The I Love Adventure Radio Program
||Home >> D D Too Home >> Radio Logs >> I Love Adventure
I Love Adventure spot ad from May 02 1958
Barton Yarborough circa 1951
Michael Raffetto and Barton Yarborough as Jack Packard and 'Doc' Long
Tom Collins and Michael Raffetto at the ABC mike for I Love Adventure
Jeanne Bates appeared as Mary Kay Jones 'the cutest secretary in Hollywood'
From the Winona Republican-Herald. Winona, Minnesota. Saturday. May 15.1948
I Love Adventure Moves to Indo-China
Jack Packard switches from romance to International Intrigue Sunday when Carlton E. Morse's new series. I Love Adventure, strlkes out to the French. Indo-China Jungle.
Packard, played, by Michael Raffetto, and his British helpmate, Reggie York, enacted by Tom Collins, wind up shoulder deep to border warfare in the episode to be heard over KWNO and KWNO-FM at 6 p. m,
This was a comparatively short-lived series for true fans of I Love A Mystery and Adventures By Morse. It serves as something of a bridge between the eras that the longer series' cover. Morse accomplishes this with a plausible back story and a somewhat implausible artifice to reunite the members of the A-1 Detective Agency after their dispersal during World War II.
The story line for I Love Adventure resumes, appropriately enough, in post-World War II London where the top secret non-governmental agency known only as The 21 Old Men of 10 Gramercy Park, whose mission is to fight all enemies of international peace. Jack Packard [Michael Raffetto] was recruited by the 21 Old Men to lead a select group on assignments circling the globe. Packard never meets the 21 Old Men face to face. His assignments were given to him from behind a 20-foot by 40-foot, two-way mirror at 10 Gramercy Park, usually from a single spokeman for the 21 Old Men [Everett Glass]. The spokesman for the 21 Old Men explains that each of the 21 Old Men represent a free country, recently liberated by World War II that, owing to the politics of the era, can only act in their countries' best interests through this ultra-secret, ultra-cooperative group of 21 Old Men.
For their parts, the original members of The A-1 Detective Agency of Hollywood--Jack, Doc, and Reggie--had been forced to split up during the war and had lost contact with each other:
- Jack Packard went into American Intelligence
- 'Doc' Long became a P-38 fighter pilot after a stint with the Flying Tigers in China
- Reggie Yorke returned to his native England to join the RAF
The 21 Old Men first dispatch Jack Packard to Indo-China for a secret formula concealed on microfilm. Subsequent 'international incidents' require additional direction by the 21 Old Men, up until Adventure #07, by which point all three adventurers have been reunited at their A-1 Detective Agency in Hollywood.
Having thus dispensed with the 21 Old Men as the issuing agency for their weekly assignments, the three are left to their own devices to respond to the series' remaining 'incidents.' A new member of the 'team' is introduced as Mary Kay Jones [Jeanne Bates], the "cutest secretary in Hollywood."
Having unloaded the weekly artifice of consulting with the 21 Old Men, the Agency is freed to take on their own workload of more conventional sleuthing. One can only surmise that Carlton Morse was attempting to either position the series to bridge it to a more expansive format, or to appease either potential sponsors or network executives. Morse was anything but a quixotic writer. If the series gave the appearance of losing its way a bit at the mid-point of this 13-week run, you can be sure it wasn't Morse's choice.
Reggie Yorke is given the task of explaining the 'break' with the 21 Old Men. His back story is that Jack Packard has become 'too hot' for further responses to 'international incidents.' The 21 Old Men and Jack Packard have agreed to have Jack 'lay low' for awhile on the West Coast until Jack and his boys can again begin responding to International incidents.
The distinction in the break with the 'international' incidents underscores the apparently wavering transition this series might have provided the subsequent I Love A Mystery productions that followed it. The reestablishment of the A-1 Detective Agency seems to have been one of several elements that would pave the way for any adventures of the Packard-Long-Yorke team to follow.
Indeed, the announcement at the end of International Incident #06 - The Finishing School Kidnapping, clearly states that the following 'International Incident' was to be International Incident #7 - The Ambassador Ricardo Santos Affair. The production apparently scrapped the 21 Old Men frame of the existing production for a return to the A-1 Detective Agency frame between Episodes 6 and 7.
This was not one of Morse's 'modular' syndications. Therefore the only explanation for the abrupt disengagement from the 21 Old Men of 10 Gramercy Park is that it was clearly unanticipated and unplanned. Morse bought himself an additional week to regroup by trotting out the script from a sales presentation he'd cut to boost sales of I Love A Mystery in 1945. The script was titled But Grandma, What Big Teeth You Have. Referring to it as simply 'Adventure No. 7', it aired as the seventh episode of I Love Adventure, while he hastily framed the subsequent contracted six episodes of I Love Adventure in a Hollywood-based A-1 Detective Agency format, sans the 21 Old Men and as more of a domestic adventure series (e.g., no more 'international' incidents).
