The Country Doctor (July 8, 1909)

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The Country Doctor
 

Released on July 8, 1909: A country doctor goes to a neighbor's home to tend an ill child while his own daughter lays dying in his home.

Produced by Biograph Company

Directed by D.W. Griffith

The Actors: Mary Pickford (oldest daughter of Poor Mother), Kate Bruce (Poor Mother), Adele DeGarde (sick daughter of Poor Mother), Gladys Egan (daughter Edith Harcourt), Rose King (the maid), Florence Lawrence (Mrs. Harcourt), Frank Powell (Doctor Harcourt)

 

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Doctor, Doctor, Give me the News . . .

No one can watch the first motion pictures made without encountering D.W. Griffith. David Wark Griffith, from the small Kentucky town of Crestwood became fascinated by 'moving pictures' after acting in a short motion picture produced by Thomas Edison. Griffith got a job at the American Mutoscope and Biograph Company in New York City in 1908 and soon moved from acting to directing, with almost 600 movies to his credit before his death in 1948. I don't believe that there was another person during the birth of motion pictures that brought more new ideas and revolutionary camera techniques to the young industry. But few motion picture actors or executives attended his funeral in Hollywood, and his grave was unmarked for almost two years in the small hometown church graveyard. I strive to bring every existing public domain motion picture to my web site so that they never disappear and are freely available to everyone in the world, but I am not ready to share his most famous feature length motion picture that caused riots outside motion picture theaters in 1915. Griffith was a gentleman from the old South, and his father was a Colonel in the Confederate Army during the U.S. Civil War, and his epic telling of the birth of the Ku Klux Klan, while historically important, continues to this day to be possibly the most controversial motion picture produced in the U.S. But with that story aside, Griffith brought to the library of motion pictures many, many amazing stories as no one else ever could. This 14 minute story is a provocative telling of an oft presented story. No one alive today in the world will forget the sight of dedicated firemen and policeman rushing into the collapsing World Trade Center buildings in New York City as hundreds were running away. The dedication of passionate professionals who put self and family aside as they serve others is seldom told in a more effective way than in this short story about a country doctor who goes to the aid of a neighbor with an ill daughter as his own daughter lays dying at home. Pop a bowl of white kernel popcorn with warm melted butter on it and enjoy the show.

Florence Lawrence, Frank Powell, Gladys Egan and Rose King
Florence Lawrence, Frank Powell, Gladys Egan and Rose King
Florence Lawrence, Frank Powell and Gladys Egan
Florence Lawrence, Frank Powell and Gladys Egan
Florence Lawrence, Frank Powel, Gladys Egan and Rose King
Florence Lawrence, Frank Powel, Gladys Egan and Rose King
Florence Lawrence, Gladys Egan and Frank Powell
Florence Lawrence, Gladys Egan and Frank Powell
Florence Lawrence watches Gladys Egan die
Florence Lawrence watches Gladys Egan die
Florence Lawrence tends to ill child Gladys Egan
Florence Lawrence tends to ill child Gladys Egan
Frank Powell comforts Florence Lawrence as Gladys Egan lays ill
Frank Powell comforts Florence Lawrence as Gladys Egan lays ill
Frank Powell, Kate Bruce and Mary Pickford with ill young daughter Adele DeGarde
Frank Powell, Kate Bruce and Mary Pickford with ill young daughter Adele DeGarde
Kate Bruce, Mary Pickford and Adele DeGarde
Kate Bruce, Mary Pickford and Adele DeGarde
Rose King, Florence Lawrence and Gladys Egan
Rose King, Florence Lawrence and Gladys Egan