Western Ladies leading the way.

by road-traveled | created - 17 Sep 2016 | updated - 25 Apr 2017 | Public

1. Fern Emmett

Actress | The Ridin' Fool

Fern Emmett was born on March 22, 1896 in Oakland, California, USA. She was an actress, known for The Ridin' Fool (1931), Cinderella Swings It (1943) and Scattergood Baines (1941). She was married to Henry Roquemore. She died on September 3, 1946 in Hollywood, Los Angeles, California.

51 westerns, 30-45.

1935, Texas Terror (1935).

1896-1946, 50,

2. Polly Ann Young

Actress | Port of Hate

Polly Ann Young was born on October 25, 1908 in Denver, Colorado, USA. She was an actress, known for Port of Hate (1939), The Man from Utah (1934) and Turnabout (1940). She was married to Carter Hermann. She died on January 21, 1997 in Los Angeles, California, USA.

6 westerns, 31-40.

Mollie, The One Way Trail (1931). 1931.

1908 - 1997, 88.

3. Beth Marion

Actress | Between Men

Beth Marion was born in Clinton, Iowa in 1912. She attended Northwestern University in Evanston, Illinois and was part of a musical trio called the Co-Eds. After starring in several B-Westerns with the likes of Ken Maynard, Tom Tyler, and Johnny Mack Brown in the 1930s she retired from acting after...

13 westerns, 35-40.

The Phantom of the Range (1936). 1936.

1912 - 2003, 90.

4. Kay Morley

Actress | Six-Gun Serenade

Kay Morley is an actress, known for Six-Gun Serenade (1947), Trails End (1949) and Campus Honeymoon (1948).

5. Norma Brooks

Actress | Blazing the Overland Trail

Norma Brooks is an actress, known for Blazing the Overland Trail (1956), Sea Hunt (1958) and Over-Exposed (1956).

6. Doris Hill

Actress | Galloping Romeo

Doris Hill was born on March 21, 1905 in Roswell, New Mexico, USA as Roberta M. Hill. She was an actress, known for Galloping Romeo (1933), Men Are Like That (1930) and Spirit of the West (1932). She was married to Monte Brice and George L. Derrick. She died on March 3, 1976 in Kingman, Arizona, ...

18 westerns, 26-34.

Dorothy Moore, Spirit of the West (1932). 1932.

1905 - 1976, 70.

7. Lois Hall

Actress | Daughter of the Jungle

Lois, was born in a tiny town in Minnesota in 1926, moved with her family to Long Beach, California where she had her first experience with theater as a set designer, stage manager and head electrician, was given a scholarship at the Pasadena Playhouse and became bitten by the "acting bug". In 1957...

35 westerns, 49-83.

11 feature westerns.

Horsemen of the Sierras (1949).

1926 - 2006, 80.

8. Frances Kavanaugh

Writer | Riding the Sunset Trail

In the 1970s, Kavanaugh enrolled at Cal State Northridge, eventually earning a bachelor's degree in art and a master's degree in psychology.

31 westerns, 41-51.

The Caravan Trail (1946). 1946. Screenplay.

1915-2009, 93.

9. Eleanor Hansen

Actress | Flaming Frontiers

Eleanor Hansen was born on September 13, 1917 in Terre Haute, Indiana, USA. She is an actress, known for Flaming Frontiers (1938), The Mad Miss Manton (1938) and The Crime of Doctor Hallet (1938).

10. Ellen Hall

Actress | Range Law

Ellen Hall was born on April 18, 1923 in Los Angeles, California, USA as Ellen J. Johnson. She was an actress, known for Range Law (1944), Brand of the Devil (1944) and Lawless Code (1949). She died on March 24, 1999 in Bellevue, Nebraska, USA.

11. Patricia Walthall

Actress | Empty Holsters

Patricia Walthall was born on March 16, 1918 in Los Angeles, California, USA as Mary Patricia Wallace Walthall. She is an actress, known for Empty Holsters (1937).

12. Betsy King Ross

Actress | The Phantom Empire

Her father, J. King Ross was a superb horse trainer, a dapper gentleman who was with numerous traveling circuses and shows. Betsy was born on 14 March 1921 (not 1922 which is the date most often given for her birth). She appeared in a few motion pictures but when she was about 13 she decided she ...

13. Betty Miles

Actress | Sonora Stagecoach

Betty Miles was born on January 11, 1910 in Santa Monica, California, USA as Elizabeth Harriet Henninger. She is known for her work on Sonora Stagecoach (1944), Lone Star Law Men (1941) and Riding the Sunset Trail (1941). She died on June 9, 1992 in California.

13 westerns, 40-45.

Sing Me a Song of Texas (1945). 1945. Stunts.

Westward Bound (1944). 1944.

1910 - 1992, 82.

14. Joan Curtis

Actress | Where Trails End

Joan Curtis is an actress, known for Where Trails End (1942), Stranger from Santa Fe (1945) and Hot Rhythm (1944).

15. Pauline Moore

Actress | The Three Musketeers

Pauline began as a model, appearing on the covers of magazines such as Cosmopolitan, McCall's and Ladies Home Journal. She was married to Jefferson Machamer, a cartoonist, from 1934 until his death in 1960. In 1962, she married minister Dodd Watkins, who died in 1972. She has three children: Wendy,...

16. Linda Leighton

Actress | The Haunted Mine

Linda Leighton was born on February 9, 1917 in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, USA. She was an actress, known for The Haunted Mine (1946), Brick Bradford (1947) and The Cisco Kid (1950). She was married to Joe Leighton. She died on December 26, 2005 in Monarch Beach, California, USA.

18 westerns, 42-59.

6 feature westerns.

Code of the Outlaw (1942). 1942.

Drink of Water (1950). 1950.

1917 - 2005, 88.

17. Jennifer Holt

Actress | The Fighting Vigilantes

Jennifer, born Elizabeth Marshall, was the daughter of film star Jack Holt and Margaret Wood Holt; she had an older half-sister from her mothers' previous marriage, named Imogene and a brother, Charles John Holt III, nicknamed Tim Holt. She would later change her name to Jennifer for professional ...

18. Helen Gilbert

Actress | The Falcon Takes Over

Helen Amelia Gilbert was one of those finds for whom everyone had high hopes, and who quickly made a splash in Hollywood, though not due to her acting, which was average at best. She appeared more in gossip columns than on the silver screen, and as her acting career waned, her notoriety grew ...

19. Jo Morrow

Actress | 13 Ghosts

Born in Cuero, Texas, Jo Morrow was still a baby when her parents took her to San Diego, where her father worked in aircraft manufacture and her mother encouraged Jo's acting aspirations. Entering a "Be A Star" contest which Morrow feels started out as a sham, she actually won a 20th Century-Fox ...

20. Dale Evans

Soundtrack | The Roy Rogers Show

American leading lady of musical westerns of the 1940s. Born Frances Octavia Smith in Uvalde, Texas. She was raised in Texas and Arkansas. Married at 14 and a mother at 15, she was divorced at 17 (some sources say widowed). Intent on a singing career, she moved to Memphis, Tennessee, and worked in ...

21. Eileen Sedgwick

Actress | Beasts of Paradise

Eileen Sedgwick came from a theatrical family. Her parents were both stage actors, her brother Edward Sedgwick went on to become a respected comedy director and her sister Josie Sedgwick became a film actress. The entire family toured the vaudeville circuit as "The Five Sedgwicks," and it wasn't ...

22. Gail Davis

Actress | Six Gun Mesa

Hailed by Gene Autry as the 'perfect western actress', diminutive, pig-tailed Betty Jeanne Grayson had all the genre's prerequisite attributes. The daughter of a prominent Arkansas physician (who went on to became State Health Officer), she had been trained in drama and dance at the University of ...

145 westerns, 47-59.

27 feature westerns.

1947, The Romance of Rosy Ridge (1947).

1959, Alias Jesse James (1959).

#1, 1956 =Dilemma at Diablo (1956)


23. Nancy Drexel

Actress | Mason of the Mounted

Nancy Drexel was born on April 6, 1910 in New York City, New York, USA as Dorothy Kitchen. She was an actress, known for Mason of the Mounted (1932), Partners (1932) and Speed Madness (1932). She was married to Thomas H. Ince Jr.. She died on November 19, 1989 in San Juan Capistrano, California, ...

16 westerns, 26-32.

The Horse Trader (1927). 1927.

1910 - 1989, 79.

24. Peggie Castle

Actress | I, the Jury

Tall, sultry, green-eyed blonde Peggie Castle was actually spotted by a talent scout while she was lunching in a Beverly Hills restaurant. In her films she was usually somebody's "woman" rather than a girlfriend, and her career was confined to mostly "B"-grade action pictures, dramas or westerns: ...

132 westerns, 52-66.

11 feature westerns.

