actors’ Equity (the theatrical performers’ union founded in 1913), it looks like it was founded in 1918–at least that’s when they were first listed in the city directory. However, actors weren’t very organized and by January 1920 there were two other competing unions, the Screen Players and the Actors’ Association. Frank Gillmore, the secretary of Actors’ Equity, came out from New York and convinced them all to join his group. Actors’ Equity covered film actors until 1933, when after movie producers announced an across-the-board salary cut, members decided they needed a separate group, the Screen Actors Guild. SAG represents film actors to this day. If you’re looking for a research challenge, 1910-20s Hollywood union history is just waiting for somebody to write it. It’s full of strife and drama and would easily fill a book.



Kingsley’s favorite film this week was full of “charming frivolity,” Kidder and Ko., featuring “that charming comedian of commerce, that roisterer of the roll-top desk, Bryant Washburn.” She gave a breezy synopsis:

The hero, in the fish business, is a rather poor fish himself until he meets a remarkable girl (Gertrude Selby, who looks like Mary Pickford without trying to) and a remarkable inventor, after which and a series of comic adventures he loses his mind and then recovers it again.

Exhibitor’s Herald agreed with Kingsley, saying “an excellent warm weather vehicle is Kidder & Ko. There is no difficult plot to deal with…an excellent tonic for depression.” The not-difficult plot is Cuthbert Kidder’s father throws him out until he can earn $1000 on his own. He gets robbed and knocked unconscious, then a tin mogul and his daughter rescue him. Cuthbert meets an inventor of tin cans, and presents the new can to the mogul and they all make buckets of money and live happily ever after. It’s a lost film, which is too bad–the world needs more frivolity.


It played with an added attraction:

A very funny Rolin comedy gives Harold Lloyd, Harry Pollard and that deliciously pretty child, Bebe Daniels, a chance to hand you a laugh even on a hot day. In fact, a lot of laughs.

Sic ‘em Towser is lost film, but luckily Peter Milne reviewed it in Motion Picture News. Lloyd’s “glass character” (which debuted in September 1917) dressed up as a homeless man for a costume party, but he gets mistaken for a real one. Meanwhile, a real homeless man turns up at the party and Bebe Daniels mistakes him for Lloyd. As Milne put it, “commotion ensues.” That hot day was 88 degrees, so it’s no wonder Kingsley wanted light entertainment.

Pickford by the water, not in it.

Another Los Angeleian beat the heat with a trip to the sea side. Despite her recent marital scandal, Mary Pickford wasn’t avoiding publicity entirely. She told Kingsley about her and her sister Lottie’s Sunday outing. They dove into the ocean and

Mary essayed to ride one of the bucking fish. It turned over with her.” ‘I went glub-glub to the bottom,” said Mary,” but half a dozen people exerted themselves to save me. When they hauled me up on my sea-horse again a boy looked at me aghast. I suppose my hair was all smack back against my head, and I looked awful. ‘My goodness,’ he exclaimed, ‘if it ain’t Mary Pickford. Well she doesn’t look much as she does in pictures.

Kingsley observed, “you can’t even drown in comfort and privacy if you’re a picture star.”

I did try to find out something about the bucking fish (they must have been some kind of flotation device) but I had no luck.


Note: Mary Mallory in the comments suggested that a bucking fish might be like the leaping fish from Douglas Fairbanks’ 1916 film. Here’s a photo:


It certainly looks like something you could easily slide off of. Thanks, Mary!



“Frank E. Woods Organizing Fund for Photoplayers, “ Moving Picture World, February 22, 1919, p.1056.

“Gillmore Explains Equity,” Camera!, May 7, 1921, p. 3.

“Los Angeles Film Folk Show Loyalty,” Motography, June 15, 1918, p. 1127.

Milne, Peter. “Sic ‘em Towser,” Motion Picture News, June 8, 1918, p. 3455.



Week of April 20th, 1918


One hundred years ago this week, Grace Kingsley reported on the Western expansion of another group dedicated to doing their part for the war effort, Stage Women’s War Relief. She interviewed actress Louise Closser Hale, the vice-president and one of the original founders of the group in New York, who was in town to help establish the new branch. Kingsley wrote:

The motion-picture people of the West are responding splendidly, according to Mrs. Hale, to their opportunities for rendering noble aid to the stage men gone to war.

