Wilton Lackaye was an American stage and film actor, who originated the role of Svengali in both stage and film.
Lackaye, Wilton was born on September 30, 1862 in Loudoun Company, Virginia, United States. Son of James and Margaret (Bagnam) Lackaye.
Educated Georgetown University. Read law 1 year.
He had a son Wilton Lackaye Jr. (1902–1977) with Alice Evans. He had two siblings in show business: James Lackaye Jr.(1867–1919) and Helen Lackaye (1883–1940).
He created the role of Svengali in the play Trilby in 1895 which he played on screen in 1915 opposite Clara Kimball Young. He enjoyed a lengthy and distinguished stage career before entering silent films in middle age. He was a unique and distinctive looking actor with large round eyes particularly effective when playing the control-freak Svengali.
Lackaye died at age 70 in New York City.
Married Alice Evans, September 25, 1896 (now deceased).; married second, Katherine Alberta Riley, March 23, 1928.