#1, Two-Gun Lady (1955).

Hell's Crossroads (1957), 1957.

1927-1973, 45.

25. Linda Cristal

Actress | The High Chaparral

Linda Cristal will always be remembered for her great performance in The High Chaparral (1967) TV series. She was a movie star in Mexico and Italy. In the United States, she worked in productions such as The Alamo (1960) and Mr. Majestyk (1974), among others. In 1985 she returned to her home ...

26. Marin Sais

Actress | Roll, Thunder, Roll!

Marin Sais was descended from one of the earliest Spanish families of California (Marin County was named after one of her ancestors). She was possessed of a fine singing voice. and after graduation from school journeyed to New York to pursue an operatic career. However, not long after her arrival ...

111 westerns, 11-53.

38 western credits, #1.

#1, 1912 -The Pony Express Girl (1912).

#1, 1916 -The Reformation of Dog Hole (1916).

#1, The Mesquite's Gratitude (1911).

1890-1971, 81.

27. Evelyn Selbie

Actress | The Silver Treasure

Evelyn Selbie was born on July 6, 1871 in Ohio, USA. She was an actress, known for The Silver Treasure (1926), Dangerous Paradise (1930) and The Prisoner's Story (1912). She died on December 7, 1950 in Woodland Hills, Los Angeles, California, USA.

102 westerns, 11-49.

The Edge of Things (1913). 1913.

1871-1950, 79.

28. Helen Gibson

Actress | Fighting Mad

Helen Gibson was one of the earliest serial stars. In 1915 she took over the title role in The Hazards of Helen (1914) from Helen Holmes. Known for her athletic abilities and willingness to do dangerous but exciting stunts, she made the transition from serials to features easily. She was the second...

96 westerns, 12-62.

19 westerns, #1.

Nine Points of the Law (1922). 1922.

College Hounds (1929). 1918.

1892 - 1977, 85.

29. Marguerite Clayton

Actress | The Night Workers

Marguerite Clayton was born on April 12, 1891 in Ogden, Utah, USA as Margaret Fitzgerald. She was an actress, known for The Night Workers (1917), The Dream Doll (1917) and Wolfblood (1925). She was married to Victor Bertrandias. She died on December 20, 1968 in Los Angeles, California, USA.

30. Claire Carleton

Actress | The Mickey Rooney Show

Claire Carleton was born on September 28, 1913 in New York City, New York, USA. She was an actress, known for The Mickey Rooney Show (1954), Alfred Hitchcock Presents (1955) and Too Many Winners (1947). She was married to Fred E. Sherman. She died on December 11, 1979 in Northridge, California, USA.

31. Dorothy Vernon

Actress | The Fighting Guide

Titian haired, full figured, voluptuous Dorothy Vernon had a career that spanned from the early days of moving pictures through the boxed screen known as television.

Rather it was a comedy, a western, a musical or whatever was needed, Dorothy did it all. Her unforgettable glow and her almost ...

62 westerns, 25-57.

57 feature westerns.

#4, An Oklahoma Cowboy (1929). 1929.

#4, Riders of the Storm (1929). 1929.

32. Ann Little

Actress | Lightning Bryce

Unlike many serial heroines, Ann Little actually was a daughter of the West. Born in a small town near the foot of northern California's Mt. Shasta, she was raised on a ranch in the shadow of the great mountain. After graduating high school, she joined a traveling stock company, winding up in a ...

33. Joan Taylor

Actress | Earth vs. the Flying Saucers

Joan Taylor's mother, Amelia Berky, was a vaudeville singing-dancing star in the 1920s. Her father was a prop man in Hollywood during that same period, but, after Joan's birth, the family moved to Lake Forest, Illinois, where her father managed a movie theater. She developed a love of movies from ...

49 westerns

#4, A Young Man's Fancy (1962).

1929-2012, 82.

34. Julie Adams

Actress | Creature from the Black Lagoon

Betty May Adams was the daughter of a travelling Iowa cotton buyer with a penchant for alcohol. Growing up in Arkansas, Betty expressed an early interest in acting and made her performing debut in a third grade play of "Hansel and Gretel". Beautiful, talented and determined, the freshly minted '...

35. Myrtle Stedman

Actress | The Silver Horde

Born in Chicago in 1885, silent screen actress Myrtle Stedman's (née Lincoln) musical talents developed quite early, finding herself on stage at age 12 singing light opera in the chorus. She had progressed to singing leads in shows by the time she decided to abandon her music career altogether for ...

