Friends Tried and True (Lillian, Dorothy, Mary and Mildred) By M. Lewis Russel

Picture Play Magazine – January 1920 Vol. XI No.5

Friends Tried and True

By M. Lewis Russel

THEY’VE been pals “forever and ever,” according to Dorothy Gish—she and Lillian and Mary Pickford and Mildred Harris Chaplin. And the day before Lillian left Los Angeles for the East there was a tea party on the Gish lawn, a sort of love feast.

Mildred Harris, Mary Pickford, Lillian Gish, Mary Robinson McConnell (Gish) and Dorothy Gish
Mildred Harris, Mary Pickford, Lillian Gish, Mary Robinson McConnell (Gish) and Dorothy Gish

Years ago, when they were all just little girls, Lillian Gish had to give up a part with a road company because her mother could not go along. That part fell to Mary Pickford, whose mother could go. And before the company started off, Lillian and Dorothy and Mary had become friends. They kept in close touch with each other from that time on.

After awhile Mary Pickford joined the Griffith forces in pictures at the old Biograph Studio in New York. One day Lillian and Dorothy returned from a trip. “Oh, girls !” said Mary, “I am working in pictures. You have never seen moving pictures made, so come on over to the studio with me, and watch them work.” Off they went!

Mary Pickford, Mildred Harris Chaplin, Mary, Dorothy, and Lillian Gish
Mary Pickford, Mildred Harris Chaplin, Mary, Dorothy, and Lillian Gish

“Hello, Mary,” said D. W. G. “Who’s this with you?”

“Oh, they’re just Lillian and Dorothy—they never saw pictures made, so I brought them along !”

“Well—do they want to work in pictures ?”

“Sure they do !”

“All right—tell them to begin next week !”

And they started in at the fabulous sum of ten dollars a week!

“Do you remember, Lillian,” said Mary over the teacups, “those little twins next door, who used to slip up and poke you with their fingers, to see if you were alive? They always thought you were a doll!”

Mary Pickford and Lillian Gish
Mary Pickford and Lillian Gish

“Yes—and do you remember when Mildred first came to the studio here how little she seemed, and how we used to take care of her, Dorothy?”

“Oh, yes, Lillian”—it was Mildred Harris talking—”you know I always did just worship you! I used totag around after you and watch every thing you did!”

“Well, we had great times saving our pennies for birthday gifts !” Dorothy exclaimed. “Do you remember when we were little things, Mary—once your mother said Lillian was just too lovely to live ! She said she was afraid an angel would come and take her up to Heaven ”

Lillian Gish and Mary Pickford
Lillian Gish and Mary Pickford

“Oh, my!” laughed Mary Pickford, “and then they noticed that whenever Lillian and I were left alone I always got away from her as fast as I could ! I was afraid the angel would come for her when I was there, and take me, too!”

“Mildred has an anniversary next week! Why, what a shame I’ll be gone,” sighed Lillian. “But I’ll be thinking about you, anyway. Aren’t we the lucky girls, all of us—all four of us. It seems most too good to be true—after all the years and years we worked together !”

“That’s all right, don’t forget that you worked and you didn’t get more than you deserved—you and Mary, anyway,” Dorothy laughed, and caught Mildred gaily by the hand. “Come on, let’s see if there isn’t some chocolate ice cream !”

Friends Tried and True - Picture-Play Magazine (Jan 1920)
Friends Tried and True – Picture-Play Magazine (January 1920)

 

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One thought on “Friends Tried and True (Lillian, Dorothy, Mary and Mildred) By M. Lewis Russel

  1. This was so awesome to read! I knew that they were friends all their lives but never could find many photos of them together. The one where Dorothy and Lillian are on the train and Mary is saying bye to them was really nice. <3 Also, the ones with the mushroom and dwarf statues are great, too. Thank you for writing this article!!!

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