Sherry Jackson

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Sherry Jackson
Sherry Jackson 1963.JPG
Jackson on an episode of Mr. Novak in 1963
Born (1942-02-15) February 15, 1942 (age 80)
Years active1949–1982
Partner(s)Fletcher R. Jones
(1967 – d.1972)
RelativesMontgomery Pittman (stepfather)

Sherry D. Jackson (born February 15, 1942) is an American retired actress and former child star.

Early life[edit]

Jackson was born in Wendell, Idaho, to Maurita (or Maurite) Kathleen Gilbert and Curtis Loys Jackson, Sr.[citation needed] on February 15, 1942, according the LA Times.[1] Her mother provided drama, singing, and dancing lessons for Sherry and her two brothers, Curtis L. Jackson, Jr., and Gary L. Jackson,[2] beginning in their formative years.[3] After her husband died in 1948,[citation needed] Maurita moved the family from Wendell to Los Angeles, California.[4]

By one account Maurita, who had been told while still in Idaho that her children should be in films, was referred to a theatrical agent by a tour bus driver whom they met in Los Angeles.[4] According to another, she was referred by the friend of an agent who saw Sherry eating ice cream on the Sunset Strip.[5] Apocryphal perhaps, but within the year Sherry had her first screen test, for The Snake Pit with Olivia de Havilland, and by the age of seven appeared in her first feature film, the 1949 musical You're My Everything, which starred Anne Baxter and Dan Dailey.[4]

In 1950, young Sherry became friends with actor Steve Cochran while working with him on The Lion and the Horse. Steve introduced his friend, writer Montgomery Pittman, to Sherry's widowed mother.[6] A romance developed, and Pittman married Maurita Jackson in a small ceremony on June 4, 1952, in Torrance, California, with Sherry as flower girl and younger brother Gary as ring-bearer; Cochran himself was Pittman's best man.[7] In 1955 Cochran hired Pittman to write his next film, Come Next Spring, the first that Cochran produced himself.[8] Sherry played the part of Cochran's mute daughter Annie Ballot,[9] a role Pittman wrote specifically for his step-daughter.[10]

During the course of appearing in several of the Ma and Pa Kettle movies during the 1950s as Susie Kettle, one of the titular couple's numerous children, Jackson also appeared in The Breaking Point, which starred John Garfield in his penultimate film role. In 1952 she portrayed the emotionally volatile visionary and ascetic Jacinta Marto in The Miracle of Our Lady of Fatima[5] and the following year played John Wayne's daughter in the football-themed Trouble Along the Way.

Make Room for Daddy[edit]

Sherry Jackson with Danny Thomas on Make Room For Daddy (ca. 1955)

Jackson may be best remembered for her five-season run as older daughter Terry Williams on The Danny Thomas Show (known as Make Room for Daddy during the first three seasons) from 1953 to 1958. During the course of her five years on the series, she established a strong bond with her on-screen mother, Jean Hagen, but Hagen left the series after the third season in 1956.

Worn out from the relentless pace of the production, Jackson left the program at the beginning of season six, once her five-year contract expired. To allow the writers to finish the character off, actress Penny Parker appeared in the role for fourteen episodes of season seven, in which the character gets married and moves away. Jackson's impact on the Danny Thomas viewing audience was such that, on February 8, 1960, she received a star for "Television" at 6324 Hollywood Blvd. on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.[11] Jackson did return as Terry for the premiere episode of the new series Make Room for Granddaddy in 1970.

Later roles[edit]

Over the next few years, Jackson broadened her range of acting roles by guest starring in dozens of television series, appearing as a hit woman on 77 Sunset Strip, a freed Apache captive who yearns to return to the reservation on The Tall Man, an alcoholic on Mr. Novak, a woman accused of murder on Perry Mason, and an unstable mother-to-be on Wagon Train. Sherry also appeared as a first season guest on The Rifleman episode “The Sister” playing the part of a horse riding sibling of two doting brothers. She played a gunslinger's promiscuous young bride in the Western series Maverick episode entitled "Red Dog" with Roger Moore, Lee Van Cleef and John Carradine. After a 1965 appearance on Gomer Pyle, U.S.M.C., she then made guest appearances on Lost in Space ("The Space Croppers", reuniting with her Danny Thomas co-star, Angela Cartwright), My Three Sons, Gunsmoke, Rawhide, The Wild Wild West ("The Night of the Vicious Valentine" and "The Night of the Gruesome Games", as two different characters), Batman, and the original Star Trek series. On the latter program, she made one of her more memorable portrayals[citation needed] as the android Andrea in the episode "What Are Little Girls Made Of?".

