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Fuzzy's costume.

(From Old Corral collection)

Above and below - Al 'Lash' LaRue and St. John in his "Fuzzy costume" which consisted of a longish beard, pushed up hat, baggy shirt, well worn and over-sized pants with suspenders, and a tattered vest. And quite often, you can spot patches on the pants and vest.


(Courtesy of Walter & Elaine Flanagan)


"Fuzzyisms"

Rollin' a cigarette with one hand was one of his talents. He seemed to always twirl his six-shooter. He often put his hand on the back of his head, scratched a bit, and the hat moved down on his forehead. Occasionally, ol' Fuzz would do a comic mount or dismount on his trusty steed, including swinging his right leg over the horse's head and sliding off the saddle. When there was trouble, ol' Fuzz would "hitch up" his trousers. There were many trips and falls down the stairs, up the stairs, etc. And there was the "leaning gag" in which Fuzz leans against a building, fence, hitching post, whatever ... and falls down.


(Image courtesy of Carol Murray and her "Jack Hendricks Photo Album")

Above - autographed photo from Al to B western henchman Jack Hendricks. Am guessing this photo was late 1930s - perhaps when Al was doing TRIGGER PALS (Grand National, 1939) - as his beard was longer in the Crabbe and Lash oaters. Blowup / crop of his signature below:



Al St. John's movie stats.
Al in westerns, shorts, other films. Have included his silent short and feature quantities. I've used the RELEASE dates (not filming dates) from the Internet Movie Database so the results may be a little skewed.
Total early films during 1913-1929 = 180 (includes Keystone Cops, 'Fatty' Arbuckle comedies, and Al's own starring silent comedies for various production companies).
Films during 1930-1952 = 154.
Total films in this chart = 334.

Al and Kenneth Harlan did their RKO vaudeville tour from mid 1932-early 1935, and those years are marked in RED.

Al's peak western sidekick period ran from 1940 - 1952 with Bob Steele, Buster Crabbe, George Houston, Bob Livingston, Don Barry and Lash LaRue and those years are highlighted in this COLOR.

Al was busiest in 1941 - 1943 when he sidekicked in both the Lone Rider and Crabbe sagebrushers at Producers Releasing Corporation (PRC) and appearing in some Don Barrys at Republic Pictures.
102 78 6
7
6
4
1
6
7
9
9
2
8
13
17
14
8
9
7
8
13
1913-
1919
1920-
1929
1930 1931 1932 1933 1934 1935 1936 1937 1938 1939 1940 1941 1942 1943 1944 1945 1946 1947 1948-
1952


Summary of Al St. John's B westerns:
Hero / star
Film / series quantities
Buster Crabbe 36 Billy the Kid / Billy Carson westerns for Producers Releasing Corporation (PRC) released in 1941-1946.
Lash LaRue 20 westerns during 1947-1952; there were 8 for PRC followed by a dozen for producer Ron Ormond.
George Houston 12 which includes 11 Lone Rider adventures released by PRC in 1941-1942 plus Houston's earlier FRONTIER SCOUT (Grand National, 1938).
Bob Steele 9 westerns - includes 6 Billy the Kids for PRC in 1940-1941 as well as 3 early Steele sound oaters.
Fred Scott 7 Spectrum westerns produced by Jed Buell and released in 1937-1938.
Bob Livingston 6 Lone Rider adventures released by PRC in 1942-1943.
Don Barry 6 Republic oaters in 1940-1942.
William Boyd 3 Hopalong Cassidys in 1935-1936 and an unbilled role in the William Boyd / Clark Gable THE PAINTED DESERT (RKO/Pathe, 1931).
1942 Frontier Marshal trio series at PRC Al has unbilled roles in two of the six.
Dozen+ 1930s B westerns 2 Tom Tylers; 2 Jack Randalls; 1 Bill Cody; 1 Bob Custer; 1 Rex Bell; 1 Tex Ritter; 1 James Newill (Renfrew); John Wayne - 1 western and 1 non-western in 1933; THE LAW OF 45's (Normandy/First Division, 1935) with Big Boy Williams; the TRIGGER PALS (Grand National, 1939) trio adventure with Art Jarrett and Lee Powell.


Al St. John Trivia.
Les Adams checked his database and has Al in 92 films in which he played "Fuzz", "Fuzzy", "Fuzzy Jones", "Fuzzy Q. Jones", et al. For comparison, William Boyd was "Hopalong Cassidy" in 66 Hoppy adventures plus a guest appearance in THE GREATEST SHOW ON EARTH. And Gene Autry portrayed "Gene Autry" in 88 of his 90 starring films for Mascot, Republic and Columbia.)

St. John never appeared in a sound serial.

