7 user 1 critic

Gretchen the Greenhorn (1916)

Not Rated | | Crime, Drama, Romance | 3 September 1916 (USA)
A kindly Dutch immigrant and her bumbling father are blackmailed by a gang of counterfeiters.


(as C.M. Franklin), (as S.A. Franklin)




Add Image Add an image

Do you have any images for this title?

Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Short | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

While caring for his sick daughter, a doctor is called away to the sickbed of a neighbor. He finds the neighbor gravely ill, and ignores his wife's pleas to come home and care for his own daughter, who has taken a turn for the worse.

Director: D.W. Griffith
Stars: Kate Bruce, Adele DeGarde, Gladys Egan
Annie Oakley (1894)
Documentary | Short
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  

The 'Little Sure Shot' of the 'Wild West.' Exhibition of Rifle Shooting at Glass Balls, etc. (from the Edison Catalog)

Director: William K.L. Dickson
Stars: Annie Oakley
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

A society woman believes her husband is having an affair, a misconception which may have dire personal consequences for all involved.

Director: Ernst Lubitsch
Stars: Irene Rich, May McAvoy, Bert Lytell
Short | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6/10 X  

During the Civil War a young soldier loses his nerve in battle and runs away to his home to hide; his sister puts on his uniform, takes her brother's place in the battle, and is killed. ... See full summary »

Director: D.W. Griffith
Stars: Henry B. Walthall, Grace Henderson, Dorothy West
Adventure | Action
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

Seeking revenge, an athletic young man joins the pirate band responsible for his father's death.

Director: Albert Parker
Stars: Douglas Fairbanks, Billie Dove, Tempe Pigott
Comedy | Short
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.5/10 X  

A family moves out to the 'peaceful' suburbs where everything goes wrong, including the mother-in-law moving in.

Documentary | Short
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.8/10 X  

Details making an early electric bulb in a factory.

The Invaders (1912)
Short | Western
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  

The U.S. Army and the Indians sign a peace treaty. However, a group of surveyors trespass on the Indians' land and violate the treaty. The army refuses to listen to the Indians' complaints,... See full summary »

Directors: Francis Ford, Thomas H. Ince
Stars: Francis Ford, Ethel Grandin, Ann Little
Short | Documentary
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6/10 X  

A montage of the skyscrapers of Manhattan opens with a succession of stationary views of the upper portions of numerous buildings. This is followed by a wide variety of fluid shots, which ... See full summary »

Director: Robert Florey


Complete credited cast:
Frank Bennett ...
Kate Bruce ...


Gretchen Van Houck is just arriving in the USA, on a ship from Holland. She joins her father, who has already spent several years in America, where he owns an engraving business. In the tenement community where the Van Houcks live, there are residents of many nationalities. Gretchen soon becomes close friends with Pietro, a popular resident, and she also takes an interest in the widow Garrity and her children. Another resident, Rogers, is more mysterious. One day Rogers tells Mr. Van Houck that he could help him get a job printing money for the government. Van Houck eagerly agrees to try, but when he finds out what Rogers is really doing, he is placed in a painful dilemma. Written by Snow Leopard

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

widow | tenement | ship | wedding | taxi | See All (30) »


Crime | Drama | Romance


Not Rated




Release Date:

3 September 1916 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Gretchen Blunders In  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


(2004 National Film Preservation Foundation print)

Sound Mix:

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


One of the films in the 3-disk boxed DVD set called "More Treasures from American Film Archives (2004)", compiled by the National Film Preservation Foundation from 5 American film archives. This film is preserved by the UCLA Film and Television Archives, has a running time of 58 minutes and an added piano score. See more »

Crazy Credits

Except for Dorothy Gish whose name appears above the title, actors were not originally credited in this movie at the start or at the end. Instead, 6 additional actors and their character names are credited in the intertitles right before they appear on-screen and are listed in the same order in the IMDb cast. All other actors, most of whom were obtained from other printed publications, are marked uncredited. See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

America Welcomes Dorothy Gish
4 July 2010 | by (Los Angeles) – See all my reviews

Hopeful "little" Dorothy Gish (as Gretchen) sails to America, "Fresh as the tulips of her native fields and green as the greatest grass that grows" in Holland. She reunites with poor engraver papa Ralph Lewis (as Jan Van Houck). Being a D.W. Griffith heroine, Ms. Gish arrives at her new home with a duck on a leash. She and her father may be hungry, but don't worry - we never see them eating the duck. They don't have a lot, but what they've got they share with frugal factory worker widow Kate Bush, who has a brood of hungry mouths to feed. Charmed by young Georgie Stone (as Micky Garrity), Gish lets the kid take the cake.

The blond tyke will later help Gish and Mr. Lewis battle counterfeiter Eugene Palette (as Rogers). Mr. Palette wants to take advantage of Lewis' engraving skills. Gish's most significant other neighbor is caring fellow immigrant Frank Bennett (as Pietro), with whom a budding romance develops. Playing the accordion, Mr. Bennett serenades Gish with songs "sung in English with an Italian accent." Their melting pot relationship is one of this above average "Triangle" production's modern strengths.

That this print of "Gretchen the Greenhorn" was found relatively recently, in a barn, will hopefully have everyone searching for similarly placed treasures. It's also a fine print, which shows off the film's keenly dressed sets, and generous locations. An ending sequence works too, although shot entirely in close-up; presumably, the lowly-regarded movie crew couldn't find a willing church. All of this helps overcome the often-recycled plot, which appealed to the mostly immigrant population of the country at large.

"Triangle" had released sister Lillian's "Sold for Marriage" in April (with a similar immigrant plot) and Norma Talmadge's "Going Straight (with this film's basic entourage) in June. Dorothy's film may look a little better because, at the time, she was a bigger star than either Lillian or Norma. Dorothy beat them both to the "Quigley Poll" Top Ten money-making stars, appearing at #7 in 1915.

****** Gretchen the Greenhorn (9/3/16) Chester & Sidney Franklin ~ Dorothy Gish, Frank Bennett, Ralph Lewis, Georgie Stone

0 of 0 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Discuss Gretchen the Greenhorn (1916) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page