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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.

(Courtesy of Jack Tillmany)
Carleton Young

A few billing credits as:
"Gordon Roberts"

Full name:
Carleton Scott Young

1905 - 1994

(Courtesy of Les Adams)

Above is from the pressbook to MESQUITE BUCKAROO (Metropolitan, 1939). Gordon Roberts is the sixth name down on the cast list.

Carleton S. Young's filmwork as "Gordon Roberts":

Don't know why he used that name or whether it was an error or on purpose. Young was "Gordon Roberts" in a pair of 1939 Bob Steele films for Harry S. Webb's Metropolitan Pictures: RIDERS OF THE SAGE (where he played 'Luke Halsey') and MESQUITE BUCKAROO (where he played 'Sands'). These were among a batch of eight 1939-40 oaters that Steele did for Webb and Metropolitan. Toward the bottom of this webpage, there's a production still from RIDERS OF THE SAGE (Metropolitan, 1939) showing Young/Roberts.

But in a three of the other films in the series, EL DIABLO RIDES, THE PAL FROM TEXAS and SMOKY TRAILS, Young was credited as Carleton Young.

Carleton Young was born October 21, 1905 in Fulton, New York (Fulton is near Syracuse, about 285 miles north of New York City).

His movie career amounted to about 150 sound films, of which 12 were serials and 59 were westerns. His work at Republic Pictures consisted of about 35 films from 1936-1952, and these were a mix of westerns, serials, and other films.  He was under a Republic Term Players contract(s) from October 5, 1936 to October 4, 1937, and about half of his Republic credits occurred during that one year period. His career in films and TV spanned nearly forty years, from 1935 - 1973.

He did a bunch of B westerns, including the sidekick role (as "Jeff") to Bob Steele and Buster Crabbe in several of the Billy the Kid oaters from Producers Releasing Corporation (PRC).

His best early work was in cliffhangers, and in particular, the role of "Gordon Tracy", the brother of Dick Tracy, who gets surgically modified into a vicious criminal in DICK TRACY (Republic, 1937).  From roughly 1937 through the early 1940s, Young was busy at Republic and Universal in cliffhangers DICK TRACY RETURNS, THE LONE RANGER RIDES AGAIN, THE ADVENTURES OF CAPTAIN MARVEL, THE ADVENTURES OF RED RYDER, BUCK ROGERS, more.  One of his better serial performances was as Mexican President Benito Juarez in ZORRO'S FIGHTING LEGION.

After his "cliffhanger and B western period", Young popped up in various features, including many directed by John Ford and/or starring John Wayne.

I realize he did all kinds of roles, but my remembrances of Young in these later films is "Carleton Young wearing uniforms of high ranking military officers". A good example is THE GLENN MILLER STORY (Universal, 1954) - at the end, General Hap Arnold (played by Barton MacLane) drops by the office of an un-named General so he can notify Helen Miller that her bandleader husband is missing. That un-named General was Carleton Young.

He portrayed an Army Colonel in the Tyrone Power AMERICAN GUERILLA IN THE PHILIPPINES (1950); was a Confederate officer in the John Ford/John Wayne THE HORSE SOLDIERS (1959); was the military officer prosecuting Woody Strode in the John Ford directed SERGEANT RUTLEDGE (Warners, 1960); was an Army Colonel in one of the finest of the 1950s B&W Sci-Fi flicks, THE DAY THE EARTH STOOD STILL (1951) which starred Michael Rennie and a robot named Gort. And he wore uniforms in the John Wayne films OPERATION PACIFIC (Batjac/Warners, 1951) and FLYING LEATHERNECKS (RKO, 1951).

His real life experiences helped with those military roles. Young enlisted in the Army Air Corps in January, 1942, served through the end of the war, and attained the rank of Captain.

Ron McKnight reminded me of another good Young screen appearance as "Winslow" in John Ford's THE LAST HURRAH (1958), a tale of politics, political bosses and running for office which starred Spencer Tracy and Jeffrey Hunter. Ron also noted that Young did a great WAGON TRAIN episode - "The Colter Craven Story" aired November 23, 1960, was directed by John Ford, and was Ward Bond's last episode. Young is "Craven", a doctor who is continually drunk, and Anna Lee plays his wife. Members of the cast included John Carradine, Ken Curtis, Hank Worden ... and John Wayne in a guest role as General Sherman.