|AFRS R-Series 'I Love Adventure'
||Anthology of Golden Age Radio Adventure Dramas
||Audition Date(s) and Title(s):
|45-05-21 [Aud] But Grandma, What Big Teeth You Have
||Premiere Date(s) and Title(s):
||48-04-25 01 The China Coast Incident
||Run Dates(s)/ Time(s):
||48-04-25 to 48-07-18; ABC; Thirteen, 30-minute programs; Sundays, 5:00 p.m.
||AFRS R-Series I Love Adventure
||Carlton E. Morse [Producer -- Director]
||Michael Rafetto, Tom Collins, Barton Yarborough, Alma Lawton, Lal Chand Mehra, Donald Morrison, Everett Glass, Barbara Jean Wong, Harry Lang, Russell Thorson, Lillian Buyeff, Earl Lee, Janet Logan, John McIntyre, Jeanette Nolan, Rolfe Sedan, Donald Morrison, Luis Van Rooten, Lal Chand Mehra, Henry Blair, Betty Lou Gerson, Dix Davis, Peggy Webber, Lou Krugman, Blanca DeSonia, Everett Glass and Frank Richards. Jeanne Bates portrays Mary Kay Jones, 'the cutest little secretary in Hollywood.'
||Jack Packard [Michael Raffetto], Reggie Yorke [Tom Collins], 'Doc' Long [Barton Yarborough]
||Jack Packard [Michael Raffetto], Reggie Yorke [Tom Collins], 'Doc' Long [Barton Yarborough]
||Carlton E. Morse, John Paul Schofield, Thomas J. Aherne
||Fred Cole, Ed Lukas [Sound Effects]
||"Valse Triste" by Sibelius, performed by Rex Koury at the Organ
||Estimated Scripts or
||Episodes in Circulation:
||Total Episodes in Collection:
||RadioGOLDINdex, Hickerson Guide, and badge714.com.
Notes on Provenances:
The most helpful provenances were the log of the RadioGOLDINdex and newspaper listings.
It's a quibble, but an accurate one: there's no such name as Kwan Moon. The correct name would be Kwan Mun.
A more serious quibble is the persistent 'otr' myth that the But Grandma, What Big Teeth You Have was an 'audition' for I Love Adventure. That's simply yet another complete and utter 'otr' falsehood, apparently originating from the frequently inaccurate Vintage Radio Place logs, and simply perpetuated--or plagiarized--by the otr community at large.
As Mr. Monk might say, "Here's what happened . . .":
- At some point during the later years of the initial I Love A Mystery franchise, Carlton E. Morse decided to cut an audition for a slightly different frame of I Love A Mystery. He titled it, But Grandma, What Big Teeth You Have.
- The But Grandma, What Big Teeth You Have audition for I Love A Mystery was recorded on approximately May 21, 1945 , with an embedded sales pitches for I Love A Mystery--not I Love Adventure--instead of commercial inserts.
- The secretary's name in the But Grandma, What Big Teeth You Have audition is named Mary Kay Brown, instead of the Mary Kay Jones name employed in the I Love Adventure version of the script.
- At the close of the sales presentation audition, the announcer states that The Great Airmail Robbery is yet another title envisioned for the I Love A Mystery series--not the I Love Adventure series. But as you can see below, The Great Airmail Robbery was the second of the scripts prepared in 1945 that was recycled for I Love Adventure three years hence.
You might well ask what possible rationale there might be for this petty otr mythology nonsense that seems to persist year after year throughout the vintage Radio collecting community. It's a childishly simply answer--money, vanity, and greed.
- It generates money for 'otr' book authors who pass along the mythology as 'fact' so as to 'go along to get along' with the 'otr' community to whom they hope to sell their books .
- It makes money for the internet charlatans of the otr community who knowingly--or even worse, unknowingly--sell CDs, cassettes, and podcasts of this nonsense, targeted to the naive, novice otr collecting community.
- It lends a certain veneer of 'authority' to 'otr' hacks that don't have a clue what they're alleging, to anyone naive enough to read or listen to them, pretending to have some secret knowledge of otr lore to which no one else is privvy.
Here's the presentation. Listen to it for yourself so you can become part of an informed solution rather than simply perpetuating the problem:
I Love A Mystery sales presentation of But Grandma, What Big Teeth You Have from May 21, 1945
What you see here, is what you get--complete transparency. We have no 'credentials' whatsoever--in any way, shape, or form--in the 'otr community'--none. But here's how we did it--for better or worse. Here's how you can build on it yourselves--hopefully for the better. Here are the breadcrumbs--just follow the trail a bit further if you wish. No hobbled downloads. No misdirection. No posturing about our 'credentials.' No misrepresentations. No strings attached. We point you in the right direction and you're free to expand on it, extend it, use it however it best advances your efforts.
We ask one thing and one thing only--if you employ what we publish, attribute it, before we cite you on it.
We continue to provide honest research into these wonderful Golden Age Radio programs simply because we love to do it. If you feel that we've provided you with useful information or saved you some valuable time regarding this log--and you'd like to help us even further--you can help us keep going. Please consider a small donation here:
We don't pronounce our Golden Age Radio research as 'certified' anything. By the very definition, research is imperfect. We simply tell the truth. As is our continuing practice, we provide our fully provenanced research results--to the extent possible--right here on the page, for any of our peers to review--or refute--as the case may be. If you take issue with any of our findings, you're welcome to cite any better verifiable source(s) and we'll immediately review them and update our findings accordingly. As more verifiable provenances surface, we'll continue to update the following series log, as appropriate.
