Monday, January 22, 2018

Buck Jones Rangers- Festivals and Dominick Marifioti

  For many years, I was privileged to be part of The Buck Jones Rangers organization which was founded to honor Buck Jones. He was a famous cowboy star that came from silent movies and transitioned sucessfuly to sound. He died prematurely in a fire at the Coconut Grove in Boston in 1942 while he was on a war bond drive. Because people crowded into the stationery doors until they couldn't get out, revolving doors are now reqired next to stationary door in all hotels.
  Dominick Marafiotifi resurrected The Buck Jones Rangers and established an annual western festival in Rochester NY. He is pictured above with Scott Shepherd, who was at the time the official Lone Ranger for Golden Books ; the then current owner of the Lone Ranger rights. Scott was removed when Classic Media, the new rights rights owner took over.
  Dominick hosted this festival for many years with guest stars appearing. Among those stars was SunsetCarson, Iron Eyes Cody, Richard Martin, Victor French, Peter Breck, Charles Starrett, Peggy Stewart, Claude Akins, and Kay Linaker. There were many more before my time with the organization.
  Dominick Passed away in 2004, and the festival came to an end. By this time there were few old time western stars left and it was difficult to find and attract guest stars. Robert Horton and Hugh O'brien were very gracious, but declined to appear because of personal restrictions. Membership was declining and attendance at the festivals declined as participants aged or/and passed on; just another sign of the waning western.
                                                                                                                          Buck Jones
    Dominick did not provide for a successor to carry on the festival. Since he had not asked me, I did not think I should take it upon myself to continue the organization.
  He had turned his house into a museum in Buck Jones honor and had a treasure house of memorabilia. Unfortunately these items were sold in an ordinary garage sale. I did not attend for I would feel like a vulture. I sometimes regret that decision. I often think about Sunset Carson's hat that he had given to Dom. Oh Well.
  I include this in my blog now for I may reference it in the future. I am thinking specifically of Dickie Jones who starred with Jock Mahoney as I featured in an earlier article.                                                                     
     Thanks, for riding the trail.


  1. Good article. I especially enjoyed your tribute to Dominick Marafioti. It is really sad that his collection of Buck Jones memorabilia was sold in a garage sale. I understand your feelings about not attending the sale. I suppose the Iron Eyes Cody Peace Medal, that he gave Dominick went in the sale also.

    Take care, and I look forward to reading about Dickie Jones.

    1. Thanks again for your interest and input. How did you know about the peace medal? You seem to have a lot of knowledge about westerns. Tell me more about yourself. I am considering guest bloggers. Let me know if you are interested.


    2. There is a book titled MOVING PICTURES AND CLASSIC IMAGES: MEMORIES OF FORTY YEARS IN THE VINTAGE FILM HOBBY(2004) written by avid film collector Samuel K. Rubin(1918-2009). Chapter 6 is about "The Film Fan Organizations and Conventions." Mr. Rubin covers the Buck Jones Rangers and their National Chief Dominick Marafioti very well. One of the stories he relates is of Iron Eyes Cody(1904-1999) presenting Mr. Marafioti with one of the Peace Medals.

      I'm just a life long fan, who enjoys reading about the American West and watching Western movies. Take care and keep up the good work.