Tag Archives: Louisiana

Previously unpublished snapshots of actor Jeffrey Hunter and first wife Barbara Rush

1949 Hank McKinnies. Snapshot. Private Collection.

1949 Hank McKinnies/Jeffrey Rush. Snapshot. Private Collection.

(If you came from the WordPress reader the couple picture isn’t the one I’m talking about.)

This is the perfect example of expecting one thing but finding something special instead. The picture stood on its own. There was no other description other than this is a picture of a handsome man from the 50’s. And here I was thinking “he looks like your typical clean-cut All-American guy of that decade, and I like it.” Little did I know he was a man who helped define the type of that decade.

Upon receiving it I saw writings on the back that hadn’t been mentioned at all by the seller. Great! I love surprises and here’s a name! Maybe I can find something about him.

Hank snapshot back.

This is Hank McKinnies. Fall 1949. Please return. Walter took the picture.

Turns out this is an original, early snapshot used as a headshot of actor Jeffrey Hunter, taken a few months before he was discovered in 1950.

Hank was born on November 26, 1926 Henry Herman ‘Hank’ McKinnies in New Orleans, Louisiana and lived his first years in Metairie (he’s my neighborhood’s boy!). His family moved to Wisconsin and Illinois, then Hank joined the navy but was medically discharged after a year. He finally settled in California to get his Masters in radio at UCLA. At the time this snapshot was taken he was 22, a student and an unknown apart from a few school plays and radio shows.

I believe his scout sent this picture to casting agencies or directors. Hence the ‘please return’ note. The snapshot was later glued on to an album I think was his or his first wife’s Barbara.

Jeffrey Hunter or Hank – I’ll call him Hank-, had a promising acting career, yet it waned in the end and only lasted 19 years.

He worked with the biggest names in the industry such as director Alfred Hitchcock in The Alfred Hitchcock Hour, and actor John Wayne as his sidekick in the classic The Searchers. He also played the role of Jesus Christ in the big budget King of Kings.

Last but not least, he starred in the first Star Trek television pilot “The Cage” as Captain Christopher Pike of the USS Enterprise (the role was reprised recently in the new Star Trek Into Darkness.) His likeness still graces the covers of Star Trek novels.

In 1969, while filming ¡Viva America! in Spain, a rigged car he was in exploded inward instead of outward, giving him a concussion. On the plane back to California Hank suffered a stroke but recovered. Again weeks later he had another, fell and fractured his skull. He died of a brain hemorrhage out of surgery the next day at the too young age of 42.

I’ve searched a few online galleries dedicated to this actor and I believe the picture I found was never publicly published.

Here are a few pictures of Jeffrey Hunter:

Because I was able to ID the picture I went back to the same California based seller, recognised and acquired his first wife’s picture who was a stunner as well. It is also a 3″x 3″ snapshot. There were also a lot of cat pictures in the same format I strongly suspect are from the same album. Cat lovers, yes! :)

Barbara Rush 1950 candid. Snapshot. Private Collection.

Barbara Rush 1950 candid. Snapshot. Private Collection.

The back is blank but was glued to the album the same way as the first picture.

Barbara Rush has had a very long and successful a career. She recently made a few recent appearances such as in 7th Heaven as Grandma Ruth Camden. She and Hank were married from 1950 to 1955 and had a son together, Chris. Hank went on to marry twice more and had three more kids; Steele he took on as his own and two boys, Todd and Scott.


Visit Jeffreyhunter.net for much more info on this very successful actor who to this day has many fans still.

Jeffrey Hunter wiki.

Barbara Rush wiki.


1968 Samuel Parker in Vietnam

On the right

Sam on the right with his unit, Vietnamese children and women.

I said it before, I’ll make a few timeline exceptions for family and when the pictures are worth sharing. Yet these are still vintage and Sam was brave. Samuel Parker isn’t blood related but he was a medic in my husband’s regiment, and as such he is my husband’s brother.

I told him I collect vintage pictures of gents and have this blog I then showed him. He smiled and said “I wasn’t too bad once upon a time. I have pictures if you want.” Of course I didn’t refuse the offer. He gave me copies of pictures from the Vietnam war in 1968 and these are great. Sam was 17 when he enlisted so he was 18 on the pictures.

I warned him: “Heh, you know I’m going to scan these and put them on my blog!” I was only half joking but he replied, “Put me on it then!” to which my husband had a chuckle, turned to me and said “Oh, here we go!”

I told Sam he’s off my timeline by eight years but “yes I will! Just know you’ll get into wordpress and tumblr jungle this time!” He got giddy!

Sam has a passion for horses. After the war he dedicated the next decades of his life to them.

New Orleans ‘brother Jo, sister Emilie and Louis’

RPPC. Private Collection.

RPPC. Private Collection.

A trio from my hometown! Louis is wearing a King Cake baby on the lapel of his coat and holding a music sheet, Emilie is cross-dressed in boy attire with her jaunty cap on. Jo is the cornetist…What an interesting trio, all IDed on the back of this RPPC.

Emilie has this soulful look in her eyes, and each one of them is wearing a different hat. Another photo which makes me smile. Can you hear the music?

RPPC: AZO 4 up triangles. Photo taken between 1907-1914.

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