45 westerns, 10-36.

The Range Law (1913)

1885-1938, 52.

36. Texas Guinan

Actress | Queen of the Night Clubs

It's hard to be very specific about any dates or events early in the life of Texas Guinan. She loved publicity and frequently improvised facts about herself when she felt they made better stories than the truth. She was born in Waco, Texas, but likely not on a ranch as she often claimed. She was ...

42 westerns, 18-21.

41 -#1 western credits.

South of Santa Fe (1919), 1919.

A Moonshine Feud (1920). 1920.

1884-1933, 49.

37. Penny Edwards

Actress | Alfred Hitchcock Presents

Vivacious blue-eyed blonde Penny Edwards was born in New York City in 1928 and displayed signs of musical talent as a youth. She began studying dance by age six and, as a teen, appeared on Broadway in "The Ziegfeld Follies of 1943". After a couple of other musicals and a stint with the St. Louis ...

41 westerns.

#2, Johnny Bravo (1956).

1928-1998, 70.

38. Mona Darkfeather

Actress | Justice of the Wild

Princess Mona Darkfeather was born Josephine M. Workman in the Boyle Heights neighborhood of Los Angeles on 13 January 1882. Her grandparents were William Workman (1799-1876), a native of England, and Nicolasa Urioste (1802-1892), who hailed from the Taos Pueblo of New Mexico. Consequently, though ...

79 westerns, 10-17.

41 -#1 credits,

1882 - 1977, (95).-

A Forest Romance (1913).

39. Claire Du Brey

Actress | The Reward of the Faithless

Lovely brown-eyed, brunette Claire Du Brey enjoyed a rich, four-decade film career in all. Born Clara Violet Dubrey on August 31, 1892, in Bonner's Ferry Idaho, her family traveled the rugged Sierra Madre terrain by covered wagon in their move to California when she was 13.

Educated in a convent ...

40. Ruth Woodman

Writer | Death Valley Days

Despite her eastern roots, Ruth Cornwall Woodman created one of the great anthologies about the American West. A descendant of Massachusetts Governor John Winthrop and a Vassar graduate, Woodman was a mother of two and wife to a New York investment banker when she was asked to create a radio show (...

135 westerns, 52-63.

Fifty Years a Mystery (1957), 1957. Writer.

1894-1970, 75.

41. Peggy Rea

Actress | Grace Under Fire

Peggy Rea was born on March 31, 1921 in Los Angeles, California, USA as Margaret Jane Rea. She is known for her work on Grace Under Fire (1993), The Dukes of Hazzard (1979) and Love Field (1992). She died on February 5, 2011 in Toluca Lake, California.

66 westerns, 57-78.

#2, 1965 -Canary Harris vs. the Almighty (1965).

#3, 1959 -Maggie O'Bannion (1959).

#4, 1961 - The Education of Sara Jane (1961).

1921-2011, 89.

61 westerns, 25-59.

Drifting Along (1946), 1946. Writer.

1900-1973, 73.

53 westerns, 37-67.

Panamint's Bad Man (1938), 1938. Screenplay.

1907-1969, 62.

44. Doris Schroeder

Writer | The Gay Amigo

Started in 1911.

46 westerns, 23-52.

The Man Who Came Back (1950). 1950. Screenplay.

1893-1981, 87.

46 westerns, 52-70.

Songs My Mother Told Me (1961). 1961. Writer.

1911 - 1997, 85.

44 westerns, 41-56.

1898-1973, 75.

47. Glen Walters

Actress | She Goes to War

Glen Walters was born on June 17, 1901 in Victoria, British Columbia, Canada as Glen Forestine Walters. She was an actress, known for She Goes to War (1929) and The Little Shepherd of Kingdom Come (1961). She died on April 26, 1997 in Los Angeles, California, USA.

39 westerns, 26-73.

The Winning of Barbara Worth (1926), 1926.

The Stone (1973). 1973.

1901-1997, 95. Canada. USA.

48. Neva Gerber

Actress | The Voice from the Sky

One of the more prolific serial actresses, Neva Gerber's film credits go back to 1912, when she was making one-reelers for Kalem. Her first serial, as far as is known, was The Great Secret (1917). She alternated between serial work and one-reel comedies for Universal and other studios and appeared ...

49. Marian Clark

Writer | Gunsmoke

Marian Clark was one of the first female news writers in radio, working for KNX during World War II. Later, she became friends with Hollywood writer Kathleen Hite, who thought scriptwriting would be good therapy for her (Clark was confined to a wheelchair). Hite introduced Clark to "Gunsmoke" ...