There were a few occasions when Al played a western movie no-good. Examples:
  • he's one of the rustlers working for brains heavy Harry Worth in the Hopalong Cassidy BAR 20 RIDES AGAIN (Paramount, 1935).
  • in John Wayne's RIDERS OF DESTINY (Lone Star/Monogram, 1933), Al and Heinie Conklin get a lot of screen time portraying two bumbling and fumbling henchmen in Forrest Taylor's gang.
On the right is a pressbook ad for FUZZY SETTLES DOWN (PRC, 1944) and on the right, Buster Crabbe has a neck lock on perpetual nemesis Charlie King.

St. John plays the crusading owner of a local newspaper.

This oater is unique in that it's the only B western to have the sidekick's name as part of the title.

(Courtesy of Les Adams)


Fuzzy Links

 Although some of the data is incomplete or inaccurate, the Internet Movie Database (IMDb) has information on Al 'Fuzzy' St. John: http://us.imdb.com/name/nm0820607/

St. John worked in scores of (mostly) shorts with his uncle, Roscoe 'Fatty' Arbuckle, who was the star and / or director: http://www.imdb.com/search/title?roles=nm0000779,nm0820607

Al worked with prolific director Sam Newfield on about 75 films during the years 1937 - 1946: http://www.imdb.com/search/title?roles=nm0820607,nm0627864

The Internet Archive has many films with Al St. John. There are silents with 'Fatty' Arbuckle (some featuring Buster Keaton) as well as B westerns: https://archive.org/details/moviesandfilms?and[]=%22al%20st.%20John%22#collection-date-archived

YouTube has an Al St. John collection which includes a starring silent for Fox and Educational as well as a couple of clip compilations from his silents: https://www.youtube.com/user/AlFuzzyStJohn

There's an official Al St. John website: https://www.alstjohn.net

Charles Simic has an article on Arbuckle, Keaton, St. John, and Fatty Arbuckle's Comique film studio on East 48th Street in New York City: http://www.nybooks.com/daily/2012/12/07/manhattans-forgotten-film-studio/

Al has a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame: http://projects.latimes.com/hollywood/star-walk/al-st-john/

There's a bunch of photos of St. John, Arbuckle, Buster Keaton, etc. on Flickr: https://www.flickr.com/photos/confetta/sets/72157623118554862/


Al's three wives.

There were three marriages:

Al's first was to Marion Lillian Ball (1891 - 1975) who had been previously married. Marion L. Hill and Al were husband and wife from 1914 - 1923 and daughter Mary Jane St. John was born October 9, 1918 in Los Angeles.

Al's second wife was Yvonne June Villon (1901 - 1957; born France), and he was her third husband. June Price Pearce married Al on July 6, 1926, and they were together over thirty years, through her death in 1957.

Al's third wife was Florence 'Flo Bell' Moore and they were together when he passed away in 1963.


Lots of battles with first wife Marion Lillian St. John over missed alimony and child support payments.


On the trail of Al 'Fuzzy' St. John.

The Family Search website (free), Ancestry.com (subscription), Social Security Death Index (SSDI), California Death Index, Georgia Death Index, Newspaper Archive, trade publications, and newspapers have more on Al St. John and family.


St. John retired from film-making in the early 1950s after the Lash LaRue series ended. He continued doing personal appearances at circuses, fairs, rodeos, and lots of small town theaters and gatherings. He passed away on January 21, 1963 from a heart attack while working with the Tommy Scott Wild West show.

Bill Russell, in his March, 2001 Western Revue magazine, included an interview with Doc Tommy Scott - St. John worked on the show for about five years, and his death was in Lyons, Georgia (not the oft reported Vidalia, Georgia).

Various newspapers carried a death notice and obituary:

January 22, 1963 newspaper article: "LYONS, Ga. - A trouper till the last, Al St. John, the comical Fuzzy Q. Jones of Western movies, died of a heart attack yesterday in the arms of his wife, Flo-Bell Moore. St. John, 70, was stricken at his hotel as he awaited a personal appearance with his wife last night in nearby Vidalia."

Excerpts from another January 22, 1963 newspaper article: "LYONS, Ga. - Private services will be held ... died of a heart attack Monday in a motel room ... St. John's body was to be cremated ... and the ashes deposited at his Double F Ranch at Homosassa Springs, Fla."

The Associated Press syndicated death announcement reported that Al was scheduled for personal appearance at the Vidalia, Georgia American Legion Club. Survivors were his wife, Flo-Bell Moore, Mrs. Minta Durfee Arbuckle (Fatty Arbuckle's first wife), and Raymond Price, a son from Al's second wife June. No mention of daughter Mary Jane.


More on Al's parents, his three wives, daughter Mary Jane, and (stepson) Raymond Price:



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