Paul Alden Brinegar
Paul Alden Brinegar Jr.
December 19, 1917
|Died||March 27, 1995 (aged 77)|
Los Angeles, California, U.S.
|Resting place||Los Angeles National Cemetery|
|Spouse(s)||Shirley Talbott (1962-1995; his death); 2 children|
Brinegar was born in 1917 in Tucumcari in eastern New Mexico, the first child of Louise (née McElroy) and Paul A. Brinegar Sr., who was a farmer. His family relocated several times during his childhood, first moving to Alamagordo, then to Las Cruces, and finally to Santa Fe. It was in Santa Fe where Brinegar became interested in acting, performing in stage productions at his local high school.
After his graduation in 1935, Brinegar left Santa Fe to attend Pasadena Junior College in California. There he studied drama, literature, and art. According to the United States Census of 1940, he was back in Santa Fe by May of that year living with his parents and his two younger brothers, Warren and Robert.
The 1940 census also identifies him at that time as an independent "Writer" and his father then as a freelancing "general short hand Reporter". Soon thereafter young Brinegar joined the United States Navy to serve four years during World War II as a chief radio operator in the South Pacific. After the war he returned to California, where he applied his military training and experience to earn a living in the Los Angeles area as a radio repairman. He also resumed his pursuit of an acting career in his spare time, playing bit parts in movies.
Brinegar's first credited appearance in a feature film was in Larceny (1948). From there, he launched a steady film career that slowed considerably in the late 1950s, after he began appearing on television but did not end until 1994, when Brinegar made his final screen appearance, as a stagecoach driver, in the 1994 film version of Maverick.
Brinegar was cast in more than 100 Western films produced between 1946 and 1994, often specializing in playing "feisty, grizzled cowboy sidekicks". On television, from 1956 to 1958, he played James H. "Dog" Kelley, the mayor of Dodge City, Kansas, in the ABC/Desilu series The Life and Legend of Wyatt Earp starring Hugh O'Brian. Brinegar appears in that series 33 times as Kelley and in one other episode in another role. He also portrays Ludwig, a bartender, in the 1959 episode "The Ringer" of The Texan starring Rory Calhoun. Brinegar, however, is best remembered as the cattle-drive cook George Washington Wishbone on the CBS series Rawhide, which was originally telecast from 1959 to 1966.:875 Earlier he had played a similar role, one as the character Tom Jefferson Jeffrey, in the 1958 movie Cattle Empire upon which Rawhide was based.
Brinegar also made two guest appearances on CBS courtroom drama Perry Mason. His first appearance on that series, prior to Rawhide, is in the 1958 episode "The Case of the Sun Bather's Diary". His second appearance on Perry Mason is in the series' ninth and final season, in the 1966 episode "The Case of the Unwelcome Well".
In the 1968-1970 CBS Western series Lancer, Brinegar had the role of Jelly Hoskins; and in 1969 he appeared in Charro! starring Elvis Presley. Then, in 1973, he played the barman in Clint Eastwood's film High Plains Drifter. From 1982 to 1983, returning to television, Brinegar portrayed a humorous cowboy-like character, Lamar Pettybone, during the first season of the ABC series Matt Houston.:667 Later he reprised a revised version of his Rawhide Wishbone character for the 1991 TV movie The Gambler Returns: The Luck of the Draw, in which he delivers a brief monologue that contains references to several old television Westerns.
The veteran actor died of emphysema at the age of 77 in Los Angeles on March 27, 1995. He was buried at Los Angeles National Cemetery. His family directed memorial contributions for Brinegar to the Motion Picture and Television Fund in Woodland Hills, California.
Brinegar guest-starred mostly in westerns, including the Saturday morning series on CBS, Tales of the Texas Rangers in the 1956 episode "The Hobo." In 1967, he guest-starred in the episode "Take the Southbound Stage" of the NBC series, Daniel Boone, starring Fess Parker in the title role.
