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Cliff Arquette (1905 - 1974)

A photo of Cliff Arquette
Cliff Arquette
1905 - 1974
Born
December 27, 1905
Death
September 23, 1974
Last Known Residence
Beverly Hills, Los Angeles County, California 90212
Summary
Cliff Arquette was born on December 27, 1905. He died on September 23, 1974 at 68 years of age. We know that Cliff Arquette had been residing in Beverly Hills, Los Angeles County, California 90212.
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Updated: March 1, 2021
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COMMENTS 1. Arquette was born on December 27, 1905, in Toledo, Ohio, as the son of Winifred Ethel and Charles Augustus Arquette, a vaudevillian. The eventual patriarch of the Arquette show business family, which became famous because of him, Arquette was the father of actor Lewis Arquette and the grandfather of actors Patricia, Rosanna, Alexis, Richmond, and David Arquette. 2. In his early career, Cliff was a nightclub pianist, later joining the Henry Halstead orchestra in 1923. 3. Arquette had been a busy, yet not nationally known, performer in radio, theatre, and motion pictures until 1956, when he retired from show business. 4. At one time, he was credited with performing in 13 different daily radio shows at different stations in the Chicago market, getting from one studio to the other by way of motorboats along the Chicago River through its downtown. 5. One such radio series he performed on was The Adventures of Wild Bill Hickok. Arquette and Dave Willock had their own radio show, Dave and Charley, in the early 1950s as well as a television show by the same name that was on the air for three months. 6. It was when Arquette performed on the shows that he created, and inaugurated his performances as, his eventual trademark character of Charley Weaver. 7. The story that Arquette later told about his big break was that one night, in the late 1950s. he was watching The Tonight Show. 8. Host Jack Paar happened to ask the rhetorical question, “Whatever became of Cliff Arquette?” 9. That startled Arquette so much that “I almost dropped my Scotch!” 10. Arquette depicted the character of “Charley Weaver, the wild old man from Mount Idy.” 11. This characterization proved so popular that Arquette almost never again appeared in public as himself, but nearly always as Charley Weaver, complete with his squashed hat, little round glasses, rumpled shirt, broad tie, baggy pants, and suspenders. 12. “Sometimes his jokes are old, and I live in the constant fear that the audience will beat him to the punch line, but they never have. 13. And I suspect that if they ever do, he will rewrite the ending on the spot. 14. I would not like to say that all his jokes are old, although some have been found carved in stone. 15. What I want to say is that in a free-for-all ad lib session, Charley Weaver has and will beat the fastest gun alive.” 16. Arquette also appeared as Charley Weaver on the short-lived The Roy Rogers and Dale Evans Show on ABC from September 29 to December 29, 1962. 17. In 1960, Arquette was honored with a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame for his contribution to radio. 18. A strange-name greeting from “Mamma,” with Weaver explaining that it related to what “Mamma always wanted me to be.”
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Cliff Arquette
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Beverly Hills, Los Angeles County, California 90212
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Clifford Charles Arquette (December 27, 1905 – September 23, 1974) was an American actor and comedian, famous for his persona, played on numerous television shows, of Charley Weaver. Early life and career Arquette was born on December 27, 1905, in Toledo, Ohio, as the son of Winifred Ethel (née Clark) and Charles Augustus Arquette, a vaudevillian. He was of part French-Canadian descent, and his family's surname was originally "Arcouet". The eventual patriarch of the Arquette show business family, Arquette was the father of actor Lewis Arquette and the grandfather of actors Rosanna, Richmond, Patricia, Alexis, and David Arquette. In his early career, Arquette was a nightclub pianist, later joining the Henry Halstead orchestra in 1923. In the late 1930s, Arquette invented the modern rubber theatrical prosthetic mask, flexible enough to allow changing facial expressions, and porous enough to allow air to reach the actor's skin. Arquette had been a busy, yet not nationally known, performer in radio, theatre, and motion pictures