Elinor Fair is an enigma. She came from a family that moved constantly, she married
many times and after her movie career ended she all but disappeared into anonymity.
Her life after 1944 is still mostly a mystery, mostly.
Born Eleanore Virginia Crowe on December 21, 1903 in Richmond, Virginia. She lived
with her parents Harry (a salesman), Helen Crowe and her older brother Donald.
Sadly Donald died in 1904 just 4 months short of his third birthday. During her
childhood her family moved many times and she lived in Virginia, Washington State,
California, Pennsylvania and possibly other states such as New York and Connecticut.
|WAMPAS Baby Stars of 1924 Elinor Fair is third
from the left. Clara Bow is first.
|I'd like to thank Susie Hatch for her tireless research!
In her earlier films she was credited as Eleanore Crowe, Eleanore Fair,
Lenore Fair and finally legally changed the spelling of her first name to
Elinor. She kept Fair as her stage name though off screen she was Elinor
Crowe. Elinor was a popular Fox Studios actress and received positive reviews
for her performances in both drama and comedies. Some of her most popular
early films were a string of comedies about the marital misadventures where
she was paired with Albert Ray. For a period in the teens, she went back to
stage work but soon Hollywood beckoned and she returned to films. In the
early 1920's came more diverse films and again, more good reviews of her
As the world rung in 1924 as a New Year, Elinor was chosen as a
WAMPAS Baby Star as was custom every year. By that point she
already had at least 33 movies under her belt.
Elinor's biggest role came when she caught the attention of Cecil B
Demille. He gave her a screen test for a part in one of his upcoming
historical dramas and despite crippling fear or nerves, she got the
part. DeMille cast her opposite actor William Boyd in 1926's epic film
"The Volga Boatman" and as the feminine lead she certainly did shine.
Though her first screen credit was at the age of 12 or 13, some press reports have Elinor starting her career as a
musician either a violinist or a singer depending on the news release you read! According to those same releases
she studied music in Leipzig, Berlin, Paris and London but returned to the United States when World War 1
broke out. Either way, around the time of World War 1, Elinor worked on stage and in Vaudeville and eventually
the family moved to California where Elinor was discovered as a dancer in a Los Angeles theatre and soon found
work in silent films.
|For the rest of Elinor's story and much more information about her
career and personal life - plus MANY pictures not seen here, please
go to the website I created just for her: