She won a Miss Hollywood contest when she was 21, and made her film debut that same year (1925) in a small role. She got her first billing in 1926's The Flesh and the Devil.
Because of her small height (she was shorter than 5 feet), she was mainly cast in light comedy roles, but could hold her own against screen dynamos like Greta Garbo.
She stirred some scandal when she appeared in the 1927 film No Man's Law because it contained a "nude" scene. In fact, Barbara was wearing a flesh colored bathing suit to simulate nudity. But even the simulation that she was naked caused quite a stir. It worked out in her favor though because later that year she was named a WAMPAS Baby Star.
She made her last film in 1935. She had previously taken a break from working and it caused the public to pretty much forget about her and move on to new talking stars. She tried to jump start her career again, but it sadly did not work out.
Barbara has only been married once, to agent and producer Harry Edington in 1932. The marriage lasted until his death in 1949. It was after his death that she faded completely from the public eye and chose to live a quiet life in Idaho (I thought I heard a rumor that she married again, but I don't have any information on that).
|Barbara and Gloria Swanson|
We all still love you Barbara. You are a beautiful lil lady and I hope you are enjoying your 104 years. Quite the accomplishment! You will live forever in the hearts and minds of the silent movie lovers out there.