Catalina from A to Z: The Vanishing American

Hello, and welcome to the Blogging A to Z Challenge! This year my theme is Catalina from A to Z, featuring posts about the Southern California island of Catalina. With a focus on the island’s romantic side, I’ll be sharing info about where to go, what to see and do, plus a few sneak peeks from my novel in progress, Wife For A Weekend, which is set on the island!

The Vanishing American is a rather key story in Catalina Island’s history. First published in the Ladies Home Journal and later turned into a book, author Zane Grey is a bit of a local legend. His book was ultimately made into a silent movie of the same name, which released in 1926, and some of the filming took place on Catalina Island. Apparently the film crew brought over a herd of buffalo for many of the western scenes, and then left them on the island after filming wrapped. The buffalo that currently roam the island are descendants of that imported herd.

As for the film itself, according to the blog Silents Are Golden, “‘The Vanishing American’ is truly one of the classics of the silent era and one that any silent movie fan should see.” The only trouble is, it’s next to impossible to actually find a copy of this film. It’s currently unavailable from any streaming services, so an intrepid viewer would have to purchase a DVD copy if they were interested in viewing it.

Here’s a brief synopsis:

THE VANISHING AMERICAN starring Richard Dix, Lois Wilson, Noah Beery, Bert Woodruff and Malcolm McGregor. Directed by George B. Seitz. The screen’s mighty tribute to the Native American, first lord of the western continent. Richard Dix is Nophaie, the hero and protector of his tribe, who fight a never ending battle for their pride and their land against the corrupt agents of the US government. Set against the gorgeous background of the chasms and gorges of northern Arizona, THE VANISHING AMERICAN is a sweeping western saga boasting a cast of 10,000 Native Americans and 100 principals. A great monument of the silent era, this film is a true epic of the American west.

Eager to learn more about Catalina and Wife for a Weekend?

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