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Disambiguation: for the girl, see Dale Evans McGillicutty
Dale Evans
Roy Rogers and Dale Evans at the 61st Academy Awards.jpg
Dale Evans (right) and Roy Rogers at the 61st Academy Awards in 1989.
Born Lucille Wood Smith (changed to Frances Octavia Smith shortly thereafter)
(1912-10-31)October 31, 1912
Uvalde, Texas, U.S.
Died February 7, 2001(2001-02-07) (aged 88)
Apple Valley, California, U.S.
Resting place
Sunset Hills Memorial Park, Apple Valley
Occupation Actress, singer-songwriter
Years active 1942–2001
Spouse(s) Thomas Frederick Fox (1927–1929; marriage dissolved); 1 child
August Wayne Johns (1929–1935; divorced)
R. Dale Butts (1937–1946; divorced)
Roy Rogers (1947–1998; his death); 8 children jointly

Dale Evans (October 31, 1912 – February 7, 2001) was an American writer, film star and singer-songwriter. She was the second wife of singing cowboy Roy Rogers.

Early life[edit]

Born in Uvalde, Texas, she had a tumultuous early life. She was born in 1912 to T. Hillman Smith and Bettie Sue Wood, and was named Lucille Wood Smith at birth; the name was changed to Frances Octavia Smith while she was still an infant.

At age 14, she eloped with her first husband, Thomas F. Fox, to whom she bore one son, Thomas F. Fox, Jr., when she was 15. A year later, she found herself in Memphis, Tennessee, a single parent, pursuing a career in music. She landed a job with local radio stations (WMC and WREC), singing and playing piano. Divorced in 1929, she took the name Dale Evans in the early 1930s to promote her singing career.[1]

She married Roy Rogers on December 31, 1947 in Davis, Oklahoma on the Flying L Ranch where they had earlier filmed the movie Home in Oklahoma. Art and Mary Jo Rush were best man and matron of honor. The marriage was Rogers' second and Evans' fourth but was successful, lasting 51 years until Rogers' death in 1998. Roy had an adopted child, Cheryl, and two biological children, Linda and Roy (Dusty) Jr., from his first marriage. Evans and Rogers together had one child, Robin, who died before her second birthday, and adopted four others: Mimi, Dodie, Sandy, and Debbie.[2]

Early career[edit]

After beginning her career singing at the radio station where she was employed as a secretary, Evans had a productive career as a jazz, swing, and big band singer that led to a screen test and contract with 20th Century Fox studios. She gained exposure on radio as the featured singer for a time on the Edgar Bergen/Charlie McCarthy show. During her time at 20th Century Fox, the studio promoted her as the unmarried supporter of her teenage "brother" Tommy (actually her son Tom Fox, Jr.). This deception continued through her divorce from Butts in 1946, and her development as a cowgirl co-star to Roy Rogers at Republic Studios.[3]

Joint efforts[edit]

Evans married Roy Rogers at the Flying L Ranch in Davis, Oklahoma, on New Year's Eve 1947.[4] Rogers ended the deception regarding Tommy. Rogers and Evans were a team on- and off-screen from 1946 until Rogers' death in 1998. Together they had one child, Robin Elizabeth, who died of complications of Down syndrome shortly before her second birthday. Her life inspired Evans to write her bestseller Angel Unaware. Evans was very influential in changing public perceptions of children with developmental disabilities and served as a role model for many parents. After she wrote Angel Unaware, a group then known as the “Oklahoma County Council for Mentally Retarded Children” adopted its better-known name Dale Rogers Training Center in her honor. Evans went on to write a number of religious and inspirational books. Roy and Dale appeared many times with Billy Graham in Crusades all over the country, singing gospel songs and giving their testimony.[3]

From 1951-57, Evans and Rogers starred in the highly successful television series The Roy Rogers Show, in which they continued their cowboy and cowgirl roles, with her riding her trusty buckskin horse, Buttermilk. Alice Van-Springsteen served as a double for both Evans and Gail Davis, the actress who starred in the syndicated series Annie Oakley, often performing such tasks as tipping over wagons and jumping railroad track. In addition to her successful TV shows, more than 30 films and some 200 songs, Evans wrote the well-known song "Happy Trails".[5] In later episodes of the program, she was outspoken in her Christianity, telling people that God would assist them with their troubles and imploring adults and children to turn to Him for guidance. In late 1962, the couple co-hosted a comedy-western-variety program, The Roy Rogers and Dale Evans Show, which aired on ABC. It was canceled after three months, losing in the ratings to the first season of The Jackie Gleason Show.[6]

In 1964, Evans spoke at a "Project Prayer" rally attended by 2,500 at the Shrine Auditorium in Los Angeles. The gathering, which was hosted by actor Anthony Eisley, star of ABC's Hawaiian Eye series, sought to flood the United States Congress with letters in support of school prayer, following two decisions in 1962 and 1963 of the United States Supreme Court which struck down the practice as in conflict with the Establishment Clause of the First Amendment to the United States Constitution.[7]