All rights reserved by their respective sources. Article and log copyright 2011 The Digital Deli Online--all rights reserved. Any failure to attribute the results of this copywritten work will be rigorously pursued.
[Date, title, and episode column annotations in red refer to either details we have yet to fully provenance or other unverifiable information as of this writing. Red highlights in the text of the 'Notes' columns refer to information upon which we relied in citing dates, date or time changes, or titles.]
The I Love Adventure Radio Program Biographies
|Carlton Errol Morse
(Writer, Producer & Director)
Radio, Stage, Film and Television writer, director and producer
Birthplace: Jennings, Louisiana, U.S.A.
Education: Sacramento Junior College; U.C. Berkeley
1930 Bible Stories
1932 One Man's Family
1940 The Romance Of Helen Trent
1940 I Love A Mystery
1944 Adventures By Morse
1944 An American Family Saga
1945 A Tribute To . . .
1945 The Victory Chest Program
1945 His Honor, the Barber
1946 Tell Me A Story (Audition)
1946 The Bennetts
1947 The Upper Room
1948 I Love Adventure
1949 Family Theater
1950 Behold A Woman
1950 That's Our Boy
1951 Uncle Judge Ben (Auditions)
1951 The Woman In My House
1953 Family Skeleton
1972 Whatever Became Of ...
It's the Berries
Families Need Parents
Inscription reads: To Eddie Dunham From one Radio fella to another. Carlton E Morse - circa 1938
Carlton E Morse - circa 1950
Carlton E. Morse at the typewriter
The Barbour Family Tree from One Man's Family
Morse's I Love A Mystery ran for thirteen years over Radio
I Love A Mystery spot ad from 1941
Carlton E. Morse with a stack of some of the books of scripts from One Man's Family over the years
Carlton Morse and his wife announce the adoption of their daughter Noelle
TIME MAGAZINE 51-05-14
Writer Carlton E. (for Errol) Morse, 49, sat in a Hollywood studio one day last week, blinking back a sentimental rush of tears. He was listening to Actor J. Anthony Smythe, the Father Barbour of One Man's Family (weekdays 7:45 p.m., NBC), thank the "great American listening audience for its wonderful and sincere loyalty" to the program over the past 19 years.
It was not surprising that Writer-Producer Morse was moved by the tribute. He had composed it himself in honor of the family he had first introduced to the U.S. in 1932. Then there were only Father and Mother Barbour and their five children. Today the clan totals 20, including twelve grandchildren, and six of the original cast have grown grey in the service of one of radio's oldest, best-known families.
Love, Marriage, Divorce.
Unlike most of their 20 million listeners, the Barbours have always had plenty of money (Father is a retired broker worth "approximately $300,000"), and Morse strongly believes that the strength of the U.S. lies in "the Barbour type of family." But the Family's greatest appeal lies in the sobs, heartaches and all-around pluckiness of the Barbours in their encounters with love, marriage, divorce and sickness.
Through the years the Barbours have mirrored the changing moods, crises and enthusiasms of a generation of U.S. families. Daughter Claudia and son-in-law Nicky were lost at sea during the war when their ship was torpedoed (they turned up several years later as the result of a lucky rescue). Son Jack was a Marine, and is currently a struggling lawyer. Daughter Hazel has a "problem" child. Son Paul, the family philosopher, often seems to speak for the changing moods of Author Morse himself.
A Dozen Typewriters.
When not in his 17-room Hollywood house, Carlton Morse can usually be found in his cubbyhole in an unused theater, where he has worn out a dozen typewriters producing the 20 million words that have gone into his shows. Stacked about him are the bound volumes of his scripts:
- One Man's Family (14,704,000 words)
- I Love a Mystery (3,400,000 words)
- The Woman in My House (102,000 words)
- His Honor the Barber (182,000 words)
Bulking large on the shelf, and even larger in Morse's imagination, are the 765,000 words of the TV version of One Man's Family.
The Family got its TV start two years ago when Morse was summoned East to put together a TV show to compete with CBS's The Goldbergs. Morse recast his show "for the eye instead of the ear," and began to think in terms of visible characters. The result was so successful that Morse now considers the TV Family (which has a different cast, headed by Bert Lytell, and a different storyline) much more top-drawer than the radio Barbours. Says Morse: "Father Barbour has become much more human than the stuffed-shirt character I created for radio; Mother Barbour is a more brilliant, society-type woman." Judging by their success to date, there seemed no reason to doubt that the TV Barbours would go right on spinning out their Family saga for just as long as their radio counterparts.
Carlton Errol Morse was born on June 4th, 1901, near Jennings, Louisiana, one of six children born to George and Ora Anna Phyllis Morse (née Grubb). Young 'Carl' and his family moved out west in 1906, to San Francisco, California. The family ultimately settled near an agricultural center in Talent, Oregon.
