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Tansey connections.


Tansey with producer William Pizor on the mid 1930s series of Wally Wales shorts.
Left is producer and distributor William M. Pizor (1890 - 1959).

In the mid 1930s, he was the head of his own William M. Pizor Productions as well as Imperial Distributing Corporation. During that period, he produced some low budget fare including western shorts starring Wally Wales (who became Hal Taliaferro).

In the mid to late 1940s, Pizor was a Vice President at Screen Guild / Robert L. Lippert, in charge of their foreign distribution.


Tansey with producer Ed Finney on the Tex Ritter westerns at Grand National and Monogram ... and that led to lots more work for Tansey at Monogram.
Right is producer and director Edward F. Finney (1903 - 1983) who is best remembered for his series of westerns with Tex Ritter.

Finney and Ritter did 32 westerns which were initially released through Grand National. Finney did double duty at Grand National, working as GN's advertising and publicity boss as well as heading his Boots and Saddles production company with the Tex Ritter films. But Grand National was in financial trouble in the late 1930s and failed.

In Summer, 1938, Finney moved to Monogram and continued the Ritter series.

Bob Tansey did one or more functions in 25 of the 32 Ritter films.


Tansey with director Robert North Bradbury.

(Courtesy of Les Adams)

Above from L-to-R are Jack Randall, handling the movie camera, along with Peggy Keys and Robert North Bradbury in a publicity still included in the pressbook for RIDERS OF THE DAWN (Monogram, 1937), Randall's first starring oater. Peggy Keys was the heroine and the director of the film was Bradbury, Bob Steele's father. Bradbury's real name was Ronald Bradbury (1886-1949).

In the mid to late 1930s, Tansey worked in about a dozen Bradbury directed oaters that starred John Wayne, Jack Randall, Tom Keene and Tex Ritter.


Frances Kavanaugh - Tansey's frequent script and story collaborator at Monogram and PRC.

(Courtesy of Frances Kavanaugh Hecker & Robert Hecker)
Left is Frances Kavanaugh (1915 - 2009), a talented script and story writer who worked behind the scenes on B westerns.

Most of Frances' work was in the 1940s at Monogram and PRC with cowboy heroes Eddie Dean, Tom Keene, the Range Busters, and Trail Blazers. Frances and Bob Tansey collaborated on about 30 westerns scattered over the years 1941 - 1951: http://www.imdb.com/search/title?roles=nm0849806,nm0442599

More on Frances is at: Cowgirl Hall of Fame: http://www.cowgirl.net/portfolios/frances-kavanaugh/

Her papers and ephemera are archived at the Autry National Center: http://collections.theautry.org/mwebcgi/mweb.exe?request=keyword;keyword=kavanaugh#


Tansey with William Thomas Crespinel (1890 - 1987), the president of Cinecolor ... and Crespinel's son, William Arthur Louvain Crespinel (1914 - 2010) who was "Lee Bennett" in the movies.

Above is Lee Bennett and he appeared in eight of the Eddie Dean oaters.

The blurb on the right is from the pressbook to Dean's ROMANCE OF THE WEST (PRC, 1946).

(Courtesy of Les Adams)

 Although some of the data is incomplete or inaccurate, the Internet Movie Database (IMDb) has information on Lee Bennett. Caution - the film listing looks OK but the biography is for big band crooner Lee Hunt Bennett who sang with the Jan Garber Orchestra and in later years, was an announcer for NBC in Chicago. We'll try to get that fixed: http://www.imdb.com/name/nm0071881

October 12, 1946 Showmen's Trade Review: "Lee Bennett, whose father is William Crespinel, Cinecolor president, was added to 'Twain Sombreros,' Harry Joe Brown production for Columbia release."

A family tree on Ancestry.com noted that William Arthur Louvain Crespinel was born on August 30, 1914 to 24 year old father William and 20 year old mother Dorothy. He had one sister. He died on May 9, 2010 in New York, New York at the age of 95.

The New York Times newspaper had an obituary on William T. Crespinel who passed away June 19, 1987 at his home in Laguna Beach, California. "He is survived by a daughter, Kathleen McCandless of North Hollywood, Calif.; a son, William A. Crespinel of Manhattan, and two grandchildren.": http://www.nytimes.com/1987/06/24/nyregion/william-crespinel-96-pioneer-in-color-films.html


Links
 Although some of the data is incomplete or inaccurate, the Internet Movie Database (IMDb) has information on Robert Emmett 'Bob' Tansey: http://www.imdb.com/name/nm0849806/

The Internet Broadway database has Master Robert Tansey appearing in eight Broadway plays during the years 1907 - 1909: https://www.ibdb.com/broadway-cast-staff/master-robert-tansey-61838

The Internet Movie Database (IMDb) has a "people working together" search function:

There's a variety of Tansey films on YouTube and the Internet Archive which you can view or download:
     YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/results?search_query=%22robert+emmett+tansey%22
     Internet Archive: https://archive.org/details/feature_films?and[]=%22robert%20emmett%20tansey%22

Martin Hart's American Widescreen Museum website has info on Cinecolor: http://www.widescreenmuseum.com/oldcolor/cinecolor2.htm


On the trail of Bob Tansey.
The Family Search website (free), Ancestry.com (subscription), newspapers, California Death Index and the death certificate provide more on Robert Emmett Tansey and family:

