Paul Dellinger authored our original biography on Allan Lane in 1999. This supplement from ye Old Corral webmaster is to document any corrections as well as new and updated information and confusion on Lane, his family, his marriages, etc.
This supplement is a work in progress and was last updated on: October 10, 2012. If anyone has further info on Lane's life and career, please shoot an e-mail to the Old Corral webmeister.
|A variety of sources note that Lane was married and divorced twice - first to a "Gladys Leslie" and next to pretty actress Sheila Ryan. There were no children from his marriages. However, recent info confirms a third marriage and divorce for Allan Lane. Details below.|
The name "Gladys Leslie" appears in Lane biographies, but no info is available on who she was and where/when Lane met her, married her, etc. The first place to check was the Internet Movie Database which has a record for one actress named Gladys Leslie (1899-1976) who did many silent films for Vitagraph and was known as "The Girl with the Million Dollar Smile". Her Hollywood career ended around 1925. The IMDB link for her is: http://us.imdb.com/name/nm0504109/
"I saw your web page on Allan Lane while doing some family research and I thought you might want to know that the mysterious wife named Gladys that you wondered about was my aunt. Her name was Gladys Schneider and she had been an actress and dancer in New York City with one notable role that I am aware of: the female lead in one of the many casts of the long-running Broadway play "Tobacco Road." She met Lane, probably in California because I know she went there to do some screen tests, and their marriage was brief.
In some follow-up e-mails, Rick and Ye Old Corral webmaster speculated about Gladys in Hollywood. There is no date or other info on the back of her photo, but based on the hairstyle and clothing, it probably was taken in the early 1940s.
(Courtesy of Rick Schneider)
(From Old Corral image collection)
Left is actress Sheila Ryan (real name: Katherine Elizabeth McLaughlin) (1921-1975) who was married to Lane for only a few months during 1945-1946.
|Emma J. Bushnell (nee Raimondo), screen name of 'Toni Raimondo'
In 2006, I received several e-mails referencing an Avon, Ohio obituary notice which mentions another marriage for Lane. Excerpts from that obituary follow:
"AVON - Emma J. Bushnell (nee Raimondo), 85, died Monday, April 24, 2006 ... She was born in Los Angeles, Calif., and lived in Manhattan Beach, Calif., for 50 years. She moved to Avon in November 2005. Mrs. Bushnell starred in the 1939 Ice Capades and acted in films ... She was married briefly to Allan ''Rocky'' Lane, an actor who had his own television show and comic book and was perhaps most famous as the voice of ''Mr. Ed.'' Mrs. Bushnell later moved to Hawaii, where she met her second husband, the late John Bushnell ...".
There is a biography and film listing on at the Internet Movie Database for 'Toni Raimondo', real name of Emma J. Bushnell (nee Raimondo). It mentions the Ice Capades, lists a few film appearances, and references the marriage to Allan Lane. The IMDB link for Toni Raimondo is at: http://www.imdb.com/name/nm0706890/
(Courtesy of Steve Morenberg)
|I received the Allan Lane Birth Certificate from the State of Indiana, Department of Health, in 1999. They provided two versions - a plain white copy of the original record (shown below), as well as a pale green official copy with the State seal and imprint. This confirms Lane's full name as HARRY LEONARD ALBERSHART, and his birthdate is September 22, 1909 ... not 1904 which is sometimes listed in Lane biographies. His parents were William Herman Albershart and Linnie Anne Dayhuff Albershart.
Pay particular attention to the line 26 on the birth certificate (shown below): number of children born to this mother is 4; number still living is 2 (which includes Lane's birth); number of children no longer living is 2.
Go to the following listing of births in St. Joseph County, Indiana: http://boards.ancestry.com/thread.aspx?mv=flat&m=1156&p=localities.northam.usa.states.indiana.counties.stjoseph
(Courtesy of Jim Sorensen & Dale Crawford)
Thanks to Jim Sorensen and Dale Crawford for journeying out to Inglewood Park Cemetery, and taking the snapshot above of Lane's grave marker.