Carl Morse attended Ashland High School from 1915 to 1917. The family then moved to Carmichael, California--a section of Sacramento--working yet again in the agricultural industries. The family began to set down roots in the area, with Carl's brother Wilbur practicing Law, his brother Melvin selling insurance and his father George eventually becoming the superintendent of the then-thriving National Rice Mills of Northern Sacramento.
Carl completed high school at Sacramento High School in 1919, playing on the varsity basketball team and editing the school paper. He played basketball for Sacramento Junior College for two years as well.
In 1922, Carl enrolled at the University of California at Berkeley, where he took Drama and Writing courses, both precursors to what was shaping up to be a major in Journalism. It was while attending U.C. Berkeley that Morse is alleged to have met future One Man’s Family, I Love Adventure, and I Love A Mystery collaborators, Michael Raffetto, Barton Yarborough, and J. Anthony Smythe. Whether fact or fancy, Morse, himself later maintained that he'd never set eyes on any of his actors until they'd shown up for auditions for his various productions. But as with much of the lore that Morse often ascribed to himself, history has yet to separate much of the fact from fancy.
As proof of both the folly and bravado of Morse's alleged protestations about remembering his performing associates from college, one is reminded that Michael Raffetto was widely advertised both throughout the campus and Central California newspapers as the Director of U.C. Berkeley's Little Theatre.
- a.) that obvious fact simply escaped Morse's attention for two years, or
- b.) Morse's considerable ego couldn't abide the notion of someone virtually the same age as he, already so accomplished in the theatre arts, then
- c.) Morse had an ego problem from an early age that must have colored most of his professional recollections for the remainder of his life.
Indeed, both Raffetto and Morse were members of The Bohemian Club, so they had to have known one another. There's one other possibility: one of the major sources of the gross misinformation circulating about Carl Morse's career is a 'major OTR author of twelve books on old time radio and television.' We leave the reader--yet again--to draw his or her own conclusions.
Scheduled to graduate with his Class of '23, Morse was expelled prior to graduation after flunking mandatory Martial Arts (military) classes. He employed his college journalism lessons at the Sacramento Union for the next year, beginning as copy boy and junior reporter for the Radio and Crime desks.
Disappointed with the nugatory pay at The Union, Morse left after a year to work at the copy desk of The San Francisco Chronicle, where he remained for the next two years. In 1925 he was offered a column with the San Francisco Illustrated Daily Herald. After two years writing columns for the Daily Herald, he moved to the Seattle Times for a year. Morse returned to California a year later as a columnist for The San Francisco Bulletin.
Though having moved around a great deal during this period, the coverage his daily and weekly columns received was quite helpful in furthering his exposure to a West Coast readership. Several of his columns were picked up by both smaller and larger local newspapers throughout the West Coast.
It was during his stint at The San Francisco Bulletin, that he met his first wife, Patricia Pattison De Ball. The couple married on September 23, 1928.
During 1929, The San Francisco Bulletin became absorbed by the Hearst Empire. Carl Morse was one of thousands of employees that found the axe during the Hearst consolidations. Responding to advertisements in his own newspaper, Carl found job openings at the young NBC West Coast network for scriptwriters for serial melodramas.
The Stock Market Crash of September 1929, couldn't have been better timed for Morse. Already securely ensconced at NBC, Morse rode out the Great Depression by busying himself with scripts for One Man’s Family. Morse subsequently penned I Love A Mystery, Adventures By Morse, I Love Adventure, and numerous other Radio programs--both memorable and not so memorable.
One Man's Family remains Morse's greatest legacy--and body of work--with over 3,200 unique scripts having aired over twenty-seven years--and the above cited 14.7 million words. Morse cited several elaborate rationales over the years for his inspiration to create a serial melodrama to celebrate the American family. The fact that the family he created bore no resemblance to 97% of mainstream America of any era during which One Man's Family aired seems to bely Morse's assertions about his motivations for this series. But to the extent that One Man's Family represents a triumph of character development--and sustainability--over a 27-year period, the series absolutely established Carlton Morse as a legend in the genre.
But as an action-adventure or mystery genre writer, not so much. Morse could certainly spin an elaborate yarn, but the almost cult status that his I Love A Mystery exemplars have attained over the years is just that--a cult. The I Love A Mystery series has little remarkable to recommend it other than its elusiveness and artificially imposed rarity. If not for the fact that a handful of the more influential collectors who 'invented' OTR during the 1970s were I Love A Mystery fans there'd be no remarkable demand for the series to this day. I Love Adventure and Adventures By Morse, for all their similar shortcomings, are all at least available. Indeed as examples of Morse's adventure writing skills, I Love Adventure and Adventures By Morse are more than adequate.
The Thousand Oaks Library Foundation, currently archives a large collection of radio scripts from I Love A Mystery, I Love Adventure, Adventures By Morse, One Man’s Family and His Honor the Barber. Stanford University currently archives the largest single repository of Morse material.
Carlton E. Morse died of natural causes on May 24, 1993.
|Elwyn Creighton Raffetto [Michael Raffetto]
Stage, Screen, Radio, and Television Actor; Producer; Writer; Attorney
Birthplace: Placerville, California, U.S.A.
