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Saturday 14 May 2011

Two Will Rogers, Two Typewriters

It’s unusual to have photos of a famous father and son at their typewriters (one a Remington portable, though Will Rogers promoted Coronas; the other a Royal desktop).
Will Rogers: William Penn Adair Rogers (born Oologah, Indian Territory, now Oklahoma, November 4, 1879; died, aged 55, Point Barrow, Alaska Territory, August 15, 1935) was an American cowboy, comedian, humourist, social commentator, vaudeville performer and actor and one of America’s best-known celebrities in the 1920s and 1930s. He was known as “Oklahoma's favorite son”.
  From 1922 until his death,  The New York Times syndicated his weekly newspaper column. It went daily in 1926 as "Will Rogers Says", reaching 40 million newspaper readers. He also wrote frequently for The Saturday Evening Post. “Rogers advised Americans to embrace the frontier values of neighbourliness and democracy on the domestic front while remaining clear of foreign entanglements.”
Rogers published a book of wisecracks and a steady stream of humour books. “He was considered the successor to Artemus Ward and Mark Twain.”
Rogers's eldest son, Will Rogers Jnr, played his father in the 1952 biopic The Story of Will Rogers and in a cameo in the 1949 film, Look for the Silver Lining.
William Vann Rogers was born in New York City on October 20, 1911, and, in serious ill health, suicided, aged 81, in Tubac, Arizona, on July 9, 1993. He was a Democratic Representative for California in 1943-1944, but resigned to return to the US Army. As well as acting, Rogers became a newspaper owner-publisher, writer and political commentator.
The photo above is a publicity shot for Good morning! with Will Rogers Jr, which made its debut on CBS Television on February 20, 1950. The caption reads, "The five-a-week early morning series features Rogers' easy-going manner and comments on the wry side of news, features, interviews and anecdotal material."

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