Jenks' Day Off

Jenks' Day Off

Jenks' Day Off is a 1910 American silent short comedy produced by the Thanhouser Company. The film follows Mr. Jenks who drafts a telegram to himself as an excuse to get a reprieve from boredom and his wife's requests. He walks along the beach and finds a secluded spot to go swimming. A convict in women's clothing swaps his clothes with Jenks and Jenks has no choice to but to wear the discarded clothes. On his way back, he answers a call for help and is mistaken for the robber. He is captured and has to explain the circumstances which lead to an awkward situation. Production and casting credits for the film are unknown, but likely Thanhouser staff offer possible identities of the writer and actors. The film was released on August 2, 1910 and was met with approval by the trade publication. The film is presumed lost.


Though the film is presumed lost, a synopsis survives in The Moving Picture World from August 6, 1910. It states: "Mr. Jenks and his family are spending the summer in a fashionable summer hotel, and Mr. Jenks is kept bored and busy performing the many services demanded by his wife. He hits upon the bright idea of sending himself a business telegram which would necessitate his immediate presence in the city, then starts out on a little vacation on his own account. Walking on the beach he discovers a secluded spot, and leaving his clothes on the beach he takes a swim. In the meantime, a convict, who has escaped from a nearby penitentiary, has entered a house nearby in search of a change of clothes, his stripes being too conspicuous. The convict locks a woman of the house up and ransacks the house, but the only garments he can find are women's clothes, and, deciding that they are better than stripes, he dons them. As the convict in his new disguise is walking along the beach he sees Jenks' clothes lying there and promptly makes another change. There is nothing for Jenks to do when he comes out except to array himself as a woman. On his way back to the hotel he passes the house that has been robbed and is unlucky enough to hear the woman's cry for help. When she gets out of the closet, through his aid, she naturally believes that he is the convict, and screams for help. Jenks, frightened, runs away, but is captured after a chase in which the entire village takes part. His wife and daughter witness humiliation, and it's almost impossible for them to 'square things.'"