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Pamela Blake

Pamela Blake

Pamela Blake (August 6, 1915 October 6, 2009)[1] was an American film actress who acted in almost 50 films. She is known primarily for her roles in western films and serials.[2]

Pamela Blake
Blake in The Utah Trail (1938)
Born
Adele Pearce

(1915-08-06)August 6, 1915
DiedOctober 6, 2009(2009-10-06) (aged 94)
OccupationActress
Years active1934–1954
Spouse(s)
    Malcolm 'Bud' McTaggart
    (m. 1936; div. 1940)
      Mike Stokey
      (m. 1943; div. 1948)
        John Canavan
        (m. 1983; died 1996)
        Children2

        Early years

        Blake was born in Oakland, California as Adele Pearce,[3] and performed under that name until 1942.[4] Following her mother's death when Blake was 3 years old, she went to live with an uncle and aunt,[2] William Bojorques and Gertrude Biddle-Bojorques in Petaluma, California. Her secondary education came at schools in Petaluma and San Francisco.[5]

        She went to Hollywood at age 17 after she won a beauty contest.[1]

        Film

        Blake's film career lasted for a little over 15 years, with her starring mostly in B-movies. Her first film role was uncredited, playing a bit part in the 1934 film Eight Girls on a Boat. However, in 1938 she starred in the western The Utah Trail[4] alongside Tex Ritter. ("It was terrible!" she said in later years. "I never saw it and never wanted to.")[2] She also starred opposite John Wayne in the 1939 film Wyoming Outlaw. This helped her to secure several other western acting roles, many times as the lead heroine.

        In 1939 she starred in five films, one of which was a crime drama, one a mystery, and one a western. In total she had roles in some 54 films, as well as a number of starring roles in certain television series. In 1946 she starred in Chick Carter, Detective. Toward the end of her career, she mostly played parts in western genre films and television episodes, such as The Range Rider.

        Waco (1952) was Blake's last feature film, and her last role was in the 1954 television pilot, The Adventures of the Texas Kid: Border Ambush, which was later released as a film.[4]

        Personal life and death

        In 1935, Blake was injured in an automobile wreck that might have ended her career. A newspaper article in The Petaluma Argus-Courier in 1940 described her as having emerged from the wrecked car "with a neck badly torn and both eyes and cheeks badly mutilated."[5] Plastic surgery helped her to return to acting.[5]

        Blake married three times. In 1936, she eloped to Yuma, Arizona, with actor Malcolm "Bud" Taggert. They divorced in 1940.[6] Her second marriage, in 1943, was to actor, television producer and writer Mike Stokey; it ended in divorce in 1948.[2] They had one son, Mike Stokey II, and a daughter, Barbara. Their son served as a 1st Marine Division combat correspondent during the Vietnam War, and who then began working in the film industry as a military technical advisor, having worked with, among others, Steven Spielberg and Tom Hanks.

        In 1953, Blake moved to Las Vegas, Nevada, to retire and raise her two children.[7] She married John Canavan, an Air Force master sergeant, in 1983.[1] Blake died of natural causes in a Las Vegas, Nevada care facility in 2009, at age 94.[1]

        Filmography

        Year Title Role Notes
        1934Eight Girls in a BoatSchool GirlUncredited
        1934Autumn CrocusLenchen
        1936One in a MillionDancerUncredited
        1937Stage DoorActressUncredited
        1938Island in the SkyHatcheck GirlUncredited
        1938The Utah TrailSally Jeffers
        1939Sorority HouseMerle Scott
        1939Wyoming OutlawIrene Parker
        1939Girl from RioAnnette Templeton
        1939Full ConfessionLaura Mahoney
        1939Three SonsMamie Donaldson
        1940Married and in LoveMinor Role(scenes deleted)
        1940Millionaire PlayboyEleanor
        1940Pop Always PaysEdna Brewster
        1940One Crowded NightRuth
        1940Men Against the SkyNurseUncredited
        1940Too Many GirlsCoedUncredited
        1941Mr. & Mrs. SmithLily
        1941No Greater SinBetty James later Betty Thorne
        1942This Gun for HireAnnie
        1942Maisie Gets Her ManElsie
        1942The Omaha TrailJulie Santley
        1942Dr. Gillespie's New AssistantJimmy JamesUncredited
        1943Kid DynamiteIvy McGinnis
        1943Slightly DangerousMitzi
        1943Swing Shift MaisieBillie
        1943The Unknown GuestJulie
        1943Swing FeverLois
        1945Three's a CrowdDiane Whipple
        1945Why Girls Leave HomeDiana Leslie
        1945Captain Tugboat AnnieMarion Graves
        1946Live WiresMary Mahoney
        1946Partners in TimeElizabeth Meadows
        1946Mysterious IntruderElora Lund
        1946The RunaroundCoffee Shop WaitressUncredited
        1946Chick Carter, DetectiveEllen DaleSerial
        1946The Mysterious Mr. MShirley Clinton
        1946Rolling HomePamela Crawford
        1947The Sea HoundAnn WhitneySerial
        1947The Hat Box MysterySusan Hart
        1948Stage StruckJanet Winters
        1948Son of God's CountryCathy Thornton
        1948Highway 13Doris Lacy
        1949Ghost of ZorroRita White
        1949Sky LinerCarol, TWA Stewardess
        1950Joe Palooka Meets HumphreyAnne Howe Palooka
        1950The Daltons' WomenJoan Talbot
        1950Federal ManMrs. Judith Palmer
        1950GunfireCynthy
        1950Border RangersEllen Reed
        1951Danger ZoneVicki Jason(2nd episode)
        1952WacoKathy Clark
        1954Adventures of the Texas Kid: Border AmbushBetty Johnson

        References

        1. "PASSINGS: Pamela Blake, Ben Ali". Chicago Tribune. October 10, 2009. Archived from the original on October 9, 2015. Retrieved July 10, 2017.
        2. Magers, Boyd; Fitzgerald, Michael G. (2004). Westerns Women: Interviews with 50 Leading Ladies of Movie and Television Westerns from the 1930s to the 1960s. McFarland. pp. 40–45. ISBN 9780786420285. Retrieved July 10, 2017.
        3. "Pamela Blake". telegraph.co.uk. London, UK. October 26, 2009. Retrieved October 26, 2009.
        4. Mayer, Geoff (2017). Encyclopedia of American Film Serials. McFarland. p. 53. ISBN 9781476627199. Retrieved July 10, 2017.
        5. "Adele Pearce, Petaluma Girl, Appears In "Pop Always Pays" At Calif. Theatre This Week". The Petaluma Argus-Courier. California, Petaluma. August 13, 1940. p. 5. Retrieved July 10, 2017 via Newspapers.com.
        6. "Actress Sues Screen Lover". The Ogden Standard-Examiner. Utah, Ogden. International News Service. August 15, 1940. p. 14. Retrieved July 10, 2017 via Newspapers.com.
        7. Lentz, Harris M. III (2010). Obituaries in the Performing Arts, 2009: Film, Television, Radio, Theatre, Dance, Music, Cartoons and Pop Culture. McFarland. ISBN 9780786456451. Retrieved July 10, 2017.
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