I cropped Dale and Jim's image and adjusted the contrast so you can better see the name and dates on the marker.
|Regardless of the above, there remain questions and controversy over Lane's birth year, and many still believe that it was 1904.|
Early on, I was a bit apprehensive about the 1909 year shown in the birth and death certificates and his grave marker. I viewed several of Lane's later films such as his last, EL PASO STAMPEDE (Republic, 1953). If Lane was born in '04, he would have been about 49 years old when he did that film. That would also have made him several years older than Gene Autry, who was born in 1907. Lane doesn't look like a man who was approaching the half-century mark. I also looked again at the Lane Red Ryder TV pilot which was lensed in 1955. If 1904 was correct, Rocky would have been about 51 when this pilot was filmed, and that's quite elderly for a cowboy hero. He doesn't look 51. Viewing Lane's later Republic films and the TV pilot convinces me that the 1909 birth year is correct. My guess is that he (or the studios) fudged the 1904 birth year at the start of his Tinseltown career in order to make him older, more mature. Remember that Lane's first film work occurred at Fox in 1929 when he was around 20 years of age.
Lane's parents were William Herman Albershart and Linnie Anne Dayhuff, and they were married July 11, 1903 in South Bend, Indiana. In addition to Lane, they also had a daughter named Helen May (or Mae) Albershart. Linnie Anne Dayhuff Albershart, was born in 1887 in Mishawaka, Indiana (St. Joseph County). At the time of her death in 1974, she was living in Los Angeles, California.
All four members of the family wound up in California ... and passed away there. Go to the In Search Of ... webpage on the Old Corral and then to the California Death Records database. There you will find records for:
Note that Lane's father and sister passed away within a couple of weeks of each other in 1955. And Lane's mother Linnie Anne passed away about six months after Lane's death.
Below is an excerpt/crop from the 1910 census sheet taken April 15, 1910. It shows the Albershart Family: father William H., mother Linnie Anne, 3 year old sister Helen, and son Harry Leonard. The five columns to the right of the names stand for: male/female, race, age, married/single, and years married. For babies and very young children, census takers often report their age as ?/12 which signifies months since birth - for example, 7/12 would indicate seven months of age. The fractional age for Harry Leonard appears to be something like 7/17. That's probably a sloppily written 7/12. 7 months would be the approximate time between Lane's September 22, 1909 birth date and the April 15, 1910 census date. Regardless of what the fraction is, Harry Leonard Albershart was under a year old when this 1910 census was taken.
|Having a difficult seeing 7/12? Here it 'tis enlarged:||Rotated 75 degrees to the right - you should now be able to see how the census taker wrote the number 12:|
|The answer to Grand Rapids, Michigan is "maybe". In the 1910 census, Lane and the Albershart family are residing in Mishawaka, Indiana. However, I've yet to find a trace of the family in the 1920 census (perhaps they were missed by the census taker or a spelling error occurred when the census data was transcribed into digital content).
Lane's mother, Linnie Anne Dayhuff Albershart, is found in the 1930 census re-married and living in Grand Rapids, Michigan. Between the 1910 and 1930 census, she was divorced from William Herman Albershart and wed William J. Costello.
In the 1920 census, the William J. Costello family includes wife Josephine and sons Justin, Thomas and James. Perhaps Josephine passed away or they divorced in the 1920s. The change occurs in the 1930 census - the Costello household includes sons Justin, Thomas and James as well as new wife Anne and stepdaughter Helen M. Wolven (who I assume is Lane's sister Helen May or Helen Mae). At that time, Lane is not with the family in Grand Rapids - in the 1930 census, he's in Los Angeles. Sometime between the 1920 and 1930 census, Lane's mother married Costello.
The Family Search website has census info:
Census information which I've been unable to locate:
LANE AND PUBLIC SCHOOL ATTENDANCE
In September, 2012, I sent e-mails to the Mishawaka, Indiana and Grand Rapids, Michigan school administrations asking for any information on Harry Leonard Albershart..
Initial and follow-up replies from the Mishawaka, Indiana school system: "... we do have records that go back that far. We checked the transcripts and yearbooks from the 20's and could not find anything. Sorry." and "couldn't find anything else from School City of Mishawaka records."
There is a mention in some newspaper or other article that Albershart may have attended grade or high school in South Bend, Indiana. In early October, 2012, I jotted off an e-mail to the South Bend school administration asking if they can check their records for Harry Leonard Albershart.