Pierce Lyden

Pierce Lyden (January 8, 1908 – October 10, 1998) was an American actor best known for his work in television and film Westerns. Pierce Lyden was born in a sod house on a ranch near Hildreth in rural Franklin County, Nebraska, on January 8, 1908. Son of a horse buyer for the U.S. Army cavalry, he acquired as a youngster riding skills that later made it possible for him to do his own stunts as an actor in Hollywood westerns. He attended the Naponee, Nebraska, High School, and acted in several plays there; he graduated from the University of Nebraska School of Music and Fine Arts in 1927 and later studied at the Emerson College of Oratory in Boston. Lyden supported himself in these early years by playing romantic leads in stock company productions in Lincoln and on the road; he appeared in a few Chautauqua presentations. When talking movies eclipsed live theater presentations in small towns, Pierce Lyden went on to Hollywood in 1932. There he played villains’ roles in B Western films, quickly becoming typecast as a “bad guy,” specializing in fight scenes. He appeared in Saturday serials called cliffhangers as well as in feature films and television series.


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