One of the most important characters associated with Lone Pine is Clarence E. Mulford’s Hopalong Cassidy. On the page he was a hard drinking, tobacco chewing, rough talking character with a limp that made him “Hop-a-long.”
When he was brought to the screen in 1935, as interpreted by William Boyd, he became a respectable cowboy hero who did not smoke, drink or swear. Although Boyd came to the silver screen in the early 1920s and was a matinee idol, he became indelibly associated with the Hopalong Cassidy character while making 66 "Hoppy" films, 31 of which were filmed in and around Lone Pine.
The film company came on location to Lone Pine so often that Boyd rented a home for his wife Grace on Tuttle Creek Road, known to this day as the “Hoppy Cabin.” It was also used in a majority of the films and today looks much as it did during those many years of filming. A local working ranch still in operation today stood in for the Bar 20 Ranch, while most of the exteriors for the pictures were shot in the Alabama Hills, which remain virtually unchanged today. Other related landmarks are easy to find and identify by the intrepid Hoppy fan around the Owens Valley with a little help from the people at the Lone Pine Film History Museum. See the films and then visit the beautiful locations for a unique experience not available anywhere else.
Hopalong Cassidy: On the Page, On the Screen covers each of Mulford's books and each of the Cassidy theatrical films in full detail. A comprehensive index enables readers interested in almost anything linked to the books or films.(520 pages) $40.00
Anticipating the potential of television and capitalizing on the popularity of the Hopalong Cassidy character, William Boyd purchased all rights to the character, the books and the films. By releasing the films to TV, Boyd nurtured a whole new life for the character he owned, which led to a merchandising phenomenon unknown before that time. A variety of licensed merchandise, including such products as Hopalong Cassidy watches, trash cans, cups, dishes, trading cards, a comic strip, comic books, records and cowboy outfits, including toy guns and boots, well over a hundred different items in all, hit the market over a three year period, making Boyd an instant millionaire.
The Museum's Hopalong Cassidy exhibit presents a wide range of movie posters and promotional advertising for the films issued by the studios. The exhibit also displays an extensive collection of the merchandise collectibles, from cereal bowls to hair trimmers; children's western wear with guns and holsters, to dinner ware, including cups and plates. Come see for yourself, bring the kids and grandchildren - relive the days of one of America's iconic Western silver screen and TV cowboys.
|William Boyd's horse. When Boyd, the actor who portrayed the character of Hopalong Cassidy for approximately 40 years during which he took made 66 feature films and 52 half-hour television shows, took Grace Bradley as his wife in 1937, he obtained Topper that same year. The white stallion was named by way of Grace after her favorite book series, "Topper," written by Thorne Smith. Thoughout the years, Topper remained Hopalong Cassidy's favorite horse because of the fact that he was a trustworthy animal, noted and admired for his constant cooperation, not only with his owner, but also with children who would sometimes pull on his mane and other such things. He died in 1961 at 26 years of age. Topper is buried in Los Angeles Pet Memorial Park; Calabasas Los Angeles County California, USA|