(Courtesy of Lad Moore)
The salutation on this photo is difficult to read. McCoy wrote: "To Lad Jr. with my best wishes, Tim McCoy 1959"
Lad Moore Remembers Tim McCoy and the Carson & Barnes Circus
"He was a fine gentlemen. First hand experience is my teacher. I toured with Tim McCoy on my uncle's Carson & Barnes Circus in 1959 (Jack and Angela Moore).
(Courtesy of Lad Moore)
|On the left is a Carson & Barnes circus "route card" for weeks nineteen and twenty of their 1959 tour. Stops are in Michigan, Indiana, and Illinois.|
COL. TIM McCOY
'Real Wild West'
"Colonel Tim was the feature act on the Carson Barnes Circus owned by the late Jack Moore and his wife Angela, and the show wintered in Hugo, Oklahoma. The year was 1958 and we did not work the entire season on the show as we had been previously booked for part of the season before we joined them. Jack and his wife were very nice to work for and we enjoyed the 'family' feeling that the show had.
It seems the Carson Barnes Circus furnished Tim with a new two-door Mercury automobile which was canary yellow. They also provided a Yellowstone trailer about 30 feet long that was the same colour. Scuttlebutt around the show was that the Colonel didn't like to stay in the trailer and just used it for a dressing room. One day as we were heading towards Silome Springs, Arkansas, I looked in the rear view mirror (as we were also pulling a trailer) and saw a yellow streak catch and pass us in a flurry. Of course it was the Colonel and later, when I asked him why he was going so fast on the hilly two lane road, he said that he was trying to get to a radio interview (and had overslept). I can't remember if he made the radio date or not."
"The Colonel was the true star of the Carson Barnes Circus. He was, of course, the last act. He entered the big top astride a beautiful white horse. He was dressed as he had dressed in his films (didn't update his western wear which was a plus to fans I think). Colonel Tim rode fast around the hippodrome track and entered the centre ring where the horse kneeled. Then he doffed his huge white Stetson, alit and did a whip act ... of sorts. The act was pretty standard and the finale was to have an assistant hold a pop bottle out from their body and McCoy would pop the bottle top opening it with a crack of the whip. Unfortunately, he sometimes missed the first time and as a result he often had a new assistant at the next performance. Everyone on the show who worked with him admired him and he was much loved.
McCoy ended his act by standing in the spotlight, house lights dimmed, orange (setting sun) backdrop, and the organ playing the Indian Love Call. The Colonel told the audience (and I'm paraphrasing) using Indian sign language as he spoke, 'We have all met and come together, became friends and everything is washte' (pronounced wash-tay as I don't know how to spell it correctly). As he ended with 'washte', he gave the 'V' peace sign as he moved his hand from one side to the other. It was dramatic --- you could hear a pin drop and it would bring a lump to the throats of we true B western movie buffs."
(Courtesy of Minard Coons)
After the Carson Barnes Circus, McCoy spent about a dozen years as the featured performer with the 'Doc' Tommy Scott Wild West show.
(Courtesy of Donn & Nancy Moyer and Tommy Scott)
Above, Tommy Scott and Colonel Tim McCoy.
(Courtesy of Donn & Nancy Moyer)
Col. Tim McCoy in his later years ... still has that stern look as he levels that ol' six gun.
Got a nice e-mail from cowboy fan Bill Weathersby in mid-April 1999:
"The Tommy Scott show was in Albany, Georgia in 1973 ... one of the greatest moments in my life was meeting the legendary Col. Tim McCoy ... I still have the autographed program ... this show was really about the only way most fans had to see or meet one of their heroes."
Western film author/expert Boyd Magers also recalls Tim McCoy and the Tommy Scott show. Boyd writes:
"I had the good fortune to meet Tim McCoy in 1970 when he was touring with Tommy Scott as they came through Columbus, GA, where I was in radio at WDAK at the time. As I was program director there, I invited McCoy to come to the station for an interview, which he did. He was quite gentlemanly, still retaining all of his military bearing. We traversed his whole career, quickly, and talked about touring with Scott. He toured with Scott in order to be able to visit all the Civil War sites across the South. Touring with Scott enabled him to visit these sites free. McCoy was a great Civil War buff. He drove everywhere ... to the battleground sites in the daytime and performed on Scott's show at night. The next day McCoy appeared on a local morning TV talkshow on WRBL. My son Alan, who was 6 at the time, came on the show with a couple of Dad's one-sheet McCoy movie posters. Tim got a great kick out of that (as did my son). McCoy's stage show, incorporated into Scott's performance, consisted of a few ancedotes and a whip act with one of Scott's lady performers. Even in his 80's, McCoy was more than handy with the whip. Odd that he never used one in a film."
Got an e-mail from David Brooks in May, 2000, and he writes:
"I never saw the Doc Tommy Scott show. But my wife and I were camping just the other day in Paris Mountain, South Carolina. And he and his wife, Mrs. Frankie Scott, stayed in the campsite next to ours. We had the privilege of talking to them for a couple of hours. We really had a great time. He told us all about the old days and Tim McCoy. He even gave us an autographed picture, a tape and a bottle of Snake Oil. He is truly one of a kind and I hope our trails will cross again sometime."