Volume II: Filmography




February 24, 1911 (Friday)

Length: 1,000 feet

Character: Drama

Cast: Marie Eline (Marie, the little daughter)

Note: The release date was given erroneously as January 24, 1911 in a review in The New York Dramatic Mirror.


ADVERTISEMENT, The Moving Picture World, February 18, 1911:

"The newsboy hero was one of those remarkable youngsters that poverty could not down or misery sour. For deep in his heart of hearts was a spring of goodness, a strength, and even of charity, that betokened brighter days and an honorable position in the important life that was to come. A small wonder, therefore, that in the first test of his manhood, he acquitted himself with rare distinction. He merely acted according to his likes - and they were strong with the flame of righteousness. He had been weighed and not found wanting, as may have been expected. The weighing is what the reel takes up."


SYNOPSIS, The Moving Picture World, February 25, 1911:

"John Bailey is a struggling young workman, but he is fond of drink. His conduct is long a source of sorrow to his wife, but her prayers and entreaties are disregarded. Finally the climax comes when John returns home one evening and is so much under the influence of liquor that he strikes his wife. Believing that life is unbearable, the woman takes the child and goes out into the world, preferring even death to future mistreatment and humiliation. The woman and helpless child, with no refuge in sight, wander around in the snow, and finally fall exhausted into the sleep that precedes death. Fortunately for them, Jim Sands, a crippled newsboy, sees their plight, goes to their assistance and takes them into his poor little home. When they prepare to start out again, Jim offers to share his all with them and they remain until the mother can obtain some other refuge.

"John, in the meantime has hunted vainly for his wife and child, and a newspaper story of the death of a woman and child in a storm convinces him that May and Marie are the victims. Remorseful, he decides that he has no right to live, and plans to drown himself. He is saved from this crime by Jim, and a Salvation Army band that is holding services nearby offers to care for him. He realizes that the one thing to do to atone for his fault is to live a manly, useful life rather than to seek suicide, the refuge of the weak. Jim by accident learns of the relationship that exists between May and Jack and brings them together. They are reunited and Jack promises to be in the future what he should have been in the past, a husband who puts home and family above everything else in the world."


REVIEW, The Billboard, February 25, 1911:

"The Thanhouser juvenile actors play important parts in this production, a story which treats of a newsboy's kindness and faithfulness to a mother and little daughter, who have been driven from their home by a drunken father. He finds them by the roadside, half buried in snow, and takes them to his hut, caring for them as best as he can. A series of incidents in which the newsboy performs heroically leads to the reunion and reconciliation of the family. The story, while rather of the made-to-order description, by the deft interpretation it receives at the hands of the players, is made more plausible. The photography is sharp and clear."


REVIEW, The Morning Telegraph, February 26, 1911:

"Strong pathos and true heart interest are blended in A Newsboy Hero, and while there is much that is out of the ordinary run of life, yet such pictures can do naught but good. A crippled newsboy befriends a little girl by dragging her on her sled to her home. That evening the child's father returns home intoxicated and drives her and her mother from the house. They wander in the snow until exhausted, when they are found by the newsboy. An automobile party comes along and they assist the woman and child to the newsy's hut, where they make their home. Meanwhile through a newspaper announcement of the burial in potter's field of a mother and child the father believes them to be dead. In his distraction he goes to the waterside and is on the point of throwing himself in when a Salvation Army company appears. The newsboy is in the onlooking crowd and he spies this would-be suicide in time to prevent his act. The Salvationists take him in tow. Sometime later the little girl shows the newsboy a locket photo of her father, and the lad recognizes his acquaintance and takes the wife and child to him, who has meantime reformed and become a member of the Salvation corps."


REVIEW by Walton, The Moving Picture News, March 11, 1911:

"A story out of a common life that made the people weep. A simple story but a strong one.... We'll call it a 'heart' yarn."


REVIEW, The New York Dramatic Mirror, March 1, 1911: This review is reprinted in the narrative section of the present work.

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Copyright © 1995 Q. David Bowers. All Rights Reserved.