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William Frawley (1887–1966)

William Frawley was born in Burlington, Iowa. As a boy he sang at St. Paul's Catholic Church and played at the Burlington Opera House. His first job was as a stenographer for the Union Pacific Railroad. He did vaudeville with his brother Paul, then joined pianist Franz Rath in an act they took to San Francisco in 1910. Four years later he formed a ... See full bio »

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Nominated for 5 Primetime Emmys. Another 1 win & 1 nomination. See more awards »

Known For

My Three Sons
My Three Sons Michael Francis 'Bub' O'Casey
Miracle on 34th Street
Miracle on 34th Street Charlie Halloran
The Fighting Seabees
The Fighting Seabees Eddie Powers
Something to Sing About


Hide Hide Show Show Actor (134 credits)
 1965 The Lucy Show (TV Series)
The Trainer
- Lucy and the Countess Have a Horse Guest (1965) ... The Trainer (as Bill Frawley)
 1964 My Living Doll (TV Series)
Det. Gladwin
- Doctor Is In (1964) ... Det. Gladwin
 1964 Summer Playhouse (TV Series)
- The Apartment House (1964) ... Cameo
 1962 Safe at Home!
Bill Turner
 1960/I No Place Like Home (TV Movie)
 1959 The Gale Storm Show: Oh! Susanna (TV Series)
Jim Comstock
- The Card Shark (1959) ... Jim Comstock
 1959 Westinghouse Desilu Playhouse (TV Series)
Joe Grady
- The Comeback (1959) ... Joe Grady
 1958 The Red Skelton Hour (TV Series)
Mr. Thomas
- Freddie and the Turkey Dinner (1958) ... Mr. Thomas
 1955 Damon Runyon Theater (TV Series)
 1955 Shower of Stars (TV Series)
Gabby Mullins
- High Pitch (1955) ... Gabby Mullins
 1954 The Loretta Young Show (TV Series)
- Dear Midge (1954) ... Sam
 1954 Texaco Star Theatre (TV Series)
Fred Mertz
- Episode #6.23 (1954) ... Fred Mertz
 1954 The Dirty Look (Short)
 1953 I Love Lucy
Fred Mertz / Himself
 1952 Rancho Notorious
Baldy Gunder
 1951 Rhubarb
Len Sickles
 1950-1951 The Bigelow Theatre (TV Series)
- Papa Romani (1950) ... Pinto
 1951 The Lemon Drop Kid
Gloomy Willie
 1950 Pretty Baby
 1950 Kiss Tomorrow Goodbye
 1950 The Silver Theatre (TV Series)
- Papa Romani (1950) ... Pinto
 1950 Kill the Umpire
Jimmy O'Brien
 1950 Blondie's Hero
Marty Greer
 1949 East Side, West Side
Bill the Bartender
 1949 The Lady Takes a Sailor
Oliver Harker
 1949 Red Light
Hotel Night Clerk
 1949 Home in San Antone
 1949 Your Show Time (TV Series)
 1948 The Girl from Manhattan
Mr. Bernouti
 1948 Good Sam
 1948 The Babe Ruth Story
Jack Dunn
 1947 My Wild Irish Rose
William Scanlon
 1947 Down to Earth
Police Lieutenant
 1947 Mother Wore Tights
Mr. Schneider
 1947 Monsieur Verdoux
Jean La Salle
 1947 Hit Parade of 1947
Harry Holmes
 1946 The Inner Circle
Det. Lt. Webb
 1946 Rendezvous with Annie
Gen. Trent
 1946 The Virginian
Honey Wiggen
 1945 Ziegfeld Follies
Martin ('A Sweepstakes Ticket')
 1945 Lady on a Train
Police Sergeant Christie
 1945 Hitchhike to Happiness
Sandy Hill
 1945 Flame of Barbary Coast
'Smooth' Wylie
 1944 Lake Placid Serenade
 1944 Going My Way
Max Dolan - the Publisher (uncredited)
 1944 The Fighting Seabees
Eddie Powers
 1943 Whistling in Brooklyn
Detective Ramsey
 1943 Larceny with Music
Mike Simms
 1943 We've Never Been Licked
Traveling Salesman
 1942 Moonlight in Havana
Barney Crane
 1942 Wildcat
Oliver Westbrook
 1942 Give Out, Sisters
 1942 It Happened in Flatbush
Sam Sloan
 1942 Roxie Hart
 1942 Treat 'Em Rough
 1942 The Yankee Doodler (Short)
 1941 Public Enemies
 1941 The Bride Came C.O.D.
Sheriff McGee
 1941 Cracked Nuts
