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Lanky, freckle faced, unassuming and a spitting image of how you would envision Mark Twain’s “Tom Sawyer” character if he came alive, juvenile actor Mitch Vogel was one of Hollywood’s top performers during the late 1960s and early 1970s.

Born January 17, 1956 in the Los Angeles area, Vogel made a youthful impression with his very first film at age 10, the popular comedy YOURS, MINE AND OURS (1968) as one of Lucille Ball’s brood. The next year, he reached the zenith of his film career with The Reivers (1969). He played the role of Lucius in the film adaptation of the William Faulkner coming-of-age novel. The film won both Vogel and star Steve McQueen Golden Globe nominations.

Following this success, Vogel became a popular face on TV and in 1970 joined the by-now classic Western series Bonanza, enjoying a two-year stint on the show playing the character of Jamie Hunter (later Cartwright), an orphan taken in by the Cartwright men and later adopted. In casting Vogel as Jamie, producers felt that the Western needed a face lift as star Michael Landon aged. The series ended in 1972. Vogel forged a friendship with Landon during that time and went on to appear in a few of Landon’s Little House on the Prairie episodes.

Disney also took an interest in the fair, wholesome-looking lad with the vital homespun appeal. Vogel appeared in lead roles with Menace on the Mountain (1970) and The Boy from Dead Man’s Bayou (1971) [aka Bayou Boy]. He continued to be seen outdoors with episodes of Here Come the Brides, Gunsmoke and others.

By the time he reached adulthood, Vogel forged a life away from the limelight. These days, he still lives in the Southern California area, is married with two daughters and continues to spark his interests by directing and appearing in church plays and singing in a band.

IMDb Mini Biography By: Gary Brumburgh

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