Alma Rubens was a silent screen star who became addicted to drugs and died young
She was born Alma Genevieve Reubens on February 19, 1897 in San Francisco, California. Her Jewish father, Albert Reubens, had immigrated from Germany. Alma was raised Catholic (her mother’s religion) and attended Sacred Heart Academy. She started her career performing in musical theater. At the age of sixteen she made her film debut in the silent short Banzai. Then she costarred with Douglas Fairbanks in The Half-Breed and with William S. Hart in Truthful Tolliver. Alma married actor Franklin Farnum, who was twenty years older than her, in 1918. He became abusive and she left him after just two months. She was offered a contract with Cosmopolitan Pictures in 1920. The dark haired beauty starred in a string of hit films including Humoresque, Thoughtless Women, and The World And His Wife. There were rumors that she was having an affair with studio boss William Randolph Hearst. In 1921 she was prescribed morphine by her gynecologist and she became addicted. Alma married Dr. Daniel Goodman in 1923 but they divorced a year later. She was signed by Fox in 1925 and starred in the drama East Lynne.