On October 1, 1966, he was cast as a prospector, Sawbuck, in the episode "Solid Gold Cavity" of the syndicated Death Valley Days, hosted by Robert Taylor and filmed in Sedona, Arizona. In the storyline based on a true incident, Sawbuck saves the life of Dr. John Beers, a young dentist, who on the trail to San Francisco is attacked and left for dead by two bandits. Dr. Beers (played by Thomas Peters) repays Sawbuck by taking some of the prospector's gold and making him a set of gold teeth, for which Beers subsequently obtained a patent. That same month, Brinegar played Rupert Johnson, who entered a partnership to cook for a feisty miner in return for half of the gold findings in the Death Valley Days episode "The Lady and the Sourdough". Amzie Strickland played the "lady", the neighboring widow Laticia Daigle.
On June 11, 1969, Brinegar played the Death Valley pioneer Jimmy Dayton (died 1899) in the episode "Jimmy Dayton's Bonanza". The aging rancher Dayton takes a saloon girl, played by Marilyn O'Connor, as his wife; but she has second thoughts after she learns that he has exaggerated his wealth. James Wainwright (1938-1999) co-stars as a cowboy who feigns an interest in Mrs. Dayton. The episode was released three days after the death of series host Robert Taylor.
TV and Film roles
- non-western roles include
- Abilene Town (1946) - Gambler (uncredited)
- Larceny (1948) - Mechanic
- Take One False Step (1949) - Reporter (uncredited)
- Sword in the Desert (1949) - British Soldier (uncredited)
- Pinky (1949) - Western Union Clerk (uncredited)
- The Gal Who Took the West (1949) - Tailor (uncredited)
- Young Man with a Horn (1950) - Stage Manager (uncredited)
- A Ticket to Tomahawk (1950) - Henchman (uncredited)
- Storm Warning (1951) - Cameraman #1 (uncredited)
- Insurance Investigator (1951) - Mr. Spangler, Hotel Orderly (uncredited)
- Journey Into Light (1951) - Bum
- Here Come the Nelsons (1952) - Thin Cop (uncredited)
- The Captive City (1952) - Police Sergeant
- Pat and Mike (1952) - Caddy (uncredited)
- We're Not Married! (1952) - Beauty Contest Spectator (uncredited)
- It Happens Every Thursday (1953) - Mr. Sweetzer, Hotel Clerk (uncredited)
- Fast Company (1953) - Smokey - Poker Player (uncredited)
- Captain Scarface (1953) - Clegg
- So Big (1953) - Farmer (uncredited)
- Phantom of the Rue Morgue (1954) - Angry Accuser in Street (uncredited)
- Rails Into Laramie (1954) - Bandleader (uncredited)
- The Rocket Man (1954) - Dave Harris (uncredited)
- Human Desire (1954) - Brakeman (uncredited)
- Dawn at Socorro (1954) - Desk Clerk
- Rogue Cop (1954) - Arcade Clerk (uncredited)
- A Star Is Born (1954) - Man at Funeral (uncredited)
- Four Guns to the Border (1954) - Barber (uncredited)
- The Silver Chalice (1954) - Audience Member (uncredited)
- The Public Defender (1954-1955, TV Series) - Bud / Vic Oliver / Bailbondsman
- Cell 2455 Death Row (1955) - Prisoner (uncredited)
- I Died a Thousand Times (1955) - Bus Driver (uncredited)
- Highway Patrol (1955, TV Series) - Blainey
- Ransom! (1956) - Bank Clerk (uncredited)
- Inside Detroit (1956) - Irate Worker (uncredited)
- Tales of the Texas Rangers (1956, TV Series) - Hobo
- World Without End (1956) - Vida (uncredited)
- Santiago (1956) - Alkali (uncredited)
- Fighting Trouble (1956) - Mailman (uncredited)
- Flight to Hong Kong (1956) - Castairs (uncredited)
- Noah's Ark (1957, TV Series) - Doug Connor
- The Spirit of St. Louis (1957) - Okie (uncredited)
- Alfred Hitchcock Presents (1955-1957, TV Series) - Mr. Stern / Police Officer / Mason
- The Iron Sheriff (1957) - Gun Salesman (uncredited)
- Tales of Wells Fargo (1957, TV Series) - Shorty Tannin
- The Vampire (1957) - Willy Warner
