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The Encyclopedia of Oklahoma History and Culture


Born on May 22, 1907, in Collinsville, Oklahoma, to Clinton and Ida Mae Goodale, George Goodale served as a press agent to stars and later for the California Angels baseball team. The family moved to Tulsa when he was young. A member of the Cherokee Nation, he graduated from Central High School in Tulsa and then studied journalism at the University of Oklahoma. Goodale attained a job at the Tulsa World as a sportswriter even before he earned his degree. While there, he did a story on a telegraph operator who played baseball, Gene Autry. Goodale married Jean Joyce, an actress in a Tulsa theater troupe.

In 1934 the couple moved to Los Angeles, and he worked for the Los Angeles Examiner. In 1935 he ran into Autry, who hired him as his press agent. When Autry was on tour, Goodale would go on to the next town to promote the concert. In 1937 he and his first wife divorced. He started working with other stars until the United States entered World War II, and in 1942 he enlisted in the U.S. Army.

Shortly after the war ended, he returned to his line of work, serving briefly as press agent for the U.S. Air Force Football League. In 1946 the Los Angeles Angels, then a minor league team, hired him as their publicity agent. In 1961 Gene Autry headed the management group for a Major League Baseball expansion team, the California Angels. Autry hired Goodale to be the club’s first publicist. He held the position until 1985. On May 31, 1990, George Goodale died.

Larry O’Dell


“Former World Sports Writer Goodale Dies,” Tulsa (Oklahoma) World, 1 June 1990.

Holly George-Warren, Public Cowboy No. 1: The Life and Times of Gene Autry (New York: Oxford University Press 2007).

Earl Gustkey, “Life with Autrey Turns Out Fine for Goodale,” Los Angeles Times, 30 April 1970.


The following (as per The Chicago Manual of Style, 17th edition) is the preferred citation for articles:
Larry O’Dell, “Goodale, George Lucius,” The Encyclopedia of Oklahoma History and Culture, https://www.okhistory.org/publications/enc/entry?entry=GO024.

Published October 20, 2023

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