1930 The Arms of The Law
1931 Roses of Memory
1932 One Man's Family
1944 I Love A Mystery
1944 Attorney For the Defense
1946 Michael Shayne, Private Detective
1947 Lady Esther Screen Guild Theatre
1948 I Love Adventure
1950 Behold A Woman
1979 Sears Radio Theatre
Families Need Parents
Michael Raffetto as Paul Barbour in One Man's Family
Paul Barbour's fascinating back story from One Man's Family
Michael Raffetto was Directing U.C. Berkeley's Little Theatre as early as February 18 1928
News clipping for I Love A Mystery from April 2 1943
Michael Raffetto (far right) with -- right to left -- Barton Yarborough, J. Anthony Smythe, and Page Gilman as The Barbours from One Man's Family circa 1944
One Man's Family around the family hearth, Michael Raffetto seated at right
One Man's Family around the family dinner table, Michael Raffetto seated at upper right
One Man's Family at NBC West Coast recording studio
|From the June 9, 1990 New York Times:
Michael Raffetto, Radio Actor, 91
Michael Raffetto, a radio actor who played Paul Barbour, the eldest son on ''One Man's Family,'' during the 1930's and 40's, died on May 31. He was 91 years old.
''One Man's Family,'' one of the longest-running and most popular programs on radio, was heard on NBC regularly from April 29, 1932, until May 8, 1959. Mr. Raffetto left the show in 1956.
Beginning in 1939, Mr. Raffetto also played the globe-trotting hero Jack Packard on ''I Love a Mystery,'' a radio program popular during the Depression and World War II.
Mr. Raffetto appeared in several silent films in his youth, including ''Tillie's Punctured Romance.'' He had a small part in ''A Foreign Affair'' with Marlene Dietrich in 1948 and ''Storm Center'' with Bette Davis in 1956.
He is survived by his wife, Constance, four daughters and five grandchildren.
The Raffetto family has roots deep back into Placerville, California history. Indeed, as far back as the Gold Rush days after which Placerville was named, Raffettos were named in newspapers notices of the era. For the uninitiated, placer mining is basically mining for gold tailings that have accumulated in surface sediments over eons of geophysical pressures and movements. Placer deposits are closer to the surface than deep vein gold deposit mining, and were popularized during the Gold Rush days of early California, since placer mining required far less equipment--and manpower.
Michael Raffetto was actually born Elwyn Creighton Raffetto, the son of a distinguished local Placerville family. Well known in his community, Elwyn adopted the name Michael during his professional career--first as an attorney and subsequently as an actor and director in the Theatre.
Raffetto practiced law briefly in San Francisco. He returned to Berkeley as a drama teacher and directed at Los Angeles' Greek Theatre during the late 1920s. Raffetto, as early as 1930, was producing, writing, and directing his own Radio production named The Arms of The Law, based principally on his own legal background up to that point.
Before long, owing primarily to his almost photographic memory and deeply resonating voice, Raffetto was performing on all manner of local Radio programming--from poetry readings to news reading to announcing to acting. He also continued producing and directing many locally broadcast productions in the Central California area.
The 1930s found him, for the most part, performing in NBC West Coast network (their Orange Network) productions, again from variety to serial adventure and melodrama. He was eventually appointed Program Director for NBC West Coast Operations. He also found the opportunity to perform in yet another legal drama as Attorney for the Defense (1944).
Michael Raffetto's fans break down in a fairly binary manner into either Carlton E. Morse Adventure fans or Carlton E. Morse serial melodrama fans. That's because it was Michael Raffetto's apparent destiny in life to portray a character in one Carlton Morse production or another for almost twenty-seven years.
Beginning with his role as Paul Barbour in One Man's Family, Michael Raffetto soon found himself performing in a trio of Carlton Morse written, directed and produced adventure dramas--I Love A Mystery, Adventures By Morse, and I Love Adventure.
Raffetto was unaccountably sidelined for months at a time during his long-running portrayal of Paul Barbour on Morse's One Man's Family, owing to a recurring lung ailment. Over the course of the fourteen years that Raffetto actively performed in the role he was sidelined with similar ailments for almost a year and a half, by newspaper accounts.
And yet, Michael Raffetto was fortunate enough to live a full 91-year life. Raffetto was married to the former Constance Murray McCormick, a well-known West Coast sculptress (and the generous donor of a huge collection of her Pre-Columbian sculptures to the Los Angeles County Museum of Art).
Raffetto worked steadily on the Stage, in Film, on Radio and in Television over a Performing Arts career of some forty-five years. In his later years, Raffetto lived in Europe, where he wrote novels and short stories. He returned to Berkeley in 1960. Raffetto retired back to Central California for all intents in the mid-1960s, writing, coaching and pursuing more fine arts and family interests than performing arts.
Raffetto had little left to prove in any case. His wife for most of his adult life had her own professional interests to keep her busy. Raffetto's large and successful Central California family--his wife, four daughters and five grandchildren--justifiably commanded most of his attention. Very much a Renaissance Man of the first order, Michael Raffetto had an extraordinary number of personal interests to fall back on throughout his very well-earned retirement.
|Jeanne R. Bates [Jane Bates; Jeanne Bates; Jean Bates]
(Mary Kay Jones)
Stage, Screen, Radio, and Television Actor
Birthplace: Berkeley, California, U.S.A.
