Scarlet Drop (1918)

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The Scarlet Drop was one of John Ford's seven directorial efforts for the year 1918 -- none of which, alas, seem to have survived. Ford also wrote the screenplay, while his friend and mentor Harry Carey essayed the leading role. Briefly dropping his standard "Cheyenne Harry" characterization, Carey is cast as "Kaintuck" Ridge, a veteran of the War Between the States. Disdained as "poor white trash," Ridge distinguishes himself with conspicuous acts of courage when he joins a Southern guerilla band, comprised of social outcasts like himself. With a price on his head, Ridge is forced to escape to the West, where he is reunited with Marley Calvert (Vester Pegg), an aristocratic Southern belle whose life he saved during the war. Though he is deeply in love with Marley, he has sworn vengeance against her family due to past humiliations, and it takes plenty of hard ridin', fancy shootin' and heavy drinkin' before the plot is resolved.