Ruth Clifford (Ruth Clifford)

Ruth Clifford

Ruth Clifford (February 17, 1900 – November 30, 1998) was an American actress of leading roles in silent films, whose career lasted from silent days into the television era. A native of Pawtucket, Rhode Island, she attended St. Mary’s Seminary in Narragansett, Rhode Island, then, following her mother’s death in 1911, came to Los Angeles as a teenager to live with her actress aunt. She got work as an extra and began her career at 15 at Universal, in fairly substantial roles. By her mid-twenties, she was playing leads and second leads, including the role of Abraham Lincoln’s lost love, Ann Rutledge, in The Dramatic Life of Abraham Lincoln (1924). But sound pictures found her roles diminishing, and throughout the next three decades she played smaller and smaller parts. She was a favorite of director John Ford (they played bridge together), who used her in eight films, but rarely in substantial roles. Ruth Clifford was also, for a time, the voice of Walt Disney’s Minnie Mouse and Daisy Duck. She lived long enough to find herself in demand for documentary interviews on the subject of early Hollywood. She was married to Beverly Hills real-estate developer James Cornelius. They had one child and divorced in 1938. Ruth Clifford died in 1998 at the age of 98. Her interment was in Culver City’s Holy Cross Cemetery.

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  • February, 17, 1900
  • USA
  • Pawtucket, Rhode Island


  • November, 30, 1998
  • USA
  • Woodland Hills, Los Angeles, California


  • Holy Cross Cemetery
  • Culver City, California
  • USA

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