Nat Pendleton

For the politician, see Nathanael G. Pendleton.
Nat Pendleton

As Eugen Sandow from the trailer for
The Great Ziegfeld (1936)
Born Nathaniel Greene Pendleton
(1895-08-09)August 9, 1895
Davenport, Iowa, U.S.
Died October 12, 1967(1967-10-12) (aged 72)
San Diego, California, U.S.
Occupation Actor
Years active 19131956
Spouse(s) Barbara Evelyn (?-1967)
(his death)
Juanita Alfonzo (?-?)
Olympic medal record
Men's freestyle wrestling
1920 Antwerp heavyweight

Nathaniel Greene "Nat" Pendleton (August 9, 1895 October 12, 1967) was an American Olympic wrestler and film actor.


Early life

Pendleton was born August 8, 1895,[1] in Davenport, Iowa to Adelaide E. and Nathaniel G. Pendleton. He studied at Columbia University where he began his wrestling career. He was twice Eastern Intercollegiate Wrestling Association (EIWA) champion in 1914 and 1915. Chosen to compete in the US wrestling team at the 1920 Summer Olympics in Antwerp, Belgium, Pendleton lost only one match during the competition, and was awarded a silver medal.[2] Returning to the US he became a professional wrestler, and with the celebrity status he had achieved, drifted into films in the late 1920s.

Film career

Pendleton appeared in over 100 films. His early roles were largely uncredited. He was chosen to appear in Horse Feathers (1932) as one of the two college football players who kidnap Harpo and Chico, and his career began to develop. His role as circus strongman Eugen Sandow in The Great Ziegfeld (1936) brought him the strongest reviews of his career. Pendleton was most often cast in supporting roles as thugs, gangsters, or policemen and was usually typecast playing characters that depended on their brawn and were "none too bright".

He appeared as a circus strongman again in At the Circus (1939), again with the Marx Brothers. He had recurring roles in two MGM film series of the late 1930s and 1940s: as Joe Wayman, the ambulance driver in the Dr. Kildare series, and its spin-off, the Dr. Gillespie series. He made his final film appearances in Scared to Death with Bela Lugosi, and Buck Privates Come Home (both 1947).

Pendleton died in San Diego, California in 1967 from a heart attack.



  1. Rainho, Manny (August 2015). "This Month in Movie History". Classic Images (482): 24–26.
  2. "Nat Pendleton Olympic Results". Retrieved 2013-09-01.
Wikimedia Commons has media related to Nat Pendleton.
This article is issued from Wikipedia - version of the 10/5/2016. The text is available under the Creative Commons Attribution/Share Alike but additional terms may apply for the media files.