James Mitchell
 1941 Blondie in Society
Waldo Pincus
 1941 Footsteps in the Dark
 1941 Six Lessons from Madame La Zonga
Chauncey Beheegan
 1940 Sandy Gets Her Man
Police Chief J. A. O'Hara
 1940 Dancing on a Dime
 1940 One Night in the Tropics
 1940 The Quarterback
 1940 Rhythm on the River
Mr. Westlake
 1940 Golden Gloves
Emory Balzar
 1940 Those Were the Days!
Prisoner (uncredited)
 1940 Opened by Mistake
Matt Kingsley
 1940 The Farmer's Daughter
Scoop Trimble
 1939 Stop, Look and Love
Joe Haller
 1939 Night Work
Bruiser Brown
 1939 Grand Jury Secrets
Bright Eyes
 1939 Ex-Champ
Mushy Harrington
 1939 Rose of Washington Square
Harry Long
 1939 Persons in Hiding
Alec Inglis
 1939 St. Louis Blues
Maj. Martingale
 1939 Ambush
Inspector J.L. Weber
 1938 Touchdown, Army
Jack Heffernan
 1938 Sons of the Legion
Uncle Willie Lee
 1938 Professor Beware
Snoop Donlan
 1938 Mad About Music
Dusty Turner
 1937 Blossoms on Broadway
Frances X. Rush
 1937 Something to Sing About
Hank Meyers
 1937 Double or Nothing
John Pederson
 1936 Rose Bowl
Soapy Moreland
 1936 Three Married Men
Bill Mullins
 1936 The General Died at Dawn
 1936 Three Cheers for Love
Milton Shakespeare
 1936 F-Man
Detective Rogan
 1936 Desire
Mr. Gibson
 1936 Strike Me Pink
Mr. Copple
 1935 Ship Cafe
Briney O'Brien
 1935 It's a Great Life
Lt. McNulty
 1935 Harmony Lane
Edwin P. 'Ed' Christy
 1935 Welcome Home
 1935 College Scandal
Chief of Police Magoun
 1935 Alibi Ike
 1935 In Caliente
Gentleman at Bar (uncredited)
 1935 Hold 'Em Yale
Sunshine Joe
 1935 Car 99
Training Sgt. Barrel
 1934 Here Is My Heart
James Smith
 1934 The Lemon Drop Kid
William Dunhill
 1934 Shoot the Works
Larry Hale
 1934 The Witching Hour
Jury Foreman
 1934 The Crime Doctor
 1934 Bolero
Mike DeBaere
 1934 Miss Fane's Baby Is Stolen
Captain Murphy
 1933 Hell and High Water
Milton J. Bunsey
 1929 Fancy That (Short)
 1929 Turkey for Two (Short)
 1927 Ventriloquist (Short)
'Hoak' salesman
 1925 Should Husbands Be Watched? (Short)
Beat Cop (unconfirmed)
 1916 Persistent Percival (Short)
Show Show Soundtrack (7 credits)
Show Show Thanks (1 credit)
Show Show Self (13 credits)
Show Show Archive footage (15 credits)

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Personal Details

Other Works:

Stage: Appeared (as "Mr. Parkin") in "Tell Her the Truth" on Broadway. Musical-farce. Music by Jack Waller and Joseph Tunbridge. Book by R.P. Weston. Based on "Nothing But the Truth" by Frederic S. Isham and James Montgomery. Lyrics by R.P. Weston and Bert Lee. Musical Director: Gene Salzer. Scenic Design by Joseph Teichner Studios. ... See more »

Publicity Listings:

1 Print Biography | 2 Portrayals | 4 Articles | See more »

Alternate Names:

Bill Frawley


5' 7½" (1.71 m)

Did You Know?

Personal Quote:

[on his initial reaction to "I Love Lucy"] I didn't think the thing had a chance. We did the lines over and over again, and it was like eating stew every night - stale and not a bit funny. See more »


In 1912, he was the first person to sing the classic, 'My Melancholy Baby.' He was appearing at the Mozart Cafe in Denver, Colorado. He happened to visit a pub on Curtis Street, where he knew the proprietor. Knowing Bill was looking for a new song for his act, the proprietor directed him to the pub's back room, where George Norton and Ernie Burnett were in the process of composing 'My Melancholy ... See more »


Played numerous sarcastic characters, through out his career. See more »



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