SHERIDAN, Mich. — It’s the last of the great west here in Michigan in the small town of Sheridan in Montcalm County. A rare collection of Roy Rogers memorabilia that is about as far from Hollywood as one can get. Today we meet the man who put it all together…81 year old Ron Schalow.
For those of us that may not remember, Roy Rogers was a huge name in early movies and TV shows with his horse Trigger and his wife Dale Evans. He was especially big in the 1930s, 40s, and 50s. He was a cowboy, singer, host, and an all American great guy! While Roy passed away in 1998, his California ranch was loaded with personal items and memorabilia that would eventually be sold off. Ron Schalow first took a trip out to the ranch and met Roy in 1996. He would later return in 2001 to bid and obtain some prize possessions of Roy Rogers.
The crown jewel of his collection is a full-size horse buggy (from the 1800s) that sits inside the house directly in his living space. Ron completely restored it from top to bottom and it was used for many years by Roy on the ranch. Ron actually acquired the buggy from Roy Rogers Jr. at the auction. There’s also a child’s pedal jeep called NellyBelle that Roy used in his TV series. That too…completely restored.
You’ll find books, movies, CD’s, posters, trading cards, toy guns, photos, and many other items that complete the collection. Even the license plate on Ron Schalow’s vehicle is a tribute to the famous western cowboy. Ron even has clothes that were worn by Roy Rogers in some of the movies he made. Embroidered shirts and pants that still look like new all these years later.
Roy Rogers and Dale Evans wrote, sang, and performed their signature song “Happy Trails” at the end of every show. Here it and see it here. It took about 15 years for Ron to put he entire collection together, some of which he has certificates of authenticity for, he’s actually thinking about selling it. “It’s been a real pleasure to collect Roy and to learn about he and his family. And now I think it’s time for us to think about maybe selling it to someone else that would enjoy it” says Ron.
The collection is available for people to see if they contact Ron Schalow at (989) 506-1172. Who knows…you may be able to invest in a piece of movie and television history if the price is right!