Child Stars of 1950s

by BatBanks | created - 08 Jan 2015 | updated - 3 days ago | Public

Not Particular Order.

1. Patty McCormack

Actress | The Master

As a testament to her passion and talent, former 1950s pig-tailed moppet star Patty McCormack has remained a consistent presence on film and TV for over five decades. While the lovely and talented blond suffered her share of hard knocks in adjusting to an adult career, she did not fade away into ...

2. Patty Duke

Actress | Valley of the Dolls

Patty Duke was born Anna Marie Duke on December 14, 1946 in Elmhurst, New York, to Frances Margaret (McMahon), a cashier, and John Patrick Duke, a cab driver and handyman. She is of Irish, and one eighth German, descent. Her acting career began when she was introduced to her brother Ray Duke's ...

3. Sherry Jackson

Actress | Star Trek

Gorgeous, chestnut-maned Sherry Jackson began her promising career as a pleasant-looking child actress. She and brother Robert were the stepchildren of television writer/director/actor Montgomery Pittman, who died of cancer in 1962. There's a rumor that Idaho-born Sherry was discovered by a talent ...

4. Natalie Wood

Actress | Rebel Without a Cause

Natalie Wood was born on July 20, 1938, in San Francisco, California, as Natalia Nikolaevna Zakharenko. Her parents, Maria Stepanovna (Zudilova) and Nikolai Stepanovich Zakharenko, were Russian-born émigrés, of Ukrainian and Russian descent, who spoke barely comprehensible English; they changed the...

5. Lana Wood

Actress | Diamonds Are Forever

Provocative and ever the temptress in her prime, the dark-maned, gorgeous Lana Wood was born Svetlana Gurdin in Santa Monica, California, the younger daughter of Nikolai Stephanovich Zakharenko and Maria Stepanovna Zudilova, émigrés of Ukrainian and Russian descent. Barely speaking comprehensible ...

6. Tommy Kirk

Actor | Babes in Toyland

Scrappy, plucky-looking Kentucky-born Tommy Kirk, who was born on December 10, 1941, became synonymous with everything clean and fun that Disney Entertainment prescribed to in the late 1950s and very early 1960s. One of four sons born to a mechanic and legal secretary, the Kirk family, in search of...

7. Bobby Driscoll

Actor | Peter Pan

Bobby Driscoll was a natural-born actor. Discovered by chance at the age of five-and-a-half in a barber shop in Altadena, CA. and then convincing in anything he ever undertook on the movie screen and on television throughout his career spanning 17 years (1943-1960). Includes such notable movie ...

8. Kathryn Beaumont

Actress | Alice in Wonderland

Kathryn Beaumont was just ten years old when she was chosen for the voice of Alice, in Disney's animated version of the classic children's tale, Alice in Wonderland (1951). Walt Disney was so impressed with Kathryn's long curly blonde hair, sparkling eyes and acting ability, that he chose her as ...

9. Annette Funicello

Actress | Muscle Beach Party

Annette Joanne Funicello achieved teenage popularity starting in October 1955 after she debuted as a Mouseketeer. Born on October 22, 1942 in Utica, New York, the family had moved to California when she was still young. Walt Disney himself saw her performing the lead role in "Swan Lake" at her ...

10. Tim Considine

Actor | My Three Sons

Tim Considine was born on December 31, 1940 in Los Angeles, California, USA as Timothy Daniel Considine. He is an actor and writer, known for My Three Sons (1960), Patton (1970) and The Shaggy Dog (1959). He has been married to Willette Hunt since July 21, 1979. They have one child. He was ...

11. Kevin Corcoran

Actor | Old Yeller

Kevin Corcoran was born on June 10, 1949 in Santa Monica, California, USA as Kevin Anthony Corcoran. He was an assistant director and actor, known for Old Yeller (1957), Swiss Family Robinson (1960) and Toby Tyler, or Ten Weeks with a Circus (1960). He was married to Laura Soltwedel. He died on ...

12. Sal Mineo

Actor | Rebel Without a Cause

Salvatore (Sal) Mineo Jr. was born to Josephine and Sal Sr. (a casket maker), who emigrated to the U.S. from Sicily. His siblings were Michael, Victor and Sarina. Sal was thrown out of parochial school and, by age eight, was a member of a street gang in a tough Bronx neighborhood. His mother ...

13. Brandon De Wilde

Actor | Shane

Born into a theatrical family, he made a much-acclaimed Broadway debut at the age of nine in "The Member of the Wedding." He was the first child actor to win the Donaldson Award and went on to repeat his role in the film version directed by Fred Zinnemann in 1952. As the blonde, blue-eyed Joey who ...

