Western Feuds (1924)

Genres - Western  |  
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Produced and co-written by low-budget specialist Ashton Dearholt and directed by John Ford's older brother Francis Ford, this silent Western once again addressed the enmity between cattle ranchers and sheep herders. Edmund Cobb starred as Ed Jones, a government operative posing as a ranch hand. Attempting to keep the peace between the feuding factions, Ed falls in love Sally Warner (Florence Gilbert), the daughter of the area's leading sheepman (William White). Rescuing the girl from the unwanted attentions of Black Pete (Merrill McCormick), an outlaw masquerading as a sheep man, Jones must also deal with a powerful cattle baron (Francis Ford), who considers him a traitor. Leading lady Gilbert was Mrs. Ashton Dearholt in real-life and veteran Western villain McCormick billed himself "Al McCormick" this time around. According to at least one Western film historian, producer-director-actor Dearholt managed to stay afloat in Hollywood despite "an almost total lack of knowledge about what he was doing."