By Bunny McBride
This biography chronicles the intense lifetime of twentieth-century appearing artist Molly noticed Elk. Born in 1903 at the Penobscot reservation in Maine, Molly ventured into express company at an early age, acting vaudeville in manhattan, starring within the vintage docudrama The Silent Enemy, then dancing for royalty and mingling with the literary elite in Europe. In Paris she came upon an viewers extra appreciative of actual local dance than within the usa. There she married a French journalist, yet she was once compelled to go away him and flee France along with her daughter through the German profession of 1940. utilizing broad diaries at the side of letters, interviews, and different assets, Bunny McBride reconstructs Molly’s tale and sheds gentle at the strain she and her friends persevered in having to behave out white stereotypes of the "Indian."
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Additional resources for Molly Spotted Elk: A Penobscot in Paris
Two other women read an early draft of this book: my sister and my mother. For support that reaches far beyond these pages, I am indebted to them, and to my father. Donald Smith, who authored the captivating biography of Molly's Silent Enemy costar Long Lance, read my chapter on the making of that film and offered a thoughtful critique. Moreover, he led me to two vital and equally helpful sources: Jean Burden Bostwick (the widow of W. Douglas Burden who produced the docu-drama), and Madeline Theriault (an Ojibwa who made many of the costumes for the movie and played a small role in it).
Her baskets provided a mainstay in the family economy. In fact, throughout Molly's childhood, basketry was central to the economic well-being of most Indian Island families. It was a rare household that was not in some way occupied with the production or sale of woodsplint and braided grass baskets. All winter long, the sweet earthy scents of grass and wood filled homes as families prepared piles of goods to sell to Maine's summer tourists. Generally, the men, including Horace, gathered the sweet grass, and found, felled, and prepared the brown ash trees used for splints.
Molly with huskie dog during The Silent Enemy shoot, 1929 101 17. Promotional poster for The Silent Enemy, 1930 105 18. Molly's living quarters during The Silent Enemy shoot, 1929 111 19. Head cameraman Marcel Picard, shooting The Silent Enemy, 1929 115 20. Producer William Douglas Burden on The Silent Enemy set, 1929 122 21. The Indian Island home Molly purchased for her family, circa 1930 126 22. Molly, 1930 promotional photograph (portrait) 132 23. Molly in street clothes, circa 1930 139 Page viii 24.
Molly Spotted Elk: A Penobscot in Paris by Bunny McBride