Buck, Frank (1884–1950)

Type: Biography

Published: 1952

Updated: November 1, 1994

Frank Buck, hunter, author, and filmmaker, son of Howard D. and Ada (Sites) Buck, was born on March 17, 1884, in a wagonyard owned by his father at Gainesville, Texas. When he was five, his family moved to Dallas, where his father, who was distantly related to the Studebaker family, went to work for their Dallas agency dealing in wagons and carriages. After attending public schools in Dallas, Buck left home at the age of eighteen to take a job handling a trainload of cattle being sent to Chicago. In 1911 he made his first expedition to South America. He eventually also traveled to Malaya, India, Borneo, New Guinea, and Africa. From these and other expeditions he brought back many exotic species that he sold to zoos and circuses, and he ultimately acquired the nickname "Bring 'Em Back Alive." Buck was author of Bring 'Em Back Alive (with E. Anthony, 1930), Wild Cargo (with Anthony, 1931), Fang and Claw (with F. L. Fraser, 1935), Jim Thompson in The Jungles (1935), On Jungle Trails (with Fraser, 1937), Animals Are Like That! (with C. Weld, 1939), and his autobiography, All in a Lifetime (1941). He was a contributor to the Saturday Evening Post and Colliers, and for some time he had a radio program. He was president of Frank Buck Enterprises, Incorporated, and Jungleland, Incorporated, and produced several motion pictures, including Bring 'Em Back Alive, Wild Cargo, and Fang and Claw (made from his books), and Jungle Menace, Jungle Cavalcade, and Jacare. Buck married Amy Leslie in the early 1900s, but they separated in 1911. He married Muriel Riley in 1928, and they had one daughter. Buck died on March 25, 1950, at Houston.

Houston Post, March 26, 1950. Vertical Files, Dolph Briscoe Center for American History, University of Texas at Austin. Who's Who in America (Chicago: Marquis, 1946–47).
  • Writers, Authors, Publications, and Literature
  • Literature
  • Memoirs, Diaries, Letters, and Travel
Time Periods:
  • Late Nineteenth-Century Texas
  • Progressive Era
  • Great Depression
  • Texas in the 1920s
  • World War II
  • Texas Post World War II
  • North Texas
  • Dallas/Fort Worth Region
  • Dallas
  • East Texas
  • Upper Gulf Coast
  • Houston

The following, adapted from the Chicago Manual of Style, 15th edition, is the preferred citation for this entry.

Anonymous, “Buck, Frank,” Handbook of Texas Online, accessed May 20, 2022, https://www.tshaonline.org/handbook/entries/buck-frank.

Published by the Texas State Historical Association.

November 1, 1994

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