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Valley detective plays key death trial roles
Alternative Title
Valley Times Photo Collection
Woods, Jon
This project was supported in whole or in part by the U.S. Institute of Museum and Library Services under the provisions of the Library Services and Technology Act, administered in California by the State Librarian
Made accessible through a grant from the John Randolph Haynes and Dora Haynes Foundation and Photo Friends
Date Created and/or Issued
Contributing Institution
Los Angeles Public Library
Los Angeles Public Library Photo Collection
Rights Information
Images available for reproduction and use. Please see the Ordering & Use page at for additional information.
Photograph was edited for publication purposes
Spade Cooley, born Donnel Clyde Cooley, was a Western Swing musician and band leader best known for his hit, 'Shame on You.' In addition to his music career, Cooley appeared in several Western films and hosted a television variety show, 'The Hoffman Hayride' also known as 'The Spade Cooley Show' which was broadcasted on KTLA from the Santa Monica Pier Ballroom. In 1961, Cooley was convicted for the murder of his second wife, Ella Mae Cooley and sentenced to life in prison.
Photograph article dated April 13, 1961 partially reads, "William S. Lewis, North Hollywood detective who says he can prove western star Spade Cooley innocent of murder...Lewis owns a tape recording of phone conversations between Cooley, Cooley's wife, Ella Mae, and himself. The taped conversation was made the weekend before Mrs. Cooley was found dead. An inquest into her death April 3 in Antelope Valley was being held today in Bakersfield. 'Spade and I are good friends,' Lewis said while sitting in the study of his home, 5222 Goodland Ave. A framed photograph was in front of him with the inscription: 'Best wishes to Billy and Helen from your old pal, Spade Cooley.'"
1 photographic print :b&w ;26 x 21 cm.
Photographic prints
Valley Times Collection
Cooley, Spade,--1910-1969--Trials, litigation, etc
Trials (Murder)--California--Los Angeles
Detectives--California--Los Angeles
Men--California--Los Angeles
Smoking--California--Los Angeles
North Hollywood (Los Angeles, Calif.)
Valley Times Collection photographs

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