Keith Hunt - Wrangling on the Range - Page Fifty- one   Restitution of All Things

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Wrangling on the Range #51

The Puzzle of Trigger

                        WRANGLING ON THE RANGE #51

     I sit here looking at the 2010 Roy Rogers calendar I bought
from the Roy Rogers Museum while in Branson, USA. It is Roy
riding "Trigger" - with a question mark ?

     Roy Rogers was a master at promoting the "Trigger" image,
call it "Hollywoodism" or "showbizism" or "movie licence" or
"double talk" - it was the talent of building more than one horse
into the one horse "Trigger" image.
     Only the very ardent, "look behind the covers" and "under
the stone" fan, could look, and read, and listen, and get the
truth figured out, as to which horse Rogers was speaking about in
any sentence, for he could be speaking about the horse that
learned to do 100 tricks in one breath, and the next breath be
talking about the original Trigger he used in his first movie
"Under Western Stars." Rogers could slip back and forth as
effortlessly with the two Triggers as slipping in and out of his

     Trigger Jr. was never a part of the "Trigger" image per se,
as he came along much later in Rogers' life, and was never used
as the other two horses in his movies and TV series. As Roy said,
Trigger Jr. was not worth a nickel as a "cow pony." But the horse
could do a mighty fine dance routine.

     This 2010 calendar photo ... well it is a puzzle of sorts.
If you look at the four white stockings the horse has, it is
Trigger Jr. The face "blaze" could be the original Trigger. But
the original Trigger did not have the four white stockings this
horse has, unless someone painted them on. And why would someone
paint on a horse four white stockings? Now the mane falls down on
the horse's right side, and the mane on Trigger Jr. fell on the
left side, unless someone deliberately combed it over to the
right side. And why would someone comb it over to the right? Now
the photo could be "reversed" I guess, but why would someone want
to reverse the photo? Maybe to get the horse looking as much like
the original Trigger as possible? Maybe so, but why would someone
want to do that. Then again I have some photos of Roy and Trigger
that are reversed, for the distinctive shape of the blaze on the
original Trigger is very plain to see the photo has been
reversed. Why would someone want to do that?

     Ah, and so goes the question as to why Roy Rogers did, said,
wrote, what he did when trying to make more than one horse into
the image of one "Trigger."  

     He could have been very open and just said and wrote, about
Trigger One or Trigger Two, if you know which was which. Why
would someone not just do that? You go figure it all, then if you
are not Sherlock Holmes, you probably could not care less. Well
the life of Roy Rogers and Trigger sure was not dull, just in
this one aspect alone.

     If your looking at a photo of Roy and Trigger anytime, maybe
what I've related to you, will make you ask yourself "Now which
Trigger is this?"


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