Young's greatest asset was his booming baritone voice which is easily recognizable. And his dialog delivery is clear and concise - probably because he worked on Broadway and did plays. I recall one exception - while Young had lots of screen time as gang boss "Pierre Lablond" in GENE AUTRY AND THE MOUNTIES (Columbia, 1951), his French Canadian accent was not very convincing.

Years back, one of my favorite TV shows was STREETS OF SAN FRANCISCO with Karl Malden and Michael Douglas. I was viewing some DVDs of the series and Young is a minister at the funeral of a police woman in "Act of Duty" (season 1, episode 15, originally broadcast in January, 1973). He's much older and grayer, but still had that voice. This was one of Young's last film/TV roles.

Carleton Scott Young passed away on November 7, 1994 at the West Los Angeles Veteran's Administration Medical Center, and cause of death was pulmonary emphysema. He also suffered from dementia and aortic valve stenosis.

To many of us, Young's most memorable screen portrayal is that of newspaper editor / journalist "Maxwell Scott" in John Ford's THE MAN WHO SHOT LIBERTY VALANCE (1962).  James Stewart (as Ransom Stoddard) tells the story of Tom Donophan (John Wayne), and Young's reply to Stewart is one of my favorite movie quotes:

"This is the West, sir.  When the legend becomes fact, print the legend."

  Although some of the data may be incomplete or inaccurate, the Internet Movie Database (IMDb) has information on Carleton Scott Young and the IMDb bio notes his wife was Noel Toy Young, a Chinese-American dancer. Air Force Captain Carleton Young married Noel Toy in late 1945 and you'll find more below. For the IMDb info on Carleton S. Young, go to:

The Family Search website (free), (subscription), Fold3 Military records, and the death certificate provide more on Carleton Scott Young:

The Daily WAV site has a couple of WAV sound files of Young doing dialog in the dreadful REEFER MADNESS dope-ploitation film from the mid 1930s:

You can download or stream REEFER MADNESS from the Internet Archive website:

The Images Journal website has a page on the first DICK TRACY serial, including a photo of Young as Gordon Tracy:

There was an obituary on the website for Noel Toy Young ... who met and married a soldier and actor named Carleton Young in 1945. She passed away on December 24, 2003 and the obit mentions that her husband, Carleton Young, died in 1994. I've cut 'n' pasted it below along with a sentence that I've highlighted in red:

Noel Toy Young, a Chinese-American fan dancer whose nude performances brought her renown at some of the hottest clubs in San Francisco and New York, died Dec. 24, five days after having a stroke. She was 84. Mrs. Young's performances during which she danced in nothing more than ostrich plumes turned a San Francisco Chinese nightclub called Forbidden City into one of the nation's most famous clubs. She often was called the "Chinese Sally Rand" because of her performances with fans and a huge, transparent plastic bubble. Mrs. Young packed in crowds at New York clubs like the Stork Club, Maxie's, the 18th Club, Lou Walter's Latin Quarter and Leon & Eddie's. She also appeared in movies, alongside Clark Gable and Susan Hayward in "Soldier of Fortune" and Humphrey Bogart and Gene Tierney in "How to Be Popular." In later years, she appeared on the TV show "M*A*S*H" and in the 1986 film "Big Trouble in Little China," starring Kurt Russell. Born in San Francisco, Mrs. Young was the first of eight children born to parents who immigrated to California from Canton, China. Mrs. Young's parents opened a laundry in Inverness, where they were said to be the only Chinese residents. Mrs. Young was just months away from receiving a journalism degree from the University of California Berkeley when she accepted an offer to perform in a show at the World's Fair on Treasure Island in 1939. Later that year, businessman Charlie Low invited Mrs. Young to work at his club, Forbidden City. Business tripled within three months. Mrs. Young later decided to change her name to Noel Toy, because she loved Christmas. Mrs. Young met and married a soldier and actor named Carleton Young in 1945, who became spellbound after seeing her perform at Latin Quarter in New York. They remained married until he died in 1994. Mrs. Young lived in Los Angeles until moving to Antioch last year. She is survived by two sisters, Lotus Now of Rio Vista and Alyce Wu of Walnut Creek; three brothers, Ken Hom of Hercules, Joe Hom of El Cerrito and Henry Hom of Oakland, and a nephew.

