|Unkempt, rough and tough looking members of the gang, or lynch mob, or vigilantes, or posse riders, or cow herders. They had minimal or no dialog, not much screen time, and were generally not listed in the film credits. Some would show up as a face in the crowd, portraying townspeople, barflies, deputies, wagon drivers, ranch hands, etc. We tend to recognize some of their faces, but have no clue as to their real names.|
Full name: Robert Austin Card
1887 - 1970
He appeared in at least 105 westerns and 9 serials, and his film career ran from about 1930 through the mid 1940s.
Bob Card's sound film career ran from about 1930 through the mid 1940s, and he did mostly uncredited roles as a lawman, barfly, townsman ... and sometimes played a member of the gang or posse. Occasionally, Card did a musical role. He may have appeared in a few or many silent films, but since much of those films are lost or missing, we'll never know.
Les Adams has Bob Card identified in about 115 sound films - that number includes 105 westerns and 9 cliffhangers.
There are census records and draft registrations on Card as well as his 1970 obituary. And there's a twenty-five year gap after he exited the movie business - from about 1945 through his death in 1970. I've yet to uncover anything about his life and career during that period.
Although some of the data is incomplete or inaccurate, the Internet Movie Database (IMDb) has information on Bob Card: http://www.imdb.com/name/nm0136285/
The Family Search website (free), Ancestry.com (subscription), Newspaper Archive (subscription), California Death Index, and the Social Security Death Index (SSDI) have info on Bob Card:
(Courtesy of Les Adams)
Above from L-to-R in the front are Fred Burns, Maude Eburne, Carol Hughes and Hal Taliaferro. L-to-R on horseback are Bob Card, Ted Mapes and Jack Montgomery. Crop from a lobby card from the Roy Rogers starrer, THE BORDER LEGION (Republic, 1940). One of Maude's great roles is the feisty ranch owner in the George O'Brien HOLLYWOOD COWBOY (RKO, 1937; alternate title WINGS OVER WYOMING).
(Courtesy of Les Adams)
Above from L-to-R are Chick Hannan/Hannon, Hank Worden, Lew Morphy, Bob Baker, Wally West and Bob Card in THE SINGING OUTLAW (Universal, 1938). That's Herman Hack in the back row center with his hand in the air. High in the upper right corner is Art Mix (George Kesterson).
(Courtesy of Dorothy Hack)
Members of the Santa Monica Mounted Police unit circa 1939-1940. The men in the photo include three western film veterans - from L-to-R are unidentified, Bob Card, Ralph 'Buck' Bucko, unidentified, unidentified, and Herman Hack.
Full name: William B. or William P. Patton
1894 - 1951
In the sound era, he appeared in at least 73 westerns and 4 serials, and his film career ran from about 1917 through the mid 1940s.
Left is Bill Patton clean shaven and wearing his trademark hat. Below with his mustache. Both of these images are circa 1935.
(Courtesy of Ed Phillips)
Above is Bill Patton - the shirt matches the one he wears in his only talkie starring role, the poverty row ARIZONA TRAILS (Art Mix Prod./Superior, 1935) churned out by Victor Adamson, AKA Art Mix, AKA Denver Dixon.
|In silents, the major western stars included William S. Hart, Tom Mix, and a few others. There were also a bunch of minor sagebrush heroes such as Buddy Roosevelt, Bob Custer, Buffalo Bill Jr. ... and Bill Patton. His hero days were over when talkies arrived, and Patton wound up doing mostly uncredited roles as a henchman, lawman, etc. in B westerns through the mid 1940s. He can be spotted in sound films starring Ken Maynard, Buck Jones, Tim McCoy, the Three Mesquiteers, Gene Autry, more. Patton also shows up in Poverty Row oaters with Reb Russell, Wally Wales, Lane Chandler, others.
He did have the lead in one sound western, ARIZONA TRAILS (Art Mix Prod./Superior, 1935) for Victor Adamson/Denver Dixon. Recently, TRAILS became available on DVD and we can confirm that Patton should have said "NO!" to doing this. He was also in the cast of a couple other Adamson/Dixon productions: the lost/missing DESERT MESA (Art Mix Prod./Security, 1935) and the available THE RAWHIDE TERROR (Art Mix Prod./Security, 1934).
Les Adams has Patton identified in about 80 sound films - that number includes 73 westerns and 4 cliffhangers.
Prior to films, Patton was a rodeo performer. "Champion Rodeo Performers Seen In Screen Drama" was the headline of a 1931 newspaper article about Richard Dix's CIMARRON western for RKO. Among the names in the article: "... Bill Patton, former western star, who won the world's broncho busting championship at Brownsville, Texas, in 1911; Denver, 1916; and Miles City in 1916."
Bil Patton suffered from heart problems and lived for about two years at the Clear View Sanitarium, Gardena, California. 57 year old William P. Patton passed away there on December 12, 1951.
Although some of the data is incomplete or inaccurate, the Internet Movie Database (IMDb) has information on Bill Patton: http://www.imdb.com/name/nm0666538/
The Family Search website (free), Ancestry.com (subscription), ProQuest obituaries, the death certificate, and the California Death Index have info on on Bill Patton:
The Google Newspaper archive has the Jimmie Fidler "Hollywood Shots" syndicated column in the a June 21, 1937 Reading (Pennsylvania) Eagle paper. Patton discusses the broken back he suffered ten years earlier which nearly ended his career ... and his current life as a "working extra": http://news.google.com/newspapers?id=x-QxAAAAIBAJ&sjid=heIFAAAAIBAJ&pg=4273,4709924&dq=bill-patton+actor&hl=en
YouTube and the Internet Archive have the (terrible) THE RAWHIDE TERROR which you can view or download:
The Internet Archive has ARIZONA TRAILS (Art Mix Prod./Superior, 1935) which features Bill Patton as the hero (with lots of eye makeup). Produced, directed, etc. by Denver Dixon/Victor Adamson and Dixon also plays Patton's sidekick: https://archive.org/details/ArizonaTrails
(Courtesy of Les Adams)
Above is a photo of the title lobby card for THE RAWHIDE TERROR (Security, 1934). Note the "Victor Adamson Presents an Art Mix Production", and a photo of Adamson/Dixon is shown in the upper left. Edmund Cobb (shown center) was kinda the star, even though he's listed second below William (Bill) Desmond. Also acting as the hero was George Kesterson/Art Mix but he kinda disappears. Bill Patton (moustached, wearing dark shirt, gloves, jacket) is to the left of heroine Frances Morris. Scuttlebutt was that THE RAWHIDE TERROR was originally planned as a serial, but never came to fruition. Thus, when Victor Adamson/Denver Dixon slapped this together as a feature, continuity and logic were lost.
(From Old Corral image collection)
Above from L-to-R are Chester Gan, Bill Patton, Charles 'Slim' Whitaker, Lucille Lund, and the bare-chested Reb Russell in FIGHTING THROUGH (Willis Kent, 1934). Lucille Lund also attended Northwestern University at the same time that Russell was there.