Katherine "Scottie" MacGregor

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Katherine MacGregor
Born Dorlee Deane MacGregor
(1925-01-12) January 12, 1925 (age 93)
Glendale, California, U.S.
Other names Scottie MacGregor
Occupation Actress
Years active 1951–1983

Katherine "Scottie" MacGregor (born Dorlee Deane MacGregor; January 12, 1925, Glendale, California) is a retired American actress, best known for her role as Harriet Oleson in Little House on the Prairie.[1]


She is best known for her comedic performance as Harriet Oleson from 1974-83 on Little House on the Prairie.[2] As a child, her mother moved them to Fort Collins, Colorado, where she lived most of her early life. She graduated from Northwestern University with a major in drama and moved to New York in 1949.[3] After arriving in New York, she was hired by the Arthur Murray Dance Studios in New York City as a dance instructor. She studied acting under N. Richard Nash, Sanford Meisner and Stella Adler.[3][4]

In 1974 she began her role as the general store owner's wife, Harriet Oleson on NBC's Little House on the Prairie. MacGregor's favorite description of her character in Little House came in a fan letter from Minnesota in the 1970s, in which Mrs. Oleson was described as "the touch of pepper in the sweetness of the show". In 1979, thanks to the popularity of Little House in Spain, MacGregor was invited to Madrid, Spain and appeared on RTVE's 625 Lineas program. After Little House on the Prairie, she withdrew from screen productions in favor of local theater. She dedicated herself to the Hindu religion, and to teaching acting to children at the Wee Hollywood Vedanta Players, before finally retiring in the early 2000s.[citation needed]

Beginning in the 1950s, as Scottie MacGregor, she worked in theatre on and off Broadway in New York and other states in plays such as The Seven Year Itch and Handful of Fire,[3][4] and won such uncredited parts as "a longshoreman's mother" (On the Waterfront); "Alice Thorn" (The Traveling Executioner) and "Miss Boswell" (The Student Nurses). She appeared in numerous episodes of various television series: Love of Life (1956), The Secret Storm, The Nurses,[5] Play of the Week (1959), East Side/West Side (1963), Mannix (1970–71), Emergency! (1972), Ironside (1972, 1974), and All in the Family (1973), as well as the two 1981 "Heroes vs. Villains" episodes of Family Feud hosted by Richard Dawson. She had roles in the TV movies, The Death of Me Yet (1971), The Girls of Huntington House (1973), and Tell Me Where It Hurts (1974).

Personal life[edit]

She was briefly married to actor Bert Remsen, one month her junior, in 1949-50, and to actor, director and teacher Edward G. Kaye-Martin, 14 years her junior, from August 1969 to October 1970.[citation needed]


Year Film Role Notes
1954 On the Waterfront Longshoreman's Mother Uncredited
1956 Love of Life Tammy Forrest #1 Unknown episodes
1959 Play of the Week Maria Episode - "The Power and the Glory"
1963 East Side/West Side Grace Morrison Episode - "Go Fight City Hall"
1970 The Traveling Executioner Alice Thorn Uncredited
1970 Mannix Nurse Evans Episode - "The World Between"
1970 The Student Nurses Miss Boswell
1971 The Young Lawyers Mrs. Brady Episode - "The Bradbury War"
1971 The Death of Me Yet Nora Queen TV movie
1971 Mannix Nurse Episode - "Run Till Dark"
1972 Ironside Mrs. Pyle Episode - "Programmed for Panic"
1972 Emergency! Myrna Scudder Episode - "Musical Mania"
1973 The Girls of Huntington House Rose Beckwith TV movie
1973 All in the Family Nurse Episode - "Edith's Christmas Story"
1974 Tell Me Where It Hurts Marge TV movie
1974 Ironside Irma Episode - "Amy Prentiss" (Parts 1 & 2)
1974–1983 Little House on the Prairie Harriet Oleson 153 episodes


  1. ^ "Katherine MacGregor profile". The New York Times. Retrieved February 11, 2017.
  2. ^ Luchina Fisher (2011-08-26). "Melissa Gilbert Files for Divorce from Bruce Boxleitner". ABC News.
  3. ^ a b c "Miss MacGregor To Portray Mrs. FDR at Casino". Springfield Sunday Republican. 22 May 1960. Retrieved 12 March 2018.
  4. ^ a b Buck, Jerry (11 June 1981). "Katherine MacGregor Plots Her Own Downfall". Greenville Daily Advocate. Associated Press. Retrieved 15 November 2017.
  5. ^ Peet, Creighton (22 December 1963). "Scottie has 7 roles in 1 play". Virginian-Pilot. Retrieved 27 June 2018.

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