Joining Evans and Eisley at the Project Prayer rally were Walter Brennan, Lloyd Nolan, Rhonda Fleming, Pat Boone, and Gloria Swanson. Evans declared, "It's high time that all America stood up to be counted. Let our children learn of the Lord and be free." Eisely and Fleming added that Rogers, John Wayne, Ronald W. Reagan, Mary Pickford, Jane Russell, Ginger Rogers, and Pat Buttram would have attended the rally had their schedules permitted.[7] In the 1970s, Evans recorded several solo albums of religious music. During the 1980s, the couple introduced their films weekly on the former The Nashville Network. In the 1990s, Evans hosted her own religious television program.

Roy Rogers and Evans at Knott's Berry Farm in the 1970s

Death[edit]

Evans died of congestive heart failure on February 7, 2001 at the age of 88 in Apple Valley, California. She was interred at Sunset Hills Memorial Park in Apple Valley, next to Rogers.[8][9]

Legacy[edit]

For her contribution to radio, Dale Evans has a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame at 6638 Hollywood Blvd. She received a second star at 1737 Vine St. for her contribution to the television industry. In 1976, she was inducted into the Western Performers Hall of Fame at the National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. She ranked No. 34 on CMT's 40 Greatest Women in Country Music in 2002.

Cheryl Rogers-Barnett, a daughter of Roy Rogers and step-daughter of Evans, co-authored Cowboy Princess: Life with My Parents, Roy Rogers and Dale Evans with Frank Thompson.[10]

In her exhibit at the National Cowgirl Museum and Hall of Fame in Fort Worth, Dale Evans is quoted as follows:

'Cowgirl' is an attitude really. A pioneer spirit, a special American brand of courage. The cowgirl faces life head-on, lives by her own lights, and makes no excuses. Cowgirls take stands; they speak up. They defend things they hold dear.[11][12]

In 2001, a Golden Palm Star on the Palm Springs Walk of Stars was dedicated to her and Roy Rogers.[13]

KZ Pictures is in the development stage of two Dale Evans themed projects. The first is a documentary which focuses on the complete life of Dale Evans, her discography and filmology, and will feature numerous celebrity interviews. The second project will be a major motion picture centered on the early life of Dale Evans including her famous songs, "Happy Trails" and "The Bible Tells Me So."[14]

Selected filmography[edit]

Footnotes[edit]

  1. ^ Dale Evans' biography, royrogers.com; accessed May 16, 2014.
  2. ^ Staff (July 7, 1998). "Roy Rogers, 'King of the Cowboys' Dies". Los Angeles Times. 
  3. ^ a b "Dale Evans Biography". The Roy Rogers – Dale Evans Museum. Retrieved 2008-02-05. 
  4. ^ Happy Trails Forever – Honoring the *King of the Cowboys* & *Queen of the West*, Roy Rogers & Dale Evans – Their Story
  5. ^ Dale Evans at the Internet Movie Database
  6. ^ Dale Evans at the Internet Movie Database
  7. ^ a b Drew Pearson (May 14, 1964). "The Washington Merry-Go-Round". dspace.wrlc.org. Retrieved January 13, 2013. 
  8. ^ Brooks, Patricia; Brooks, Jonathan (2006). "Chapter 8: East L.A. and the Desert". Laid to Rest in California: a guide to the cemeteries and grave sites of the rich and famous. Guilford, CT: Globe Pequot Press. pp. 235–37. ISBN 978-0762741014. OCLC 70284362. 
  9. ^ Dale Evans at Find a Grave
  10. ^ Cheryl Rogers-Barnett and Frank Thompson, Cowboy Princess: Life with My Parents, Roy Rogers and Dale Evans, Lanham, Maryland, 2003; ISBN 1-58979-026-X
  11. ^ Dale Evans profile, cowgirl.com; accessed February 25, 2015.
  12. ^ Dale Evans Rogers exhibit, National Cowgirl Museum and Hall of Fame in Fort Worth, Texas
  13. ^ Palm Springs Walk of Stars (by date of dedication); accessed May 16, 2014.
  14. ^ Proposed KZ Pictures films based on Dale Evans' life, encyclopediaofarkansas.net; accessed February 25, 2015.

References[edit]

  • Zwisohn, Laurence. (1998). "Dale Evans". In The Encyclopedia of Country Music. Paul Kingsbury, Editor. New York: Oxford University Press. pp. 166–7.

Further reading[edit]

External links[edit]


Original courtesy of Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dale_Evans — Please support Wikipedia.
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188691 videos foundNext > 

Dale Evans ~ 1939 ~ Big Band Girl Vocalist w/ Anson Weeks Orch.

Dale Evans (Yes, the cowgirl Dale), sings "I Can't Get Started with You" accompanied by Anson Weeks and His Orchestra. The music was recorded in 1939. France...

