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The Character Actresses


(From Old Corral image collection)

Above from left to right are Sarah Padden, Emmett Lynn, Eddie Dean, Jennifer Holt and Al LaRue (in his days before becoming "Lash") in Eddie Dean's first starring effort, the Cinecolor SONG OF OLD WYOMING (PRC, 1945).



(From Old Corral image collection)

Standing from left to right in this still from FRONTIER OUTLAWS (PRC, 1944) are Kansas Moehring, Tex Cooper and star Buster Crabbe. Sitting from left to right are Al 'Fuzzy' St. John, Marin Sais, and Frances Gladwin. Marin Sais (1890-1971) began her film career in silents. She was married to Jack Hoxie but they divorced in 1925 after about five years of marriage.



(From Old Corral image collection)
Left, Robert 'Bobby' Blake was Little Beaver to both Bill Elliott and Allan Lane in their 1940s Red Ryder westerns.  Shown with Blake is Alice Fleming who played the Duchess in the early Ryder films.


(From Old Corral image collection)

Martha Wentworth took over the role of 'the Duchess' from Alice Fleming.  Wentworth was a gifted and prolific radio performer, and her credits include the 'Wintergreen Witch' in THE CINNAMON BEAR.



(Courtesy of Minard Coons)

C. Montague Shaw, as Professor Faxon, is on the couch while Max Terhune, Ray Corrigan, Bob Livingston, heroine Mary Russell and other cast members look on in this scene from the Three Mesquiteers' RIDERS OF THE WHISTLING SKULL (Republic, 1937).  The actress kneeling and wearing a pith helmet is Fern Emmett (1896-1946). Fern Emmett did bit roles in various A and B grade films - a good example is her portraying the secretary receiving Monty Wooley's attention when he sings "Miss Otis Regrets" in the Cole Porter biography NIGHT AND DAY (Warners, 1946).



(Courtesy of Les Adams)

Above from L-to-R in the front are Fred Burns, Maude Eburne (1875-1960), 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 Ed Tabor)
Left are Emma Tansey and Lloyd Ingraham as "Mr. and Mrs. Nestor" in the Johnny Mack Brown THE GAMBLING TERROR (A. W. Hackel/Republic, 1937).


Western film expert Les Adams, co-authored Shoot-Em-Ups with Buck Rainey.  About twenty years ago, Les also wrote and published a series of softcover 'zines titled Yesterday's Saturdays, and each issue highlighted a couple dozen B westerns and included cast lists, plot synopsis, ad cuts, etc.  Les has a massive database on the B western and serial, and that database includes info on the heroes, heroines, supporting players, directors, producers, et al.

Following is a database run of those wonderful performers who were NOT heroines --- these are the character actresses who often had minor roles and bit parts.  Some, like Alice Fleming and Martha Wentworth, had choice roles portraying 'The Duchess' in the Republic Red Ryder films.  And there were several of these talented actresses who did a few B westerns but are more remembered for other work --- two that come to mind are Marjorie Main (Ma & Pa Kettle films) and Ellen Corby (WALTON'S MOUNTAIN TV show).

Before proceeding, please take a look at the 'ground rules' on what each of the columns includes and does not include:

Date of this database run: 11/16/99
The list is sorted in WESTERN film appearance order


CHARACTER ACTRESS Westerns Serials Features Shorts Total
ROSE PLUMER (aka Rose Lincoln Plumer & Rose Plummer) 48 10 29 1 88
MARIN SAIS 35 3 13 0 51
SARAH PADDEN 34 2 86 1 123
MINERVA URECAL 34 1 96 10 141
EVA McKENZIE 24 2 6 13 45
FERN EMMETT 24 0 76 13 113
HELEN GIBSON 23 7 7 0 37
MARY MacLAREN 22 0 23 0 45
SOLEDAD JIMINEZ 22 1 22 0 45
ROSA TURICH 20 2 8 0 30
ALICE FLEMING 17 1 18 0 36
MARY GORDON 15 0 152 5 172
IRIS ADRIAN 14 0 85 6 105
VIRGINIA BRISSAC 14 1 65 0 80
EVA NOVAK 14 0 1 0 15
BARBARA WOODELL 14 0 20 0 34
DOROTHY GRANGER 13 1 85 97 196
EMMA TANSEY 13 1 5 0 19
MARJORIE MAIN 13 0 73 0 86
JESSIE ARNOLD 13 0 39 4 56
MIRA (Myra) McKINNEY 12 0 48 0 60
MAUDIE PRICKETT 11 0 17 2 30
JODY GILBERT 11 0 50 1 62
RUTH ROBINSON 10 0 34 1 45
ELLEN CORBY 10 1 76 0 87
ARGENTINA BRUNETTI 10 0 24 0 34
MAUDE EBURNE 9 0 92 0 101
CLAIRE DuBREY 9 0 41 1 51
MARY NEWTON 9 0 15 0 24
ALMIRA SESSIONS 9 0 54 2 65
ANNA DEMETRIO 9 0 17 0 26
GERTRUDE CHORRE 9 4 5 0 18
MINNA GOMBELL 8 0 64 0 72
HELEN MacKELLAR 8 0 24 2 34
EVA PUIG 8 0 7 0 15
EDYTHE ELLIOTT 8 1 33 1 43
ETTA McDANIEL 8 0 39 1 48
DOROTHY VERNON 8 0 10 1 19
RUTH WARREN 8 0 61 0 69
MARTHA WENTWORTH 7 0 16 0 23
MARY CARR 7 0 26 5 38
FLORENCE LAKE 6 0 37 69 112
MARY TREEN 6 0 107 5 118
DOROTHY VAUGHN 6 0 79 9 94
SARAH EDWARDS 6 0 74 3 83
GERTRUDE ASTOR 6 2 51 9 68
ISABEL LaMAL 6 1 14 0 21
ANNE HOWARD 6 0 7 0 13
BETTY ROADMAN 5 1 14 0 20
NANA BRYANT 5 0 87 3 95
LOUISE BEAVERS 5 0 126 1 132
GEORGIA CAINE 5 0 51 0 56
ALMA CHESTER 5 0 5 0 10
FELICE RICHMOND 5 0 3 0 8
BETTY FARRINGTON 5 0 42 0 47


Above is the property of, and copyright ©1999-2009, by Les Adams



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