When her father is ruined, a society girl (Emmy Wehlen) flees to Texas where she falls for a recovering alcoholic playboy (Eugene Strong). By one of those coincidences so endemic to bad writing, the man who caused her father's downfall is now a Texas outlaw known only as "The Shadow" (Harry S. Northrup). With lust in his heart, the bandit leaves a note explaining how he ravished the girl. The playboy is devastated but proposes to the girl anyway. She, however, rejects the offer because of her great shame. The outlaw is then fortuitously shot by the Rangers, clearing the girl's good name with his dying breath. A typical Victorian melodrama, The Trail of the Shadow was based on a story by O.A.C. Lund, a former film director from Sweden who had helmed several such stories in the very early 1910s for the New Jersey-based Eclair Company. German-born Emmy Wehlen later became a star with Metro.
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