Education: Burlinghame High School; San Mateo Junior College
1945 Doctor Christian
1947 Family Theatre
1947 The Whistler
1947 Shorty Bell, Cub Reporter
1948 Your Movietown Radio Theatre
1948 Let George Do It
1948 The Adventures Of Philip Marlowe
1948 The Anacin Hollywood Star Theatre
1949 Sam Pilgrim's Progress
1949 Prowl Car
1949 Screen Director's Playhouse
1949 The Adventures Of Frank Race
1949 Yours Truly, Johnny Dollar
1949 Four Star Playhouse
1949 The Adventures Of the Saint
1949 Richard Diamond, Private Detective
1950 Night Beat
1950 Rocky Jordan
1950 Lux Radio Theatre
1950 The Story Of Dr Kildare
1950 Presenting Charles Boyer
1950 The New Adventures Of Nero Wolfe
1950 The Amazing Nero Wolfe
1950 The Line-Up
1951 Mr and Mrs Blandings
1951 The Adventures Of Nero Wolfe
1951 Dangerous Assignment
1951 Wild Bill Hickok
19511951 The Man From Homicide
1951 The Great Gildersleeve
1952 Guest Star
1952 Stars Over Hollywood
1952 The Silent Men
1952 Stars In the Air
1952 Broadway Is My Beat
1952 Errand Of Mercy
1953 Jason and the Golden Fleece
1953 General Electric Theatre
1953 Bakers' Theatre Of Stars
1953 You Were There
1953 Rocky Fortune
1954 That's Rich
1954 Barrie Craig, Confidential Investigator
1954 Saturday Theatre
1956 CBS Radio Workshop
1956 Fort Laramie
1956 Heartbeat Theatre
1956 The Lone Ranger
1958 Whispering Streets
1958 Frontier Gentleman
1958 Have Gun, Will Travel
Skippy Hollywood Theatre
||Born and raised in the Berkeley area of California, Jeanne Bates began her acting career while attending Burlingame High School.
Her first real print notice was in a Founder's Day Pageant presentation at Burlingame High School, in the San Mateo Times notice of February 16, 1934, wherein she's mentioned as the capable young performer of the 'religion' presentation of the Pageant. Young Miss Bates is mentioned several times in the Society section of The San Mateo Times throughout the late 1930s, including a favorable 1935 notice for her performance in the Noel Coward play, Hay Fever, with her Burlingame High School theatrical group:
"Jeanne Bates was smooth and well-cast as the sleek Myra Arundel, "a dangerous woman." Her scene with David in the second act was handled admirably. She seems to have a poise and ease on the stage that few students have ever been able to attain."
Miss Bates is also mentioned several times in notices of Bridge Parties she hosted or attended throughout her high school years. More importantly, she continued to receive rave local notices after she graduated from Burlingame and enrolled in the Drama program at San Mateo Junior College. It was while she was still attending San Mateo Junior College, that she began to appear on West Coast Radio soap operas in San Francisco.
She landed a lead role in the West Coast Don Lee-Mutual Radio mystery series, Whodunit (1940), written by her future husband, Lew X. Lansworth. Her scream was the signature element of the program and the show's success secured her an offer to move to Hollywood in 1941 as a Columbia Pictures contract player.
She signed a contract with Columbia Pictures in 1942. Once Jeanne's contract work began to pay off, Bates and Lansworth married in 1943. She had her film debut in 1943, in the Boston Blackie mystery, The Chance of a Lifetime. She portrayed Diana Palmer in the 1943 serial feature, The Phantom (1943) with Tom Tyler. She was also Bela Lugosi's first victim in Return of the Vampire (1943). She also had a small role in the classic, Death of a Salesman (1952).
From the March 3, 1947 edition of The San Mateo Times:
Former J. C. Girl
On Hersholt Show
Jeanne Bates, former Burlingame High school and San Mateo Junior college student, will be heard in a prominent supporting role on the "Dr. Christian" show, starring Jean Hersholt, Wednesday night over the Columbia net. Bates, who attended the junior college in 1936, 1937 and 1938, took several leading roles in plays at the college. She lived at 1272 Cabrillo avenue, Burlingame, at that time. In 1937 she entered radio in San Francisco and was a member of the original cast of the "Whodunit" show on KFRC. Later she appeared in the movies playing supporting roles with Warner Baxter, Chester Morris and Larry Parks. The broadcast will be heard at 8:30 p. m. over KQW.
Jeanne Bates was no flash in the pan. From the beginning of her work in Radio, she rapidly became one of Radio's busiest young actresses. Her radiography rivals that of Lurene Tuttle, Irene Tedrow, Betty Lou Gerson and Virginia Gregg. Her estimated 5,000 appearances over Radio spanned a Radio career of twenty-five years.
