Last Roundup: Rex Trailer and His Cow Hands

Rex Trailer, host of “Boomtown,” a Western-themed children’s TV show that beguiled generations of New England children, has died. “Rex Trailer left this earth peacefully last night surrounded in love and song by his family. Rex had been in Florida for the holidays when he became ill into the New Year. While everyone’s prayers and support have been of great comfort to Rex, he decided it was time to go home. Rex and family thank all of you and love you.”

“Rex Trailer’s Boomtown” premiered on WBZ-TV in Boston in 1956. It ran until 1974. The show included cartoons, educational games, and outdoor adventures. Trailer showed off cowboy tricks he learned when he was growing up in Texas.

Trailer brought children with disabilities on his program. In 1959, he led a wagon train across Massachusetts to raise awareness about children with disabilities.

The show was a weekend morning fixture on local TV. Trailer made more than 1,000 episodes. A filmmaker who made a documentary about the show estimated that more than 4 million baby boomers grew up watching it and nearly 250,000 appeared in the show’s live audiences, the Globe reported in 2004.

Trailer’s young fans once included Jay Leno, Boston Mayor Thomas M. Menino, Barry (Jordan’s Furniture) Tatelman, and Jimmy Tingle.

This song is from “Rex Trailer and his Cow Hands”, Western Favorites, which was released in 1961 on Spin-O-Rama records.

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7 Comments on “Last Roundup: Rex Trailer and His Cow Hands”

  1. Beto Says:

    We’ve followed him on many adventures…
    but into the great unknown mystery, he precedes us.

    • Kat Says:

      Saturday mornings and Rex and Sgt. Billy were a ritual for us. We never missed Rex riding Goldrush. I always wanted to be in the audience and never got the chance.

      • Caryn Says:

        I was on that show. I got to sit on Goldrush. Pablo was sidekick in my day. I last saw Rex Trailer a couple of years ago when he rode in our 4th of July parade.

      • Kat Says:

        I’m most decidedly jealous.

        I remember Pablo as well! Sitting o Gold rush too-okay rub it in!!

  2. MT C Says:

    Thanks for posting this, Kat. Rex was a part of my life.

    RIP, Rex.


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