Josephine Ruth Clarke
|Died||May 15, 1991 (aged 70)|
|Other names||Reno Blair|
|Occupation||Film actress, equestrian, pilot|
Reno Browne (born Josephine Ruth Clarke, April 20, 1921 – May 15, 1991) was an American equestrian and B-movie actress during the late 1940s and into the 1950s, with most of her films being in 1949. She was sometimes billed as Reno Blair
Born in Reno, Nevada to wealthy parents, her father being a successful attorney, Browne first became a licensed pilot, and proficient at riding horses. After taking drama lessons, she embarked on a film career, signing a contract with Monogram Pictures. She starred with Whip Wilson in the 1949 western Haunted Trails, and that same year started a thirteen-episode radio show titled Reno Rides Again. Also in 1949 she starred in West of El Dorado with Max Terhune and Johnny Mack Brown. In total, she starred in fourteen westerns of the period, at times with Roy Rogers and Jimmy Wakely.
She and Dale Evans were the only western actresses to have their own comic books based on their characters, Browne having four issues published in 1950 by Marvel Comics. In 1950, Bill Haley and His Saddlemen recorded a single called "My Palomino and I"/"My Sweet Little Girl from Nevada" for Cowboy Records (CR 1701) which was released as by "Reno Browne and Her Buckaroos", even though Browne had no connection with the recording (though her photo did appear on the sheet music for the latter song, and it said her last name on it.). Also in 1951, she was crowned Clovis Rodeo Queen in Clovis, California.
For a period, she was married to western actor Lash LaRue. She retired to Reno, and during the 1980s she attended several western film festivals. She was diagnosed with cancer, and died in Reno on May 15, 1991.
- Fitzgerald, Michael G.; Magers, Boyd (2006). Ladies of the Western: Interviews with Fifty-One More Actresses from the Silent Era to the Television Westerns of the 1950s and 1960s. McFarland. pp. 19–23. ISBN 9780786426560. Retrieved 25 April 2017.
- 102nd Clovis Rodeo Official Souvenir Program, Page 12