From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia Claire McDowell (2 November 1877 – 23 October 1966) was an American actress. She appeared in 360 films between 1908 and 1945. Still somewhat of a youthful beauty when she started in early silent films, McDowell appeared in numerous films, eventually graduating to playing character and mother types. She can be seen to good advantage in Douglas Fairbanks's 1920 The Mark of Zorro. McDowell appeared in two of the biggest films of the silent era, The Big Parade (1925) and Ben-Hur: A Tale of the Christ (1925), both in which she played mothers. She was married to silent screen character actor Charles Hill Mailes from 1906 to his 1937 death. The couple appeared in numerous silent films together, including The Mark of Zorro. They had two sons, Robert Mailes and Eugene Mailes. Claire McDowell died, aged 88, in Hollywood, California.