Roy Rogers & Dale Evans Biography - Happy Trails Theatre Feature HOME MOVIES

Here is a 23 minute biography of Roy and Dale that is featured on some of the "Happy Trails Theatre" DVDs. This features some of their family home movies, ho...

Dale Evans Rogers - ANGEL UNAWARE - Happy 100th Birthday! - Music Video Home Movies

In celebration of Dale's 100th birthday (which is 31 Oct 2012), we made a music video to her fantastic song, "Angel Unaware". The song was written by Dale an...

1944 SAN FERNANDO VALLEY ROY ROGERS DALE EVANS UNCUT MOVIE

Subscribe to Captain Bijou! More vintage videos, trailers and commercials are added almost daily! To buy classic films, westerns, serials, commercials and vi...

What's My Line? - Roy Rogers & Dale Evans; Red Skelton (Sep 26, 1954)

MYSTERY GUESTS: Roy Rogers & Dale Evans; Red Skelton PANEL: Dorothy Kilgallen, Fred Allen, Arlene Francis, Bennett Cerf.

Roy Rogers & Dale Evans "ANYTIME THAT I'M WITH YOU" from "UNDER NEVADA SKIES" (1946)

Roy and Dale sing the fantastic duet "Anytime That I'm with You" in English and Spanish. Performed in Gabby's clock repair shop, they sing in time to the tic...

The Muppet Show - S3 E22 P1/3 - Roy Rogers & Dale Evans

The Muppet Show, Season 3, Episode 22, 1979. Guest starring Roy Rogers & Dale Evans.

Roy Rogers and Dale Evans - The Yellow Rose of Texas

From the movie "The Yellow Rose of Texas" 1944.

Sunset in El Dorado (1945) 1/1 ROY ROGERS & DALE EVANS

SUNSET IN EL DORADO (1945) (Cut Version -I haven't been able to locate the unedited version yet.) Starring ROY ROGERS DALE EVANS as Lucille Wiley / Kansas Ka...

Man From Oklahoma (1945) COMPLETE FILM Roy Rogers DALE EVANS Gabby Hayes TRIGGER

Roy Rogers and the Sons of the Pioneers, seeking fame in New York City, come home to Oklahoma to help stop a feud between Gabby and Dale's grandmother. Roy s...

188691 videos foundNext > 

6366 news items

360Nobs.com

360Nobs.com
Wed, 04 Mar 2015 02:41:15 -0800

By virtue of this showdown with Dale Evans –another prospect– “the Natural” puts his undefeated record on the line in a fight billed as the “Ultimate Glory”. On Wednesday, 24th February; the “Ultimate Glory” press conference took place at The Grand ...

Houston Chronicle

Houston Chronicle
Thu, 05 Mar 2015 07:45:00 -0800

You don't have to dress like Roy Rogers and Dale Evans to respect Houston's cowboy past. I am a big fan of the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo. I have covered it since I got to Houston in 1986. In fact, that first year, the editor of the newspaper ...

Carmarthen Journal

Carmarthen Journal
Wed, 18 Feb 2015 04:52:46 -0800

CARMARTHEN boxer Dale Evans will face undefeated Larry Ekundayo in an eliminator for the British welterweight title next month. The 23-year-old is set to fight for the first time in 2015 at East London's iconic York Hall venue on March 14 as he gears ...
 
The Herald-News
Thu, 05 Mar 2015 09:58:15 -0800

The presentation was one of several statewide to announce the report's findings, said R. Dale Evans, family self-sufficiency program coordinator for the Housing Authority of Joliet. About one in five children statewide, more than 600,000 children, live ...

Patch.com

Patch.com
Thu, 05 Mar 2015 15:08:22 -0800

Cartersville police on Wednesday arrested Roger Dale Evans, 35, and charged him with felony theft by taking, engaging in business as a seller without a certificate of registration, failure to file a Georgia tax return and failure by a dealer to furnish ...

Cody Enterprise

Cody Enterprise
Wed, 04 Mar 2015 15:33:58 -0800

These include the Lone Ranger and Tonto, Roy Rogers and Dale Evans and Hopalong Cassidy. “They've been with me a long time,” he said. For much of their cardboard lives they have been relegated to storage because he hasn't had space to show them.

Brockville Recorder and Times

Brockville Recorder and Times
Thu, 05 Mar 2015 20:18:45 -0800

The gloves, quite literally, very well could be off for good and the song, Happy Trails by Roy Rogers and Dale Evans, that was heard over the PA after the melee(s) might be fitting for the rest of the series. These teams are mad and both are going to ...

Chron.com

Chron.com
Thu, 05 Mar 2015 04:35:53 -0800

Two small children were found safe early Thursday, a day after they disappeared from their home in north Houston. An Amber Alert was canceled about 2:30 a.m. after Leah Avila, 3, and Jordan Avila, 4, were found unharmed, according to the Houston Police ...
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