24 westerns, 59-63.

17 westerns, 55-58.

Danger (1958). 1958. Writer.

51. Olive Cooper

Writer | Down Mexico Way

Olive Cooper was born on July 31, 1892 in San Francisco, California, USA as Olivette Cooper. She was a writer and actress, known for Down Mexico Way (1941), The Great Train Robbery (1941) and Cocoanut Grove (1938). She died on June 17, 1987 in Los Angeles, California.

17 westerns, 40-50.

Outcasts of the Trail (1949). Writer.

1892-1987, 94.

52. Patricia Harper

Writer | The Scarlet Horseman

Patricia Harper is a writer and actress, known for The Scarlet Horseman (1946), The Drifter (1944) and Code of the Lawless (1945).

16 westerns, 38-47.

The Drifter (1944). 1944. Story, Screenplay.

7 westerns, 36-54.

Saddlemates (1941). 1941. Story.

1909-1989, 80.

54. Dorothy M. Johnson

Writer | The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance

A graduate of the University of Montana, Dorothy Marie Johnson left her widowed mother in Whitefish, Montana and moved to New York City, where she worked as a writer and an editor of women's magazines. In 1950, she returned to Whitefish and edited the local paper for three years; she then joined ...

8 westerns, 58-83.

The Bije Wilcox Story (1958). 1958. Story.

1905 - 1984, 78.

55. Mary C. McCall Jr.

Writer | Swing Shift Maisie

She died in the night of April 3, 1986, from complications of cancer, at the Motion Picture and Television Hospital in Woodland Hills (Los Angeles).

7 westerns, 52-58.

Slim Carter (1957). 1957. Story.

9 westerns, 42-57.

Lost Train (1957). 1957. Writer.

57. Jean Holloway

Writer | The Ghost & Mrs. Muir

Jean Holloway, born Gratia Jean Casey in San Francisco, became interested in writing for radio after winning a poetry contest upon graduating from San Jose State College. From the late 1930s, she worked on a number of quality syndicated programs, including "The Kate Smith Show" and "The Hallmark ...

39 westerns, 57-71.

Prudence and the Chief (1970). 1970. Creator.

1917 - 1989, 72.

9 westerns, 31-38.

Rustlers of Red Dog (1935). 1935. Screenplay.

1885 - 1984, 99.

59. Agnes Brand Leahy

Writer | The Spoilers

Was a stenographer for the first nine of her seventeen years at Paramount Pictures.

5 westerns, 29-33.

The Spoilers (1930). 1930. Screenplay.

1893 - 1934, 40.

60. Carmen Laroux

Actress | Cavalier of the West

Carmen Laroux was born on September 4, 1909 in Durango, Mexico. She was an actress, known for Cavalier of the West (1931), Island Captives (1937) and Two-Gun Caballero (1931). She was married to Elmer Ellsworth. She died on August 24, 1942 in Los Angeles, California, USA.

14 westerns, 27-38.

Anita Verdugo, Son of Oklahoma (1932). 1932.

1909 - 1942, 32. Mexico. California.

61. Sally Winters

Writer | The Law of the Mounted

Sally Winters is a writer and actress, known for The Law of the Mounted (1928), The Canyon of Missing Men (1930) and The Lone Horseman (1929).

30 westerns, 28-30.

Writer, The Lone Horseman (1929). 1929.

62. Sally Payne

Actress | Man from Cheyenne

Sally Payne was born on September 5, 1912 in Chicago, Illinois, USA. She was an actress, known for Man from Cheyenne (1942), Young Bill Hickok (1940) and Bad Man of Deadwood (1941). She was married to Arthur F. Kelly and William Telaak. She died on May 8, 1999 in Los Angeles, California, USA.

21 westerns, 36-54.

Rodeo Dough (1940). 1940.

Sally Whittacker, Man from Cheyenne (1942). 1942.

1912 - 1999, 86.

63. Nell O'Day

Actress | Thundering Trails

Born in Prairie Hill, Texas, in 1909, lovely Nell O'Day had the obvious breeding credentials to become a leading lady of westerns. She began as a child dancer in the early 1920s, later performing with the Tommy Atkins Sextet. This led to a part in the early musical King of Jazz (1930) and the stage ...

Edith Walker, Thundering Trails (1943). 1943.

1909 - 1989, 79.

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