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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.



Above and below
Ray Jones circa 1940

Ray Jones

Full name: Raden Charles Jones

1898 - 1975

appeared in about 180 westerns, 6 serials, and lots of early TV shows


  Texan Ray Jones is another familiar B western "face in the crowd", and he generally did uncredited roles as a henchman, townsman, barfly, et al.

Les Adams has Jones identified in 180+ western movies and 6 serials.

As with many other B western supporting players, Jones migrated to early TV work and can be spotted in episodes of GUNSMOKE, HAVE GUN WILL TRAVEL, WYATT EARP, more.

His film and television career spanned 30+ years, from about 1930 through the early 1960s.

In the information below, note that his first name was Raden (not Rayden). Pure guess - he probably got nicknamed "Ray" as a child. And as time went by, Raden/Ray morphed into Rayden.

As of December, 2016, the Internet Movie Database (IMDb) incorrectly identifies actor Ray Jones as Raymond F. Jones, born August 12, 1900 in Batvia, Iowa: http://www.imdb.com/name/nm0429070/

That IMDb reference to Raymond F. Jones is incorrect. The Family Search website has the 1940 census takers worksheet for 39 year old Raymond F. Jones (born Iowa) and 37 year old wife Lillian who own their home at 725 North Carson Avenue in Los Angeles. Jones' occupation is "Studio electrician - Motion Pictures", and in 1939, he worked 50 weeks and earned $4000.00: https://familysearch.org/pal:/MM9.3.1/TH-1971-27797-4129-58?cc=2000219&wc=M9Q8-B7Q:n1312975888

The Family Search website, ProQuest obituaries, California Death Index, and the Social Security Death Index (SSDI) have info on our B-western actor Ray Jones:

  • World War I draft registration dated September 12, 1918 - 19 year old Raden Charles Jones was born November 11, 1898, and he signs the form as Raden (not Rayden). His mail address is General Delivery, Laramie, Wyoming; occupation is "Ranch hand" at the Will M. Rathye Ranch, Millbrook, Wyoming (the ranch name and location is difficult to read). His nearest relative is Jim Jones, Maynard, Arkansas: https://familysearch.org/pal:/MM9.3.1/TH-1942-26305-4495-98?cc=1968530
  • April 26, 1933 marriage license of 32 year old Ray Jones (born Texas) to 21 year old Irene Cole (born Maine) in Los Angeles. His occupation is "Actor - Theatrical"; he is divorced and this is his second marriage; parents were John R. Jones (born Georgia) and Deamer Escel (born Texas). Irene's occupation is "Beauty Operator":
    https://familysearch.org/pal:/MM9.3.1/TH-1942-29941-990-38?cc=1804002
    https://familysearch.org/pal:/MM9.3.1/TH-1961-29941-515-40?cc=1804002
  • 1940 census summary and census takers worksheet - 40 year old Rayden Jones (born Texas), 28 year old wife Irene (born Maine) and 5 year old son Douglas (born California) are among many renters at 1401 North Ridgewood Place in Los Angeles, and they lived in Los Angeles in 1935. Jones was born in Texas; completed school through the 8th grade; occupation is "Actor - Motion Pic", and in 1939, he worked 26 weeks and earned $1400.00: https://familysearch.org/pal:/MM9.1.1/K9CX-HZC
  • The California Death Index and the Social Security Death Index (SSDI) have records for: Rayden Jones, born November 11, 1898 in Texas, and passed away on October 27, 1975 in the Los Angeles area:
    https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:VPHP-T11
    https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:JG3P-JQQ
  • ProQuest obituaries had a (brief) funeral notice from the November 7, 1975 Los Angeles (California) Times newspaper. Excerpt: "JONES, Rayden ... gravesite services ... at Rosedale Cemetery." There was no mention of a wife or other family members.
  • Ray's son - Rayden Douglas Jones:
    California birth index record for Rayden Douglas Jones, born June 5, 1934, and his mother's maiden name was Cole: https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:V2Q7-22N
    Social Security Death Index (SSDI) for Rayden Douglas Jones. He was born June 5, 1934, passed away May 14, 2006, and last residence was Vista, San Diego County, California: https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:J5JZ-M4H

As noted above, the 1933 Ray Jones and Irene Cole marriage license have his parents as John R. Jones (born Georgia) and Deamer Escel (born Texas). 1910 census adds confusion as the Jones family report 7 children born and 5 are still living. But only 4 children are listed in the 1910 census - perhaps there was an older child who was no longer residing with his/her parents? Then there's son Dewie who was born about 1898 and is about 12 years old. Could "Dewie" be a nickname for our Ray/Raden/Rayden Jones ... or an incorrect entry by the census taker?

  • 1910 census - living in Self Creek Township, Pike County, Arkansas are 45 year old John R. Jones (born Georgia), 37 year old Deamie [sic] (born Texas), 18 year old son James (born Texas), 12 year old son Dewie (born Texas), 6 year old daughter Olga (born Oklahoma) and newborn son Haskell (born Arkansas): https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:MKVL-975
    1910 census takers worksheet adds "Daisy town" as part of the location. John R. Jones and Deamer have been married for about 24 years, and this was their first marriage. Deamer had 7 children, 5 are still living ... but only 4 children are listed in the census. The occupation of father John R. Jones is "Physician - Professional": https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:33SQ-GRJK-7DY?cc=1727033



(Old Corral collection)

Sitting at the saloon table with their beers are Ray Jones (left) and unidentified player (right). In the background left to right are Jack Evans, Benny Corbett and Chester Gan. Crop from a production still from the Reb Russell oater FIGHTING THROUGH (Willis Kent, 1934).



(Courtesy of Les Adams)

Above from left to right are Marjorie Manners, Archie Ricks, Ray Jones, Buster Crabbe, unidentified man and woman, Frank Hagney, unidentified woman, I. Stanford Jolley (with the six-shooter), and on the far right is an unidentifed player. Production still from Crabbe's BLAZING FRONTIER (PRC, 1943). Don't be fooled by the badge on Hagney as he and Stan Jolley are the gang leaders in this Billy the Kid yarn.



(From Old Corral image collection)

Above from left to right are Jack Hendricks (AKA Ray Henderson), Buster Crabbe, Frank Ellis, Al 'Fuzzy' St. John, Ray Jones and Lorraine Miller in a still from BORDER BADMEN (PRC, 1945).



(Courtesy of Les Adams)

Above from left to right are Leonard Penn and Jim Bannon, and inside the stage are Ray Jones and Black Jack O'Shea. From WANTED, DEAD OR ALIVE (Monogram, 1951), which starred Whip Wilson.



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