Elizabeth Harrower (actress)

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Elizabeth Harrower Seabold (May 28, 1918 - December 10, 2003) was an American actress and screenwriter.

Early years[edit]

Betty Louise Foss was born during World War I in Alameda, California during the great flu epidemic. Within six weeks, her mother died, her father had a nervous breakdown, and relatives passed her care around. Babies were thought to draw the deadly flu, so in a short while, she was placed in a San Francisco orphanage. Eventually, she was adopted by Scottish immigrants William and Jessie Harrower.[1]

During the Great Depression, William's salary was cut in half, and Jessie decided to take Betty out of school and off to Hollywood to begin an acting career. After trying out several alter egos in the hopes of making an impression on someone in the industry, she eventually settled on the identity of Elizabeth Harrower.


Harrower went on to find success in television, including four appearances on Perry Mason (The Case of the Waylaid Wolf) and 10 appearances on Dennis the Menace (mostly as Dennis' teacher, Miss Perkins) in the early 1960s.

She made her film debut in Becky Sharp (1935). She also appeared in other movies, including 1969's True Grit and The Sterile Cuckoo.[2]

In the late 1970s, she served as head writer for the NBC soap opera Days of Our Lives, where her daughter Susan was a cast member. She went on to write for The Young and the Restless[3] in the 1980s and early 1990s. Her last writing stint was on the short-lived soap Generations in 1991.

In 2003, Harrower received rave reviews for her performance as a drunken con artist on The Young and the Restless.


In 1942, Harrower married Harry Seabold, an Air Force cadet she had met in fifth grade. Their daughter, actress Susan Seaforth Hayes, was born in 1943. The couple's marriage did not last.

For many years, she and her daughter lived in the Alvarado Terrace Historic District of Los Angeles, where she was active with the Pico-Union community redevelopment project advisory committee.


On December 10, 2003, Harrower died in Studio City, California, of cancer. She was 85.[4] She was interred in the Forest Lawn Memorial Park Cemetery in Glendale, California.


  1. ^ Elizabeth Harrower Biography, IMDB,
  2. ^ Landesman, Fred (2004). The John Wayne Filmography. McFarland. p. 384. ISBN 9780786432523. Retrieved 18 April 2017. 
  3. ^ Grant, Matthew W. Sex On Soaps: Afternoon Love & Lust On Television Daytime Dramas. Granite Gate Media. Retrieved 18 April 2017. 
  4. ^ Lentz, Harris M. III (2004). Obituaries in the Performing Arts, 2003: Film, Television, Radio, Theatre, Dance, Music, Cartoons and Pop Culture. McFarland. pp. 177–178. ISBN 9780786417568. Retrieved 17 April 2017. 

External links[edit]

Preceded by
Ann Marcus
Head Writer of Days of Our Lives
February 27, 1979 - March 14, 1980
Succeeded by
Ruth Brooks Flippen