Cast & Crew
Matt B. Snyder
In the South, just before the Civil War, Stephen Brice, a lawyer newly arrived from Boston, falls in love with Virginia Carvel, a staunch Southern Democrat. She rejects Stephen, however, because of his abolitionist sympathies, and becomes engaged to the dashing Clarence Colfax. After the war begins, Stephen is wounded while fighting for the Union and then becomes an aide to President Abraham Lincoln. Virginia, meanwhile, becomes less and less interested in Clarence and finally breaks her engagement with him; but when he is captured by Union forces and condemned to death, she goes to Lincoln to plead for his life. Lincoln, wishing to show mercy to the defeated Southern forces, commutes Colfax's sentence. When Virginia then sees that Stephen is the president's aide, the two embrace and look to the future.
Matt B. Snyder
Sam D. Drane
Sherman-Elliott, Inc. released The Crisis in the western half of the United States and sold the film on a state rights basis in the East. According to a contemporary news item, scenes for this production were shot in St. Louis, MO and in Vicksburg, MS. In his impersonation of Abraham Lincoln, Sam D. Drane used Lincoln's dispatch box, which was loaned to him by the War Department. Members of the Mississippi National Guard were used as extras in the film. According to a pre-production news item, Lionel Atwell was to play the part of Clarence Colfax. Matt Snyder, who played Colonel Carvel, was, according to publicity items, an 82-year-old Civil War veteran who had fought in the actual battle of Vicksburg in 1863. A private showing of the film was given at the Strand Theatre in New York on September 29, 1916 to a large number of invited guests Another private showing was held in Minneapolis on December 22, 1916, and the first public performance of the film was given there on December 24, 1916.