How Many of These 1914 Stars Do You Recognize?

It’s time to test our knowledge of silent stardom circa 1914! This is an interesting time period because, while we love and recognize a decent number of stars from this colorful period, there are still a great many who are met with a “HUH?!” even by nerdy fans.

Let’s have fun and acquaint ourselves with some big names. These entries are from March and April 1914 issues of Motography. I am not presenting an exhaustive filmography for each star, just linking to a film or two for the convenience of anyone who wants to sample their work.

Augustus Phillips

I have not seen the “delightful comedies” listed here but would very much like to. However, Phillips did play the Statesman in An Unsullied Shield (1913).

Ben F. Wilson

Wilson had a long career before his death in 1930. I have not seen it but his 1925 serial The Power God is on DVD.

Gertrude McCoy

I don’t know if I delight in the histrionic films but McCoy did play Light in The Blue Bird (1918).

Gladys Hulette

Hulette is a great favorite of mine, from her child roles in A Midsummer Night’s Dream and Princess Nicotine to her touching performance in Tol’able David.

Harry Benham

Harry Benham played the title role in Nicholas Nickleby for Thanhouser and was one of the company’s stars.

Mignon Anderson

I have not seen any of Mignon Anderson’s “Desperate Desmond” roles but should very much like to. You can see her in Just a Shabby Doll, which also features Harry Benham.

Maude Fealy

Another Thanhouser player, you can see Fealy in King Rene’s Daughter.

Riley Chamberlin

Chamberlin’s name is misspelled in this piece. You can see him in The Evidence of the Film.

You can look up lots of swell clippings like these at the Media History Digital Library.

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13 Replies to “How Many of These 1914 Stars Do You Recognize?”

  1. I recognized Ben Wilson because I knew he had played Cleek. I edited a set of the Cleek stories awhile back and one volume collected the short stories that were adapted to film. It also included the reviews from Motion Picture World. While the Cleek series is “lost” (or at least not easily obtainable) I ordered “The Power God” to get an idea of how Wilson was on screen. Another silent film to add to my small collection. Thank you, Fritzi.

  2. Augustus Phillips, Maude Fealy, Gladys Hulette, and Harry Benham. Beyond that…nope. Thanks, as always, for the link: Media History Digi is my friend in these matters.

  3. I have seen “The Power God,” which is not a great serial, but has some funny moments. Wilson’s “Officer 444” is broader and funnier, not alway intentionally. Both co-star Wilson’s wife, Neva Gerber, who is not exactly star material.

    1. After reading Stephen Pershing’s comment about The Power God and Officer 444 I ordered a copy of the latter. Now, if I could only find a copy of The Chronicles of Cleek!

  4. Oh my goodness! Only one, Gladys Hulette. As you say, now we have the enjoyable task of searching out the others.

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