Cast & Crew
In 1912, Clara is the star designer at Herzmann's department store, but quits her job to marry Frank Deane, an insurance salesman. Just prior to their wedding, police inspector Garrison arrests Frank for embezzlement and warns Clara to think twice before marrying him. Sure of her judgement of Frank, Clara marries him, and the district attorney drops the charges when she pays back what he stole. By 1916, Clara and Frank have a four-year-old daughter, Nancy, but Frank is out of work most of the time and Clara has been selling drawings to Mr. Moses Herzmann. Clara arrives home one day to find Frank gone and Inspector Garrison in her apartment playing with Nancy. Garrison advises her that a gambling establishment was robbed and the owner recognized Frank's voice behind one of the robbers' masks. He warns her to take Frank out of the city or be ready for the consequences. Clara convinces Frank to move to her family house in the country, but when they stop for gas along the way, Frank robs the gas station and kills a motorcycle policeman who chases them. Both Frank and Clara are arrested. Although Clara is innocent, the jury does not accept her denial of complicity, and she and Frank are sentenced to prison, and are forced to sign an agreement surrendering Nancy for adoption. In 1931, Clara is released on parole, and after being refused any information about her daughter at the Children's Aid Society, she begs Inspector Garrison for some information about the girl, who now is a young woman. Garrison refuses and warns Clara to stop looking for her daughter. Unknown to Clara, Garrison himself adopted Nancy, and that day gives his consent for her to marry her wealthy boyfriend, Norman Ware. Mr. Herzmann kindly gives Clara a job at the store as a fitter, and when she fits Norman's sister Miriam for a dress, Miriam asks Clara to bring it to her house that evening when the alterations have been completed. That night at the Ware house, Clara hears Nancy called by her first name and sees Garrison at the reception. Astonished by her presence in the home, he tells her to go home and meet him there later. Clara returns to her apartment, but her next visitor is Frank, who has been paroled. Clara firmly tells Frank that she is no longer interested in seeing him, but he will not take no for an answer, and when Garrison arrives, Frank hears that their daughter is to marry a wealthy man. Although Garrison warns them to leave town, Frank decides to blackmail Nancy for money by threatening to reveal her parents' identities, even though she has long believed they are dead. Clara tries to dissuade him, but is unsuccessful until outside the Ware mansion, she shoots him. Garrison sees her in the bushes as she runs off and confronts her back at her apartment. He decides not to arrest her, realizing her intentions were honorable, as long as she never reveals her true identity to Nancy. He then claims he shot Frank as he was trying to escape. Sometime later, Clara is fitting Nancy for her wedding gown, and Nancy is struck by a recollection of hearing her mother's voice when Clara speaks. Clara is pleased and flattered, but brushes this off as fantasy, knowing in her heart that she has found her daughter at last.
Cora Sue Collins
Some reviews called this film Clara Deane and Case of Clara Deane.