Winds of the Wasteland (July 6, 1936)

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John Wayne in Winds of the Wasteland
 

Released on July 6, 1936: Two Pony Express riders buy a stage line franchise when the Pony Express shuts down, and discover that the town that their stage services is a ghost town with only 2 people living in it.

Produced by Nat Levine

Directed by Mack V. Wright

The Actors: John Wayne (John Blair), Phyllis Fraser (Barbara Forsythe), Lew Kelly (Rocky O'Brien), Douglas Cosgrove (Cal Drake), Lane Chandler (Larry Adams), Sam Flint (Doctor William Forsythe), Bob Kortman (henchman Cherokee Joe), Ed Cassidy (Mr. Dodge), Jon Hall (pony express rider Jim), Merrill McCormick (henchman Pete), Christian J. Frank (telegraph crew chief), Jack Rockwell (Buchanan City Marshal), Arthur Millett (Buchanan City Postmaster), Tracy Layne (Green), Yakima Canutt (henchman Smokey), Horace B. Carpenter (settler with ill child), Helen Gibson (settler's wife), Herman Hack (townsman), Henry Hall (townsman), Lloyd Ingraham (man showing stage to Barbara), Jack Ingram (guard), Cliff Lyons (express rider), Clyde McClary (townsman), Bud McClure (Green, guard), Art Mix (pony express rider Ed), George Morrell (townsman), Bud Pope (henchman), Arthur Thalasso (race starter), Francis Walker (townsman), Joe Yrigoyen (Drake's stage driver)

 

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Ghost Town Magic

I live in nearly rural Niles, Ohio, which was once a bedroom suburb of Youngstown, a mighty steel-making city between Pittsburgh and Cleveland. A couple of generations ago any able-bodied man could get a lifetime of work at one of the steel mills or the businesses that supported the mills and the community. Immigrants came from Europe and African Americans came north and found work that would last over their lifetime and then give their children a good job. Niles was largely populated by Italian immigrants, and several of my current neighbors still speak English with a wonderful Italian accent. Well, times changed, and the mighty steel mills turned to rust as the work was 'outsourced' - steel could be made in Japan and Europe and shipped to the U.S. cheaper than it could be made here, so all the jobs in this proud area went away leaving a large population of able-bodied people without jobs . . . Many moved away, and many stayed, working any minimum wage job that they could find. As I write this I am told that more than 80% of the kids in the local school qualify for school lunch aid because their family income is so low. In this John Wayne adventure Wayne is a Pony Express rider who, along with the other riders, is suddenly out of work because the telegraph lines are replacing the Pony Express for communicating across our great nation. The Pony Express has made its last run, so John and buddy Larry, played by Lane Chandler, decide to take their savings and their knowledge of riding horses over long distances and start a stage line, transporting passengers and goods instead of fast mail. Well . . . they show their lack of business sense when they pay our bad guy Drake for a stage line franchise in Crescent City . . . a town with only two people living in it and absolutely no need for a stage. Any fan of old cowboy movies knows that John Wayne can handle any outlaw . . . any gang of outlaws . . . with his fists and his guns . . . but in this adventure he needs much more than his fists to beat the bad guy . . . he needs a large dose of business sense, a little luck, and of course his riding ability and his gun to outwit the bad guys and win the Government stage line race to Sacramento and win a lucrative government contract. Does John Wayne have what it takes? Can he become a businessman with a gun and a smile? Pop a big bowl of white kernel popcorn with plenty of warm melted butter on it and enjoy the show.

Arthur Millett
Arthur Millett
Bob Kortman and Douglas Cosgrove
Bob Kortman and Douglas Cosgrove
Bob Kortman
Bob Kortman
Douglas Cosgrove
Douglas Cosgrove
Ed Cassidy and John Wayne
Ed Cassidy and John Wayne
John Wayne and Christian J. Frank
John Wayne and Christian J. Frank
John Wayne and Lew Kelly
John Wayne and Lew Kelly
John Wayne meets Douglas Cosgrove
John Wayne meets Douglas Cosgrove
John Wayne meets Sam Flint
John Wayne meets Sam Flint
Jon Hall
Jon Hall
Lane Chandler and John Wayne
Lane Chandler and John Wayne
Lane Chandler
Lane Chandler
Lew Kelly and John Wayne
Lew Kelly and John Wayne
Lew Kelly
Lew Kelly
Phyllis Fraser and John Wayne
Phyllis Fraser and John Wayne
Phyllis Fraser and Lloyd Ingraham
Phyllis Fraser and Lloyd Ingraham
Sam Flint and John Wayne
Sam Flint and John Wayne
Sam Flint and Phyllis Fraser
Sam Flint and Phyllis Fraser
Screen credit for Douglas Cosgrove
Screen credit for Douglas Cosgrove
Screen credit for John Wayne
Screen credit for John Wayne
Screen credit for Lane Chandler
Screen credit for Lane Chandler
Screen credit for Lew Kelly
Screen credit for Lew Kelly
Screen credit for Phyllis Fraser
Screen credit for Phyllis Fraser
Yakima Canutt, Bob Kortman and Douglas Cosgrove
Yakima Canutt, Bob Kortman and Douglas Cosgrove