14. Michael Chaplin

Actor | A King in New York

Michael Chaplin was born on March 7, 1946 in Santa Monica, California, USA as Michael John Chaplin. He is an actor, known for A King in New York (1957), Charlie Chaplin Untold Story and The Sandwich Man (1966).

15. Ron Howard

Actor | Arrested Development

Academy Award-winning filmmaker Ron Howard is one of this generation's most popular directors. From the critically acclaimed dramas A Beautiful Mind (2001) and Apollo 13 (1995) to the hit comedies Parenthood (1989) and Splash (1984), he has created some of Hollywood's most memorable films.

Howard ...

16. Carol Lynley

Actress | The Poseidon Adventure

Carol Lynley was born on February 13, 1942 in New York City, New York, USA as Carole Ann Jones. She is an actress, known for The Poseidon Adventure (1972), Bunny Lake Is Missing (1965) and The Cat and the Canary (1978). She was previously married to Michael Selsman.

17. Christopher Walken

Actor | The Deer Hunter

Nervous-looking lead and supporting actor of the American stage and films, with sandy colored hair, pale complexion and a somewhat nervous disposition. He won an Oscar as Best Supporting Actor for his performance in The Deer Hunter (1978), and has been seen in mostly character roles, often ...

18. Tuesday Weld

Actress | Once Upon a Time in America

Susan Ker Weld was born on August 27, 1943 (Friday), in New York City. When her father, Lathrop Motley Weld, died three years later at the age of 49, the cute little girl, whose name by then had somehow been transmogrified into "Tuesday", took over the role of the family breadwinner, which included...

19. Tony Dow

Actor | Leave It to Beaver

Tony Dow was born on April 13, 1945 in Hollywood, Los Angeles, California, USA as Tony Lee Dow. He is an actor and director, known for Leave It to Beaver (1957), Star Trek: Deep Space Nine (1993) and Crusade (1999). He has been married to Lauren Shulkind since June 16, 1980. They have one child. He...

20. Cubby O'Brien

Actor | Zane Grey Theater

Cubby O'Brien was born on July 14, 1946 in Burbank, California, USA as Carl O'Brien. He is known for his work on Zane Grey Theater (1956), Westward Ho, the Wagons! (1956) and The Hoffman Hayride (1948). He has been married to Holly since 2002. He was previously married to Terri and Marilyn.

21. Johnny Crawford

Actor | The Rifleman

Johnny Crawford was born on March 26, 1946 in Los Angeles, California, USA as John Ernest Crawford. He is an actor, known for The Rifleman (1958), Hellboy (2004) and The Thirteenth Floor (1999). He has been married to Charlotte Samco since February 14, 1995.

22. Angela Cartwright

Actress | The Sound of Music

Born in England, Angela is the younger sister of actress Veronica Cartwright. As a child she was cast as the cute little stepdaughter, Linda Williams, on Make Room for Daddy (1953). She was on the show from 1957 to 1964. After that, she was cast as Brigitta in the popular Julie Andrews movie The ...

23. Beverly Washburn

Actress | Old Yeller

Beverly Washburn was born on November 25, 1943 in Los Angeles, California, USA. She is an actress, known for Old Yeller (1957), Star Trek (1966) and Spider Baby or, the Maddest Story Ever Told (1967). She is married to Michael Radell.

24. Brenda Lee

Soundtrack | Dick Tracy

Brenda Lee was born on December 11, 1944 in Lithonia, Georgia, USA as Brenda Mae Tarpley. She has been married to Ronnie Shacklett since April 24, 1963. They have two children.

25. Barry Gordon

Actor | A Thousand Clowns

Barry Gordon was born on December 21, 1948 in Brookline, Massachusetts, USA as Barry Vincent Gordon. He is an actor, known for A Thousand Clowns (1965), Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (1987) and Swat Kats: The Radical Squadron (1993). He is married to Gail Schaper.

26. Frank Bank

Actor | Leave It to Beaver

Frank Bank was born on April 12, 1942 in Los Angeles, California, USA. He was an actor, known for Leave It to Beaver (1957), The New Leave It to Beaver (1983) and Life with Archie (1962). He was married to Rebecca Fink, Jeri Lynn Handelman and Marlene Kay Blau. He died on April 13, 2013 in Los ...

27. Susan Gordon

Actress | Tormented

Susan Gordon was born on July 27, 1949 in St. Paul, Minnesota, USA as Susan Lynn Gordon. She was an actress, known for Tormented (1960), The Five Pennies (1959) and Ben Casey (1961). She was married to Avraham Aviner. She died on December 11, 2011 in Teaneck, New Jersey, USA.

