as “Mr. Haney” on Green Acres
|Born||Maxwell Emmett Buttram
June 19, 1915
Addison, Alabama, U.S.
|Died||January 8, 1994 (aged 78)
Los Angeles, California, U.S.
Cause of death
|Maxwell Chapel, United Methodist Church
Haleyville, Alabama, U.S.
|Alma mater||Birmingham-Southern College|
|Occupation||Film and television actor, writer|
|Spouse(s)||Dorothy McFadden (1936-1946; divorced); 1 child
Sheila Ryan (1952–1975; her death), 1 child
Maxwell Emmett “Pat” Buttram (June 19, 1915 – January 8, 1994) was an American actor, known for playing the sidekick of Gene Autry and for playing the character of Mr. Haney in the television series Green Acres. He had a distinctive voice which, in his own words, “never quite made it through puberty”.
Buttram was born in Addison in Winston County, Alabama, to Wilson McDaniel Buttram, a Methodist minister, and his wife Mary Emmett Maxwell. He had an older brother, Augustus McDaniel Buttram, and five other elder siblings. When “Pat” Buttram was a year old, his father was transferred to Nauvoo, Alabama. Buttram graduated from Mortimer Jordan High School, which was then located in Morris, Alabama, then entered Birmingham–Southern College to study for theMethodist ministry.
Film and television career
Buttram went to Hollywood in the 1940s and became a “sidekick” to Roy Rogers. However, since Rogers already had two regulars, Buttram was soon dropped. He was then picked by Gene Autry, recently returned from his World War IIservice in the Army Air Force, to work with him. Buttram would co-star with Gene Autry in more than 40 films, and in over 100 episodes of Autry’s television show.
Buttram’s first Autry film was Strawberry Roan in 1948. In the late 1940s, Buttram joined Autry on his radio show, Melody Ranch and then on television with The Gene Autry Show. During the first television season, Buttram went by “Pat” or “Patrick”, with a variety of last names. From the second season forward, he used his own name.
Buttram guest starred on three episodes of Walter Brennan‘s ABC sitcom, The Real McCoys, including the role of Cousin Carl in the episode “Back to West Virginny” (July 27, 1961). In the story line, Amos, Luke, and Kate McCoy return to Smokey Corners, West Virginia, for the 100th birthday gathering of “Grandma McCoy”, played by Jane Darwell. Henry Jones guest starred in this segment as Jed McCoy.
Buttram is remembered for his role as Mr. Haney (Eustace Haney) in the 1965–1971 CBS television comedy Green Acres. He did voice work for several Disneyanimated features, playing Napoleon (hound dog) in The Aristocats, the Sheriff of Nottingham (a wolf) in Robin Hood, Luke (swamp inhabitant) in The Rescuers, Chief (hunting dog) in The Fox and the Hound, and one of the Toon bullets in Who Framed Roger Rabbit. He had a recurring role as the voice of Cactus Jake onGarfield and Friends. One of his last roles was a cameo in Back to the Future Part III. His final voice-over was A Goofy Movie, released a year after his death.
Buttram made the oft-quoted observation about the 1971 “rural purge“, in which CBS cancelled many programs with a rural-related theme or setting: “CBS canceled everything with a tree — including Lassie“, referring to the cancellations of Green Acres, The Beverly Hillbillies and Petticoat Junction. (Lassie actually ran until 1973.)
In 1936, Buttram married Dorothy McFadden. The couple adopted a daughter but divorced in 1946. In 1952, he married actress Sheila Ryan; the marriage ended with her death in 1975. They had a daughter named Kathrine (nicknamed Kerry) born in 1954. Buttram retired from acting in 1980 and made his home in his native Winston County, Alabama. However, he soon returned to California, where he made frequent personal appearances.
Buttram was a staunch Republican who helped Ronald W. Reagan spice up his speeches with political quips. In 1993, Buttram expressed surprise that with the inauguration of Bill Clinton and Al Gore as US President and Vice President, respectively, so many Hollywood actors were “taken with that whole country-boy image they tried to project.” According to his niece, Mary Buttram Young of Sheffield, Alabama, “Uncle Pat would always say, ‘I’m from Alabama – I can see right through that’.”
