A friend of mine who lived north of Tulsa had a hunting rifle that had come from the family of Mr. Johnson a few years ago. Seems like he had an autographed picture of Mr. Johnson with a big horn sheep cradling the same rifle in his arms. My mother saw him once back in the 70's in Las Vegas coming out of the frontier and that was one of her biggest claims to fame was seeing Ben Johnson!Ben Johnson's personal Colt SAA that I recently purchased from his long time friend and wrangler, Paul Smith; Ben used it in the movie The Train Robbers with the Duke (although it had wood stocks at that time). Paul told me that the grips broke and Ben found these in a box of parts he had. It is marked Fox Studios and was shipped to California Hardware in 1930 and is a 45 (of course). It came with paperwork supporting it's provenance! Born in Oklahoma, Ben Johnson was a ranch hand and rodeo performer when, in 1940, Howard Hughes hired him to take a load of horses to California. He decided to stick around (the pay was good), and for some years was a stunt man, horse wrangler, and double for such stars as John Wayne, Gary Cooper and James Stewart. His break came when John Ford noticed him and gave him a part in an upcoming film, and eventually a star part in Wagon Master (1950). He left Hollywood in 1953 to return to rodeo, where he won a world roping championship, but at the end of the year he had barely cleared expenses. The movies paid better, and were less risky, so he returned to the west coast and a career that saw him in over 300 movies.
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That is beautiful, thanks for sharing.I got this one today. Made a deal on it almost a month ago but just haven't been able to hookup with the former owner. Box is not in the best condition, but its all there.