Biography

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Elizabeth Ann Theresa "Betty" Lynn (born August 29, 1926) is a former American actress. She is best known for her role as Thelma Lou, Deputy Barney Fife's girlfriend, on The Andy Griffith Show.

Betty Lynn was born in Kansas City, Missouri, Her mother, Elizabeth Ann Lynn, was "an accomplished mezzo-soprano" who taught Betty to sing and started her in the Kansas City Conservatory of Music when she was 5 years old.

Lynn had little personal contact with her father, who once reportedly threatened to shoot her mother in the abdomen when she was pregnant. After Lynn's birth, her mother once took shelter in a locked closet with the baby as her husband threatened the two. They divorced when Lynn was 5 years old. Lynn's grandfather, George Andrew Lynn, a railroad engineer, took on the role of father as she grew up.

Betty Lynn began her acting career in radio as a member of the cast on a daytime drama on a station in Kansas City.

On Broadway, she appeared in Walk with Music (1940) and Oklahoma! (1943). She was discovered in a Broadway production by Darryl F. Zanuck and signed to 20th Century Fox. A clause in her contract allowed the studio to drop her at six-month intervals, leading to recurring concerns for Lynn. She said, "I was a redhead with freckles and didn’t have a bosom. I prayed so hard they’d keep picking me up."

Lynn made her film debut in the 1948 film Sitting Pretty opposite Robert Young. That same year, she appeared in June Bride with Bette Davis followed by roles in Mother Is a Freshman (1949), Cheaper by the Dozen (1950), and Payment on Demand (1951).

Lynn replaced Patricia Kirkland in the role of Betty Blake in the CBS comedy, The Egg and I (1951-1952), and she played Pearl in the ABC comedy Love That Jill (1958).

She was Viola Slaughter in the ABC Western Texas John Slaughter (1958-62). In the 1953–54 television season, Lynn was cast as June Wallace, the sister-in-law of the Ray Bolger character in the ABC sitcom Where's Raymond? Allyn Joslyn played her husband, Jonathan Wallace. Lynn and Joslyn left the series in its second season when it was renamed The Ray Bolger Show.

After guest-starring on various television series, including Schlitz Playhouse of Stars, The Gale Storm Show, Sugarfoot, and Markham, Lynn won the role of Thelma Lou on The Andy Griffith Show. She portrayed the role regularly from 1961-65, then made a final guest appearance in one episode during the sixth season (1965–66). Following the end of The Andy Griffith Show, Lynn continued appearing in various television and film roles.

In 1986, she reprised the role of Thelma Lou in the reunion television movie Return to Mayberry in which Thelma Lou and Barney Fife were finally married. In 2006, Lynn retired from acting and relocated to Mount Airy, North Carolina, the hometown of Andy Griffith and the town on which Mayberry is believed to have been based despite Griffith's claims to the contrary.

In 1950, Lynn bought a house in Los Angeles, with her mother and grandparents moving in. She thus took on the off-screen roles of breadwinner and caretaker. CLR

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Elizabeth Ann Theresa "Betty" Lynn (born August 29, 1926) is a former American actress. She is best known for her role as Thelma Lou, Deputy Barney Fife's girlfriend, on The Andy Griffith Show.

Betty Lynn was born in Kansas City, Missouri, Her mother, Elizabeth Ann Lynn, was "an accomplished mezzo-soprano" who taught Betty to sing and started her in the Kansas City Conservatory of Music when she was 5 years old.

Lynn had little personal contact with her father, who once reportedly threatened to shoot her mother in the abdomen when she was pregnant. After Lynn's birth, her mother once took shelter in a locked closet with the baby as her husband threatened the two. They divorced when Lynn was 5 years old. Lynn's grandfather, George Andrew Lynn, a railroad engineer, took on the role of father as she grew up.

Betty Lynn began her acting career in radio as a member of the cast on a daytime drama on a station in Kansas City.