Her Television career was even more remarkable. Working steadily in Television almost from it's popular inception, Jeanne Bates was seen at one time or another on virtually every significant Television program during the Golden Age of Television--some 4oo appearances over a 50-year career in Television. She is most commonly remembered for her roles as Nurse Wills on Ben Casey (1961-1966), and her nine years of appearances as Anne Peters in Days of Our Lives (1966-1975). But over her fifty years in Television, Jeanne Bates delivered a staggering number of widely varied--and highly effective--characterizations.
Bates also taught acting for almost twenty-three years. A favorite of quixotic director David Lynch, she appeared as Mrs. X in his Eraserhead (1977) and 24 years later in his darkly atmospheric Mulholland Drive (2001).
Her husband of 38 years, sucessful writer Lew Lansworth, passed away in 1981. Jeanne never remarried. What's more remarkable is that for all Jeanne Bates' extraordinary success--well into her 80s--it was this remarkable artist's fate to ultimately spend her last years residing at the Motion Picture & Television Country Home and Hospital in Woodland Hills, where she ultimately succumbed to breast cancer at the age of 89.
We recognize the fine work and resource that the Motion Picture & Television Country Home and Hospital was for over 68 years, meeting the needs of destitute artists and technicians--many of them still living legends at the time of their demise.
But with the decision to finally close the Motion Picture & Television Country Home and Hospital for good, we need to take a deeper, more introspective look at an industry--and society--that takes so very much from these incredibly talented artists, while ultimately turning its back to them in their time of greatest need.
The decision to close the Country Home and Hospital demands far greater scrutiny of the various, highly profitable Performing Arts industries. It's a travesty that artists of Jeanne Bates' caliber should be consigned to live out their last years in an industry-supported welfare system in the first place.
But now that the industry has pulled the rug out from that last critical resource, what does it say about the heart and soul that so many epic films purport to portray on big screen and small--but have no room for in their own corporate conscience.
Jeanne Bates' remarkable career deserved better--far better. At least she was one of the last artists of her caliber to benefit from her industry's last hope for artists with no surviving family or safety net.
But there's enduring justice in the legacy of the thousands of her recordings, films, and television programs that serve as a poignant reminder of both her great talent, and the shameful travesty that her industry has devolved to since her passing.
|William Barton Yarborough
Stage, Screen, Radio, and Television Actor; Playwright
Birthplace: Goldthwaite, Texas, U.S.A.
1932 One Man's Family
1935 Unsolved Mysteries
1939 I Love A Mystery
1939 The Chase and Sasnborn Hour
1941 One Man's Family
1944 Adventures By Morse
1944 Radio Almanac
1944 The Human Adventure
1944 The Life Of Riley
1944 Attorney For the Defense
1945 Words At War
1945 Cavalcade Of America
1946 Hawk Larabee
1947 Voyage Of the Scarlet Queen
1948 In Your Name
1948 The First Nighter Program
1948 Decision Now!
1948 I Love Adventure
1948 Jeff Regan, Investigator
1948 Family Theatre
1948 The Eddie Cantor Pabst Blue Ribbon Show
1948 Errand Of Mercy
1948 Guest Star
1949 Three For Adventure
1949 Screen Director's Playhouse
1949 Let George Do It
1949 Today's Children
1949 Broadway Is My Beat
1950 Frontier Town
1950 Yours Truly, Johnny Dollar
1950 The Adventures Of Christopher London
1950 Hopalong Cassidy
1950 Richard Diamond, Private Detective
1950 One Man's Family
1950 Adventure Is Your Heritage
1951 The Story Of Dr Kildare
1951 The Line-Up
1951 Lux Radio Theatre
1951 Wild Bill Hickok
1951 Melody Ranch
1951 Meet Millie
1951 Bold Venture
1951 The Halls Of Ivy
1952 I Was A Communist For the FBI
The Black Ghost
Hashknife Hartley and Sleepy Stevens
The Cisco Kid
Three For Adventure
The Capture Of Lizzie Stone
Barton Yarborough circa 1944
Barton Yarborough was a member of the famed Eva Le Gallienne Company.
Barton Yarborough as Doc Long with Jim Bannon as Jack Packard in I Love A Mystery (1945)
News clipping for I Love A Mystery from April 2 1943
Barton Yarborough was briefly married to beautiful Stage, Screen, Radio and Television actress Barbara Jo Allen, better remembered in Radio as Vera Vague.
'Doc', Reggie and Jack camp it up for publicity still for I Love A Mystery
Barton Yarborough as Detective Sergeant Ben Romero in Dragnet (1951)
|William Barton Yarborough was born in 1900 near Goldthwaite, Texas to Patrick and Molly Ardena Yarborough. During high school, Yarborough ran away from home, attracted to Vaudeville.
Yarborough began his acting career on the Stage, studying with the famed Eva Le Gallienne Company. Yarborough began his Radio career while in his early 20s, starring in several long-running programs as well as in hundreds of character roles during a twenty-six year career in Radio. It was while appearing in early radio that he met and briefly married his first wife, actress Barbara Jo Allen, best remembered by Golden Age Radio fans as Vera Vague, a character she'd developed in San Francisco in 1935. The couple had one child together before divorcing in 1931. The two later appeared in two long-running Radio programs together: One Man's Family (as Beth Holly from 1937) and I Love A Mystery (1939).
