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Saturday, December 27, 2008

Ahoy Maties! Tribute to "Salty Sam"

The Chicago Tribune has a holiday tribute to George "Salty Sam" Baselton, the much beloved co-host of the Captain Jinks Show on WEEK Channel 25. Captain Jinks (Stan Lonergan) and Salty Sam were two of the very greats to host children's TV. Here is a website dedicated to the show.

At least two generations of Peoria children whiled away the dead hours after school watching "The Captain Jinks Show," which aired from the 1950s to the 1970s. But few heard the sad end that befell one of the original hosts—Captain Jinks sidekick Salty Sam—until a far south suburban man began researching his own family's history. Gus Baseleon of Manhattan, Ill., discovered last year that his cousin George, the faux-mustachioed, black-capped man who played Salty Sam on the nautical-themed series, had been buried in an unmarked grave. "He's an icon in this area — it's really a shame," said Pat Lewis, 58, general manager of Springdale Cemetery in Peoria, where Baseleon was buried in 1985. The two men decided to try drumming up public interest to pay for a headstone. Their efforts were covered by Peoria's WEEK-TV, which originally aired the show and took the original set out of mothballs for a fundraiser, and a Peoria Journal-Star columnist. So far, about $6,000 has been raised, Baseleon said, and the headstone is being built. The memorial, scheduled to be unveiled on Memorial Day, will also honor Capt. Jinks (played by Stanley Lonergan), whose cremated remains were scattered in the Illinois River after his 1989 death, Lewis said. People "were coming out of the woodwork [to help]," said Baseleon, who grew up in Chicago. "I never knew so many people loved the show."


Anonymous said...

Great post on a great show. I wonder if Stan Lonergan was related to Dan "Bunny" Lonergan of Park Ridge?

Maybe the next Pirates of the Caribbean is set on the Illinois River?

Happy New Year.


Anonymous said...

Viva la Jinx! Viva la Salty!


Anonymous said...

I wonder if Stan was related to Studs?

Anonymous said...

Or was that Lonigan?

Anonymous said...

Re: Lonergan: I believe the spelling and pronunciation are usually different.


JBP said...

And one is a real person named Lonergan playing a fictional character, while the other is a fictional character named Lonigan written by a real person.

Yet....James Farrell's mother's maiden name was Lonigan, and spelling was never all that important to new immigrants.

Could Farrell be connected to Captain Jinx?


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