Santa Clarita Valley History In Pictures
Warner Baxter as Alessandro
Edwin Carewe's "Ramona" (1928)

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Actor Warner Baxter in costume as the character Alessandro from director Edwin Carewe's 1928 adaptation of Helen Hunt Jackson's 1884 novel, "Ramona," which was loosely based on the people and features of Rancho Camulos.

Fan card, 5x7 inches, sent to Miss Charlotte Klima of Cedar Rapids, Iowa, probably in response to a request for a photograph. Baxter's signature on the photograph is printed, but the writing on the envelope (below) appears to be in Baxter's own hand.

A handwritten notation on the back of both the photo/fan card and the envelope says it was received Jan. 11, 1928. The movie didn't come out until March 28 in Los Angeles and May 14 in New York.

About Edwin Carewe's "Ramona."

Director Edwin Carewe's "Ramona" is one of a handful of film adaptations of Helen Hunt Jackson's 1884 novel, which was based in part on the people and settings of Rancho Camulos in the western Santa Clarita Valley.

While readers of the novel and most filmmakers were drawn to Jackson's idyllic portrayal of Old Spanish California, the author's actual intent was to draw attention to the mistreatment of Native Americans. Carewe's adaptation is truer than others to Jackson's intent in its depictions of white colonizers' abuses.

Like many films of the silent era, Carewe's "Ramona" was lost — until a copy turned up in Prague in the early 2000s. The story of the print is at least as fascinating as the movie itself.

The Nazis confiscated what proved to be the last surviving copy of Carewe's "Ramona" in the former Czechoslovakia, which they occupied in 1939, and brought it (and countless other films) to Berlin. Then, when the Soviet Union liberated Berlin, "Ramona" was removed to the Soviet film archive, Gosfilmofond, outside of Moscow. Next, after the fall of the Soviet Union, Czech archivist Myrtil Frida found it in Gosfilmofond (now the State Film Fund of the Russian Federation) and carried it back to Prague.

Finally in about 2009, Hugh Munro Neely, longtime (now former) curator of the Mary Pickford Institute of Film Education, learned of its existence. Together with colleagues Joanna Hearne, an authority on early native American representations in cinema, and Dydia DeLyser, author of the book, "Ramona Memories," Neely traveled to Prague. "Over the next several years," Neely writes, "we were able to help coordinate the return of this print to the United States where it was preserved by the Library of Congress."

For more, click here.

LW3062: 9600 dpi jpeg from original fan card purchased 2017 by Leon Worden.


Story: Formerly Lost Film Premieres Again 3-29-2014


"Ramona" Returns | By Hugh Munro Neely


Lobby Card 1928


Spanish Lobby Cards / Illustrations (6)


Warner Baxter
Fan Card 1928


Sreenplay in French Fanzine 1928


Sheet Music:
Ramona Waltz (Mult.)


Sheet Music:
And I Still Do


Picture Show 1929


Dolores Del Rio Statue, Hollywood



Del Rio in The Red Dance, 1928

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