OAB Hall of Fame
Will Rogers, philosopher, entertainer, writer, speaker, movie star and humanitarian...his daily “piece for the papers” was read by millions. He was the highest paid radio entertainer of his day, tops at the box office and in great demand as a speaker.
In the 1920s Will “discovered” radio. He felt intimidated by a microphone that did not react to his humor, did not give him a clue as to whether his remarks had struck a funny bone or had fallen flat. In 1930 Rogers began his own regular program, sponsored by E. R. Squibb & Sons. He performed on the air, most often before a studio audience, as the political and social wit of the nation. Between 1933 and 1935 he delivered fifty-three radio broadcasts for Gulf Oil, and made other air appearances in between, including as especially memorable broadcast for President Herbert Hoover’s Organization on Unemployment Relief in 1931.
Will Rogers was born in 1879 on the Rogers Ranch, north of Claremore, Oklahoma and died in 1935 in a plane crash with another Oklahoman, Wiley Post near Point Barrow, Alaska.