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The 'brains' and 'action' heavies who had meaty roles and lots of dialog ... and the players who were fathers, ranch owners, lawman, mayors, judges, lawyers, storekeepers, newspaper editors, wardens, etc.

Emmett Vogan

Full name:
Charles Emmett Vogan

1893 - 1969

Charles Emmett Vogan was a prolific movie performer whose face is recognized by many of us ... but we don't know his name.

Several years ago, Turner Classic Movies (TCM) ran a few Dick Foran oaters including EMPTY HOLSTERS (Warners, 1937). In that, Vogan is a real nasty, playing the boss baddie role with vim and vigor ... and did I mention he was really nasty. After viewing EMPTY HOLSTERS, I wondered why Vogan never specialized in westerns or why production companies and directors didn't utilize him more often as a B western brains heavy.

Charles Emmett Vogan was born September 27, 1893 in Lima, Allen County, Ohio to Charles H. Vogan and Emma Long. He learned his acting skills on the stage and traveling repertory companies. When he registered for the World War I draft, he was performing in St. Louis with the Lakeside Musical Comedy Company. Newspaper and tradepaper articles circa 1918 - early 1930s have him acting with the Woodward Players (Spokane), Wilkes Stock Company (Seattle), George Sharp Players (Pittsburg), Orpheum Players (Kansas City), National Players (Cincinnati), Howard Stock Company (Chicago), more. He often performed with his actress wife Edythe who was billed as "Edith Lawrence" (Lawrence was her maiden name). For example - in 1925, Emmett and Edythe were at the Hippodrome in Peoria, Illinois with the Gifford Stock Company and and with the Dorothy Gale Players at the Temple, Hammond, Indiana.

Emmett and Edythe tied the knot on January 4, 1913 in Clarke County, Georgia. Son Emmett Jr. was born May 23, 1918 in Denver, Colorado.

Vogan began his Hollywood career circa 1933.

Les Adams has him identified in over 450 sound films - and of that number, about fifty are westerns and cliffhangers. That quantity is significant as his movie career was only about twenty years, from 1933 through the mid 1950s. He was the recipient of a large quantity of paychecks from Republic Pictures - during the period from 1936 - 1954, he appeared in 71 Republics which were a mix of musicals, dramas, mysteries, westerns and serials. His Republic oaters were mostly with Roy Rogers (seven films), but he also can be spotted in sagebrush adventures starring Gene Autry, Don Barry, Bill Elliott, Allan Lane, Monte Hale, Rex Allen and John Wayne.

Several Vogan B western and serial roles come to mind:

In many of his A and B grade film appearances, he was an unbilled / uncredited newspaper reporter, police officer, judge, doctor, attorney, member of the military ... or just a face in a crowd. Examples:

In the 1950s, Vogan was busy in mostly uncredited movie roles and a few early TV shows (SKY KING, RACKET SQUAD, HOPALONG CASSIDY, ABBOTT AND COSTELLO, more).

He passed away on November 13, 1969.

Edythe and Emmett Vogan's son, Emmett Jr. (1918 - 2002), served in the Navy during World War II. He appeared in about a half dozen films released in 1946 - 1947 and then made a career change to law enforcement.

Above - newspaper advertisement from June, 1920 for Emmett Vogan's musical revue at the Lakeside Amusement Park, Denver, Colorado. Also in the act was wife Edythe, billed as "Edith Lawrence".

(Courtesy of Les Adams)

Above is the title lobby card for THE OIL RAIDER (Mayfair, 1934) which Buster Crabbe did 'on loan' from Paramount. The "Scott-Bennet Production" in the lower left refers to Lester F. Scott, Jr. (producing) and Spencer Gordon Bennet (directing).The Mayfair company existed from the late 1920s through mid 1930s, and THE OIL RAIDER was the last - or among the last - of Mayfair's films. This was one of Emmett Vogan's early films ... and he does get billing credit. That's Vogan standing next to Buster's elbow.

Courtesy of Boyd Magers)

Above from left to right are George Chesebro, Emmett Vogan, Anderson Lawler, Dick Foran, Tom Brower and Patricia Walthall in a scene from Foran's EMPTY HOLSTERS (Warners, 1937). This is a standout role for Vogan as "Ace Cain". Both he and Foran have romantic feelings for Pat Walthall, and to eliminate his competition, Vogan gets Foran sent to prison on a trumped up charge. Vogan was in his mid forties when he did this role.

Courtesy of Boyd Magers)

Above from left to right are Douglas Fowley, Emmett Vogan, Roy Rogers and Roy Barcroft in a 1954 blue duotone re-release lobby card from ALONG THE NAVAJO TRAIL (Republic, 1945). Fowley and Barcroft report to Vogan who is the president of an oil drilling company that needs Dale Evans' ranch for a pipeline.

There is a controversy with Vogan's full name. In the links below, you'll find his Ohio birth record as Charles E. Vogan and he was Charles Emmett Vogan on his World War I and World War II draft registrations. However, his grave marker at Forest Lawn reads Emmett C. Vogan.

  Although some of the data is incomplete or inaccurate, the Internet Movie Database (IMDb) has information on Emmett Vogan:

The Family Search website (free), (subscription), California Death Index, Social Security Death Index (SSDI), newspaper funeral notices, and ProQuest obituaries provide more on Emmett Vogan and family:

Jim Tipton's Find A Grave website has a photo of the marker for Emmett C. Vogan and his wife Edythe who are interred at Forest Lawn Memorial Park (Hollywood Hills), Los Angeles, California:

Family Search website (free) and (subscription) had info on Emmett Jr. (1918 - 2002):

Jim Tipton's Find A Grave website notes that Emmett C. Vogan (1918 - 2002) is interred at Forest Lawn Memorial Park (Covina Hills), Covina, Los Angeles County, California:

  The IMDb has a few 1946 - 1947 films for Edythe and Emmett's son Emmett Vogan Jr. (1918 - 2002):

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