He appeared in the premiere cast of one of Radio's longest running serial melodramas, One Man's Family (1932), portraying young Clifford Barbour--eventually portraying Cliff Barbour for his entire adult life as a professional actor.
Yarborough was probably best known for his role as Doc Long in Carlton E. Morse's I Love a Mystery (1939), Skip Turner in Adventures By Morse (1944), and Doc Long in I Love Adventure (1948), his starring role in Hawk Larrabee (1946), and as Sergeant Ben Romero on Dragnet (1949). Indeed, Bart Yarborough owed most of his Radio career to either Carlton E. Morse or Jack Webb. Yarborough appeared in virtually every production Carlton Morse ever initiated and in every production that Jack Webb was associated with during Yarborough's career.
Barton Yarborough debuted in a credited Film role in the Dr. Christian feature, They Meet Again (1941) with Jean Hersholt. Yarborough subsequently co-starred as 'Doc' Long, of the A-1 Detective Agency in three movies based on the Carlton E. Morse radio series I Love a Mystery: I Love a Mystery [a.k.a. The Decapitation of Jefferson Monk] (1945), The Devil's Mask (1946), and The Unknown (1946).
Throughout the 1940s he appeared in another fourteen character roles, in a variety of characterizations. Notable among his other Film appearances was his role as Dr. Kettering in The Ghost of Frankenstein (1942), the ill-fated mastermind, Joseph Bradish in the Charlie Chan film The Red Dragon (1945), and a small, uncredited role in Alfred Hitchcock's classic, Saboteur (1942).
But it's Yarborough's Radio work that remains his greatest legacy. Yarborough's distinctive drawl and nasally twang were his most easily recognizable voice characterizations, although it's clear from his other Radio work and Film work that he could just as easily dispense with his native twang for hundreds of other versatile characterizations.
Barton Yarborough added playwright to his already considerable resumé in 1948 with his play, These Tender Mercies, which concerns lynching and racial discrimination in a small Southern town of the early 1900's. It was presented in both Los Angeles and at the Lenox Hill Playhouse in New York as part of Experimental Theatre's Invitational Series, sponsored by the American National Theatre and Academy.
Yarborough began his highly productive--yet brief--association with 28-year old Jack Webb in Webb's gritty detective drama Jeff Regan Investigator (1948) with an appearance as one of Regan's fellow operatives, Joe Canto of Anthony J. Lyon's dubious International Detective Bureau. The Lady With the Golden Hair (48-07-31) was the fourth episode of Jeff Regan, and costarred Hans Conreid [Max Vladny], Betty Lou Gerson [Hilda Graham], and Wilms Herbert [Anthony J. Lyon] as well. In one of the series most entertaining episodes, Joe Canto takes a gunshot in the lung during the second half of the program. Joe Canto would survive to appear in at least two other Jeff Regan adventures.
In 1949, Webb approached Yarborough with his idea for a ground-breaking new, true-to-life cop show. The stories would come straight from the files of the L.A.P.D., with the full support of legendary L.A. Police Chief William Parker. Dragnet would star Jack Webb as Detective Sgt. Joe Friday and Bart Yarborough as his partner, Detective Sgt. Ben Romero.
Homicide was Dragnet's premiere Radio episode, airing on June 2, 1949. Friday and Romero would work together in 133 appearances on Radio's Dragnet until Yarborough's unexpected fatal heart attack of December 19, 1951 that took his life.
Webb and Yarborough had already begun filming their Television version of Dragnet. With the pilot already in the can, Webb and Yarborough both anticipated a December 1951 roll-out of the equally ground-breaking Television version of Dragnet.
Television's Dragnet pilot episode, The Human Bomb, aired on December 16, 1951, three days before Yarborough's fatal heart attack, starring Radio standbys Stacy Harris, Herb Butterfield, Jack Kruchen, and Sam Edwards. Barney Philips appeared as Officer Sam Erickson and Raymond Burr as Watch Commander Thad Brown. The pilot was a critical and popular sensation and the series was set to premiere on January 3, 1952. The second episode, The Big Actor, was already in the can. They'd begun filming the third episode when, on the evening of December 19,1951 at 8:55pm, Barton Yarborough died of a heart attack at his home at 122 South Valley Street in Burbank, California. He was survived by his second wife, Janet, and their daughter, Joan.
On December 27, 1951, eight days after Yarborough's death, Jack Webb remembered his friend and partner in a Dragnet radio episode he dedicated to Barton Yarborough. The Big Sorrow, has Joe Friday working Homicide when he gets the news that his partner, Ben Romero, has died at his home from a heart attack--a poignant memorial to one of Radio's giants.
Barton Yarborough's last I Love A Mystery adventure, Find Elsa Holberg - Dead or Alive, aired posthumously on December 29, 1949.
Yarborough's One Man's Family character, Cliff Barbour, heard for 19 years, was written out of the storyline.
On January 3, 1952, the first Dragnet television episode of the season, The Big Actor, aired--the last screen appearance of Performing Arts legend, Barton Yarborough.
||Home >> D D Too Home >> Radio Logs >> I Love Adventure