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Leatrice Joy in Rural Drama
DOWN HOME is a rural drama set in New England and stars Leatrice Joy as Nancy Pelot, daughter of the town drunk. He was once a businessman and still owns a local farm, but Nancy now supports her father and herself with a mysterious job in a nearby town.
The gossips in New Canaan, six miles from Redburn and the railroad, have a field day wondering about Nancy's job in the city, and of course they assume the worst. The local blacksmith Chet Todd (Edward Hearn) has a crush on Nancy but backs off because of the gossip. It turns out she plays piano in a saloon.
When "salt deposits" are discovered in the derelict farm, snarky Martin Doover (Edward Nolan) teams up with some businessmen to steal it away from old Pelot by getting him drunk and getting him to sign a deed of transfer. But Chet discovers the trick and thrashes Doover. He then burns the signed document.
At a revival meeting old Pelot is saved and stops drinking. But he remembers signing away the farm and travels to Redburn to negate the deal. On his way home he's caught in a raging blizzard and dies from exposure.
By the next spring, Nancy has comes of age and inherits the farm. The businessmen move in and get her to sign away the valuable property but Chet
discovers the plot and intrudes on the meeting. Can he save the day?
Nicely done drama made by a small company and directed by Irvin Willat in his first independent production. There was a big audience for these rural dramas. Although she does not get star billing, this was an important film for Leatrice Joy.
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