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Ken Maynard

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Ken Maynard

Source: nndb.com

Ken Maynard (July 21, 1895 – March 23, 1973) was an American motion picture stuntman and actor.

Working at carnivals and circuses, starting at age 16, Maynard became an accomplished horseman. As a young man, he performed in rodeos and was a trick rider with Buffalo Bill 's Wild West Show. During World War I, he served in the United States Army.

After the war, Maynard returned to show business as a circus rider with Ringling Brothers. When the circus was playing in Los Angeles, California, actor Buck Jones encouraged Maynard to try work in the movies. Maynard soon had a contract with Fox Studios. He first appeared in silent motion pictures in 1923 and in addition to acting also did stunt work. His horsemanship and rugged good looks made Maynard a cowboy star. His white stallion, "Tarzan", also became famous. He became one of the first singing cowboys with Columbia Records, recording two songs, "The Lone Star Trail" and "The Cowboy's Lament". Maynard moved to Universal Studios, where he made his first films with a musical soundtrack. He sang two songs in Sons of the Saddle (1930).

In 1931 and 1932, Maynard worked for Tiffany Productions and Sono Art-World Wide Pictures before moving back to Universal in 1933. Maynard played several instruments and was featured playing the fiddle in The Fiddlin' Buckaroo (1933) and the banjo in The Trail Drive (1933). Maynard moved to Mascot Pictures in 1934.

With his white cowboy hat, fancy shirt, and pair of six-shooters, from the 1920s to the mid-1940s, Maynard appeared in more than 90 films. His film career declined in 1944. He made appearances at state fairs and rodeos.He then owned a small circus operation featuring rodeo riders but eventually lost it to creditors. The significant amount of money he had earned vanished, and he lived a desolate life in a rundown mobile home. During these years, Maynard was supported by an unknown benefactor, long thought to be Gene Autry.

Fact file

  • Born: July 21, 1895 Vevay, Indiana
  • Died: March 23, 1973 (aged 77) Woodland Hills, California, U.S.

Read more about Ken Maynard at Wikipedia or at the Internet Movie Database

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