Archives On The Air 168: The Joy Girl—Olive Borden Papers

Nov 18, 2019

Olive Borden was a silent film star. Her film career started in 1922 in comedy shorts. She starred in the 1927 film The Joy Girl.

Borden signed with Fox Studios. She was one of the highest paid stars in Hollywood in the 1920s.

The advent of talkies ended her career.

She worked with a voice coach to get rid of her southern accent. She rebranded herself with a flapper haircut. But it didn't help.

Borden could not find work. By the late 1930s she was broke.

Borden served with the Women's Army Corp in World War II.

After the war she struggled with alcoholism and lived in poverty until her death in 1947. She was 41 years old.

The Olive Borden papers at UW's American Heritage Center contain materials from her silent film career.