"A clever, manly little chap, earnest in manner and possessed of that frankness of extreme youth," as his publicity proclaimed, Bobby Connolly (born Robert Joseph Connolly) was arguably the pioneer Vitagraph company's most popular performer in the early to mid-1910s. From a family of vaudevillians (his sister Helen followed him into films), little master Connolly made his screen debut at the age of three with Kalem in 1912 but enjoyed his greatest success in Vitagraph's Sonny Jim (1915) and Bobby (1917) series, both written especially for him. Connolly, who publicly claimed a preference for roles that required him to use crutches, was born with an enlarged heart, an affliction that indirectly caused his death at the young age of 13 in 1922. He should not be confused with the later choreographer of the same name.
by Hans J. Wollstein biography