In 1966, Jackson was cast as Katherine "Kate" Turner, a young woman from Boston who takes over a wagon train after the death of the trailmaster, in the episode "Lady of the Plains" of the syndicated series Death Valley Days. DeForest Kelley plays a gambler, Elliott Webster, who falls in love with her though she is engaged to marry once the wagon train reaches Salt Lake City.[12]

When Blake Edwards remade the television series Peter Gunn as a feature film entitled Gunn (1967), Jackson was filmed in a nude scene[13] that appeared only in the international version, not the U.S. release.[14] Stills of the nude scene appeared in the August 1967 issue of Playboy magazine, in a pictorial entitled "Make Room For Sherry".[15] The movie has not yet been released on VHS or DVD.[citation needed]

In 1968 Jackson co-starred in The Mini-Skirt Mob as a member of an all-female motorcycle gang, and appeared in the 1973 film Cotter opposite Don Murray and Carol Lynley. In subsequent years she appeared in TV movies such as Wild Women (1970), Hitchhike! (1974), The Girl on the Late, Late Show (1974), Returning Home (1975), Enigma (1977), Curse of the Moon Child (1977) and Casino (1980).

In the 1970s through early 1980s she made guest appearances on such TV shows as Love, American Style, The Rockford Files, Starsky & Hutch, The Blue Knight, Switch, The Streets of San Francisco, Barnaby Jones, The Incredible Hulk, Fantasy Island, Vega$, Alice, Charlie's Angels and CHiPs.

Personal life[edit]

In 1967, Jackson began a five-year relationship with business executive and horse breeder Fletcher R. Jones, a union that ended on November 7, 1972, when Jones was killed in a plane crash eight miles east of Santa Ynez Airport in Santa Barbara County, California.[16] Five months after Jones's death, Jackson filed a palimony suit against his estate, asking for more than $1 million ($6.1 million today), with her attorneys stating that Jones had promised to provide her with at least $25,000 a year for the rest of her life.[17][needs update]



Year Title Role Notes Ref(s)
1950 Covered Wagon Raid Susie Davis
1950 The Breaking Point Amy Morgan [18]
1951 When I Grow Up Ruthie Reed
1951 Lorna Doone Young Annie Ridd
1951 Hello God Little Italian Girl
1952 The Miracle of Our Lady of Fatima Jacinta Marto [19]
1952 The Lion and the Horse Jenny [3]
1952 This Woman is Dangerous Susan Halleck [20]
1953 Trouble Along the Way Carole Williams [19]
1956 Come Next Spring Annie [10]
1960 The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn Mary Jane Wilkes [21]
1965 Wild on the Beach Lee Sullivan (Lippert Productions Ltd., 20th Century Fox)
1967 Gunn Samantha (Geoffrey Productions, Paramount Pictures) [22]
1968 The Mini-Skirt Mob Connie
1969 The Monitors Mona (Commonwealth United Entertainment)
1973 Cotter Shasta
1977 Bare Knuckles Jennifer Randall [16]
1978 Stingray Abigail Bratowski [16]


