Her Crowning Glory (1911)

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In this Vitagraph "Bunnyfinch" film, comedian John Bunny plays a widower with an unruly child. Bunny views the little girl's rowdy behavior as more playful than annoying; not so his sister, who find the child's irrepressible antics unbearable. She insists that her brother hire a governess (Flora Finch) who has a reputation for meting out stern discipline. The governess proceeds to make the little girl's life miserable, and doesn't win any favor with her nurse, either. However, she wins the heart of the widower who ultimately proposes to her, proclaiming that her beautiful mass of long, dark hair was what made him notice her in the first place. The nurse overhears Bunny's declaration and takes note. The day before the wedding, while the governess is dozing in a chair, she sends the little girl over with a pair of scissors. The child cuts off all the woman's hair, and when the widower sees how homely she really is ("Her one beauty gone," the title card wryly notes), the wedding's off. The governess is sent packing, and the child, the nurse, and the widower are a happy family once again.