'When Lincoln Paid': Previously Lost 1913 Movie About Abraham Lincoln to Be Screened

Francis Ford brother of John FordWhat is apparently the only surviving print of the 1913 silent short When Lincoln Paid was accidentally found by a contractor inside an old New Hampshire barn about to be demolished in 2008. The nitrate reels were then given to Keene State College Film Archives, which determined that the film couldn't be found in film archives.

The tale of a mother of a dead Union solider who requests that Abraham Lincoln pardon a Confederate soldier she had initially turned in, When Lincoln Paid is one of eight early silents starring Francis Ford (photo) as Lincoln. According to an Associated Press report, there are no known surviving copies of the others. Among those are The Heart of Lincoln (1915), The Toll of War (1913), and The Battle of the Bull Run (1913).

As per the IMDb, also in the cast of When Lincoln Paid are Ethel Grandin, a popular actress in the 1910s, and Jack Conway, the future MGM director of classics such as Red-Headed Woman (1932), with Jean Harlow; A Tale of Two Cities (1935), with Ronald Colman; and Libeled Lady (1936), with Harlow, William Powell, Myrna Loy, and Spencer Tracy.

A Colorado lab has restored When Lincoln Paid, which will be screened on April 20 at Keene.

Francis Ford, by the way, was the brother of four-time Oscar-winning director John Ford, among whose classics are The Informer, Stagecoach, The Grapes of Wrath, How Green Was My Valley, and The Quiet Man.

Francis' film career as an actor went from 1909 all the way to 1953. By then, he was mostly appearing in small – sometimes uncredited – roles, including several in his brother's films. Francis also directed dozens of movies from 1912 to 1928.

More information on the When Lincoln Paid screening here.

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