Iris Meredith was Charlie's leading lady in twenty films.
(Courtesy of Minard Coons)
Above and below - pretty Iris Meredith with Charles Starrett in RIDERS OF THE BLACK RIVER (Columbia, 1939). Iris was the main heroine to Starrett, and she worked in twenty of Starrett's Columbias which were released during the years 1936-1940.
(Courtesy of Minard Coons)
Starrett portrayed a Canadian mountie in six films.
(Courtesy of Les Adams)
Above is the title lobby card for OUTPOST OF THE MOUNTIES (Columbia, 1939) which starred Charles Starrett and featured pretty Iris Meredith and the Sons of the Pioneers.
Starrett portrayed a mountie in six films:
UNDERCOVER MEN (J. R. Booth/Dominion, 1935)
SECRET PATROL (Columbia, 1936)
NORTH OF THE YUKON (Columbia, 1939)
OUTPOST OF THE MOUNTIES (Columbia, 1939)
THE ROYAL MOUNTED PATROL (Columbia, 1941)
LAW OF THE NORTHWEST (Columbia, 1943).
(Courtesy of Bill McCann)
Charles Starrett / Durango Kid comics.
Magazine Enterprises published 41 issues of Charles Starrett as the Durango Kid during 1949-1955.
The Grand Comics Database has images of the 41 covers: http://www.comics.org/series/680/covers/
The Starrett Gunbelt.
Charles Starrett wore a variety of gunbelts during his lengthy stay with Columbia Pictures.
At the top of the collage shown below are crops/blowups of the Durango Kid gunbelt and single action Colt shown against the black DK costume.
Further down, you'll see a few variations of the six-gun, holster and belt that he wore prior to the Durango Kid series ... or when he was the civilian "Steve something-or-other" before changing into the Durango costume.
Note the two pistols - one with a white pearl grip and the other stag-handled.
The (many) Starrett Horses.
(Courtesy of Minard Coons)
Above, Charles Starrett and two Raiders. And no, you're not seein' double. Many of the western heroes had several mounts which were their own, rentals or studio cayuses - one was the primary (and valuable) horse for closeups and tricks and the other(s) was less valuable and used as a chase double, etc.
(Courtesy of Minard Coons)
Charles Starrett's note on the picture above reads: "Of all the 33 white horses I rode here was the best. Charles Starrett".
Check out the Trusty Steeds page on White Hoss #3 - "Silver/Silver Chief" as Starrett's favorite white hoss is Silver/Silver Chief which was ridden by Lee Powell and Bob Livingston in the two Lone Ranger serials, by Sunset Carson, and several other heroes.
On the trail of Charles Robert Starrett.
The Family Search website (free), Ancestry.com (subscription), the California Death Records database, the Social Security Death Index (SSDI), and the Newspaper Archive have information on Charles Starrett and family:
- 1880 census: 44 year old widower Leroy S. Starrett (born Maine), 18 year old son Frank E. (born Maine) and three daughters live in Athol, Worcester County, Massachusetts: https://familysearch.org/pal:/MM9.1.1/MHFS-1DS
Ancestry had the 1880 census takers worksheet: Leroy's occupation is "inventor" and son Frank "works in machine S."
Note: Leroy is the founder of the L. S. Starrett Tool Company, and his son Frank Elmer Starrett was Charles Starrett's father.
- 1900 census: 38 year old Frank E. Starrett (born Massachusetts), 39 year old wife Lena (born Virginia) and six sons and daughters are residing in Athol, Massacusetts: https://familysearch.org/pal:/MM9.1.1/M9YB-BTN
1900 census takers worksheet has Frank's occupation as "laborer - machine": https://familysearch.org/pal:/MM9.3.1/TH-266-11823-139135-74?cc=1325221&wc=M94Y-BZN:970683931
- 1903 birth registration ledger for the town of Athol, Worcester County, Massachusetts for Charles Robert Starrett, born March 28, 1903. Parents were Frank Starrett (occupation "mechanic"; born Massachusetts) and Lena Hoehn Starrett (born West Virginia): https://familysearch.org/pal:/MM9.3.1/TH-266-11854-71121-32?cc=1536925&wc=11695181
- Ancestry had the January 5, 1904 death record for (almost) 42 year old Frank E. Starrett. His father and mother were L. S. Starrett and Lydia Bartlett Starrett. Informant was Lena D. Starrett.
- 1910 census: census taker did not cross the T in STarrett, so the last name appears as SLarrett (spelled with an L) . Seven year old Charlie Slarrett [sic] is the youngest of nine children living with his 46 year old mother Luce (???) (born West Virignia) in Athol, Massachusetts: https://familysearch.org/pal:/MM9.1.1/M22X-2YJ
Ancestry had the 1910 worksheet, and the census taker appears to have correctly written Starrett's mother's name as Lena, not Luce.
An older brother in that 1910 census is 23 year old Arthur Slarrett [sic] (born Massachusetts). A 1931 newspaper article on Charles Starrett notes that "He is a brother of Arthur L. Starrett, general managerr of the L. S. Starrett Co., of Athol."
- 1920 census: 16 year old Charles Starrett is one of six children living with his widowed mother in Athol, Massachusetts: https://familysearch.org/pal:/MM9.1.1/MF9F-CPQ
Ancestry had the 1920 census takers worksheet: the family lives at 925 Main Street, Athol, Massachusetts. Charles' mother is listed as Mrs. Frank Starrett. He is listed as "student - Worcester Academy".
