Tumbleweeds (1925 film)
is a 1925 American Western film starring and produced by
William S. Hart. It depicts the Cherokee Strip land rush
of 1893. The 1939 Astor Pictures' re-release of Tumbleweeds
includes an 8-minute introduction by the then 75 year old Hart as
he talks about his career and the "glories of the old west."
Tumbleweeds was Hart's last movie.
In the Cherokee Strip of Oklahoma
during the 1880's and early 1890's, the government lands that were
leased to cattlemen were opened to settlement by homesteaders. To
allow a fair chance for everyone, the prospective homesteaders
were required to register and registrants were prohibited from
entering into the Strip before the appointed time.
Those who tried to get there beforehand were called "Sooners". Hence
the nickname of Oklahoma is the Sooner State. When a cannon shot
signaled the start of the land rush, a hundred thousand men and
women tried to stake their claims.
Set in Caldwell, Kansas on the
Kansas-Oklahoma border, the movie features cowboy Don Carver
(Hart) as a "tumbleweed" (i.e., a drifter) who decides to settle
down after falling in love with Molly Lassiter (Barbara Bedford).
Carver decides to get in on the Cherokee Strip land rush but when
he's arrested and parted from his new love, he's in danger of
missing the big race. Lucien Littlefield plays a strong supporting
role in the movie as Hart's comic sidekick and best friend.
Hart's last movie
Tumbleweeds was Hart's last
movie. In 1939, Astor Pictures re-released the film and provided
an eight-minute introduction that would be Hart's last appearance
on film. In this introduction, he states:
[My friends, I loved the art of making motion pictures. It is as the
breath of life to me ... the rush of the wind that cuts your face,
the pounding hooves of the pursuing posse, and then the clouds of
dust! Through the cloud of dust comes the faint voice of the
director, "Now, Bill, OK! Glad you made it! Great stuff, Bill,
great stuff! And, say, Bill! Give old Fritz a pat on the nose for
me, will ya?" The saddle is empty, the boys up ahead are calling,
they're waiting for you and me to help drive this last great
round-up into eternity."]
Hart retired to his ranch in Newhall, California and although
producers continued to offer him roles in sound films, he refused
to return to the screen.
- Release date(s) December 20, 1925
- Running time 78 minutes
King Baggot (as King Baggott)
William S. Hart (uncredited)
(in alphabetical order)
Hal G. Evarts - story
C. Gardner Sullivan - adaptation
William S. Hart Don Carver
Lucien Littlefield ... Kentucky Rose
Gordon Russell ... Noll Lassiter
Richard Neill ... Bill Freel
(as Richard R. Niell)
Jack Murphy ... Bart Lassiter
Gordon ... Joe Hinman
George F. Marion ... Old man (as George
Gertrude Claire ... Old woman
Lillian Leighton ...
Nino Cochise ... Indian (uncredited)
Collins ... Hicks (uncredited)
Ted Duncan ... Cavalry Major (uncredited)
Fred Gamble ... Hotel Proprietor (uncredited)
Al Hoxie ...
Apache Bill Russell ... (uncredited)
Savage ... Riley Boy (uncredited)
Charles Stevens ... Indian (uncredited)