- Hell on Devil's Island (1957) - Arneaux (uncredited)
- Copper Sky (1957) - Charlie Martin
- Cattle Empire (1958) - Tom Jefferson Jeffrey
- State Trooper (1958, TV Series) - Storekeeper
- The Life and Legend of Wyatt Earp (1955-1958, TV Series) - Mayor Jim Kelley
- How to Make a Monster (1958) - Rivero
- Lawman (1959, TV Series) - George the Stage Line Clerk
- The Texan (1959, TV Series) - Ludwig
- Trackdown (1959, TV Series) - Deputy Zack Armstead
- Peter Gunn (1961, TV Series) - Chigger
- Rawhide (1959-1965, TV Series) - George Washington Wishbone
- Country Boy (1966) - Link Byrd, Sr., the father of Nashville musician played by Randy Boone
- Bonanza (1967, TV Series) - Lev Buckalew
- Iron Horse (1967, TV Series) - Waco Hobson
- Daniel Boone (1967, TV Series) - Gurney
- The Guns of Will Sonnett (1968, TV Series) - Charlie Moss
- Charro! (1969) - Opie Keetch
- Death Valley Days (1966-1969, TV Series) - James 'Jimmy' Dayton / Rupert Johnson / Sawbuck - Prospector
- Lancer (1968-1970, TV series) - Jelly Hoskins
- High Plains Drifter (1973) - Lutie Naylor
- Emergency! (1974-1976, TV Series) - Max / Grady / Husband (Tom)
- Cannon (1974, TV Series) - Charlie Tompkins
- The Six Million Dollar Man (1975, TV Series) - Rafe Morris
- I Wonder Who's Killing Her Now? (1975) - Looney Pickup Driver
- CHiPs (1977-1982, TV Series) - Keith Lawton / Old Surfer
- The Dukes of Hazzard (1979, TV Series) - Dewey Stovall
- The Texas Rangers (1981, TV Movie) - Old Al
- The Creature Wasn't Nice (1983) - Clint Eastwood / Dirty Harry
- Chattanooga Choo Choo (1984) - Pee Wee
- Annihilator (1986, TV Movie) - Pops
- Life Stinks (1991) - Old Bellboy
- The Adventures of Brisco County, Jr. (1993, TV Series) - Francis Kilbride
- Maverick (1994) - Stage Driver
References and notes
- Wilson, Earl (November 27, 1969). "Small Towns Have Produced Many Big Stars". The Milwaukee Sentinel. p. A33. Retrieved May 22, 2015.
- Oliver, Myrna (1995). "Paul Brinegar; Appeared in TV's 'Rawhide'", obituary, Los Angeles Times, March 31, 1995. Retrieved May 11, 2017.
- Louise Brinegar's maiden name is documented in "California Death Index, 1940-1997", Paul Alden Brinegar, March 27, 1995; database of the Department of Public Health Services, Sacramento. FamilySearch. Retrieved April 17, 2019.
- "The Fourteenth Census of the United States, 1920", a photographic copy of original enumeration record that includes Brinegar family, Otero County, New Mexico, February 24-25, 1920. FamilySearch, archives of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, Salt Lake City, Utah. Retrieved May 12, 2017.
- "Paul Brinegar (Rawhide)", Taos Unlimited, an online "Comprehensive Guide to Taos, New Mexico", 2006-2017. Retrieved May 11, 2017.
- "The Sixteenth Census of the United States, 1940", a photographic copy of original enumeration record that includes the Brinegar family, Santa Fe, New Mexico, May 13, 1940. FamilySearch. Retrieved May 12, 2017.
- "Larceny (1948)", cast and production details, catalog of the American Film Institute (AFI), Los Angeles, California. Retrieved April 17, 2019.
- Terrace, Vincent (2011). Encyclopedia of Television Shows, 1925 through 2010. McFarland & Company, Inc. ISBN 978-0-7864-6477-7. P. 579.
- "Paul Brinegar". The Daily Herald. Utah, Provo. July 23, 1962. p. 17. Retrieved July 4, 2016 – via Newspapers.com.
- "Solid Gold Cavity of Death Valley Days". Internet Movie Data Base. October 1, 1966. Retrieved May 28, 2015.
- ""The Lady and the Sourdough" on Death Valley Days". Internet Movie Data Base. October 8, 1966. Retrieved May 30, 2015.
- "Jimmy Dayton's Bonanza on Death Valley Days". Internet Movie Data Base. June 11, 1969. Retrieved July 17, 2015.
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