Men and women


Men and women
   Henry C. DeMille and David Belasco based this four-act melodrama on an actual case of embezzlement drawn from newspaper headlines. Men and Women featured Maude Adams and William Morris when it opened on 21 October 1890 for 204 performances at Proctor's 23rd Street Theatre, produced by Charles Frohman. A financial panic is set off when two young bank tellers, Edward Seabury and William Prescott, are suspected in the theft of bonds from their bank's vault. Edward's engagement to Dora, William's sister, is jeopardized when Calvin Steadman, a rival for Dora's love, frames him. When Governor Rodman supports Edward, Steadman reveals the governor's shady past, leaving Edward in jeopardy until a repentant William confesses that in a moment of weakness he took the bonds. There is no prosecution, but William cannot find a job and fears he will lose his fiancée, Agnes, daughter of the disgraced governor. The bank president, taking pity on the lovers and convinced of William's remorse, gives the young man a second chance. Critics applauded the play and the cast, but it was to be the last collaboration of DeMille and Belasco. Lionel Barrymore appeared in a 1914 motion picture adaptation of Men and Women. DeMille's son, William C. deMille, directed a 1925 screen version.

The Historical Dictionary of the American Theater. .