Barton MacLane: At-a-glance
Born under the name of Ernest Barton MacLane on Christmas Day (Dec. 25) 1902 in Columbia, South Carolina; MacLane moved with his family to the small town of Cromwell, Connecticut at the age of seven (according to Robert and Kathleen Hubbard’s Arcadia historic publication, “Legendary Locals of Middletown”). Upon entering Connecticut, MacLane attended St. John’s Parochial School in Middletown, Connecticut (according to my late aunt’s recollections, the information on the family connection to MacLane follows after his film and TV credits). He graduated from Middletown High School in 1921 and attended Wesleyan University, where he majored in athletics (notably in football, baseball and basketball). One of MacLane’s major achievements during his time at Wesleyan was that he made a 100-yard kickoff return during one of his Wesleyan football games in 1924. Because of his achievement, Paramount Pictures talent scouts encouraged MacLane to go into the field of acting in motion pictures. His first film appearance was in an uncredited role in “The Quarterback” (1926, with Richard Dix).