William Welsh

Active - 1913 - 1935  |   Born - Feb 9, 1870 in Philadelphia, PA  |   Died - Jul 16, 1946 in Los Angeles, CA  |   Genres - Western, Drama, Action, Comedy

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A former actor/manager who had appeared for David Belasco in Under Two Flags, pioneering screen actor William Welsh (sometimes spelled Welch) became a favorite of Universal founder Carl Laemmle, who cast him as the father in the sensationalistic white slavery melodrama Traffic in Souls (1913). The following year, Welsh played Neptune opposite Australian swimmer Annette Kellerman in Neptune's Daughter and he was prominent as well in the studio's biggest production of 1916, 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea. White-haired and stout, Welsh was the very picture of the amiable old rancher and played scores of those kind of roles in Westerns, Grade-B and otherwise, until his retirement in the mid-'30s. William Welsh was the father of starlet Betty Welsh, who appeared opposite Bob Steele and Tom Tyler in the late '20s.

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