Mary Grace Canfield

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Mary Grace Canfield
Born (1924-09-03)September 3, 1924
Rochester, New York, U.S.
Died February 15, 2014(2014-02-15) (aged 89)
Santa Barbara, California, U.S.
Occupation Actress
Spouse(s) Charles Carey (divorced; 2 children)
John Bischof (1984–2014; her death)

Mary Grace Canfield (September 3, 1924[1] – February 15, 2014) was an American theatre, film and television actress.

Early life and career[edit]

Mary Grace Canfield was born in Rochester, New York,[2] the second child of Hubert and Hildegard (née Jacobson) Canfield. She grew up in Pittsford, New York. She had an elder sister, Constance, who was two years older.[3]

Acting mostly in small theatre companies and regional theatre, between 1952 and 1964 she appeared in several Broadway plays, although most ran for no more than a month. Her Broadway credits include The Waltz of the Toreadors and The Frogs of Spring.[4][5]

Canfield's first credited performance on television was in March 1954, when she portrayed Frances in the episode "Native Dancer" on Goodyear Playhouse. After making additional television appearances, she played a housekeeper, Amanda Allison, in the ABC sitcom The Hathaways during the 1961-62 season. As Thelma Lou's "plain" cousin in an episode of CBS's The Andy Griffith Show, she had an arranged blind date with Gomer Pyle, played by Jim Nabors. Her name on that episode was her actual name, Mary Grace.

Green Acres[edit]

Canfield was best known for her recurring role on the hit CBS comedy series Green Acres as Ralph Monroe, the all-thumbs carpenter who greeted her fellow Hootervillians with her signature "Howdie Doodie!" She appeared in more than 40 episodes of the show during its six-season run from 1965 to 1971.[2] She reprised the role in the 1990 TV movie Return to Green Acres.[4] Recalling the Ralph character in a 2006 interview, she stated, "To be remembered for Ralph kind of upsets me — only in the sense that it was so easy and undemanding." She added, "It's being known for something easy to do instead of something you worked hard to achieve."[6]

Other roles[edit]

She guest starred on the NBC medical drama The Eleventh Hour. In 1966, Canfield played Abner Kravitz's sister, Harriet, on three episodes of Bewitched. Actress Alice Pearce, who played Abner's wife, Gladys Kravitz, had died from ovarian cancer, and her successor as Mrs. Kravitz (Sandra Gould) had yet to be hired. During the early 1970s, Canfield and actress Lucille Wall shared the role of Lucille March on General Hospital. Canfield appeared in such feature films as Pollyanna (as "Angelica"),[7] The St. Valentine's Day Massacre[8] and Something Wicked This Way Comes.[9]

Later life and death[edit]

Canfield made her last public appearance in 2005, when she attended Eddie Albert's funeral along with Green Acres co-stars Sid Melton and Frank Cady.

Canfield died at age 89 from lung cancer on February 15, 2014 in Santa Barbara, California.[10]

Filmography[edit]

Film[edit]

Year Title Role Notes
1960 Pollyanna Angelica
1963 Come Blow Your Horn Mildred
1967 St. Valentine's Day Massacre, TheThe St. Valentine's Day Massacre Mrs. Doody
1975 Half a House Thelma
1983 Something Wicked This Way Comes Miss Foley
1993 Young Goodman Brown Goody Cloyse

Television[edit]

Year Title Role Notes
1954 Goodyear Television Playhouse Frances Episode: "Native Dancer"
1955 Best of Broadway, TheThe Best of Broadway Liesl Episode: "The Guardsman"
1956 Robert Montgomery Presents Abigail Lewis Episode: "Goodbye, Grey Flannel"
1959 Play of the Week, TheThe Play of the Week Sidonia Episode: "The Waltz of the Toreadors"
1961 Thriller Celia Perry Episode: "A Good Imagination"
1961-1962 Hathaways, TheThe Hathaways Amanda Allison Episodes: "Elinor's Guilt", "TV or Not TV", "The Paint Job", "A Man for Amanda"
1962 Thriller Ally Rose Episode: "The Hollow Watcher"
1962 Hazel Miss Simmons Episode: "Rock-A-Bye Baby"
1962 Poor Mr. Campbell Grindl TV film
1963 Joey Bishop Show, TheThe Joey Bishop Show Mrs. Bennett Episode: "The Baby Formula"
1963 Eleventh Hour, TheThe Eleventh Hour Mrs. Dobkin Episode: "The Middle Child Gets All the Aches"
1963 Andy Griffith Show, TheThe Andy Griffith Show Mary Grace Gossage Episode: "A Date for Gomer"
1964 Bob Hope Presents the Chrysler Theatre Juliet Episode: "Wake Up, Darling"
1965-1971 Green Acres Ralph Monroe Recurring role (41 episodes)
1966 Farmer's Daughter, TheThe Farmer's Daughter Alice Goodall Episode: "Twelve Angry Women"
1966 Bewitched Harriet Kravitz Episodes: "Follow That Witch: Parts 1 & 2", "A Bum Raps", "Man's Best Friend"
1967 Vacation Playhouse Mildred Episode: "Heaven Help Us"
1970 Adam-12 Susie Fisher Episode: "Log 135: Arson"
1973 Love, American Style Bridgette Episode: "Love and the Games People Play"
1973 General Hospital Lucille March TV series, replacement for Lucille Wall
1976 Family Mrs. Hanley Episodes: "Coming Apart", "Home Movie"
1978 Tabitha Dr. Morrison Episode: "Paul Goes to New York"
1984 Burning Rage Nettie McFadden TV film
1985 Alice Ruthie Episode: "The Night They Raided Debbie's"
1990 Return to Green Acres Ralph Monroe TV film
1993 Jackie Thomas Show, TheThe Jackie Thomas Show Jane Episode: "Aloha, Io-wahu"

References[edit]

  1. ^ Was born in 1924 not 1926 as per Intelius and the 1930 US census Year of birth per ancestry.com; accessed February 20, 2014.
  2. ^ a b The People of Hooterville
  3. ^ Hubert H Canfield, "United States Census, 1930"
  4. ^ a b Funny Ladies - Michael Karol - Google Books
  5. ^ Mary Grace Canfield Theatre Credits
  6. ^ Mary Grace Canfield dies at 89; character actress was on 'Green Acres'
  7. ^ Nissen, Axel (2013). The Films of Agnes Moorehead. Scarecrow Press. ISBN 978-0810891371. Retrieved 2014-02-18. 
  8. ^ Naha, Ed; Corman, Roger (1982). The Films of Roger Corman: Brilliance on a Budget. Arco Pub. ISBN 978-0668053082. Retrieved 2014-02-18. 
  9. ^ Muir, John Kenneth (2013). Horror Films of the 1980s. McFarland. p. 258. ISBN 978-0786455010. Retrieved 2014-02-18. 
  10. ^ "Actress Mary Grace Canfield Dies", abcnews.go.com; accessed February 18, 2014.

External links[edit]