Alma Rubens

Alma Rubens (February 19, 1897 – January 22, 1931) was an American silent film actress and stage performer. Born to John B. and Theresa Hayes Rueben in San Francisco, California, she performed since youth and became a star at the age of 19. She was educated at the Sacred Heart Convent in San Francisco. Her mother, Theresa, born in December 1871 in San Francisco, was of Irish heritage. Her father, John Ruebens, born in 1857 in Germany, was Jewish, and emigrated to the United States in 1890. An older sister, Hazel, was born in 1893. Although some biographies erroneously state that her birth name was Genevieve Driscoll, Driscoll was in fact her maternal grandmother's maiden name. In 1918, Alma announced that she was changing the spelling of her last name of Rueben to "Rubens" because it caused too much confusion in the movie industry and in publications. Alma's first stage opportunity came in 1917, when a chorus girl in a comedy became ill; the young aspirant was called on to replace her merely because she happened to be there. Soon the stock company came to Los Angeles, California.


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