Gilman Rankin: American actor (1911 - 1993)
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Gilman Rankin
American actor

Gilman Rankin

Gilman Rankin
The basics

Quick Facts

Intro American actor
Was Actor Television actor
From United States of America
Field Film, TV, Stage & Radio
Gender male
Birth 17 April 1911, Boston
Death 31 October 1993, Huntington Beach (aged 82 years)
Star sign Aries
The details


Gilman Warren Rankin (April 17, 1911 – October 31, 1993) was a Boston-born actor who appeared primarily in television westerns between 1956 and 1975.

Rankin was born on April 17, 1911, in Boston, Massachusetts.

Between 1957 and 1959, he had a supporting role as Deputy Charlie Riggs in seven episodes of the series Tombstone Territory. Rankin further guest starred nine times between 1960 and 1975 in various roles on CBS's Gunsmoke with James Arness.
His first western role was as the “Reverend Simon Peter Wheedle” in the 1956 film Ghost Town, which also starred character actor John Doucette. Other western roles followed: as “Jed” in the 1956 episode "Patrol" of NBC's Frontier, as “Tawanga” in the 1957 episode "The Doctor" of ABC's Broken Arrow, as “Judge Parnell” in the 1957 film Black Patch, and as “Cy Conway” in the 1957 episode "Death on the Rock" of Rod Cameron's syndicated series, State Trooper.

Rankin guest starred in numerous drama programs, including his first television appearance as “Vince” in the 1955 episode "Prison Break" of Broderick Crawford's syndicated crime drama Highway Patrol. He appeared twice on CBS's The Millionaire fantasy drama in 1955 and 1957 and as an announcer in the 1957 episode "Blizzard" of NBC's The Loretta Young Show. He also appeared on NBC's Jane Wyman Presents, CBS's Lassie, NBC's Dragnet, CBS's Perry Mason, ABC's The Untouchables, and the syndicated Border Patrol in the 1959 episode "The Logmen".

Other western roles included that of a foreman in the episode "Tom Horn" of Dale Robertson's then NBC series Tales of Wells Fargo and twice on NBC's Laramie in 1959 episodes "Stage Stop" and "The General Must Die", in which he appears briefly as Union Army General William Tecumseh Sherman.

Rankin also appeared on Richard Boone's CBS western Have Gun - Will Travel, and the short-lived NBC Overland Trail series in the episode "Daughter of the Sioux". He appeared as Tully in the 1960 episode "Disaster at Gold Hill" of ABC's The Alaskans. He portrayed the character “Thornlee” in the 1960 episode "Incident at Tupelo" of ABC's The Man From Blackhawk. In 1960-1961, he appeared on CBS's The Texan, starring Rory Calhoun, and NBC's Riverboat, with Darren McGavin.

Rankin's later appearances were on NBC's Grindl and Empire (1963), ABC's The Long, Hot Summer (1965), the film Midnight Cowboy (1969), Raymond Burr's NBC series, Ironside (1971), and as Henry Cottle in the 1974 episode "The Graduation" of CBS's The Waltons.
Rankin's final appearance was as a bus driver in the 1976 film Assault on Precinct 13.


Rankin died on October 31, 1993, aged 82, in Huntington Beach, Orange County, California.

Partial Filmography

  • Illegal (1955) - Juror (uncredited)
  • Ghost Town (1956) - Rev. Wheedle
  • Dance with Me, Henry (1956) - McKay (uncredited)
  • Accused of Murder (1956) - Fingerprint Cop (uncredited)
  • Black Patch (1957) - Judge Parnell
  • The Power of the Resurrection (1958) - Joseph of Arimathea
  • Face of a Fugitive (1959) - Deputy at Rocks (uncredited)
  • Midnight Cowboy (1969) - Woodsy Niles - Texas
  • Assault on Precinct 13 (1976) - Bus Driver (final film role)
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