The Lives and Legend of Roy Rogers’ Palomino, 2d ed.


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About the Book

Roy Rogers’ golden palomino, Trigger, was the perhaps the most famous horse in film—more popular than the man himself among certain fans. In its expanded second edition, this detailed look at the animals and men who created the legend of “the smartest horse in the movies” examines the life story of the original Trigger—and his doubles, particularly Little Trigger, the extraordinary trick horse.
Movies in which Trigger appeared without Rogers are discussed. More than 200 photographs (90 new to this edition) and 30,000 words of additional material are included, covering unresolved aspects of Trigger’s story, controversies surrounding the sale of the Roy Roger’s Museum collection and the fate of his legacy.

About the Author(s)

Leo Pando, a Roy Rogers and Trigger fan since grade school in Santa Fe, has worked as a freelance illustrator/graphic designer in Los Angeles and New York and as an assistant manager for an Arabian horse breeding facility in Edmonton. Please view his webpage at He lives in central Maine.

Bibliographic Details

Leo Pando

Format: softcover (7 x 10)
Pages: 373
Bibliographic Info: 189 photos, notes, bibliography, index
Copyright Date: 2019
pISBN: 978-1-4766-7163-5
eISBN: 978-1-4766-3452-4
Imprint: McFarland

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments ix
Foreword by Corky Randall 1
Foreword by Cheryl ­Rogers-Barnett 2
Preface 3
Introduction: Once Upon a Time on a Horse 13
1. Remembering Trigger 21
2. Chasing Trigger 30
3. Trigger’s Tale 42
4. Dick Weston and the Golden Cloud 57
5. Trigger’s Trail 69
6. Little Trigger 91
7. Trigger Jr. and the Roy Rogers Remuda 112
8. Golden Stallion, Silver Screen 128
9. Trigger Filmography 176
10. Trigger Television 179
11. Glenn Randall and the Randall Ranch 193
12. The Smartest Horse in the Movies 211
13. Ride ’em, Cowboy 227
14. Trigger Collectibles and Memorabilia 242
15. Trigger Trivia 258
16. Trigger’s Peers 269
17. Horse Hero Comic Books 288
18. Golden Slumbers, Empty Saddle 302
19. Golden Sunset, Blue Shadows 314
20. Trigger Timeline 330
Chapter Notes 341
Bibliography 353
Index 357

Book Reviews & Awards

  • “In a time in business where marketing was king and embellishment was the norm, Leo Pando has done yeoman’s work in searching out and documenting the impact one golden horse had on a society of people. Leo makes every effort to explain why Trigger was loved by so many and why he has gone down in history as America’s favorite horse.”—Dr. Floyd Branson, vice president, Palomino Horse Breeders Heritage Foundation
  • Rambo’s creator is a Trigger/Roy Rogers fan. Leo Pando’s book about these iconic Western figures is amazingly informative, entertaining, and revealing. Major secrets are uncovered. I couldn’t stop turning the pages and saying, ‘Wow, I didn’t know THAT.’”—David Morrell, New York Times bestselling author of First Blood
  • “Impressive…diligently researched”—Leonard Maltin’s Movie Crazy
  • “If you want to know the real Trigger’s full story, Leo Pando’s book is the source to consult”—Big Reel
  • “Meticulous…you’ll come away knowing more about the most famous horse in westerns than you ever deemed possible”—Western Clippings
  • “Very interesting, revealing and worthwhile…highly recommended”—Wrangler’s Roost
  • “Top notch…highly recommended…photos are outstanding”—The Old Cowboy Picture Show
  • “Leo Pando has written a love story that B western fans around the world can resonate with…in-depth analysis”—Suite Collectibles.