until 1956, when he retired from show business. At one time, he was credited with performing in 13 different daily radio shows at different stations in the Chicago market, getting from one studio to the other by way of motorboats along the Chicago River through its downtown. One such radio series he performed on was The Adventures of Wild Bill Hickok. Arquette and Dave Willock had their own radio show, Dave and Charley, in the early 1950s, as well as a television show by the same name that was on the air for three months. It was when Arquette performed on the shows that he created and inaugurated his performances as his eventual trademark character of Charley Weaver. During an appearance as a witness on NBC-TV's "Dragnet" ("The Big Hands," 21 May 1953), Arquette momentarily breaks up the stoic demeanor of actor Jack Webb, playing Detective Sergeant Joe Friday. It is believed to be the only few frames of humorous, off-the-cuff laughter Webb allowed in the entire eight years of the first (1951–59) "Dragnet" television run. Charley Weaver This section needs additional citations for verification. Please help improve this article by adding citations to reliable sources. Unsourced material may be challenged and removed. In 1959, Arquette accepted Jack Paar's invitation to appear on Paar's NBC Tonight Show. Arquette had previously created the character of "Charley Weaver, the wild old man from Mount Idy". He would bring along, and read, a letter from his "Mamma" back home. This characterization proved so popular that Arquette almost never again appeared in public as himself, but nearly always as Charley Weaver, complete with his squashed hat, little round glasses, rumpled shirt, broad tie, baggy pants, and suspenders. Arquette could often convulse Paar and the audience into helpless laughter by way of his timing and use of double entendres in describing the misadventures of his fictional family and townspeople. As Paar noted, in his foreword to Arquette's first Charley Weaver book: Sometimes his jokes are old, and I live in the constant fear that the audience will beat him to the punch line, but they never have. And I suspect that if they ever do, he will rewrite the ending on the spot. I would not like to say that all his jokes are old, although some have been found carved in stone. What I want to say is that in a free-for-all ad lib session, Charley Weaver has and will beat the fastest gun alive. Arquette, as Charley Weaver, hosted Charley Weaver's Hobby Lobby on ABC from September 30, 1959 to March 23, 1960. He also appeared as Charley Weaver on The Roy Rogers and Dale Evans Show (September 29 to December 29, 1962). In 1960, Arquette was honored with a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame for his contribution to radio. Later career and legacy Arquette as Charley Weaver on Hollywood Squares in 1974. In his Charley Weaver persona, Arquette became a regular on the original version of the classic game show The Hollywood Squares, placed in an oft-visited "square," at lower left, to give him a good deal of comic opportunities. That gig did not lend itself well to the "Letters from Mamma" theme, so he shifted his standard joke setting to his presumed residency in a nursing home, which he simply referred to as "out at The Home". One notable exception to his perennial portrayal of Charley Weaver was his characterization of Mrs. Butterworth of syrup fame. He dressed as the brand's "old lady" icon, affected an obviously falsetto voice ("Hello! Mrs. Butterworth here!") and continued to sport his moustache.[citation needed] A Civil War buff, in the 1950s he opened the Charley Weaver Museum of the Civil War in Gettysburg, Pennsylvania. The museum was housed in a building that had served as headquarters for General O.O. Howard during the Battle of Gettysburg, and remained in operation for about ten years. The site later became the Soldiers National Museum, and closed early November 2014. Arquette spent some time in the hospital in the early 1970s, due to heart disease. He suffered a stroke in 1973 that kept him off Hollywood Squares for some time.[citation needed] Among those who occupied his square during his absence was George Gobel, whose appearances on the show became more frequent after Arquette's death, later replacing Arquette in the lower left square. Partially paralyzed by the stroke and using a wheelchair, Arquette eventually returned to Squares looking gaunt, but with mind and comedic spirit still intact. Death Arquette died in Burbank, California following a stroke on September 23, 1974. He was 68 years old.

