Monday, March 25, 2013
Recently, I ran across this old newspaper clipping from 1938. I checked my spreadsheet of Grandpa Charlie's movies and didn't see "Keystone Hotel" listed so I did a bit of research. According to IMDB.com, "Keystone Hotel" was made in 1935 and is the story of a hotel holding a beauty contest with a judge who is cross-eyed, so he selected an elderly cleaning lady as the winner. Of course, the crowd was outraged and chaos ensued so the cops were called. In this case, it was the "Keystone Cops" which I am sure caused even more chaos!
I couldn't find Charlie's role listed on IDMB so he may have played a policeman or one of the angry mob. The article mentions Charlie's nickname of "Teenie Terror" as a Chicago policeman. I have read in other articles that Charlie was the shortest guy at the department and that is where the "tiny" moniker originated. The next sentence about his injury is what my brother Danny refers to as "the 2% rule" -- you can tell a story as long as it is 2% true. Charlie was injured on the job but it was due to a taxi driver running into the police car and not "slugs" or gunshots from Al Capone or bandits! Grandpa Charlie was in the hospital at least twice in the 6 month period and it did force his early retirement from the police force. Moving his family to Southern California, he gave us his "badge" for the "big screen".