Nostalgia Ain’t What It Used To Be ► James A. Westerfield

San Fernando Mission Cemetery, Los Angeles, California

Dateline September 20, 1971 – Namesake James Westerfield died from a heart attack at the age of 58. Born in 1913, James A. Westerfield was one of those character actors that you’ve seen dozens of times, yet few people know his name. 

From “The Fourflushers,”
episode 72 of The Rifleman

Westerfield appeared in some of the greatest movies of all-time including The Magnificent Ambersons, On The Waterfront, The Shaggy Dog, The Absent-Minded Professor, Son of Flubber, Birdman of Alcatraz, The Sons of Katie Elder, Hang ‘Em High, and True Grit among many others. During The Golden Age of Television he also appeared in dozens of tee vee programs over the years, including The Rifleman, Perry Mason, Hazel, Kraft Theatre, Johnny Ringo, Alfred Hitchcock Presents, The Untouchables, Maverick, Wagon Train, Mike Hammer, Bat Masterson, The Andy Griffith Show, Gunsmoke, Lost in Space, among many others. James Westerfield worked right up to his death in 1971.

This trailer from “On The Waterfront” starts with James Westerfield, as Big Mac, blowing his whistle:

Let’s tip our hat to one of Hollywood’s great character actors, James A. Westerfield.


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Headly Westerfield
Calling himself “A liberally progressive, sarcastically cynical, iconoclastic polymath,” Headly Westerfield has been a professional writer all his adult life.