ERIC Number: ED184744
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1979-Oct-15
Reference Count: 0
Will Rogers: The Story of an American Indian.
Campbell, C. W.
Although Will Rogers often described himself as "just a cowboy with a lot of luck," he was more than that. At one time or another he was a vaudeville entertainer, film star, world traveler, author, columnist, and after-dinner speaker. The most beloved figure of his time, this famous humorist was also part Cherokee Indian. Rogers was born in 1879 in Oklahoma; his father was one of the richest and most powerful ranchers in the Cherokee Nation. Although a good student, Rogers preferred riding and roping and ranch life; after completing 11 years of school he began work at a variety of cattle handling jobs. Later he traveled to Argentina to seek his fortune. Unsuccessful there, he went on to South Africa. Months later, broke and penniless, he signed on with the Wild West Show as a trick roper; his career in show business was begun. Although work with more wild west shows back in the states later added to his reputation, his real rise to fame began when he signed with the Ziegfield Follies. There, on the Broadway stage, he did his rope tricks while commenting on the day's headlines. His jokes soon became more important than the rope work. America loved his wise and witty quips, and the ensuing books, movies, radio broadcasts and speaking tours made him known to all the nation. Rogers died in a plane crash in Alaska in 1935 and the world mourned the loss of the kindly humorist. This biography is part of a series on famous American Indians and is intended for grades five and up. (DS)
Descriptors: Acting, American Indians, Authors, Biographies, Childrens Literature, Comedy, Drama, Elementary Education, Film Industry, Photographs, Radio, Reading Materials, Theater Arts, United States History
Dillon Press, Inc., 500 South Third Street, Minneapolis, MN 55415 ($6.95)
Publication Type: Historical Materials; Books
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers: Actors; Cherokee (Tribe); Ranchers; Rogers (Will)