In popular culture
|1944||National Barn Dance||Himself||Buttram’s first film appearance|
|1948||The Strawberry Roan||Hank|
|1952||Wagon Team||Deputy Pat Buttram|
|1950||The Gene Autry Show||Pat||Television series|
|1961||Wild in the Country||Mr Longstreet, the mechanic||Uncredited|
|1961-1963||The Real McCoys||Cousin CarlPat Clemens||episodes: Back to West Virginny, Fly Away Home, Luke the Reporter, & The Partners|
|1963||Make Room for Daddy||Harvey Bullock||episode: Here’s the $50 Back|
|1964||The Tycoon||Brian||episode: The Shotgun Meyer|
|1965||Green Acres||Mr. Haney|
|1965||The Munsters||Pop Mallory||episode: All-Star Munster|
|1968-1973||The Dean Martin Comedy Hour||Himself||episodes:March 14, 1968, Celebrity Roast: Ed McMahon, Celebrity Roast: Bette Davis|
|1970||The Aristocats||Napoleon||Voice only
|1970||The Merv Griffin Show||Himself||episode: June 25, 1970|
|1971||The Gatling Gun||Tin pot|
|1971||The Jimmy Stewart Show||Oscar Pettywhistle||episode: Luther’s Last Love|
|1972||Alias Smith and Jones||First Sheriff||episode: Bad Night in Big Butte|
|1972||The Mouse Factory||Himself||episode: Bullfighting to Bullfrogs|
|1973||Adam- 12||Drunk Man||episode: Keeping Tabs|
|1973||Robin Hood||Sheriff of Nottingham||Voice only
|1974||Emergency!||Hermit||episode: Floor Brigade|
|1977||The Rescuers||Luke (swamp inhabitant)||Voice only|
|1979||The Sacketts||Tuthill the Bank Teller||TV mini series|
|1979||Angel’s Revenge||Used Car Salesman|
|1981||The Fox and the Hound||Chief (hunting dog)||Voice only
|1982||Simon and Simon||Jonathan Evans||episode: Rough Rider Rides Again|
|1984||Family Feud||Himself||episode: Country & Western Singers vs. TV & Film Cowboys|
|1986||Knight Rider||Buck||episode: Fright Knight|
|1988||The Good, the Bad, and Huckleberry Hound||Red Eye the bartender||Hanna-Barbera Superstars 10 TV movie|
|Who Framed Roger Rabbit||A toon bullet||Voice only
Live action/Animated film
|Garfield and Friends||Cactus Jake (10 epis.)Cactus Josh (1 epis.) Cactus Jimmy (1 epis.) Cactus Joe (1 epis.)||Voice only
Animated series \ 10 episodes
|1990||Back to the Future: Part III||Saloon Old Timer #3||Cameo|
|1990-1991||Who’s the Boss||Chappy||3 episodes|
|1991||Tiny Toon Adventures||Bicycle Bob||episode: Son of the Wacko World of Sports|
|1995||A Goofy Movie||Possum Park Emcee||Voice only
Dedicated to him
- “Terry Pace, “Pat Buttram: Homespun humorist, character actor, cowboy sidekick””. The Los Angeles Times, March 1, 2001. Retrieved January 15, 2013.
- Wilson, Claire M. “Pat Buttram” on the Encyclopedia of Alabama website
- “KFLW (radio listing)”. Herald and News. January 11, 1959. p. 51. Retrieved April 27, 2015 – via Newspapers.com.
- “”Back to West Virginny”, The Real McCoys, July 27, 1961″. Internet Movie Data Base. Retrieved January 11, 2013.
- Quotation taken from amazon.com preview of book, accessed March 23, 2009. Harkins, Anthony (2005). Hillbilly: A Cultural History of an American Icon. Oxford University Press US. p. 203. ISBN 0-19-518950-7.
- “Hee HAw: Writers” on TV.co,
- Pat Buttram at the Internet Movie Database
|This article needs additional citations for verification. (July 2010)|
- Grabman, Sandra. Pat Buttram, the Rocking Chair Humorist. Boalsburg: BearManor Media, 2006. ISBN 1-59393-067-4.