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Thirty Days at Hard Labor (1912)

Jack must prove himself before Beatrice's father will allow him to continue seeing his daughter.



(story "Halberdier of the Little Rheinschloss")


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Cast overview:
Mr. Langdon - Beatrice's Father
Beatrice Langdon
Harold M. Shaw ...
William Wadsworth ...
Restaurant Proprietor


Beatrice Langdon's father objects to her marrying Jack Deering on the grounds that he is a son of a wealthy man. He makes it plain to Jack that if he is to marry his daughter he must sign an agreement, which stipulates that he must put in thirty days at hard labor. Jack, unknown to Beatrice, signs the agreement, and his first position is laying pipes with a gang of laborers. Inside of three days he is so worn out that he is obliged to relinquish his position. His next jobs were at rock excavation and shoveling coal, but his weak physique is not strong enough for hard work, so he resigns. In the meantime Beatrice, who has heard nothing from Jack for a couple of days, is heartbroken, but too proud to write him for an explanation, so she indulges in a little flirtation with Reggie Bullion. While passing the Munich Restaurant, Jack notices a sign, "Halberdier Wanted." He makes application for the job and is accepted. Upon the last night, Langdon, Reggie and Beatrice happen to visit the ... Written by Moving Picture World synopsis

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Short | Comedy





Release Date:

9 January 1912 (USA)  »

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Sound Mix:

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?


A copy of this film survives at The Museum of Modern Art in New York. See more »


Featured in Edison: The Invention of the Movies (2005) See more »

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User Reviews

There is freshness in its incidents and in the way the story is worked out
23 July 2016 | by (Chicago) – See all my reviews

A comedy that makes use of an old situation. It is well acted and has some good photographs of interesting backgrounds. There is freshness in its incidents and in the way the story is worked out. The young son of the idle rich undertakes to earn his bread for thirty days by the sweat of his brow. It is to win a girl and is a condition imposed by her father, a self-made man. At first the young man attacks the problem in the simplest way, gets a job, several, in fact, at day labor. He finds that it doesn't go, souses his wits and lands a soft snap as halberdier in a German restaurant in New York. At about a half hour before his time is up, the girl comes to the Reinschloss Restaurant. The self-made man recognizes the youth, but he quickly pulls down his visor and the girl doesn't see him. It's a good light comedy, a good program filler.

  • The Moving Picture World, January 20, 1912

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