Lumpy, pear-shaped comedian with an inimitably whiny, rustic drawl, discovered in the audience of a Chicago World Fair and soon thereafter a popular radio personality on "The National Barn Dance" and...
First met Gene Autry on the WLS radio program, "The National Barn Dance"
Left college when an Alabama radio station hired him to perform after seeing his work in a college play
Supplied the voices of Washington Irving and Ichabod Crane's horse on the animated children's series, "The New Misadventures of Ichabod Crane"
Wrote for the CBS summer variety series, "The Jerry Reed When You're Hot You're Hot Hour"
Guested regularly on KMPC, a Los Angeles radio station
Last feature film, "Back to the Future III"
Played Eustace Haney on the popular CBS sitcom, "Green Acres"
Was one of the writers of the NBC variety special, "Danny Thomas Goes Country and Western"
Began as Gene Autry's sidekick in the late 1940s
Made regular appearances on Arthur Godfrey's various radio and TV shows ("Arthur Godfrey and Friends", "Arthur Godfrey's Talent Scouts", etc.) And on "The Ed Sullivan Show"
Attended the Chicago World's Fair; was in the audience of the "Barn Dance" and got big laughs when he was interviewed; subsequently hired as a comic
Supplied voices on the NBC children's animated series, "Rick Moranis in Gravedale High"
Reprised the role of Mr. Haney on the CBS TV-movie, "Return to Green Acres"
Earliest feature film credits include "The National Barn Dance"
Played Pat, Gene Autry's assistant, on the popular Western TV series, "The Gene Autry Show"
Returned to occasional feature film work in the early 1960s
Lumpy, pear-shaped comedian with an inimitably whiny, rustic drawl, discovered in the audience of a Chicago World Fair and soon thereafter a popular radio personality on "The National Barn Dance" and other shows. Buttram met singing cowboy star Gene Autry while performing on the air and later became the star's comedy sidekick for the tail end of Autry's silver screen reign. Although Smiley Burnette usually rode alongside the smartly dressed Western hero, Buttram continued Burnette's bumbling antics in "B" Westerns including "The Strawberry Roan" (1949), "Riders in the Sky" (1949), "Indian Territory" (1950) and "Barbed Wire" (1952). Buttram also followed Autry into TV and continued his bumptious antics for six years on "The Gene Autry Show".<p> Buttram subsequently wrote comedy material for several TV specials and kept busy as an entertainer on the Hollywood banquet and benefit circuit. He also played intermittent character roles in features ranging from the Elvis Presley musical, "Roustabout" (1964), to the silly comedy, "I Sailed to Tahiti with an All-Girl Crew" (1969), and the sincere if minor drama, "Choices" (1981). A versatile voice-over artist, Buttram had just the right vocal qualities to evoke whimsical cartoon characters. In addition to much TV work in this vein he lent his pipes to such Disney films as "The Aristocats" (1970, as Napoleon), "Robin Hood" (1973, as the Sheriff of Nottingham), "The Rescuers" (1977, as Luke) and "The Fox and the Hound (1981, as the Chief). Late in life he even provided the voice of one of the bullets in "Who Framed Roger Rabbit?" (1988). Although older audiences may remember Buttram best alongside Autry, younger generations probably cherish his role as the conniving salesman Mr. Haney on the down-on-the-farm sitcom, "Green Acres" (1965-71), selling star Eddie Albert not only his ramshackle home but also a lot of other junk, to considerable comic effect.
acted together in the Gene Autry vehicle, "Mule Train" (1950); born on June 8, 1921; married from 1952 until her death from a lung ailment on November 4, 1975
Birmingham Southern College
Most of the obituaries that came out at the time of Buttram's death gave his age as 78 but not his month or date of birth. The one source that does give his full date or birth gives the year as 1917, however.