Roy Rogers

Actor, Singer, Fruit picker
Roy Rogers was hardly from the West. In fact, he was born in Cincinnati and never left the state of Ohio until he was 18 years old and followed his father to California where the family worked as migratory fruit ... Read more »
Born: 11/05/1911 in Cincinnati, Ohio, USA

Filmography

Actor (31)

All My Friends Are Cowboys 1998 - 1999 (TV Show)

Actor

America's Music: The Roots of Country 1995 - 1996 (TV Show)

Actor

A Tribute to the Singing Cowboy 1992 - 1993 (TV Show)

Actor

Bob Hope: The First Ninety Years 1992 - 1993 (TV Show)

Actor

Holiday Greetings From the Ed Sullivan Show 1992 - 1993 (TV Show)

Actor

Roy Rogers: King of the Cowboys 1992 - 1993 (TV Show)

Actor

Roy Rogers: King of the Cowboys 1992 (Movie)

Himself (Actor)

The 34th Annual Grammy Awards 1991 - 1992 (TV Show)

Actor

Randy Travis -- Happy Trails 1990 - 1991 (TV Show)

Actor

The 61st Annual Academy Awards Presentation 1988 - 1989 (TV Show)

Actor

The Nashville Palace 1981 - 1982 (TV Show)

Actor

The Great Movie Cowboys 1977 - 1978 (TV Show)

Actor

Wonder Woman 1976 - 1977 (Tv Show)

Actor

Happy Birthday, America 1975 - 1976 (TV Show)

Actor

It's Showtime 1975 (Movie)

Himself (Actor)

Mackintosh & T.J. 1975 (Movie)

Mackintosh (Actor)

Saga of Sonora 1972 - 1973 (TV Show)

Actor

A Country Happening 1969 - 1970 (TV Show)

Actor

The Roy Rogers Show 1951 - 1964 (TV Show)

Actor

Alias Jesse James 1958 (Movie)

Himself (Actor)

Son of Paleface 1953 (Movie)

(Actor)

Don't Fence Me In 1945 (Movie)

(Actor)

Dark Command 1939 (Movie)

Fletch McCloud (Actor)

Under Western Stars 1937 (Movie)

(Actor)

The Republic Pictures Story (TV Show)

Actor
Music (6)

Men in Black 3 2012 (Movie)

("I'm An Old Cowhand") (Song Performer)

Roy Rogers: King of the Cowboys 1992 (Movie)

(Song Performer)

The 25th Annual Country Music Association Awards 1991 - 1992 (TV Show)

Song Performer

Randy Travis -- Happy Trails 1990 - 1991 (TV Show)

Song Performer

Showtime Coast to Coast: American Music 1989 - 1990 (TV Show)

Performer

The Hot Spot 1990 (Movie)

music score performer (Music)

Biography

Roy Rogers was hardly from the West. In fact, he was born in Cincinnati and never left the state of Ohio until he was 18 years old and followed his father to California where the family worked as migratory fruit pickers. In the early 1930s, Rogers shed his birth name of Leonard Slye and took the stage name 'Dick Wesson' when he formed the singing group The Sons of the Pioneers, who became popular on radio. In 1935, Republic Pictures signed him to a seven-year contract at $75 per week and still billed as 'Dick Wesson', he made his film debut in "Tumbling Tumbleweeds" (1935), a vehicle for Gene Autry. Rogers continued playing bit roles, but studio head Herbert Yates was grooming him for stardom. When Gene Autry walked off the lot in a contract dispute in 1938, it was Rogers' chance. Now billed as 'Roy Rogers' and often playing an onscreen character with that name, he had his first leading role in "Under Western Stars", as a singing cowpoke turned Washington Congressman. The film is a combination of Davy Crockett lore and "Mr. Smith Goes to Washington" rip-off that defends the independence of the American westerner. Rogers was an instant hit, and was then usually teamed with Gabby Hayes as his sidekick. Virtually all of his films were in the singing cowboy mode, except for "Dark Command" (1940), in which he played the supporting part of Claire Trevor's trigger-happy brother who is trying to settle the question of whether or not Kansas should be slave state prior to the Civil War.

Relationships

Mary Little Doe Rogers

Daughter
adopted with Dale Evans born in October 1952 three-quarters Choctaw

Thomas Frederick Fox Jr

Step-Son
born in 1927 mother, Dale Evans survived him

Dale Evans Actor

Wife
Married Dec. 31, 1947 in Davis, OK until his death July 6, 1998

Cheryl Rogers

Daughter
born in 1941 adopted with Arlene Wilkins survived him

Debbie Rogers

Daughter
adopted with Dale Evans in 1955 Korean-born was killed in a bus accident on August 17, 1964

Linda Rogers

Daughter
born on April 18, 1943 mother, Arlene Wilkins survived him

Marion Rogers

Daughter
adopted with Dale Evans in 1954 Scottish born in 1948

Robin Rogers

Daughter
born with Downs Syndrome on August 26, 1950 died on August 24, 1952

John Rogers

Son
adopted with Dale Evans in 1952 born in 1946 name changed from Harry died on October 31, 1965 in Germany at age 19

Roy Rogers

Son
born on October 28, 1946 mother, Arlene Wilkins

Andrew Slye

Father
part Cherokee

Hattie Slye

Mother
part Choctaw

Grace Wilkins

Wife
Married June 11, 1936 until her death Nov. 3, 1946 due to complications from giving birth to son Roy Jr.

EDUCATION

dropped out of high school after two years

Milestones

1997

Final public performance at 50th wedding anniversary celebration

1982

Appeared on retrospective "The Singing Cowboys Ride Again" (syndication)

1975

Returned to feature films in "MacKintosh & T.J."

1962

Starred on "The Roy Rogers and Dale Evans Show" (ABC)

1959

Made cameo appearance in "Alias Jesse James", starring Hope

1952

Last prominent film role for over 20 years, co-starring with Bob Hope in "Son of Paleface"

1951

Made last B-Western, "Pals of the Golden West"

1951

Starred on "The Roy Rogers Show" (NBC)

1943

Made first film with Dale Evans, "The Cowboy and the Senorita"

1938

When Gene Autry walked out on Republic contract, renamed 'Roy Rogers' and later became 'King of the Cowboys'

1937

Billed as Dick Weston, played a bandit opposite Gene Autry in "The Old Corral"

1935

Signed by Republic to contract; made film debut in "Tumbling Tumbleweeds"

1931

Radio debut as member of Tom Murray's Hollywood Hillbillies

1929

Moved to California with family; picked peaches

1919

Father moved family to a farm in Duck Run, OH

Frequently guest-hosted (with Dale Evans) "The Nashville Palace" (NBC)

Formed singing duo with cousin Stanley Slye

Under stage name 'Dick Weston' formed Sons of the Pioneers singing group; performed on radio

Bonus Trivia

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Roy Rogers was partnered in the fast-food chain that bears his name.

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He founded the Roy Rogers-Dale Evans Museum in Victorville, CA

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On working at Republic Pictures, Rogers told NEW YORK POST on March 13, 1991: "Well, you never made any money there, but you were working. In the 30s, that was important. But I was just thrilled to death to come to work every morning, because I was just a young guy, just getting started in the entertainment world."

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"The most touching things happen at the museum. Adults, who were the kids that grew up with my pictures, come in and throw their arms around me like I'm a long-lost relative. There's tears running down this old boy's cheeks . . . you can't believe it. But for a few seconds he's six years old again." --Roy Rogers in NEW YORK POST, March 13, 1991

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