Ruth Donnelly

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Ruth Donnelly
Ruth Donnelly.jpg
Born (1896-05-17)May 17, 1896
Trenton, New Jersey, U.S.
Died November 17, 1982(1982-11-17) (aged 86)
New York City, New York, U.S.
Occupation Actress
Years active 1913–1965
Spouse(s) Basil de Guichard (1932–1958; his death)[1]

Ruth Donnelly (May 17, 1896 – November 17, 1982) was an American stage and film actress.

Life and career[edit]

According to a 1915 article in The Day Book, the young Donnelly was forced to leave Sacred Heart Convert in New Jersey because she repeatedly broke into laughter at inappropriate times.[2] She began her stage career at the age of 17 in 1913 in The Quaker Girl.[citation needed] The Day Book article also states that actress Rose Stahl took the teen under her wing and, after giving her training and a year's experience in the chorus, placed the then 18-year-old in the play Maggie Pepper.[2] Her Broadway debut brought her to the attention of George M. Cohan, who proceeded to cast her in numerous comic-relief roles in such musicals as Going Up (1917).[3]

Though she made her first film appearance in 1913, her Hollywood career began in earnest in 1931 and lasted until 1957. In her films she often played the wife of Guy Kibbee (Footlight Parade, Wonder Bar, Mr. Smith Goes to Washington). Among her roles was the part of Sister Michael in The Bells of St. Mary's, starring Bing Crosby and Ingrid Bergman. Years after her final film role, she returned to the stage, understudying Patsy Kelly in the Broadway revival of No No Nanette with old co-star Ruby Keeler and later appearing in the touring production starring Don Ameche and Evelyn Keyes.

Her uncle, Frederick W. Donnelly, was the longtime mayor of Trenton, New Jersey.[1][4]

Partial filmography[edit]


  1. ^ a b "Ruth Donnelly, Film Actress, Will Marry". Santa Cruz Evening News. Associated Press. June 24, 1932 – via  open access publication – free to read
  2. ^ a b "She Laughed Her Way From Convent to Stage". The Day Book. April 22, 1915 – via  open access publication – free to read
  3. ^ "Ruth Donnelly Other Works". Internet Movie Database. Retrieved 22 February 2016. 
  4. ^ "F. Donnelly Dead. 21 Years as Mayor. Trenton Leader Resigned in 1932 Because of Health. His Father Mayor 1884-86.". New York Times. September 26, 1935. Retrieved 2011-10-04. 

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