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Sammy Davis Shooting

Updated on June 9, 2011

Sammy In Action

Fastest Draw In Hollywood

Many people are familiar with the name Sammy Davis Jr. His showmanship is an accumulation of what he grew up around. His father was an entertainer in Vaudeville and he took Sammy on the road with him. Sammy is well publicized concerning his activity with the “Rat Pack” his close relationship with the late great Frank Sinatra.  Mr. Davis had the ability to impersonate many performers both black and white. In the beginning this offended many who did not believe a black person should impersonate a white person. 

This would soon take a backseat as the civil rights movement escalated. Mr. Davis would at time be at odds with many during the Civil rights movement for a variety of reasons. Many believed Mr. Davis should you his fame to bring more attention to the struggle. Mr. Davis did not necessarily see it this way. He deserves credit for crashing barriers and challenging the status quo. Whatever he was doing whether it was acceptable to the Movement leaders or not Sammy Davis Jr. opened door for many entertainers who would follow in the entertainment business. Mr. was not concerned if any would follow him or not. When he converted to Judaism it was for a reason. It would cause a network of people to view him not only as an entertainer but also in the light of faith. Consequently expanding his exposure in the entertainment world. This presents a little known view of   Sammy Davis.

The Unknown Sammy Davis Jr. made appearance in several western movies. In an episode of the Rifleman he showed off a skill few are familiar. He was a quick draw artist. Seeing him in action is mind altering. He also sings and performs shooting expertise in “Bang Bang” The legendary entertainer suggest that he only felt free “on stage” he constantly gave great performance y et, one thing trouble him as it did Michael Jackson, Miles Davis and a multitude of African American entertainers. The majority of them did not believe they received the same respect as entertainers as their Caucasian counter parts. This

Sammy On Stage

Sammy's Impersonator


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    • Ericdierker profile image

      Eric Dierker 

      5 years ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

      Race?? Sammy Davis -- rat pack?? Really?? Out west here we did not think race except to distinguish. I know there are weird enclaves like Watts and Oakland but really we do not roll that way. Out Southwest USA we really have to get along in the song. If a white man gets up and hates Mexicans well that will not work. A black man in the military hates whites -- sorry that is a dead end. I do not think people get it --- from Hollywood to Tijuana. We are just so mixed up. I tell stories 4 days a week at my sons school. What race are the children -- danga bodanga -- I would guess wrong half the time.

      Maybe /detroit you can still tell but no out here. My boy is mixed and so are his friends I just do not think this race card is relevant any more.

    • S Leretseh profile image

      S Leretseh 

      5 years ago

      "The majority of them did not believe they received the same respect as entertainers as their Caucasian counter parts."

      One people identifying with their own people (racial, ethnic group) is completely normal. One people (White Christians) creating integration rights - civil rights- for another people, THIS was unprecedented in human history i.e. one male group giving another male group across-the board integration rights into THEIR established society ...AND WITH NO QUID PRO QUO! One people did this for another people. It was truly an extraordinary thing! There was, of course, no existing template how to integrate one people across-the board into the political & economic arenas of another people. White Christian males invented the idea of using written laws to force white people to commit to race-nullification i.e. to force white people to submit to nullifying the black male's (and female's) distinctness. Of course, using the legislative system to accomplish compulsory integration was NOT what our Founding Fathers envisioned it to be used for. In fact, the 10th Amendment is clearly there to protect the American people from just such human-engineering experiments (SCOTUS - all white males until 1967, decided not invoke the 10th Amendment).

      Basically, blacks demanded their integration ...and they got it. ABC , NBC,CBS and Hollywood also helped a great deal by creating visual images to encourage (some would call it "indoctrinating") white people to submit to the integration experiment.

      Bottom line Owl, I really don't see what blacks hv to complain about in this compulsory integration system. Looking at it thru the lens of human history, it (compulsory integration) should not be here. It should not exist. Yet, incredibly it does. And compulsory integration does exist because white people chose NOT to oppose its implementation -- incredibly, white people also submitted to affirmative action programs (deliberate double standards gifted to blacks --WOW). Only societies created by English speaking white Christians have agreed to integrate and then multi-multiculturalize their established societies. Putting it another way, all other peoples, except societies created by white Christians, have rejected compulsory integration and multiculturalism in THEIR established societies.

      Regarding Sammy Davis Jr, I always liked him. In fact, I really liked all the Rat Pack members. I think Davis' height was a major detriment to his acting career. He stood only about 5'4". Dean Martin was also considered very much under-rated as an actor.

      Owl, you seem to be complaining ... that white people just didn't submit to race-nullification good enough to suit you.

    • Ericdierker profile image

      Eric Dierker 

      5 years ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

      Sammy Davis and Glen Ford were by far the fastest. I was 8th grade president and so was allowed to draw it out with Sammy for a school assembly. He killed me, but I killed him also.

      Quick draw is awesome.

    • Coolmon2009 profile image


      5 years ago from Texas, USA

      I too remember that episode of the Rifleman. Been a while since I watched it. Mr Davis was a talented performer. Nice Article

    • James A Watkins profile image

      James A Watkins 

      6 years ago from Chicago

      I enjoyed your Hub about a major talent: Sammy Davis Jr. I saw him on TV the other day when I happened upon an old episode of Laugh-In on PBS. The show did not age well.

      Of performing arts, I think comedy ages the least well. You know? Stuff that seemed hilarious to people fifty years ago usually doesn't seem funny today. But drama ages wonderfully. Drama that is hundreds of years old still holds its power.

    • CMerritt profile image

      Chris Merritt 

      7 years ago from Pendleton, Indiana

      Sammy Davis WAS without a doubt, a cool cat!!!

      I loved anything with the rat pack...

      I have seen that episode of the rifleman before....not the original, but I have watched reruns and THAT was a great one.

      Great hub..

    • feenix profile image


      7 years ago


      What a cool hub. It contains a lot of fond memories for me. I actually saw the premier of that episode of the "Rifleman" that you show on this post. Watched it on my family's black-and-white Hoffman Easy Vision T.V. with a 17" green screen.

      Sammy Davis, Jr. is, undoubtedly, one of the greatest performers in the history of entertainment and you did an excellent job of pointing that out.

      Thank you for writing and publishing this informative and much-needed post.

    • Hyphenbird profile image

      Brenda Barnes 

      7 years ago from America-Broken But Still Beautiful

      I loved Sammy Davis Jr. and indeed all the Rat Pack. Thanks for the memories.

    • profile image


      7 years ago

      Believe it or not, I remember that episode of The Rifleman, which I used to watch as a kid. Talk about memories! Thanks so much for sharing this retrospective of the great Sammy Davis, Jr.!


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