Do you know D.C.?

Get our free newsletter to stay in the know about local D.C.



The cowboy being the quintessential symbol of America, and Roy Rogers being the “King of the Cowboys,” ipso facto: Roy Rogers is the king of America. At least, that imaginary America of undisputed good, triumphant right, and justice for all. Rogers ruled his kingdom with a genial smile, a twinkle in his eye, and a song in his heart. But Rogers also embodies another classic American trait: reinvention. The singing cowpoke was born not on the prairie but in Cincinnati—with the villainous name Leonard Slye. In the 1946 Republic film Home in Oklahoma, Rogers stars with saddle- and soul mate Dale Evans. The film was directed by William Witney, the John Ford of B Westerns. Also screening is Witney’s 1952 film Border Saddlemates, starring another singing cowboy, Rex Allen, and quintessential sidekick Slim Pickens. The films screen at 6:30 p.m. at the Library of Congress’ Pickford Theater, 101 Independence Ave. SE. Free. (202) 707-5677. (Dave Nuttycombe)