One of these projects, which sounds modest enough, is the workroom now being established in the Mason Operahouse Building; and if the Los Angeles branch approximates the work of similar service rooms in New York and other cities, its work will be of tremendous importance. The service room is a very democratic institution—all varieties of stage workers from stars to scrub women labor together for the common cause. No surgical bandages are made, but sewing, knitting and crocheting are done, all according to patterns furnished by other local war reliefs and every article made is turned over to the Red Cross and other relief agencies. No workers outside the profession are permitted to work here, however, no matter what their station or calling.

“One of our first beneficiaries,” said Mrs. Hale, “was a baby born after its father—a Fox director—was called away to war. We were very excited about it, and I am sure the youngster received about three times as many clothes as it needed.”

Hale and Olive White Farnum were planning a big meeting at the Morosco Theater on Friday, April 26th to kick things off. In addition to the workroom, they wanted to launch a series of benefits and bazars, and the proceeds would go to stage and screen soldiers and their families.

The SWWR Western branch was a success. To raise money they did hold all-star benefit shows, as well as flag drives, garden fetes, and they even auctioned kisses from actresses at their show at the Hotel Alexandria. They also organized entertainment for sailors and soldiers; their first show was at the Submarine base in San Pedro on May 9th. In addition, they opened a tea room that was free for service members

The group held their last meeting where they began, at the Morosco Theater, on December 4th. There they decided to take a new name and purpose. Calling themselves the Players Welfare League, they decided to help stage people down on their luck. They immediately started planning fundraising. Unfortunately, interest in the group petered out, but in 1939 as World War 2 began, the government asked women from the New York branch to reactivate their group. They did, starting a new workroom, raising money, training speakers to sell war bonds and running Stage Door Canteens, which provided food and entertainment for service members. The group got a new name: The American Theater Wing. After the war they began giving grants to theater companies and educating people about live theater, but they’re best known for their annual awards, the Tonys and the Obies.


Kingsley’s favorite film this week was a “corking” comedy, Twenty-One, starring “that fascinating screen persona, Bryant Washburn.” He had a dual role: a tough prize-fighter and the mollycoddled youth who wants to be a prizefighter. As she pointed out, “naturally (in picturedom) he gets his chance.” The two change places, but the fighter likes the youth’s job so much that he refuses to change back. So the young man must not only fight in the ring, but he also has the beat up the fighter to get his own place back. She really enjoyed it: “the picture is done with sparkle and Washburn invests it with his usual delightfully unctuous humor.” It’s a lost film.


Kingsley reported on D.W. Griffith’s comeback success:

When Hearts of the World, Griffith’s latest film masterpiece, began its seventh week at Clune’s Auditorium last night, the audience numbered just twenty less than on the opening night. The film has broken all records at Clune’s Auditorium and has established new records for Griffith’s productions. The end of the run is not in sight.

The photos the New York Post Office doesn’t want you to see!

Kingsley told a story of excessive war rationing:

Again has Annette Kellerman been made to realize that a fine head of hair does not constitute a bathing suit in the eyes of the law. Photographs of Miss Kellerman in her latest Fox picture, Queen of the Sea, and nothing much else, caught the eye of the New York post office authorities, and she has been called upon to explain why she has Hooverized so painstakingly in the matter of bathing suits.

Now the lost film is remembered for being the first movie to be shot on  panchromatic negative film, not for running into trouble with censors. However, I did learn that it’s still illegal to mail what the U.S. Postal Service considers lewd or filthy matter. According to their basic standards for mailing services/domestic mail manual, “obscene, lewd, lascivious, or filthy publications or writings, or mail containing information on where, how, or from whom such matter may be obtained, and matter that is otherwise mailable but that has on its wrapper or envelope any indecent, lewd, lascivious, or obscene writing or printing, and any mail containing any filthy, vile, or indecent thing is nonmailable (18 USC 1461, 1463).”

However, I suspect they don’t think Miss Kellerman is filthy, vile or indecent any more.