Society of the Old West

From early westward expansion through the early 20th Century.

He often played "Oldtimers" and Frontiersmen - actor Arthur Hunnicutt was born on this day in Gravelly Arkansas. Aspiring to be a teacher he attended Arkansas Teachers College but dropped out due to lack of funds during the great depression. He went back east and took up acting appearing on stage for several years and then moved west to Hollywood California.

Arthur appeared in over 85 movies and tv programs from 1942 through 1975. He earned a best supporting actor nomination for his role as Uncle Zeb Calloway in the movie Big Sky which starred Kirk Douglas. Hunnicutt was also the narrator for the classic movie about Fur Trappers in the American West.

Hunnicutt was stage driver Ed Rintoon in the Tall T with Randoplh Scott and Richard Boone. And later was John Waynes sidekick, Bull Harris, the jailor and gopher in El Dorado.

There is a monument dedicated to Arthur Hunnicutt on the Arkansas walk of fame in Hot Springs Arkansas along with monuments for General Douglas MacArthur, who lead American troops in WWII and the Korean War, and Charles Portis the man who wrote  the book True Grit. All were Native Sons of Arkansas.

He played a worn out "retired" Butch Cassidy in Cat Ballou and appeared in 4 episodes of Bonanza and 3 episodes of the Virginian. In the Movie the Big Sky he bragged that he once sewed a mans ear back on which had been torn off by a bear saying---"yep but I sewed it on backwards and he hated me until the day he died on account every time he heard a Rattlesnake he'd turn the wrong way and step right on it". Arthur Hunnicutt the "Old Grizzled Western Sidekick" died in 1979 at age 69.

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Comment by Mel Graf on February 22, 2011 at 6:42am
He was on a "Twilight Zone" episode titled "The Hunt" and played an old country fellow named Hyder Simpson.  He and his dog "Rip" went 'coon hunting one night and he didn't realize that he died while trying to save his drowning dog.  He and Rip went back to his cabin figuring his wife was going to be angry with him for being so late and saw that everyone was preparing for his funeral.  They ultimately went walking down "Eternity Road" and ran into a gate keeper.  The gate keeper said that the dog couldn't come in so Hyder decided that any place his dog wasn't allowed he didn't want to be either.  They ran into an angel while continuing down the road and he told them that the gate they had passed was the gate to Hell.  The angel said,  "You see Mr. Simpson, a man, well, he'll walk right into Hell with both eyes open. But even the Devil can't fool a dog!"
Comment by dirtrider on February 17, 2011 at 7:35pm
Just love to remember these actors.  His is a familiar face.

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