Harry Roscoe “Tim” Moore was a renowned actor and entertainer. He was born in Rock Island, Illinois, in 1888 to Harry and Cynthia Moore. He began his career in show business as a child singing and shuffling for people who passed by.
At the very young age of 12, Moore and partner Romeo Washburn left Rock Island to join a vaudeville troupe, appearing in an act called “Cora Miskel and Her Gold Dust Twins.” Moore’s talents and skills soon took him to the British music halls. After returning to the States, he joined a medicine show that played vacant lots all over the Midwest.
Moore began peddling and selling a cure-all potion to customers. At 15, when things were not working out as planned, Moore returned home and worked as a fly-shooter in a stable and then became a fight manager. Eventually, he toured as a professional boxer named “Young Klondike” and earned $110,000, winning 84 of 104 fights.
In the 1920s, Moore teamed up with Mantan Moreland in “Blackbirds of 1928.” Moore appeared in a number of black musical revues over a period of 15 to 20 years, including “Fast and Furious,” “Take the Air,” “Shuffle Along, “Harlem Scandals,” and “Rhapsody in Black.” Moore wrote nearly all of his own material as well as skits for other performers; W.C. Fields bought his sketch called “Not a Fit Night for Man nor Beast.”
By the beginning of the 1950s, he had retired to his native Rock Island. Moore had already been in show business for 50 years when he was chosen to play the role of George “Kingfish” Stevens in the television version of the wildly popular “Amos ‘n’ Andy” radio show. The show ran from June 28, 1951, on CBS through June 11, 1953. More died in 1958 at the age of 71.