Edward Salisbury Field

Edward "Ned" Salisbury Field (February 28, 1878 – September 20, 1936) was an American author, playwright, artist, poet, and journalist. He was born in Indianapolis, Indiana[1] to Edward Salisbury and Sarah Mills Hubbard Field. He was the husband of Isobel Osbourne (step-daughter of Robert Louis Stevenson) and step-father of playwright Austin Strong (Isobel's son from a former marriage).

Field was an employee and friend of William Randolf Hearst where he made drawings for Hearst newspapers, signing his drawings "Childe Harold". As a young news man in his 20s, Field became the secretary, protégé and possibly lover of Fanny Stevenson (who was 38 years older), after the death of her husband Robert Louis Stevenson.[2] After Fanny's death in 1914, Field married her daughter Isobel Osbourne, who was 20 years his senior.[2] Field became a successful Southern California real estate developer. In the 1920s oil was discovered on some of his property which made them wealthy.[2] In 1926 Field purchased Zaca Lake and surrounding land on Figueroa Mountain near Los Olivos, California.[3] His wife Isobel built an artists studio there and the Field home became a popular meeting place for writers and actors.[1]

Field's best known works were the film scripts for Wedding Bells (based on his play of the same name) and Twin Beds (based on a novel and subsequent play).[1] The screwball comedy novel Twin Beds (1913) was filmed four times;[4] as Twin Beds in 1920 starring Carter and Flora Parker DeHaven;[5] Twin Beds in 1929 starring Jack Mulhall;[6] as The Life of the Party in 1934;[7] and as Twin Beds in 1942 with George Brent and Joan Bennett.[8] It was also adapted to stage co-written with Margaret Mayo.[4]

Field died September 20, 1936, at Zaca Lake.[1] He was 58 years old.


  • The Quest, and Other Poems (1904)
  • A Child's Book of Abridged Wisdom (1905)
  • In Pursuit of Priscilla (1906)
  • A Six-Cylinder Courtship (1907)
  • Cupids Understudy (1909)
  • The Sapphire Bracelet (1910)
  • The Purple Stockings (1911)
  • The Rented Earl (1912)
  • Twin Beds (1913)


  1. Salisbury Field, bio at IMDb
  2. Claire Harman. Myself and the Other Fellow: A Life of Robert Lewis Stevenson, Harper Collins 2006, pg.460
  3. "Zaca Lake history". Zaca Lake Foundation. Archived from the original on May 22, 2010.
  4. Twin Beds at The Neglected Books Page, February 2011
  5. Twin Beds (1920) at IMDb
  6. Twin Beds (1929) at IMDb
  7. The Life of the Party at IMDb
  8. Twin Beds (1942) at IMDb
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