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Marguerite De La Motte (June 22, 1902 – March 10, 1950) was an American film actress, most notably of the silent film era.

Marguerite De La Motte
Marguerite De La Motte by Hartsook.jpg
De La Motte, c. 1924
Born(1902-06-22)June 22, 1902
DiedMarch 10, 1950(1950-03-10) (aged 47)
Years active1918–1942
Spouse(s)John Bowers (1924–1936)
Parent(s)Mr. and Mrs. Joseph De La Motte


Early yearsEdit

Born in Duluth, Minnesota,[1] De La Motte was the daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Joseph De La Motte.[2] She was a 1917 graduate of the Egan School of drama, music, and dancing.[3]

De La Motte began her entertainment career studying ballet under Anna Pavlova.[4] In 1919, she became the dance star of Sid Grauman on the stage of his theater. In 1918, at the age of 16, she made her screen debut in the Douglas Fairbanks, Sr directed romantic comedy film Arizona. In 1920, both of her parents died, her mother in January in an automobile accident[5] and her father in August from heart disease. Film producer J.L. Frothingham assumed guardianship of her[6] and her younger brother.


De La Motte in 1921.

De La Motte spent the 1920s appearing in numerous films, often cast by Douglas Fairbanks to play opposite him in swashbuckling adventure films such as 1920's The Mark of Zorro and The Three Musketeers. She developed a close friendship with Fairbanks and his wife, actress Mary Pickford. Her career as an actress slowed dramatically at the end of the silent film era of the 1920s. She did continue acting in bit parts through the sound era and made her final appearance in the 1942 film Overland Mail opposite both Noah Beery Sr. and Noah Beery Jr., as well as Lon Chaney Jr.

Personal lifeEdit

De La Motte was married twice. She first wed silent film actor John Bowers in 1924, who was then a matinee idol of the silver screen. The couple were separated at the time when Bowers committed suicide in 1936. De La Motte later married attorney Sidney H. Rivkin whom she divorced after four years of marriage.[7] Her cousin, Clete Roberts, was an American war correspondent and journalist, who appeared in two episodes of the television series M*A*S*H* in the 1970s.

Later yearsEdit

After her film career ended, De La Motte worked as an inspector in a southern California war plant during World War II. Later she came to San Francisco, California, where she worked in the Red Cross office.[7]


On March 10, 1950, De La Motte died of cerebral thrombosis in San Francisco at the age of 47.[8]


On February 8, 1960, De La Motte was awarded a star in the Motion Pictures section of the Hollywood Walk of Fame at 6902 Hollywood Blvd., in Hollywood, California.[9]


Year Title Role
1918 Arizona Lena
1919 Josselyn's Wife Lizzie
1919 A Sagebrush Hamlet Dora Lawrence
1919 The Pagan God Beryl Addison
1919 For A Woman's Honor Helen Rutherford
1919 Dangerous Waters Cora Button
1919 In Wrong Millie Fields
1920 The Hope Lady Brenda Carylon
1920 Trumpet Island Eve de Merincourt
1920 The U.P. Trail Allie Lee
1920 The Sagebrusher Mary Warren
1920 The Mark of Zorro Lolita Pulido
1920 The Broken Gate Anne Oglesby
1921 The Nut Estrell Wynn
1921 The Ten Dollar Raise Dorothy
1921 The Three Musketeers Constance Bonacieux
1922 Shadows Sympathy Malden
1922 Shattered Idols Sarasvati
1922 The Jilt Rose Trenton
1922 Fools of Fortune Marion DePuyster
1923 The Famous Mrs. Fair Sylvia Fair
1923 What a Wife Learned Sheila Dorne
1923 Scars of Jealousy Helen Meanix
1923 Just Like a Woman Peggy Dean
1923 A Man of Action Helen Sumner
1923 Wandering Daughters Bessie Bowden
1923 Desire Ruth Cassell
1923 Richard the Lion-Hearted Lady Edith Plantagenet
1924 The Beloved Brute Jacinta
1924 Behold This Woman Sophie
1924 The Clean Heart Essie Bickers
1924 East of Broadway Judy McNulty
1924 When a Man's a Man Helen Wakefield
1924 Gerald Cranston's Lady Angela
1924 Those Who Dare Marjorie
1924 In Love with Love Ann Jordan
1925 Cheaper to Marry Doris
1925 Daughters Who Pay Sonia Borisoff/Margaret Smith
1925 Flattery Betty Biddle
1925 Children of the Whirlwind Maggie
1925 Off the Highway Ella Tarrant
1925 The People vs. Nancy Preston Nancy Preston
1925 The Girl Who Wouldn't Work Mary Hale
1926 Red Dice Beverly Vane
1926 Meet the Prince Annabelle Ford
1926 Fifth Avenue Barbara Pelham
1926 Hearts and Fists Alexia Newton
1926 The Last Frontier Beth
1926 The Unknown Soldier Mary Phillips
1926 Pals in Paradise Geraldine "Jerry" Howard
1927 The Final Extra Ruth Collins
1927 Held by the Law Mary Travis
1927 The Kid Sister Helen Hall
1927 Ragtime Beth Barton
1927 Broadway Madness Maida Vincent
1929 The Iron Mask Constance
1929 Montmartre Rose Jeanne
1930 Shadow Ranch Ruth Cameron
1934 A Woman's Man Gloria Jordan
1941 Reg'lar Fellers Mrs. Dugan
1942 The Man Who Returned to Life Mrs. Hibbard
1942 Overland Mail Rose, the Waitress


  1. ^ Katchmer, George A. (2009). A Biographical Dictionary of Silent Film Western Actors and Actresses. McFarland. p. 92. ISBN 9781476609058. Retrieved 27 September 2017.
  2. ^ "(photo caption)". The New York Times. New York, New York City. January 28, 1917. p. 42. Retrieved September 27, 2017 – via  
  3. ^ "(Egan School advertisement)". The Los Angeles Times. California, Los Angeles. September 9, 1919. p. 56. Retrieved September 27, 2017 – via  
  4. ^ "Miss de la Motte, Once Dancer, Now Shines as Dramatic Screen Star". Star Tribune. Minnesota, Minneapolis. April 25, 1920. p. 54. Retrieved September 27, 2017 – via  
  5. ^ "Here and There With the Stars". Vancouver Daily World. Canada, Vancouver, British Columbia. January 17, 1920. p. 19. Retrieved September 27, 2017 – via  
  6. ^ "Movie Star Can's Spend Her Pay Check Unless Guardian Says So". Oakland Tribune. California, Oakland. September 6, 1920. p. 18. Retrieved September 27, 2017 – via  
  7. ^ a b Brettell, Andrew; King, Noel; Kennedy, Damien; Imwold, Denise (2005). Cut!: Hollywood Murders, Accidents, and Other Tragedies. Leonard, Warren Hsu; von Rohr, Heather. Barrons Educational Series. p. 71. ISBN 0-7641-5858-9.
  8. ^ "Miss De La Motte, 47, Star of Silent Films". The New York Times. 1950-03-11. p. 15.
  9. ^ "Marguerite De La Motte". Hollywood Walk of Fame. Archived from the original on 28 September 2017. Retrieved 28 September 2017.
  • "Marguerite De La Motte III". New York Times. February 28, 1950. p. 21.

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