Slavey Student (1915)

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Depending on which source one reads, the Edison production The Slavey Student was either a three- or four-reeler. Viola Dana and Pat O'Malley play sister and brother, forced to fend for themselves after their parents' death. While O'Malley heads to New York to seek his fortune, Dana enters an all-female school, paying her way by working as a servant. Having the bad luck to live next door to a burglar, O'Malley is arrested on suspicion of robbery; meanwhile, Dana is going through a crisis of her own, forced to decide whether to continue her education or to take care of her pet bulldog. Once Dana's crisis is passed, she must deal with another one -- specifically, whether to attend a fancy-dress ball or to stick to her kitchen-help duties. The story goes along this episodic path until the finale, when Dana's exonerated brother shows up in time to prevent her marriage to the crook responsible for his incarceration. The Slavey Student was directed by John H. Collins, the husband of star Viola Dana.