  • New York birth index record for Robert Tansey - he was born June 8, 1897 in Brooklyn, New York to Harry Tansey and Emma Purcell Tansey: https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:2W7V-P8P
  • March 19, 1910 The New York Dramatic Mirror newspaper had a death notice for 47 year old actor and father Harry Tansey who passed away from penumonia at his New York home on March 12, 1910. Excerpts: "... left his home in St. Louis thirty years ago with a Pinafore company." ; "He was the father of the clever stage children, John, Robert and Sheridan Tansey."
  • 1918 - son Robert Emmett Tansey was born May 15, 1918 in New Jersey.
  • World War I draft registration dated September 4, 1918 for 21 year old Robert Emmett Tansey. He was born June 29, 1897 in Arverne???, Long Island, New York. Wife is Catherine [sic] Tansey and they live at 608 West 138th Street, New York, New York. His employer is O. A. C. Lund, Coytesville, New Jersey. (O. A. C. Lund (1886 - 1963) was a silent era actor and director.): https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:33S7-81NW-P83?mode=g&i=2820&cc=1968530
  • 1920 census summary and census takers worksheet - renting in Palisades Park, Bergen County, New Jersey are 42 year old Emma Tansey (born Kentucky; no occupation), 18 year old son John (born New York; occupation "Actor - Moving Pictures"), and 13 year old son Sheridan (born New York; occupation "Actor - Moving Pictures"). Also living there are Emma's 22 year old son Robert Tansey (born New York; occupation "Actor - Moving Pictures"), his 19 year old wife Katie (born New York; occupation "Actress - Moving Pictures") and one year old son Robert (born New York): https://familysearch.org/pal:/MM9.1.1/M4PK-9R4
  • 1925 - daughter Jeanne Helen Tansey was born June 19, 1925 in New Jersey.
  • 1930 census summary and census takers worksheet - renting in West Hollywood, Beverly Hills Township, Los Angeles County, California are 33 year old Robert E. Tansey (born New York; occupation "Director - Motion Pictures"), his 30 year old wife Catherine [sic] (born New York), their 11 year old son Robert E. Tansey Jr. (born New Jersey), and 8 year old daughter Jeanne (born New Jersey). Also living with them are Tansey's mother Emma Tansey (born Kentucky; widow; occupation "Actress - Motion Pictures") and Tansey's brother, 23 year old Sheridan Tansey (born New York; occupation "Actor - Motion Pictures"): https://familysearch.org/pal:/MM9.1.1/XCFL-1DV
  • 1940 census summary and census takers worksheet - renting in Los Angeles, California are 43 year old Robert Tansey (born New York; occupation "Free Lance - Writer"), his 36 year old wife Katherine N. (born New York) and 18 year old daughter Helen Jeanne (born New Jersey): https://familysearch.org/pal:/MM9.1.1/K9HK-LLT
  • April 4, 1942 Motion Picture Herald: "Mrs. Emma Tansey, 72, former stage and screen actress, died March 24th (1942) in Hollywood. She is survived by three sons, Robert Emmett Tansey, Monogram producer; Sheridan, actor, and John, writer. Mrs. Tansey began her stage career at age of two and at seven played in the original American production of 'Little Lord Fauntleroy.' Mrs. Tansey went to Hollywood 19 years ago to enter pictures. Illness forced her retirement a year ago."
  • Ancestry had the 1944 City Directory for North Hollywood, California: Robt E Tansey (mot pict producer) and wife Kath M live at 4229 Teesdale Avenue.
  • Death certificate - 53 year old Robert Emmett Tansey was born June 29, 1897 in New York to Harry and Emma Purcell Tansey. His occupation was "Director - Motion Pictures", and he and wife Katherine Tansey lived in North Hollywood, Los Angeles County, California. He passed away from a heart attack on June 17, 1951 in Glendale, California. Death certificate informant was his daughter Jeanne Tansey. Utter-McKinley, Glendale, California was the funeral director and interment at Grandview.
  • California Death Index mirrors the death certificate - Robert Emmett Tansey was born June 29, 1897 in New York, mother's maiden name was Purcell, and he passed away on June 17, 1951 in the Los Angeles area: https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:VPZM-DTK
  • June 20, 1951 Motion Picture Daily: "Funeral services will be held tomorrow in North Hollywood for Robert Tansey, producer-director of Western features, who died Sunday from a heart attack. The widow and a daughter survive."
  • Funeral notice in the June 20, 1951 Los Angeles (California) Times newspaper mentioned that Robert E. Tansey passed away from a heart attack and was survived by wife Katherine, daughter Jeanne, son Robert, and brother John. No mention of brother Sherry.

Jim Tipton's Find A Grave website confirms that Bob Tansey is interred at Grand View Memorial Park and Crematory, Glendale, California: http://www.findagrave.com/cgi-bin/fg.cgi?page=gr&GRid=47550514


Wife Katherine (Katie), son Robert Jr., and daughter Jeanne:

California Death Index has a record for Bob's wife Katherine M. Tansey. She was born January 9, 1901 and passed away November 18, 1963 in the San Francisco, California area. Family trees have her birth name as Katherine Marie Stiehn: https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:VP4Z-2XH

California Death Index has dual records for Robert E. Tansey and Bob E. Tansey. He was born May 15, 1918 and passed away May 20, 1962 in the San Francisco, California area, and mother's maiden name was Stiehn:
https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:VP47-RCW
https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:VGRF-1ZX
Jim Tipton's Find A Grave website has a photo of the marker for World War II and Korea Navy veteran Bob Emmett Tansey who is interred at Golden Gate National Cemetery, San Bruno, San Mateo County, California: https://www.findagrave.com/cgi-bin/fg.cgi?page=gr&GRid=3639727

Ancestry had the California Divorce Index - Jeanne Tansey married Clinton Schmidt in 1953 and their divorce was finalized in 1970.
California Death Index has a record for Jeanne Helen Schmidt. She was born June 19, 1925 in New Jersey, father's last name was Tansey and she passed away October 26, 1986 in the Los Angeles area: https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:VPFM-Z9M



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