University of Delaware Library

Pickford, Mary, 1892-1979.

Mary Pickford photographs and publicity stills

1914-1933


Descriptive Summary

Identification: PPI 104


Creator: Pickford, Mary, 1892-1979.


Title: Mary Pickford photographs and publicity stills


Inclusive Dates: 1914-1933


Extent: .33 linear feet (42 items)


Abstract: This collection of American actress Mary Pickford photographs and publicity stills contains 40 photographs and two glass slides. The photographs and slides provide insight into production, distribution, and publicity during Hollywood's era of silent films.


Language: Materials entirely in English.



Citation

PPI 104, Mary Pickford photographs and publicity stills, Special Collections, University of Delaware Library, Newark, Delaware.

Shelving Summary

Box 1: Shelved in SPEC MSS manuscript boxes

Location

Special Collections, University of Delaware Library / Newark, Delaware 19717-5267 / Phone: 302-831-2229 / Fax: 302-831-6003 / URL: http://www.lib.udel.edu/ud/spec/

Source

Gift of Paul Preston Davis, October 2011.

Processing

Processed and encoded by Elyse Brown, February 2013.


The collection is open for research.

Terms Governing Use and Reproduction

Use of materials from this collection beyond the exceptions provided for in the Fair Use and Educational Use clauses of the U.S. Copyright Law may violate federal law. Permission to publish or reproduce is required from the copyright holder. Please contact Special Collections , University of Delaware Library, http://www.lib.udel.edu/cgi-bin/askspec.cgi


Biographical Note

Dubbed "the first movie star" by Time magazine, Mary Pickford (1892-1979) made over 200 films during her career, which spanned the years between 1909 and 1934. She starred in films such as Rebecca of Sunnybrook Farm (1917), A Little Princess (1917), Pollyanna (1920), and Tess of the Storm Country (1922).

Mary Pickford was born Gladys Marie Smith in 1892 in Toronto, Canada. She found fame in her late teens in New York City making films for the Biograph film company. Her 5-foot tall frame and delicate beauty earned her several ingenue roles and the nickname "America's Sweetheart." She commanded high pay for her roles, supervised most aspects of her films' production, successfully marketed herself, and was socially active during World War I, taking part in campaigns promoting the sale of Liberty Bonds. In 1919 she joined forces with Charlie Chaplin, D. W. Griffith, and Douglas Fairbanks in co-founding the film distribution company United Artists Corporation. The company freed actors from relying on the large studios for contracts and enabled them to enjoy the full profits and creative control of their films.

Sources:

Corliss, Richard. "The First Movie Star: A Pickford Revival in Books and Videos Proves There's Still Something About Mary." Time, June 28, 1999.

"Mary Pickford." American Decades, December 16, 1998. Gale Biography in Context. http://galenet.galegroup.com (accessed February 2013).


Scope and Content Note

This collection of American actress Mary Pickford photographs and publicity stills contains 40 photographs and two glass slides. The photographs and slides provide insight into production, distribution, and publicity during Hollywood's era of silent films.

Many of the photographs are marked for cropping and compositing for promotional use. The verso of many of the photographs are marked with pencil, typed text, or stamps, providing credits for studios such as Artcraft Pictures and photographers such as Charles Rosher (1885-1974) and K. O. Rahmn (1885-1974). The typed text on the back of one undated photograph indicates that all of Pickford's fashions were custom-made for the actress by French designer Jeanne-Marie Lanvin (1867-1946). Other notable figures associated with the films, such as directors Marshall Neilan (1891-1958) and Maurice Tourneur (1876-1961), appear in some of the photographs. Aspects of the productions themselves, such as camera angles, lighting, and even a stunt performed by Pickford herself in Rebecca of Sunnybrook Farm (1917), can be seen in several of the photographs.

The collection also includes two 3.25" x 4" glass slides which contain promotional images for two films, M'Liss (1918) and Pollyanna (1920). Slides such as these were projected in theaters before, and often between the reels of, showings of other films, announcing that the film promoted on the slide would also be shown at upcoming times. There is a blank space on each slide into which the intended show date and time would be handwritten.


Selected Search Terms

Personal Names
Lanvin, Jeanne, 1867-1946.
Neilan, Marshall A., 1891-1958.
Pickford, Mary, 1892-1979.
Rahmn, Knut Olaf, 1876-1957.
Rosher, Charles, 1885-1974.
Tourneur, Maurice, 1876-1961.
Corporate Names
Artcraft Pictures Corporation.
United Artists Corporation.
Topical Terms
Motion picture actors and actresses--United States--History--20th century.
Motion picture industry--United States--History--20th century.
Motion picture industry--United States--Marketing.
Silent films--United States--History.
Form/Genre Terms
Color slides.
Film stills.
Photographs.
Occupation
Actors.
Photographers.
Personal Contributors
Rahmn, Knut Olaf, 1876-1957.
Rosher, Charles, 1885-1974.
Corporate Contributors
Artcraft Pictures Corporation.
United Artists Corporation.

Detailed Contents List

Studio publicity, undated , undated   [Box 1 F1]

Six undated publicity photographs. Some feature Pickford with gifts from fans. The verso of one photograph discusses Pickford's personal fashion designer, "Madame Lanvin."

Unidentified films, undated , undated   [Box 1 F2]

Dolly Lane, 1914   [Box 1 F3]

Tess of the Storm Country, 1914   [Box 1 F4]

The Little Princess, 1917   [Box 1 F5]

One photograph and one collage of "gag stills" featuring Pickford and the film's director, Marshall Neilan, joking between takes.

The Poor Little Rich Girl, 1917   [Box 1 F6]

Two photographs; both include director Maurice Tourneur.

Rebecca of Sunnybrook Farm, 1917   [Box 1 F7]

War Relief , 1917   [Box 1 F8]

Text on verso indicates it is a still from an all-star liberty bond film campaign.

Amarilly of Clothes-line Alley, 1918   [Box 1 F9]

One photograph, list of production studios written on verso.

Stella Maris, 1918   [Box 1 F10]

One production still, one publicity photograph of Pickford visiting a group of orphans.

Captain Kidd, Jr., 1919   [Box 1 F11]

The Heart of the Hills, 1919   [Box 1 F12]

Pollyanna, 1920   [Box 1 F13]

Six photographs; one photograph marked "United Artists Corporation" on verso; Pickford co-founded United Artists in 1919.

Rosita, 1923   [Box 1 F14]

Stamp of photographer Charles Rosher on verso.

Little Annie Rooney, 1925   [Box 1 F15]

My Best Girl, 1927   [Box 1 F16]

Two photographs, stamp of "K. O. Rahmn: Photographer, Mary Pickford Corp." on verso of each.

Secrets, 1933   [Box 1 F17]

Two photographs from Pickford's final film, one with stamp of K. O. Rahmn on verso.

Glass slides , undated   [Box 1 F18]

These slides are for Pickford's Pollyanna (1920) and M'Liss (1918).