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Collection Dates: 1946 – 2007
Scope and Content Note: Home movies, professional films, outtakes, audio formats, and videotapes made by "Doc" Tommy Scott during his long career as a musician and traveling medicine show man.
Biographical Note: Tommy Scott (1917-2013) began his entertainment career as a radio performer in 1933. He joined Doc Chamberlain’s Medicine Show in 1936 as Ramblin’ Tommy Scott, and developed several characters in the act including his ventriloquist dummy Luke McLuke. Mr. Scott took over the show in 1938, and was given the recipe for Herb-O-Lac and Snake Oil, restarting the production of Herb-O-Lac in 1942. He changed the name of the show to “Ramblin’ Tommy Scott’s Hollywood Hillbilly Jamboree" and toured extensively. He also joined the band Kentucky Partners with Charlie Monroe, further developing his stage characters. He married Frankie Thomas (1920-2004) in 1939 who, along with their daughter Sandra, performed in show. Tommy Scott travelled with and produced the “Tommy Scott Show” for radio and television and appeared with Luke McLuke on the Grand Ole Opry. He wrote several country and western songs including "Rosebuds and You" and "You Are the Rainbow of My Dreams." Gaines Blevins joined the show in 1949, his wife Lona handled many aspects of the business, and his son Scotty Lee performed with the act. Mr. Scott produced and starred in movie “Trail of the Hawk” in 1950, and made other short films, as well as creating “Tommy Scott’s Smokey Mountain Jamboree” for TV syndication in 1950s. Mr. Scott was an early proponent of the recreational vehicles he toured in, creating several large campers himself, then designed and partnered with a manufacturer, Stewart Coach Industries, and advertised the RVs in his shows. He continued to tour his Medicine Show and Georgia Peanut Band, while appearing on national TV talk shows, being featured in the PBS documentary “Still Ramblin’” in 2001. Mr. Scott wrote his memoir “Snake Oil, Superstars, and Me” in 2007.
Extent: 315 items
Objects in the collection