Last modified on September 15, 2020, at 18:44

Conlan Carter

Chester Conlan Carter​
Actor Conlan Carter.jpg

Born October 3, 1934​
Center Ridge, Conway County,
Arkansas, USA

Former resident of Naples, Florida
Resident of Branson, Missouri

Spouse (1) Patricia Ann Musser Carter

(2) Betty Carol Murphy Carter​
Alma mater:
Southeast Missouri State University (Cape Girardeau)

Chester Conlan Carter, known as Conlan Carter (born October 3, 1934), is a former film and television actor best known for the role of "Doc," featured in sixty-six episodes of the World War II drama, Combat!, which aired on ABC from 1962 to 1967 and starred Rick Jason (1923-2000) and Vic Morrow (1929-1982).

From 1960 to 1962, Carter appeared as C. E. Carruthers, the assistant to the Abraham Lincoln Jones, portrayed by James Whitmore (1921–2009), in ABC's legal drama, The Law and Mr. Jones.[1] ​ In 1964, Carter was nominated for an Emmy Award for "Outstanding Performance in a Supporting Role by an Actor" on the Combat! episode "The Hostages."[2]


Carter was born in rural Center Ridge, an unincorporated community in Conway County in north central Arkansas, but he was reared on a farm near Matthews in New Madrid County in the far southeastern "Boot" of Missouri. He graduated from Matthews High School and was the state champion in the pole vault in 1951-1952. He was also named to the all-state track and field team. From 1952 to 1954, he attended Southeast Missouri State University in Cape Girardeau on an athletic scholarship. He then served in the United States Air Force from 1954 to 1956 and acquired an interest in flying.[3]


In 1956, Carter relocated to San Francisco, California, to study with Mara Alexander Gilbert of the Bay City Actor's Lab. For three years, he concentrated on musical comedy and appeared in more than ten productions before he relocated to North Hollywood, a part of Los Angeles. His first television appearances were in 1959-1960 on the Four Star Television westerns, Johnny Ringo with Don Durant, "The Westerner" with Brian Keith, and the parent program, Dick Powell's Zane Grey Theatre. At the age of twenty-six, Carter acquired the secondary role on Four Star's The Law and Mr. Jones with Whitmore and Janet De Gore.[4]

In 1963, he joined Combat! in 1963 at the start of the second season, having also appeared as a guest star in the first season of the program as a corporal in the episode "Hill 256." In 1964, the same year as his Emmy nomination, Carter obtained his first film role in the comedy, Quick Before It Melts, in which he portrayed an uncouth radio operator in Antarctica.[3]

After Combat!, Carter appeared in the 1973 feature film White Lightning, with Burt Reynolds as well as on many television programs. He guest starred in 1961 on NBC's Outlaws as Perry Brathwaite in the segment, "The Brathwaite Brothers." He also appeared in Clint Eastwood's Rawhide, and on five occasions on James Arness's Gunsmoke, both series on CBS. He was featured three times on ABC's The Big Valley with Barbara Stanwyck and twice on the network's The Rifleman with Chuck Connors and Johnny Crawford. He also guest starred twice on NBC's Bonanza and The Virginian with James Drury and on CBS's crime dramas Barnaby Jones with Buddy Ebsen and Mannix, with Mike Connors. He appeared as an ensign in the 1963 episode The Thirty-Fathom Grave of CBS's The Twilight Zone, hosted by Rod Serline.[4]

One of Carter's more unusual roles was in 1970 as L. Frank Baum, the creator of The Wonderful Wizard of Oz on the episode "The Wizard of Aberdeen" on the syndicated anthology series, Death Valley Days. Other appearances were on ABC's Alias Smith and Jones, NBC's The Wide Country with Earl Holliman and Dr. Kildare with Richard Chamberlain, and CBS's The Dukes of Hazzard. He also appeared in an uncredited role in The Hellstrom Chronicle. His last television appearance was as Police Chief Ed Train in a 1986 episode of ABC's original MacGyver adventure series starring Richard Dean Anderson.[4]

Personal life

After he acquired his commercial pilot's license, Carter left acting. He lives in the resort community of Branson in southwestern Missouri.[5] He formerly resided in Naples, Florida, where he piloted business executives around the United States in their own private aircraft. He had also been a corporate pilot. On December 21, 1957, he married the former Patricia Ann Musser (born 1937).[3]

Carter is currently married to the former Betty Carol Murphy (born 1935).[5] He is a brother of actor John Carter (1927-2015).[3]


  1. Alex McNeil, Total Television, 4th edition, New York: Penguin Books, 1996, p. 471.
  2. Conlan Carter - Awards. Internet Movie Data Base. Retrieved on December 20, 2019.
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 3.3 Loraine Wingham. Conlan Carter - Biography. Internet Movie Data Base. Retrieved on December 20, 2019.
  4. 4.0 4.1 4.2 Conlan Carter. Internet Movie Data Base. Retrieved on December 20, 2019.
  5. 5.0 5.1 US Search: People Search and Background Check: Chester Conlan Carter