Year Title Role Notes Ref(s)
1949–1951 Fireside Theatre Little Girl 2 episodes
1951–1952 The Range Rider Susan Harper / Virginia Lee 2 episodes
1951–1952 The Gene Autry Show Bonnie Ford / Frankie Scott 2 episodes
1952 The Roy Rogers Show Lucy Collins Episode: "Unwilling Outlaw"
1953–1958 The Danny Thomas Show Terry Williams 133 episodes
1953 The Ford Television Theatre Terry Pelham Episode: "All's Fair in Love"
1953 Lux Video Theatre Ruthie Hammond Episode: "Look, He's Proposing!"
1953 Private Secretary Episode: "Child Labor"
1954 Shower of Stars Terry Williams Episode: "Entertainment on Wheels"
1954 Mystery is My Business Episode: "Woman in the Chair"
1956 The Charles Farrell Show Julie Episode: "Charlie's Secret Love"
1957–1961 Maverick Erma Curran / Annie Haines 2 episodes
1958 The Rifleman Rebecca Snipe Episode: "The Sister"
1959–1960 77 Sunset Strip Ophir / Shirley Bent / Ella / Chris Benson / Carrie 5 episodes [23][24]
1960 The Swamp Fox Melanie Culpin 2 episodes
1960 The Millionaire Susan Johnson Episode: "Millionaire Susan Johnson"
1960 The Many Loves of Dobie Gillis Mignonne McCurdy Episode: "The Prettiest Collateral in Town"
1960 Surfside 6 Jill Murray Episode: "High Tide"
1960 Riverboat Inez Cox Episode: "The Water of Gorgeous Springs"
1961 Bringing Up Buddy Janie Episode: "Buddy and Janie"
1961 The Tall Man Sally Bartlett Episode: "Apache Daughter"
1962 The New Breed Ellen Talltree Episode: "Care is No Cure"
1962 The Twilight Zone Comfort Gatewood Episode: "The Last Rites of Jeff Myrtlebank"
1962 Hawaiian Eye Joan Carmichael Episode: "A Scent of Whales"
1962 Gunsmoke Aggie / Lacey Parcher 2 episodes [25]
1963 Vacation Playhouse Alice Watson Episode: "Come a-Runnin"
1963 Mr. Novak Cathy Ferguson Episode: "The Risk"
1963 Perry Mason Madeline Randall Episode: "The Case of the Festive Felon"
1964 The Lieutenant Maggie Shea Episode: "Gone the Sun"
1964 Wagon Train Geneva Balfour Episode: "The Geneva Balfour Story"
1965 Rawhide Mar Episode: "Moment in the Sun"
1965 Gomer Pyle, U.S.M.C. Geraldine Episode: "Sergeant Carter Gets a Dear John Letter"
1965 The Virginian Lois Colter Episode: "Show Me a Hero"
1966 Branded Nell Beckwith Episode: "Barbed Wire"
1966 Lost in Space Effra Episode: "The Space Croppers"
1966 My Three Sons Linda June Mitchell Episode: "The Wheels"
1966 Batman Pauline 2 episodes
1966 Death Valley Days Katherine Turner Episode: "Lady of the Plains"
1966 Star Trek Andrea Episode: "What Are Little Girls Made Of?"
1967–1968 The Wild Wild West Lola Cortez / Michele LeMaster 2 episodes
1970 The Interns Jeri Spencer Episode: "The Quality of Mercy"
1970 Make Room for Granddaddy Terry Williams Episode: "Make Room for Grandson"
1970 The Immortal Sherry Hiller Episode: "Sylvia"
1970 Wild Women Nancy Belacourt TV Movie
1971 Love, American Style Blanche Segment: "Love and the Waitress"
1974 Hitchhike! Stefanie TV Movie
1974 The Girl on the Late, Late Show Pat Clauson TV Movie
1974 Chase Shirley Episode: "$35 Will Fly You to the Moon"
1975 Returning Home Marie Derry ABC Movie of the Week
1975 Barbary Coast Sherry Episode: "Crazy Cats"
1975 Mobile One Leslie Willis Episode: "The Pawn"
1975 The Rockford Files Jennifer Sandstrom Episode: "The Real Easy Red Dog"
1975 Matt Helm Elena Bosworth Episode: "Double Jeopardy"
1976 Starsky and Hutch Denise Girard Episode: "Bounty Hunter"
1976 The Blue Knight Mrs. Bonner Episode: "The Rose and the Gun"
1976 Switch Jennie Rosenthal Episode: "The 100,000 Ruble Rumble"
1977 The Streets of San Francisco Jackie Allen / Joy Adams / September Dawn Episode: "One Last Trick"
1977 Enigma Kate Valentine TV Movie
1978 Barnaby Jones Erica Hughes 2 episodes
1978 The Incredible Hulk Dr. Diane Joseph Episode: "Earthquakes Happen"
1979 Fantasy Island Monica Jensen Episode: "Cowboy/Substitute Wife"
1979 Vega$ Denise Episode: "The Usurper"
1980 Alice Toni Morelli Episode: "Good Buddy Flo"
1980 Charlie's Angels Tina Fuller Episode: "Homes $weet Homes"
1980 CHiPs Diane Episode: "The Strippers"
1980 Casino Jennifer TV Movie


