Dean of the Cowboys
Click Photo for a larger version.
For years, the name "Bob Atcher" was only a ghost in my memory. I remembered growing up with Roy Rogers as my hero, but I could not remember details on who this other cowboy was and had only a vague memory of what he looked like, so in 1992 when I first found Riders in the Sky I asked Woody Paul if he knew Bob Atcher. He said he sure did...that Bob had been on there show and he knew that Ranger Doug kept in contact with him. I asked Doug about him, and eventually came up with an address where I could write, and I immediately did.
Now, -- asking someone "Who they are" when they are a star, is a rather delicate matter, but I needed to put the pieces together and find out where he fit into my past. The response I received follows, in part. It is a wonderful detailing of Bob Atcher's career as a singing cowboy in his own words. Bob later went on to become "Mayor Atcher" of Schaumburg, IL.
I can readily see how my name could ring bells for anyone in the Midwest. I spent the years from early 1930's to mid 1970's in Chicago radio and TV - In the early 1930's I went to Gary to broadcast on WIND, which then had studios in the Gary State Bank Bldg. (Now Gary Nat'l Bank Bldg.)
From there I broadcast on WJJD, WBBM and CBS until 1937 when I moved to Chicago. There I worked on the same stations until I joined the army and served in the Pacific Theater during WW II - When I returned I only worked at WBBM and CBS until Jan. 1948 when I went to WLS and the National Barn dance, where I was emcee and singing feature. I started TV also in 1948. Then I did 22 years of television on old WNBQ, (now WMAQ) WGN-TV, WENR (Now WLS-TV) and WBKB (Now WBBM -TV). In Radio I worked then on WLS, NBC, and WGN Radio and TV -- I did over 500 appearances for "Beatrice Food-Meadow Gold" products at Super Markets, some in Gary. - I lead the State Street Christmas Parade seven years in a row on my old horse "Golden Storm". On television he was known as "Meadow Gold". -- I did another over 500 programs at Chicago area schools for Beatrice Foods. The Chicago School Board called them "The Citizenship Program.
I did two shows a day on TV five days a week and two on Saturday play the "Meadow Gold Ranch" show on Sunday evening. I make hundreds of recordings for Columbia Recording (none of being pressed as of today).
I hope this will help untangle the knots in your memory.
I have searched for information on Bob Atcher on the internet, but mostly come up with details on his career in politics. I offer this letter from him as testimony to the important place that he had in the lives of children growing up in the Midwest in the 40's 50's and 60's. Children today do not have the advantage of having such wonderful heros.
Bob Atcher Links
Broadcasting in Chicago
1921-1989 Back to Bobbie's page
American Gramophone & Wireless Co.
Email me HERE
Back to RITS Cyberpals
Back to Bobbie's page