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Cliff Arquette Biography Showing all 11 items Jump to: Overview (3) | Mini Bio (1) | Spouse (3) | Trivia (4) Overview (3) Born December 28, 1905 in Toledo, Ohio, USA Died September 23, 1974 in Burbank, California, USA Birth Name Clifford Charles Arquette Mini Bio (1) Comedian, actor, pianist, composer and songwriter. He was a night club pianist, later joining the Henry Halstead orchestra in 1923. He created the character of 'Charlie Weaver' for The Jack Paar Show, and portrayed 'Mrs. Butterworth' in television commercials. He joined ASCAP in 1959, and his chief musical collaborator was Charles "Bud" Dant. His popular-song compositions include: "It's Xmas in Mount Idy" "Just Got a Letter from Mama"; "On the Boardwalk at Snider's Swamp"; "Fight for Sub-Normal U"; "Who'll Sign the Pardon for Wallace Swine?"; and "Don't Give the Chair to Buster". - IMDb Mini Biography By: Hup234! Spouse (3) Darleen Sammons (18 March 1946 - 9 July 1951) ( divorced) Julie Harrison (3 April 1934 - 4 September 1942) ( divorced) Mildred Nesbitt Speight (27 May 1933 - 29 September 1938) ( divorced) ( 1 child) Trivia (4) Son of Charles (1879-1927) and Winnie (née Clark) Arquette (1880-1938). Both were born and raised in the state of Ohio. Comic, father of Lewis Arquette and father-in-law of Brenda Denaut. Grandfather of Rosanna Arquette, Patricia Arquette David Arquette, Richmond Arquette and Alexis Arquette. Great-grandfather of Zoë Bleu Sidel (Rosanna's daughter), Coco Arquette and Charlie West & Augustus Alexis Arquette (David's children), Enzo Rossi and Harlow Jane-Arquette (Patricia's children). Opened a Civil War museum in Gettysburg, Pennsylvania in 1959. For eight years (from its inception in 1966) the grizzly, stocky storyteller occupied the lower left square of The Hollywood Squares (Daytime) (1965) game show as his 'Charley Weaver' character. A major stroke took him off the show for a time, but he eventually returned, much more gaunt looking, and remained until his death in 1974 of a heart attack. Comedian George Gobel replaced him. He was awarded a Star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame for Radio at 6720 Hollywood Boulevard in Hollywood, California.
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In 1905, in the year that Cliff Arquette was born, the Niagara Falls conference was held in Fort Erie, Ontario. Led by W.E.B. Du Bois and William Monroe Trotter, a group of African-American men met in opposition to racial segregation and disenfranchisement. Booker T. Washington had been calling for policies of accommodation and conciliation and these two men, along with the others who attended the conference, felt that this was accomplishing nothing. The group was the precursor to the NAACP.

In 1936, he was 31 years old when on November 3rd, President Franklin Delano Roosevelt was reelected to a second term. He ran against Republican Governor Alf Landon (Kansas), defeating Landon in the popular vote by 60.8% to 36.5%. Vermont and Maine were the only two states in which Landon won. John Nance Garner IV became the Vice-President in this election.

In 1948, when he was 43 years old, on January 30th, Mahatma Gandhi was assassinated in New Delhi by a member of a Hindu nationalist party who thought that Gandhi was too accommodating to Muslims. The man, Nathuram Godse, shot Gandhi 3 times. He died immediately. The shooter was tried, convicted, and hung in November 1949.

In 1964, Cliff was 59 years old when on June 11th, activist Nelson Mandela was sentenced to life imprisonment in South Africa for conspiring to overthrow the state (because of his numerous anti-apartheid activities). He served 27 years in prison.

In 1974, in the year of Cliff Arquette's passing, on August 9th, Gerald R. Ford became the 38th President of the United States. He had been Vice President for 8 months when he became President due to the resignation of President Nixon.

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