Moroni Olsen

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Moroni Olsen
Moroni Olsen & Billie Burke.JPG
Moroni Olsen with actress Billie Burke in Father's Little Dividend (1951)
Born (1889-06-27)June 27, 1889
Ogden, Utah, U.S.
Died November 22, 1954(1954-11-22) (aged 65)
Los Angeles, California, U.S.
Cause of death Heart attack
Resting place Ogden City Cemetery
Occupation Actor
Years active 1919–1954
Parent(s) Edward Arenholt Olsen (father)
Martha Magdalena[1] Hoverholst (mother)

Moroni Olsen (June 27, 1889 – November 22, 1954) was an American actor.


Olsen was born in Ogden, Utah to Mormon parents Edward Arenholt Olsen and Martha Hoverholst,[2] who named him after the Moroni found in the Book of Mormon.[3] Some sources[who?] have claimed that Olsen's birth name was John Willard Clawson, but there appears to be no support for this claim.

Olsen studied at Weber State Academy, the predecessor of Weber State University. He then went to study at the University of Utah, where one of his teachers was Maud May Babcock. During World War I, he sold war bonds for the United States Navy.

In 1923 Olsen organized the "Moroni Olsen Players" out of Ogden. They performed at both Ogden's Orpheum Theatre and at various other locations spread from Salt Lake City to Seattle.

After having worked on Broadway he made his film debut in a 1935 adaptation of The Three Musketeers. He later played a different role in a 1939 comedy version of the story, starring Don Ameche as D'Artagnan and the Ritz Brothers as three dimwitted lackeys who are forced to substitute for the musketeers, who have drunk themselves into a stupor.

His most famous role was the voice of the Slave in The Magic Mirror in Walt Disney's Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs (1937). Olsen also provided the voice of St Joseph in It's a Wonderful Life.


Olsen died on November 22, 1954 from a heart attack at the age of 65. He was buried in Ogden City Cemetery.

Broadway roles[edit]

Partial filmography[edit]


External links[edit]