If interested, I have several newspaper articles/photos from late 1945 - early 1946 showing the engagement and marriage announcements of Air Corps Captain Carleton Young and Noel Toy. Shoot the Old Corral webmaster an e-mail and I'll send these to you.

Find A Grave website has interment info and photos of Noel Toy Young and her husband Carleton Scott Young whose ashes are together at Hollywood Forever Cemetery, Hollywood, Los Angeles County, California:

          Noel Toy Young (1918 - 2003):
          Carleton Scott Young (1905 - 1994):

Bob Edwards provided the info and photos to Find A Grave, and he's also provided the photo below. Inside their niche - and on the right side - is a photo of Noel Toy Young with her husband. There's two nameplates on the bottom left and bottom right of the box. The nameplate for her husband is engraved CARLETON SCOTT YOUNG 1905 - 1994.

(Courtesy of Bob Edwards)

On the right is a blowup of the photo within the niche at the Hollywood Forever Cemetery of our movie Carleton Scott Young (in his World War II military uniform) and his wife Noel Toy Young.

Bob Edwards adds some additional details:

"At the bottom of the Chinese box containing his ashes you'll see two tiny silver plaques with their names: the first one has the name and dates of his wife, Noel Toy Young; the second reads, CARLETON SCOTT YOUNG 1905 - 1994." (shown on the right).

Were There Two Carleton Youngs?     YUP!

I recalled a prolific radio performer named Carleton G. Young. I checked with some of the Old Time Radio (OTR) experts as well as B western experts.  Got several responses, and in summary, there appears to be a Carleton Young (movie actor) and a Carleton Young (radio performer).  Bobby Copeland adds that Tony Young, who starred in the TV western GUNSLINGER, is the son of the "radio Carleton Young".  Bobby also mentioned that he believes that the "movie Carleton Young" passed away on 11/7/94.

Knowing that there were two "Carleton Youngs", I checked the California Death Records database and the Social Security Death Index (SSDI) and found records for:

  • Carleton G. Young, born 5/26/1907 in New York, died 7/11/1971 in Los Angeles. This is our "radio Carleton Young", and that matches the newspaper obituary and details below.

  • Carleton Scott Young, Mother's maiden of Adler, born 10/21/1905 in New York, died 11/7/1994 in Los Angeles. This is our "movie Carleton Young". That matches with info and other details shown above on wife and husband Noel Toy Young and Carleton Scott Young.

Carleton G. Young

1907 - 1971

(Courtesy of Jack Tillmany)

In the early 1940s, radio performer Carleton G. Young starred in THE ADVENTURES OF ELLERY QUEEN program. And from 1944 - 1952, he was THE COUNT OF MONTE CRISTO, which initially ran on the Don Lee Network (West Coast) and later, over the Mutual Network. While radio work was his primary source of income, Carleton G. did appear in a few movies, and in the 1950s, he also worked on TV shows. One of his occasional movie roles was in the Technicolor THRILL OF A ROMANCE (MGM, 1945) which starred Esther Williams and Van Johnson. In that film, he was seventh billed and listed as Carleton G. Young.

Carleton G. Young passed away in 1971, and his obituary (below) mentions that he was 64 years of age (which would confirm his birth year as 1907), and movie/TV performer Tony Young was one of his children. Tony Young starred as "Cord" in the short-lived TV western GUNSLINGER (1961).

On The Air, The Encyclopedia Of Old Time Radio by John Dunning (Oxford Press, 1998), has a good writeup on the ten year run of THE ADVENTURES OF ELLERY QUEEN which was broadcast over CBS, NBC and ABC. The titled sleuth was played by Hugh Marlowe, then Carleton G. Young, then Sydney Smith, then Lawrence Dobkin, and lastly, by Howard Culver. Several of those performers are familiar. Hugh Marlowe was in a bunch of movies and TV shows (and he even starred in the early 1950s TV version of Ellery Queen). Larry Dobkin was also a familiar face in movies and TV. Howard Culver was the voice of radio's STRAIGHT ARROW, and for many years portrayed "Howie the hotel clerk" on TV's GUNSMOKE.

