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(Courtesy of Bryanna Holt)
The Holt Family

From left to right in a circa 2008 - 2009 family photo are Bryanna, her brothers Jack and Jay and mother Berdee.

Sad to report that Berdee passed away on April 25, 2011.

Tim Holt Day
Harrah, Oklahoma, September 13, 1975

The Governor of Oklahoma proclaimed September 13 as 'Tim Holt Day', and ceremonies were held in Harrah, Oklahoma beginning in 1975.

(Courtesy of Gerald Walton)

In the back seat of the convertible are stuntman Dave Sharpe (closest), Tim's wife Berdee in the center, and on the outside wearing the cowboy hat is Ben Johnson.

Tim's Horses

The replacement for George O'Brien at RKO was Tim Holt, and he rode at least four horses during a starring career that spanned about a dozen years at that studio. In the early 1940s, prior to leaving for World War II military service, he rode Duke. And then there were a couple different horses in his post-war films, one of which was Shiek as well as a palomino named Lightning. Toward the end of his RKO series, Holt rode Sun Dance.

(From Old Corral collection)

For some reason, Tim rode the horse pictured above in WILD HORSE MESA (RKO, 1947), and the trusty steed appears to be famous movie hoss Steel (who has a unique face blaze and three white socks).

Check out the Tim Holt page in the Trusty Steeds section of the Old Corral for more info on his horses. (Thanks to Denny Linser for jogging my memory on Shiek, and Pat Mefferd for the help on Holt riding Steel.)

(Courtesy of Les Adams)

Above from the pressbook for WAGON TRAIN (RKO, 1940) with info on Tim's Wonder Horse Duke.

Above are Holt (riding the palomino Lightning) and his post World War II sidekick, Richard Martin (as 'Chito Jose Gonzales Bustamonte Rafferty').

(Courtesy of Bill McCann)

Tim Holt Comics

Thx to Lansing Sexton for the following info on the comic book series of Tim Holt:

From the point of view of comics history, Tim Holt's series is an especially fascinating one.  Western comics had existed since the appearance of Western Picture Stories, dated February, 1937.  But the real explosion in comics' popularity came with the publication of Action Comics #1 dated June 1938 containing the first adventure of Superman.  From that moment on, Super heroes ruled the comic book roost as they do today.

However, after the War, Superhero comics began to suffer a slow decline.  Many disappeared from the stands and others were converted to non-superhero subjects.  Crack comics, for example, which for some years had featured Captain Triumph, became Crack Western with the November 1949 issue.  (In fact, Tim's photo appeared on the cover of issue 72 of Crack Western dated May 1951 even though the contents appear to have nothing to do with him).

The first Tim Holt comic appeared in Magazine Enterprises' anthology series A-1 Comics with issue #14 in 1948.  It had a drawn cover with an upper left corner medallion containing a head shot of Tim.  Of course, Tim's movie series had started many years earlier in 1940, and after wartime interruption (he won the Distinguished Flying Cross), the films resumed in 1947.

A-1 Comics #17 and 19 also featured Tim now with photo covers (19 has a photo back cover, too).  With the next issue, (#4 dated January/February 1949,) Tim's series became independent of the A-1 series.  The photo covers continued as did the phrases 'Cowboy Star of the Movies' and 'Western Adventures' on each cover.  Issue 5 and 6 also had photo back covers.

The photo front covers lasted through issue 16, returning one last time with issue 18.  In issue 17, Tim was back to an upper left head shot and the rest of the cover presented a striking drawing of the new comic sensation, the Ghost Rider!  The seeds of this change had appeared as early as issue #6, which had a backup feature relating the adventures of the Calico Kid alias Rex Fury.  An insert on the cover of issue 11 heralded the metamorphosis of the Calico Kid into the Ghost Rider.  Clad in phosphorescent white and masked, GR was a spooky superhero-style cowboy hero, frightening and fooling villains into thinking he was a ghost.  Ghost Rider inserts appeared again on the covers of issue 16 and after his full cover splash on 17, again on 18.
Issue 19 had a drawn cover of Tim with the photo medallion again.  The comic ended with a page showing a cowboy all in red, wearing a Durango Kid style mask.  'Coming next issue', it said.  Sure enough, with issue 20, Tim's photo-medallion was back, along with a new tagline under the logo: 'Tim Holt As Red Mask'.  Tim hadn't been replaced exactly, instead, he had become Red Mask, and so he stayed through the last issue #41 of April/May 1954.  The one exception was issue 29 which featured a full-length black and white photo of Tim on Lightning against a red background with a drawing of Red Mask in a medallion for a change.  With issue 42, the comic changed it's name to Red Mask, but now there was a photo medallion of someone (Tim?) in a red hat, wearing the new Lone Ranger-style red mask.  The last issue was #54 dated Sept 1957.

An interesting aspect of the series was the adoption of so-called '3-D' artwork with issue 39.  A number of real 3-D comics requiring red/green glasses, had appeared in 1953 and 1954, but although the 3-D effects were good, they were all, of necessity, in black and white.  Tim's comic had drawings which broke the panel frame, and though not 3-D, it was an intriguing effect.  I remember one story, set in the hills in which rocks were dislodged in one panel and fell across the page into another illustration.

Red Mask, always identified as Tim Holt, also appeared in 9 issues of A-1 comics' sub series Best of the West along with the Ghost Rider, Straight Arrow and the Durango Kid, all superhero style western heroes.

In the sixties, I. W. Reprints did 4 issues of Red Mask reprints. In 1971, Skyward Comics reprinted Red Mask stories in 2 issues of Blazing Six-Guns, one issue of Wild Western Action (#3) and in a one-shot called The Bravados.  In 1989-90, AC Comics published Red Mask reprints in Black Phantom numbers 2 and 3. All these reprints demonstrate a continuing interest in Tim Holt's colorful alter-ego.

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