- September 28, 1927 marriage record of 24 year old Charles Robert Starrett (occupation "actor") to 20 year old Mary Alice McKinnon (student) in Hanover, New Hampshire (which is where Dartmouth College is located). This is the first marriage for both, and both list Athol, Massachusetts as their birth location: https://familysearch.org/pal:/MM9.3.1/TH-267-11815-73857-73?cc=1520640
- Leroy S. Starrett passed away April 23, 1922 at age 87, and there were many newspaper articles on his death. One mentioned that the funeral "bearers were grandsons and nephews of the dead manufacturer, and were Arthur Starrett, John Starrett, Phillip Starrett, Charles Starrett ...". Articles from mid May, 1922 noted that Starrett left no will and his heirs were two daughters, five granddaughters and five grandsons.
- 1930 census: 27 year old Charles R. Starrett (born Massachusetts), 22 year old wife Mary A. (born Massachusetts), and newborn twin sons Charles D. and David M. (both born New York) are living in Brooklyn, New York: https://familysearch.org/pal:/MM9.1.1/X76R-W89
Ancestry had the 1930 census takers worksheet: the Starrett family are one of many families renting at a large boarding house or hotel. They reside in unit 415, 136 Hicks Street, Brooklyn. Newborns Charles D. and David M. are listed as 7/12 years old (which equals 7 months of age). Starrett reports his occupation as "Actor - Theater".
- You may want to go to the In Search Of ... page and check the California Death Records database. You should find a record for Charles Robert Starrett, birthdate and location of 3/28/1904 and Massachusetts, Mother's maiden name was Hoehn, and he passed away on 3/23/1986 in the San Diego, California area. You should also find a record at the Social Security Death Index (SSDI) - however, the SSDI has his correct birth date of 3/28/1903.
- I have several obituaries on Starrett and following are some excerpts: "... died Sunday while vacationing at Borrego Springs." "Private services are planned." "In addition to his wife Mary, survivors include twin sons Charles ... and David ..."
(Courtesy of Dick Fulcher)
Thanks to Dick Fulcher, above is further confirmation on Starrett's March 28, 1903 birth date. Dick owned some Starrett memorabilia, including Charlie's passport dated December 1, 1967. The above is a crop from that passport.
Starrett at Worcester Academy (Worcester, Massachusetts; he graduated in 1922) and Dartmouth College (Hanover, New Hampshire; he graduated in 1926).
The Newspaper Archive had various blurbs on Starrett doing sports at Worcester Academy. Following are a few excerpts from January and May, 1922 articles:
"Starrett was the only academy boy to score a win for his team, taking the 50-yard swim."
"Only one record was broken, Starrett of Worcester Academy throwing the discus 115 ft 7 in for a new mark. Starrett was the big man of the meet, scoring 11 points."
"... return of Charley Starrett to the Worcester squad has strengthened it considerably, especially in the hammer throw, high jump and pole vault. Starrett is throwing the hammer consistently around 135 feet."
Ancestry has the 1926 AEGIS yearbook from Dartmouth College. Charles Robert Starrett was one of about two dozen members of the Casque and Gauntlet society and was in the Zeta chapter of Psi Upsilon fraternity. The '26 AEGIS also has a photo of Starrett in his Dartmouth football uniform. The description adjacent to Starrett's image reads:
"Charles Robert Starrett
Weight, 180; Height, 6 ft., 1 1/2 in.; Class, 1926; Position, Fullback
'Charlie' will always be remembered by us as the man who intercepted a forward pass in the Cornell game last fall, and ran for a touchdown. For three years he had been trying to make the grade, then got his chance, seized it, and you know the rest. He came from Worcester Academy."
There are photos and info on Charles Starrett's horses - both Raider and Bullet - in the Trusty Steeds section on the Old Corral. And in the Stuntmen and Women section, there's a profile and photos on Ted Mapes and Jock Mahoney.
Although some of the data is incomplete or inaccurate, the Internet Movie Database (IMDb) has information on Charles Starrett: http://us.imdb.com/name/nm0823633/
The Internet Broadway Database has Starrett in the November, 1929 New York play "Claire Adams": http://ibdb.com/person.php?id=60909
The New York Times and Los Angeles Times newspaper websites have obituaries on Starrett:
Tim Kirk has a blog entitled "Charles Starrett - One Fan's Journey" and he's working on reviews for all of Starrett's films. Included are many stills and lobby cards: http://stevesomething.wordpress.com/
Bill Black of AC Comics has a writeup on Charles Starrett and Jock Mahoney: http://www.accomics.com/acnews/durango-kid-rough-tough-west/
There's a photo of a young Charles Starrett in a Will Rogers film at Walt's Wyoming(Film) Web site: http://www.theastrocowboy.com/Mlist/skitch.htm
James Gurney has info about Charles and Mary Starett's son Dave, who taught art in the Los Angeles area for many years: http://gurneyjourney.blogspot.com/2009/04/real-lee-crabb.html
Learn more about the L. S. Starrett Tool Company of Athol, Massachusetts: http://www.starrett.com/about/company-profile
Charles Starrett was involved in the formation of the Screen Actors Guild (SAG) in the early 1930s: http://www.sagaftra.org/history/sag
YouTube and the Internet Archive have the Charles Starrett mountie adventure UNDERCOVER MEN (J. R. Booth/Dominion, 1935):