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Jay Silverheels

Biography

Mohawk First Countries athlete turned professional who played the function of Tonto in TV’s The Lone Ranger. He performed lacrosse beneath the name, Harry Smith. He has already established several film assignments including a component in Essential Largo with Humphrey Bogart and Broken Arrow with Adam Stewart. He previously a kid, Jay Silverheels, Jr. who became an professional. He is at Captain in the Castille with Tyrone Power.

Quick Facts


Full Name Jay Silverheels
Date Of Birth May 26, 1912
Died March 5, 1980, Calabasas, California, United States
Place Of Birth Brantford, Canada
Profession TV Actor
Nationality Canadian
Spouse Mary Diroma, Bobbie Smith
Children Jay Silverheels Jr.
Parents A.G.E. Smith
Movies The Lone Ranger and the Lost City of Gold, Broken Arrow, Walk the Proud Land, The Cowboy and the Indians, War Arrow, The Man Who Loved Cat Dancing, The Battle at Apache Pass, Santee, The Black Dakotas, One Little Indian, The Pathfinder, Four Guns to the Border, Trail of the Yukon, The Girl from Monterrey, Saskatchewan, The Vanishing American, Smith!, Key Largo, Return to Warbow, Alias Jesse James, Last of the Comanches, The Nebraskan, Indian Paint, Red Mountain, Brave Warrior, Masterson of Kansas, Yankee Buccaneer, Jack McCall, Desperado, The Feathered Serpent, Lone Ranger: Tale of Gold, Enter the Lone Ranger, Laramie, The Lone Ranger, Tale of Gold, Champions of Justice, One Mask Too Many, Legend of the Lone Ranger, More Than Magic, Trackers, Not Above Suspicion, Count the Clues, Justice of the West, The Truth, The Search, Masquerade, The Lawless, Vengeance Vow
TV Shows The Lone Ranger
Star Sign Gemini

  • Facts
  • Filmography
  • Awards
  • Salaries
  • Quotes
  • Trademarks
  • Pictures

#Fact
1While filming The Lone Ranger (1949) in 1955, he suffered a heart attack. He didn't appear on the show for eight weeks while he recuperated. Stuntman Chuck Courtney, as the Lone Ranger's nephew Dan Reid, replaced him until he was well enough to return;.
2Reportedly beat out 35 other actors to win the Tonto role in the initial radio version of "The Lone Ranger", which he had been invited to audition for based on his appearance in Key Largo (1948).
3Was said to have "despised" his show-business portrayal of an Indian.
4Adopted the nickname 'Silverheels" during a very brief boxing career, which saw him compete as a middleweight in a Golden Gloves bout in New York City's Madison Square Garden.
5Resided in Canoga Park, CA, and used to take walks around his neighborhood. Daughter attended and graduated from Canoga Park High School.
6Of the nearly 200 TV and film appearances Silverheels made with Clayton Moore, the actors co-starred in just 4 features where they did NOT play Tonto and The Lone Ranger: Perils of Nyoka (1942), The Cowboy and the Indians (1949), Cyclone Fury (1951) and The Black Dakotas (1954).
7Was a full-blooded Mohawk Indian, one of 11 children of A.G.E. Smith, who had served as a decorated officer in the Canadian forces in WWI.
8Father of Jay Silverheels Jr.
9Was an avid horse-racer when not acting. When asked if he ever thought about running Silver or Scout (who portrayed the steeds of the Lone Ranger and Tonto, respectively) in a race, Silverheels laughed: "Heck, *I* can beat Scout."
10Inducted into the Hall of Great Western Performers of the National Cowboy and Western Heritage Museum in 1993.
11U.S. government records give Silverheels' birthdate as 26 June 1912, though virtually all cinema reference works disagree, giving instead the 1919 date listed here.
12On The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson (1962), Silverheels told Johnny Carson that he had married his Italian wife to "get back at Christopher Columbus". They called their children "Indalions".


