(written from a Production point of view)
Ian Wolfe (4 November 1896 – 23 January 1992; age 95) was a character actor from Canton, Illinois who appeared twice on Star Trek: The Original Series, first playing Septimus in the episode second season "Bread and Circuses" and then Mr. Atoz the librarian in the third season episode "All Our Yesterdays". He filmed his scenes for "Bread and Circuses" on Tuesday 12 September 1967 and Wednesday 13 September 1967 on location at Bronson Canyon, and his scenes for "All Our Yesterdays" on Friday 27 December 1968 and Monday 30 December 1968 at Paramount Stage 5.
Wolfe was born in Illionis in 1896, making him, along with Judith Anderson, Morgan Farley, Bill Borzage, Richard Hale, Anthony Jochim, Felix Locher, Celia Lovsky, Leonard Mudie, Charles Seel and Abraham Sofaer, one of only ten credited Star Trek guest stars born in the 19th century. Three credited Star Trek production staffers – Franz Bachelin, Ernest Haller, and Byron Haskin – also were born in the 1800s.
At the age of twenty two, Wolfe joined the United States Army and served as a medical orderly, making him one of only two Star Trek actors verified as a veteran of the First World War, the other being Paul Fix. Art Director Franz Bachelin also served in World War I, albeit on the German side.
Immediately after the war ended in 1919, Wolfe became a theater actor and spent the next fifteen years working on Broadway. In 1934, he made the transition from stage to film.
Television and film work
Wolfe's credits include nearly 200 films and made-for-TV movies and over 80 television guest appearances in a career which spans 56 years. One of his first major films starred Clark Gable, as Fletcher Christian, in the 1935 film Mutiny on the Bounty. Wolfe played the ship's clerk of the HMS Bounty, a ship which was later mentioned in Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home.
Other notable appearances during his long career were in the films On Borrowed Time (1939), Foreign Correspondent (1940, with Leonard Mudie), Rebel Without a Cause (1955, with Corey Allen, Chuck Hicks, music score by Leonard Rosenman and cinematography by Ernest Haller) and Witness for the Prosecution (1957, with Torin Thatcher), just to name a few. He also had smaller roles in such classic films as Mrs. Miniver (1942, with John Abbott), No Way Out (1950, with Frank Overton), Holiday for Sinners (1952, with William Campbell, Bill Erwin and Peter Brocco), Julius Caesar (1953, with John Hoyt, Lawrence Dobkin, Richard Hale, Morgan Farley, Michael Ansara and Vic Perrin), and Seven Brides for Seven Brothers (1954, with Julie Newmar). He appeared in a 1957 episode of Studio One with William Shatner.
He appeared in five movies with fellow TOS guest actor Jeff Corey: Paris Calling and The Lady from Cheyanne in 1941, The Moon Is Down in 1943, California in 1946, and Creator in 1985. The latter film also featured Star Trek: The Next Generation guest actor David Ogden Stiers. He had a minor role in the 1979 movie The Frisco Kid alongside TNG guest actors Vincent Schiavelli and Clyde Kusatsu.
He made several guest appearances on the TV series Bonanza, Soap, and guest-starred in an episode of Barbary Coast, which starred TOS actor William Shatner and guest starred Sherry Jackson. Wolff also appeared in the 1970 telefilm The Andersonville Trial, which also starred Shatner and featured Whit Bissell, Dick Miller, Harry Townes and Kenneth Tobey in smaller roles. Wolfe appeared as Herbert Hooper in an episode of All in the Family, a show that also featured TOS guest stars William Windom and Jason Wingreen.
Wolfe was a principal supporting actor in THX 1138 (1970, with Sid Haig and the voice of David Ogden Stiers), which was the first film directed by George Lucas. Wolfe then went on to appear in the 1981 multi-Oscar-winning film Reds, which co-starred TNG guest actor Paul Sorvino. Both Wolfe and Sorvino later appeared in Dick Tracy in 1990. This film also featured appearances by Trek actors Colm Meaney, John Schuck, Seymour Cassel, Hamilton Camp, Chuck Hicks, Mike Hagerty, Robert Costanzo, Ed McCready, Bert Remsen, Walker Edmiston, and Michael J. Pollard. Dick Tracy also proved to be Wolfe's last feature film.
Later television work
Towards the end of his life, Wolfe appeared primarily in guest roles on television series. He appeared in WKRP in Cincinnati, in the recurring role as the sardonic butler Hirsch, and also in a 1982 episode of Cheers which later prominently featured actor Kelsey Grammer.
Wolfe was also one of several Star Trek actors to appear on the classic '80s sitcom The Facts of Life. Other Star Trek alumni who appeared in the series included William Windom, Kenneth Tigar, Roger Perry, Paul Comi, Nehemiah Persoff, Clive Revill, Robert DoQui, Nicholas Coster, Clyde Kusatsu, Robert Hooks, and Eve Smith. Lead Star Trek: Deep Space Nine actor Armin Shimerman also made a brief appearance in the show's seventh season premiere episode.
In 1989, Wolfe returned to the screen, appearing in the film Checking Out. His last credited film role was in the 1990 film Dick Tracy, which also starred Seymour Cassel. Wolfe passed away in Los Angeles, California at the age of 95, just twenty days after Dame Judith Anderson, who starred in 1947's Pursued, in which Wolfe also appeared. He was the last surviving Star Trek actor to have been born in the 19th century.