ELLERY QUEEN originated from New York through 1947, and then the show switched to Hollywood origination. From January 10, 1942 through December 30, 1944, EQ was sponsored by Bromo Seltzer and was on Saturday evenings at 7:30 over NBC (earlier sponsor was Gulf Oil and later sponsor was Anacin). Carleton G. Young is credited with playing Ellery from January, 1942 through August, 1943, and was replaced by Sydney Smith. I obtained some EQ programs, and in particular, those with Bromo Seltzer ads. After listening to those - and others from earlier and later in the series - I can report that radio's EQ is NOT our movie Carleton Young - the movie Carleton Young had that deep, booming, instantly recognizable voice.

J. David Goldin's RadioGoldIndex website includes a listing of 150+ programs featuring Carleton G. Young. When you get to the site, click "Start Here", then select "Search By Artist", then select Y, and then scroll down and click on the Carleton Young radio credits:

Wikipedia includes a small photo of Carleton G. Young as well as a mention that he is interred at Inglewood Park Cemetery, Inglewood, California:

Find A Grave website also notes that Carleton G. Young is interred at Inglewood Park Cemetery, Inglewood, California:

  Although some of the data may be incomplete or inaccurate, the Internet Movie Database (IMDb) has information on Carleton G. Young and his actor son Tony Young:

          Carleton G. Young :
          Tony Young (1937-2002), son of Carleton G. Young:

(Courtesy of Ed Tabor)

Below - Carleton Scott Young in westerns

(Courtesy of Les Adams)

Above from left to right are Carleton Young, William Boyd, Russell Hayden and Frank Darien in a crop from a lobby card from CASSIDY OF BAR 20 (Paramount, 1938).

(From Old Corral collection)

Above from left to right are Carleton Young (hand on door handle) followed by Ted Adams and behind him is Robert Walker.  On the right side of the door are Bob Steele and Betty Mack.  From Steele's THE PAL FROM TEXAS (Metropolitan, 1939). In this Harry Webb production, Young was billed as Carleton Young, not "Gordon Roberts".

(Courtesy of Les Adams)

Above from left to right are Reed Howes, Dave O'Brien, Carleton Young, Bob Steele, Claire Rochelle and Ted Adams in a scene from Steele's RIDERS OF THE SAGE (Metropolitan, 1939). Note the 'butt forward' gunbelt on Howes. Young was billed as "Gordon Roberts" in this film.

(Courtesy of Les Adams)

Spelling errors were not uncommon, and this pressbook ad contains two: Carlton Young should be Carleton (with an e), and Louise Curry should be Currie.

(Courtesy of Les Adams)

Above are a moustached Carleton Young with Bob Steele in BILLY THE KID IN TEXAS (PRC, 1940).

(Courtesy of Les Adams)

Above from left to right are Jack Hendricks (AKA Ray Henderson), Carleton Young, Louise Currie, Kenne Duncan, Bob Steele, John Merton, Hal Price, Reed Howes and Al 'Fuzzy' St. John in a scene from BILLY THE KID OUTLAWED (PRC, 1940). Young was sidekick "Jeff" in several of the Bob Steele and Buster Crabbe Billy the Kid westerns done by PRC. Crops/blowups below provide a better view of the faces.

(Courtesy of Les Adams)

Above left to right in the front row are Buck Moulton w/ sixgun, Bud McClure next to him w/ sixgun, Carleton Young is in the center with coat and pointing, and on the right is Hobart 'Tex' Parker. From the Don Barry starrer TWO GUN SHERIFF (Republic, 1940).

(Courtesy of Les Adams)

Above is the title lobby card to BILLY THE KID'S FIGHTING PALS (PRC, 1941). In the inset at the bottom left, you can spot Fuzzy St. John, Curley Dresden (hands in the air), Sherry Tansey and Wally West (behind Steele), and moustached Carleton Young (as Steele sidekick "Jeff") is on the right with the six-shooter. Note that Carleton is spelled correctly.

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