Image of Betty Lynn

Betty Lynn

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

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Aug 29, 1926 In Kansas City, Missouri, U.S.
Movie/TV Credits:
First Appeared:
In the movie Sitting Pretty 1948-03-10
Latest Project:
Series E! True Hollywood Story 1996-03-29
Known For
Poster of Little House on the Prairie
Poster of The Andy Griffith Show
Poster of My Three Sons
Poster of Where's Raymond?
Series E! True Hollywood Story Unknown 1996-03-29
Series Shades of L.A. Unknown 1990-10-10
Series Matlock Unknown 1986-03-03
Movie Return to Mayberry Thelma Lou 1986-04-13
Series The Zoo Gang Unknown 1974-04-05
Series Little House on the Prairie Unknown 1974-09-11
Movie The Boy Who Stole the Elephant Lottie Ladare 1970-09-20
Series The Mod Squad Unknown 1968-09-24
Series Family Affair Unknown 1966-09-12
Series The Andy Griffith Show Thelma Lou 1960-10-03
Series National Velvet Unknown 1960-09-18
Series My Three Sons Unknown 1960-09-29
Movie The Louisiana Hussy Lili Guillot 1959-04-01
Movie The Hangman Molly 1959-06-17
Series Lawman Unknown 1958-10-05
Series Bronco Unknown 1958-09-23
Movie Gun for a Coward Claire 1957-01-30
Series M Squad Unknown 1957-09-20
Series Sugarfoot Unknown 1957-09-17
Movie Meet Me in Las Vegas Young Bride 1956-03-09
Movie Behind the High Wall Anne MacGregor 1956-07-01
Series Matinee Theater Unknown 1955-10-31
Series Where's Raymond? 1953-10-08
Series Cavalcade of America Unknown 1952-10-01
Movie Payment on Demand Martha Ramsey 1951-02-03
Movie Take Care of My Little Girl Marge Colby 1951-07-06
Series Schlitz Playhouse of Stars Unknown 1951-10-05
Movie Cheaper by the Dozen Deborah Lancaster 1950-03-31
Movie Mother Is a Freshman Susan Abbott 1949-03-12
Movie Father Was a Fullback Connie Cooper 1949-09-30
Movie Sitting Pretty Ginger 1948-03-10
Movie June Bride Barbara 'Boo' Brinker 1948-10-29
Movie Apartment for Peggy Wife 1948-09-30