  1. ^ "Sherry Jackson". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 2021-04-10.
  2. ^ "Maurita Pittman, TV writer, manager, 88". alt.obituaries. February 1, 2006. Retrieved February 1, 2015.
  3. ^ a b Cook, Ben (June 26, 1952). Written at Hollywood. "The Kid Finally Gets Second Chance". The Pittsburgh Press. Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. p. 34. Retrieved February 1, 2015.
  4. ^ a b c West, Alice (January 25, 1953). "Behind the Scenes in Hollywood". Ogden Standard-Examiner. Ogden, Utah. p. 9. Retrieved February 1, 2015.
  5. ^ a b "Young Actors Play Leads in 'Miracle' at Warner". The Pittsburgh Press. Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. September 17, 1952. p. 29. Retrieved February 1, 2015. Sherry [Jackson] is only ten... [She] has been a movie actress for four years. She was discovered by the friend of a Hollywood talent agent, while she was having an ice cream soda.
  6. ^ "Human Interest Story Is Behind Fox Lodi Film". Lodi News-Sentinel. Lodi, California. June 14, 1956. p. 2. Retrieved February 1, 2015.
  7. ^ "Writer, Starlet Wed in Torrance" (PDF). Torrance Herald. Torrance, California. 12 June 1952. p. 17. Archived from the original (PDF) on 2 February 2015. Retrieved February 1, 2015.
  8. ^ "Will Hutchins on Montgomery Pittman". Western Clippings. January 2013. Retrieved February 1, 2015.
  9. ^ "CMBA Blogathon: Come Next Spring (1956)". Jim Lane's Cinemadrome. May 22, 2014. Retrieved February 1, 2015. Matt assures her that he's been sober for three years, then he asks about Annie. "Is she...Did she ever get over...?" "Nope," says Bess, "still mute. Cain't utter a sound."
  10. ^ a b "A Happy Family Affair Inspires a Screen Hit". The News and Eastern Townships Advocate. St. Johns, Quebec. September 6, 1956. p. 17. Retrieved February 1, 2015. Her dad, Montgomery Pittman, wrote the screenplay and he built the script around little Sherry. ... [I]t turned out to be one of the most dramatic roles ever offered a youngster and was planned as such. ... [F]or her work in this show [she] received the "Gold Star Award" from Mars, Inc.
  11. ^ "Sherry Jackson profile". Hollywood Walk of Fame. Retrieved February 1, 2015.
  12. ^ "Lady of the Plains on Death Valley Days". IMDb. May 5, 1966. Retrieved September 12, 2015.[unreliable source?]
  13. ^ Heffernan, Harold (May 9, 1967). Written at Hollywood, CA. "Danny's Sherry Big, Big Girl Now". The Blade. Toledo, Ohio. NANA. p. 42. Retrieved February 1, 2015.
  14. ^ J. Kingston Pierce (February 13, 2013). "Make a Wish". Rap Sheet.
  15. ^ Lockhart, Michael J. (November 28, 2012). "Femme on Fire: Melissa Rauch". Retrieved February 1, 2015.
  16. ^ a b c Kleiner, Dick (March 17, 1978). Written at Hollywood. "Third Career for Sherry". The Daily News. Bowling Green, Kentucky. NEA. p. 27. Retrieved February 1, 2015.
  17. ^ Written at Los Angeles. "$1-Million Suit by Sherry Jackson". St. Joseph News-Press. St. Joseph, Missouri. UPI. April 12, 1973. p. 3C. Retrieved February 1, 2015.
  18. ^ Nott, Robert (2003). He Ran All the Way: The Life of John Garfield. Hal Leonard Corporation. p. 263. ISBN 9780879109851. Retrieved February 1, 2015. Maurita Pittman always felt that Jack L. Warner experienced an internal struggle regarding the film: 'I don't know why the film was unsuccessful. Warner was really too greedy of a man not to get whatever money he could out of a picture. But he was fervently anti-communist and maybe he realized that Garfield was in trouble, and he didn't put that much publicity into the film.'
  19. ^ a b Written at Burbank. "10-Year-Old Screen Star 'Just Loves John Wayne'". The Sunday Star. Wilmington, Delaware. December 7, 1952. p. 16. Retrieved February 1, 2015.
  20. ^ "This Woman Is Dangerous - Full Cast & Crew". TV Guide. Retrieved 2021-09-17.
  21. ^ Finnigan, Joe (January 26, 1960). Written at Hollywood. "Sherry Jackson Keeping One Eye on Bank Account". Schenectady Gazette. Schenectady, New York. UPI. p. 19. Retrieved February 1, 2015.
  22. ^ Deffernan, Harold (January 8, 1967). Written at Hollywood. "Sherry Jackson Sees Light". The Pittsburgh Press. Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. p. 4 §7. Retrieved February 1, 2015.
  23. ^ Kern, Janet (July 23, 1959). "It Happens On TV -- Girls Drop Years". The Milwaukee Sentinel. p. 2 §2. Retrieved February 1, 2015.
  24. ^ "TV Weekagazine: Friday". Evening Independent. St. Petersburg, Florida. October 4, 1959. p. 10. Retrieved February 2, 2015.
  25. ^ Johnson, Erskine (March 22, 1962). Written at Hollywood. "Sherry Jackson, Home-Grown Dish". Sarasota Journal. Sarasota, Florida. NEA. p. 13. Retrieved February 1, 2015.


  • Best, Marc. Those Endearing Young Charms: Child Performers of the Screen, South Brunswick and New York: Barnes & Co., 1971, pp. 122–127.

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