Smithsonian Collections

Gene Autry

Image for Gene Autry
Data Source
National Portrait Gallery
Exhibition Label
Born Tioga, Texas
Within a few years of his 1934 film debut, cowboy crooner Gene Autry was a box-office favorite whose popularity rivaled that of stars like Clark Gable and Mickey Rooney. Autry got his start on the radio in 1927 as "Oklahoma’s Yodeling Cowboy" and later gained an enthusiastic following as the "Nation’s Number One Singing Cowboy" on radio’s National Barn Dance program. Brought to Hollywood for a cameo role in 1934, Autry was given the lead in the weekly serial The Phantom Empire (1935) and went on to star in dozens of low-budget westerns for Republic Studios. He profited handsomely from the sale of Gene Autry–themed merchandise—from guitars to cap pistols—and also enjoyed a lucrative recording career, with hits that included "Tumbling Tumbleweeds" (1935) and "Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer" (1949). In the 1950s Autry made the move to television, forming a production company and starring in his own series.
Artist
Harry Warnecke, 1900 - 1984
Robert F. Cranston, 26 Jul 1897 - 1978
Sitter
Gene Orvon Autry, 29 Sep 1907 - 2 Oct 1998
Date
1942
Credit Line
National Portrait Gallery, Smithsonian Institution; gift of Elsie M. Warnecke
Medium
Color carbro print
Dimensions
Image: 41 x 34 cm (16 1/8 x 13 3/8")
Sheet: 41.6 x 34.7 cm (16 3/8 x 13 11/16")
Mat: 71.1 x 55.9 cm (28 x 22")
Type
Photograph
See more items in
National Portrait Gallery Collection
Object number
NPG.94.39
Topic
Costume\Jewelry
Interior
Costume\Headgear\Hat
Weapon\Gun
Gene Orvon Autry: Male
Gene Orvon Autry: Performing Arts
Gene Orvon Autry: Performing Arts\Performer\Musician\Songwriter
Gene Orvon Autry: Performing Arts\Performer\Actor\Movie
Gene Orvon Autry: Performing Arts\Performer\Entertainer\Radio
Gene Orvon Autry: Performing Arts\Performer\Actor\Television
Gene Orvon Autry: Performing Arts\Producer\Television
Portrait