Actor

Actor

TitleYearStatusCharacter
The Lone Ranger1949-1957TV SeriesTonto
Walk the Proud Land1956Geronimo
The Lone Ranger1956Tonto
The Vanishing American1955Beeteia
The Lone Ranger Rides Again1955TV MovieTonto
Masterson of Kansas1954Yellow Hawk
Four Guns to the Border1954Yaqui
The Black Dakotas1954Black Buffalo
Drums Across the River1954Taos
Saskatchewan1954Cajou
War Arrow1953Satanta
The Nebraskan1953Spotted Bear
Jack McCall, Desperado1953Red Cloud
Last of the Comanches1953Indian (uncredited)
The Legend of the Lone Ranger1952Tonto
The Pathfinder1952Chingachgook
Yankee Buccaneer1952Lead Warrior
The Story of Will Rogers1952Joe Arrow (uncredited)
Brave Warrior1952Tecumseh
The Half-Breed1952Apache (uncredited)
The Battle at Apache Pass1952Geronimo
The Wild Blue Yonder1951Benders
Red Mountain1951Little Crow
Broken Arrow1950Geronimo (uncredited)
The Cowboy and the Indians1949Lakoma
Sand1949Indian (uncredited)
Trail of the Yukon1949Poleon
Lust for Gold1949Deputy Walter (uncredited)
Laramie1949Running Wolf (uncredited)
Song of India1949Villager (uncredited)
The Feathered Serpent1948Diego (uncredited)
Family Honeymoon1948Elevator Boy (uncredited)
Yellow Sky1948Indian (uncredited)
Singin' Spurs1948Abel
Key Largo1948Tom Osceola (uncredited)
Fury at Furnace Creek1948Little Dog (uncredited)
The Treasure of the Sierra Madre1948Indian Guide at Pier (uncredited)
Captain from Castile1947Coatl (uncredited)
The Prairie1947Running Deer
The Last Round-up1947Sam Luther (uncredited)
Unconquered1947Indian (uncredited)
Northwest Outpost1947Indian Scout (uncredited)
Gas House Kids Go West1947Kingsley's Henchman (uncredited)
Singin' in the Corn1946Indian Brave
Romance of the West1946Young Bear (uncredited)
Song of the Sarong1945Spearman (uncredited)
Tahiti Nights1944Lua (uncredited)
I Am an American1944ShortIndian (uncredited)
Lost in a Harem1944Guard at Execution (uncredited)
Haunted Harbor1944Native [Chs. 11-12] (uncredited)
Call of the Jungle1944Native (uncredited)
The Tiger Woman1944Native at Shack Shoot-Out [Ch. 7] (uncredited)
Passage to Marseille1944Sailor Crewman on Boat Deck (uncredited)
Raiders of the Border1944Indian at Trading Post (uncredited)
The Phantom1943Astari Warrior (uncredited)
Northern Pursuit1943Indian (uncredited)
The Girl from Monterrey1943Fighter Tito Flores (as Harry Smith)
Daredevils of the West1943Kiaga [Ch. 8-9] (uncredited)
Good Morning, Judge1943Indian (uncredited)
Perils of Nyoka1942Tuareg (uncredited)
Valley of the Sun1942Indian (uncredited)
This Woman Is Mine1941Indian Marauder (uncredited)
Jungle Girl1941Lion Man Guard [Chs. 2-3, 15] (uncredited)
Western Union1941Indian (uncredited)
Hudson's Bay1941Indian (uncredited)
Too Many Girls1940Indian (uncredited)
Kit Carson1940Indian (uncredited)
The Sea Hawk1940Native Lookout (uncredited)
Make a Wish1937Undetermined Role (uncredited)
Dusty's Trail1974TV SeriesIndian Chief
A Different Drum1974ShortJim Swift Hands
Cannon1973TV SeriesJimmy One Eye
Santee1973John Crow
The Man Who Loved Cat Dancing1973The Chief
One Little Indian1973Jimmy Wolf
Love, American Style1972TV Series segment "Love and the Test of Manhood"
- Love and the Bachelor Party/Love and the Latin Lover/Love and the Old-Fashioned Father/Love and the Test of Manhood 1972 ... segment "Love and the Test of Manhood"
In Pursuit of Treasure1972
Cade's County1971TV SeriesChief Wild Horse
The Brady Bunch1971TV SeriesChief Eagle Cloud
Cat Ballou1971/IITV MovieIndian Chief
The Psychiatrist1971TV SeriesMedicine Man
The Virginian1968-1971TV SeriesSpotted Hand / Den'Gwatzi
The Phynx1970Tonto
True Grit1969Condemned Man at Hanging (uncredited)
Smith!1969McDonald Lasheway
Gentle Ben1967TV SeriesWillie Sam Gopher
Pistols 'n' Petticoats1966-1967TV SeriesGreat Bear
The Rounders1966TV SeriesJohn Tallgrass
Daniel Boone1964-1965TV SeriesSashona / Latawa / Chenrogan
Indian Paint1965Chief Hevatanu
Branded1965TV SeriesWild Horse
Laramie1962TV SeriesToma
Rawhide1961TV SeriesPawnee Joe
Frontier Circus1961TV SeriesChief Red Cloud
Gunslinger1961TV SeriesHopi Indian
Wagon Train1961TV SeriesThe Serpent
Walt Disney's Wonderful World of Color1960TV SeriesNatchez
Rescue 81960TV SeriesCharlie
Wanted: Dead or Alive1959TV SeriesCharley Red Cloud
Alias Jesse James1959Tonto (uncredited)
The Lone Ranger and the Lost City of Gold1958Tonto
Return to Warbow1958Indian Joe

Self

Self

TitleYearStatusCharacter
The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson1969TV SeriesHimself
Wide Wide World1958TV Series documentaryHimself

Archive Footage

Archive Footage

TitleYearStatusCharacter
Pioneers of Television2014TV Mini-Series documentaryTonto - the Lone Ranger
Kemosabe Version 1.02007ShortTonto
The Canadians2000TV SeriesTonto
The Stan Freberg Commercials1999VideoTonto (segment "Show Us Your Pizza Roll Pack")
Television: The First Fifty Years1999Video documentaryTonto
The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson1992TV SeriesHimself
The Visionary1990VideoMedicine Man
Action Heroes of Movies & T.V.: A Campy Compilation1989Video documentaryTonto
Walt Disney's Wonderful World of Color1976TV SeriesJimmy Wolf
The Far Out West1967Great Bear
Cyclone Fury1951Indian (uncredited)

Won awards

Won awards

YearAwardCeremonyNominationMovieAward shared with
1990In Memoriam AwardGolden Boot Awards
1979Star on the Walk of FameWalk of FameTelevisionAt 6536 Hollywood Blvd.


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#Quote
1[re his lacrosse days] I was so scared, I was weak. I'd walk out on the floor shaking, thinking I can't do it, I can't, I can't. Then the whistle would blow, and I'd play in a fury. Happened every time.
2[re his signature character] He's stupid. The Lone Ranger treats him like some kind of servant, and this seems to suit Tonto fine.


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