Florence La Badie
She was born Florence Russ in New York April 27, 1888.
She was adopted by Joseph and Amanda LaBadie and raised as an
only child. She was educated at the Convent of Notre Dame. In
1908, she began a career on stage with a touring company. She
also worked as an artist model and appeared on magazine covers.
She was introduced to D.W. Griffith by Mary Pickford in 1909.
She appeared in several Biograph shorts in minor roles including
as Bobby Harron's sister in "Enoch Arden" (1911). Feeling
that she was not going to get featured parts at Biograph, she
went to Thanhouser where she quickly became a popular star in
such films as "The Last of the Mohicans" (1911) and
"Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde" (1912). She appeared in over
80 films during a two-year period with the company. Cashing in
on the success of "The Perils of Pauline" (1914), Thanhouser
starred LaBadie in the 1914 serial "The Million Dollar Mystery,"
a huge success for Thanhouser and LaBadie. Starring roles continued,
and her popularity with movie-goers grew. She was known for being
willing to take a risk and doing many of her own stunts. She loved
the wild rides at Coney Island, sometimes rode a motorcycle to
work and learned to fly an airplane. Although she signed a new
contract with Thanhouser in 1916, the company was in its final
days. LaBadie made 13 features in 1916 and 1917. After the completion
of the war drama "The Man Without a Country" (1917),
she and friend Daniel Carson Goodman were driving outside Ossining,
NY, and the car's brakes failed on a hill. LaBadie spent the next
two months in the hospital, but succumbed to her injuries Oct.
Selected films of this star available for viewing:
The Return of Draw Egan (1916)
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