Western Stars of the Past: Tim McCoy

Tim McCoy and John Wayne seen in Two Fisted Law in 1932 in the first part of the movie. Wayne was 25 at the time of the filming and another veteran actor Walter “Real McCoys” Brennan was 38.

Tim McCoy was born on April 10, 1881 in Saginaw, Michigan as Timothy John Fitzgerald “Tim” McCoy.  He was the son of an Union soldier and served in World War I and World War II.

McCoy appeared in 20 films during the silent movie era. 1927 would find him in five movies, six movies in 1928 and he made nine movies in 1932.

At one stretch from 1926 to 1936 he made 26 movies and was paid $4,000 for each movie. This was during the height of the depression earning $104,000 during that span.

The Internet Movie Database lists McCoy as having been in 91 movies during film career spanning from his debut in The Thundering Herd in 1925 till his last movie appearance 40 years later in 1965 in Requiem for a Gunfighter.

During various points in his career McCoy would appear in a circus and different wild west shows one which he had a financial interest in lost $300,000 according to McCoy.

He married Inga Arvad in 1945 after divorcing his first wife Agnes Miller in 1931. Arvad had a very controversial past before marrying McCoy.

Arvad who was a Danish journalist had been investigated for being a possible Nazi spy since she was seen with Adolf Hitler at the 1936 Olympics. She been married several times before their marriage.

She had enough connections with Hitler henchmen Hermann Goring and Joseph Goebbels to be the first to scoop the news of the  wedding of Goring and arranged through Goebbels an interview with Hitler. In her article after the interview she stated about Hitler:

 “You immediately like him. He seems lonely. The eyes, showing a kind heart, stare right at you. They sparkle with force.”

Her being shadowed because of her Nazi connections led to her being discovered that she was having an affair with John F. Kennedy in 1942. FBI director had the couple photographed and had hidden microphones installed in the bedroom but they apparently knew they were being taped since they would sometimes say “whoever is listening.”

It is a mystery of how a Danish journalist who had been seen with Hitler and  had an affair with John F. Kennedy would wind up marrying a cowboy hero in Tim McCoy. She died of cancer in Nogales, Arizona in 1973.

Tim McCoy died on January 29, 1978 at the age of 86 in Fort Huachuca, Sierra Vista, Arizona.

McCoy was another of the early cowboy stars who appeared in both silent films and talkies. B-westerns.com has an excellent website with pages and pages of information and photos about Tim McCoy.