The Tell-Tale Hand (1914)

Genres - Western  |   Countries - United States   |   MPAA Rating - NR
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The story to this Western mystery was yet another winner of the Ladies World competition. Since the Essanay studios filmed all the winning tales, it's an easy guess that G.M. "Broncho Billy" Anderson would star in this one. Although her sweetheart is Broncho Billy, Annie Fango (Marguerite Clayton) still has to fend off the advances of Tim Cantle (Lee Willard). Then one day her father is found murdered and Cantle accuses her of the crime. Broncho Billy tries to protect her but the sheriff's posse catches up with her anyhow. She is tried and convicted of her father's killing. Broncho Billy is convinced she is innocent and believes that Cantle -- who has been yelling the loudest about her guilt -- is the real murderer. There was a bloody hand print on the dead man's shirt, which gives Billy an idea (since fingerprinting had not yet come to the Old West). He pours some chemicals on a piece of paper and forces Cantle's hand on it. The two hand prints match up and Cantle confesses. Annie is cleared of the charge, and Broncho Billy is waiting when she gets released from jail.