On Broadway, she appeared in Walk with Music (1940) and Oklahoma! (1943). She was discovered in a Broadway production by Darryl F. Zanuck and signed to 20th Century Fox. A clause in her contract allowed the studio to drop her at six-month intervals, leading to recurring concerns for Lynn. She said, "I was a redhead with freckles and didn’t have a bosom. I prayed so hard they’d keep picking me up."

Lynn made her film debut in the 1948 film Sitting Pretty opposite Robert Young. That same year, she appeared in June Bride with Bette Davis followed by roles in Mother Is a Freshman (1949), Cheaper by the Dozen (1950), and Payment on Demand (1951).

Lynn replaced Patricia Kirkland in the role of Betty Blake in the CBS comedy, The Egg and I (1951-1952), and she played Pearl in the ABC comedy Love That Jill (1958).

She was Viola Slaughter in the ABC Western Texas John Slaughter (1958-62). In the 1953–54 television season, Lynn was cast as June Wallace, the sister-in-law of the Ray Bolger character in the ABC sitcom Where's Raymond? Allyn Joslyn played her husband, Jonathan Wallace. Lynn and Joslyn left the series in its second season when it was renamed The Ray Bolger Show.

After guest-starring on various television series, including Schlitz Playhouse of Stars, The Gale Storm Show, Sugarfoot, and Markham, Lynn won the role of Thelma Lou on The Andy Griffith Show. She portrayed the role regularly from 1961-65, then made a final guest appearance in one episode during the sixth season (1965–66). Following the end of The Andy Griffith Show, Lynn continued appearing in various television and film roles.

In 1986, she reprised the role of Thelma Lou in the reunion television movie Return to Mayberry in which Thelma Lou and Barney Fife were finally married. In 2006, Lynn retired from acting and relocated to Mount Airy, North Carolina, the hometown of Andy Griffith and the town on which Mayberry is believed to have been based despite Griffith's claims to the contrary.

In 1950, Lynn bought a house in Los Angeles, with her mother and grandparents moving in. She thus took on the off-screen roles of breadwinner and caretaker. CLR

Personal Info

Known For Acting

Gender Female

Known Credits 32

Birthday 1926-08-29

Place of Birth Kansas City, Missouri, U.S.

Official Site -

Also Known As

  • -

Acting TV ShowsMovies

1996 E! True Hollywood Story (1 episode)
1990 Shades of L.A. (1 episode)
1986 Matlock (4 episodes)
1974 Little House on the Prairie (1 episode)
1974 The Zoo Gang (1 episode)
1970 The Boy Who Stole the Elephant as Lottie Ladare
1968 The Mod Squad (1 episode)
1966 Family Affair (4 episodes)
1960 The Andy Griffith Show (26 episodes) as Thelma Lou
1960 My Three Sons (7 episodes)
1960 National Velvet (1 episode)
1959 The Hangman as Molly
1959 The Louisiana Hussy as Lili Guillot
1958 Lawman (1 episode)
1958 Bronco (1 episode)
1957 M Squad (1 episode)
1957 Sugarfoot (2 episodes)
1957 Gun for a Coward as Claire
1956 Behind the High Wall as Anne MacGregor
1956 Meet Me in Las Vegas as Young Bride
1955 Matinee Theater (3 episodes)
1953 Where's Raymond? (39 episodes)
1952 Cavalcade of America (2 episodes)
1951 Schlitz Playhouse of Stars (2 episodes)
1951 Take Care of My Little Girl as Marge Colby
1951 Payment on Demand as Martha Ramsey
1950 Cheaper by the Dozen as Deborah Lancaster
1949 Father Was a Fullback as Connie Cooper
1949 Mother Is a Freshman as Susan Abbott
1948 June Bride as Barbara 'Boo' Brinker
1948 Apartment for Peggy as Wife
1948 Sitting Pretty as Ginger

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