28. Cheryl Holdridge

Actress | Leave It to Beaver

Cheryl Holdridge was born on June 20, 1944 in New Orleans, Louisiana, USA as Cheryl Lynn Phelps. She was an actress, known for Leave It to Beaver (1957), Life with Archie (1962) and The Donna Reed Show (1958). She was married to Manning J. Post, Albert James Skarda and Lance Reventlow. She died on ...

29. Rusty Hamer

Actor | Make Room for Daddy

A deadpan, freckle-faced, curly-haired child actor of the late 50s, Rusty Hamer entered films at age 5 and became a precocious TV celebrity the very next year, trading quips with top comedian Danny Thomas as his lippy, obnoxious son, on the hit sitcom, Make Room for Daddy (1953), in 1953. Playing '...

30. Jimmy Boyd

Actor | Inherit the Wind

Jimmy Boyd was born on January 9, 1939 in McComb, Mississippi, USA. He was an actor, known for Inherit the Wind (1960), A Dirty Shame (2004) and The United States Steel Hour (1953). He was married to Anne Forrey and Yvonne Craig. He died on March 7, 2009 in Santa Monica, California, USA.

31. Sandra Dee

Actress | Gidget

Sandra Dee was born Alexandria Zuck on April 23, 1942 in Bayonne, New Jersey, to Mary (Cymboliak) and John Zuck. She was of Carpatho-Rusyn descent. Her mother envisioned a show business career for her daughter and would often lie about her age in order to get Sandy where she wanted to go. For ...

32. Dean Stockwell

Actor | Quantum Leap

Photogenic American child actor of the 1940s, popular due in no small measure to his air of innocence and his beautiful, cherubic face with its dimples and his sparkling eyes, topped with a crown of curls. Still an actor in demand while well into his middle years, he is one of the few juvenile ...

33. Richard Beymer

Actor | West Side Story

Born in Avoca, Iowa and moved with his parents to Hollywood, California in the late 1940s, Richard Beymer acted in various films while attending North Hollywood High School. He enjoys making his own films and has a film used in a PBS series on the civil rights movement.

34. Jerry Mathers

Actor | The Trouble with Harry

Jerry Mathers was born on June 2, 1948 in Sioux City, Iowa, USA as Gerald P. Mathers. He is an actor and director, known for The Trouble with Harry (1955), Leave It to Beaver (1957) and The Love Boat (1977). He has been married to Teresa Modnick since January 30, 2011. He was previously married to ...

35. Frankie Lymon

Soundtrack | American Graffiti

Frankie Lymon was born on September 30, 1942 in Harlem, New York City, New York, USA as Franklin Lymon. He was married to Emira Lymon, Zola Taylor and Elizabeth Waters. He died on February 28, 1968 in New York City.

36. Doreen Tracey

Actress | Westward Ho, the Wagons!

Doreen Tracey was born on April 3, 1943 in St Pancras, London, England as Doreen Isabelle Tracey. She was an actress, known for Westward Ho, the Wagons! (1956), Annette (1958) and The Donna Reed Show (1958). She was married to Robert A Washburn. She died on January 10, 2018 in Thousand Oaks, ...

37. Tommy Rettig

Actor | The 5,000 Fingers of Dr. T.

Tommy was a successful child actor in 1954 when he was chosen out of a field of 500 to play Jeff Miller in the TV series Lassie (1954). He was with the show for four years, after which Lassie acquired a whole new family.

Rettig, the only child of Elias Rettig, a Lockheed aircraft-parts inspector, ...

38. Jon Provost

Actor | Lassie

Forever associated with a heroic TV collie whom he frequently had his arms lovingly wrapped around, blond tyke Jon Provost actually was a veteran performer by the time he won the role of "Timmy Martin" at age seven in the series Lassie (1954). L.A. born and bred, Jon was just three years old when ...

39. Sheila James Kuehl

Actress | The Bob Cummings Show

Babyboomers remember well the diminutive (4'10"), dark-haired comedienne Sheila James who raised a smile with her portrayals of tomboyish kid sisters and boy-crazy high schoolers on late 50s and early 60s TV. For a while she was a huge hit backed by her characters' plaintive, pony-tailed presences,...

40. Zina Bethune

Actress | Planet of the Apes

Lovely, lithe and light-haired Zina Bethune, noted ballet dancer, choreographer and teacher, also had a promising acting career during the late 1950s and 1960s.

The native New Yorker was born on February 17, 1945, the daughter of William Charles Bethune (who died in 1950 when Zina was 5) and ...

41. Tony Blankley

Producer | Child Abuse

After working as a prosecutor in the office of the California Attorney General, Tony Blankley worked in the Reagan administration as a speechwriter and senior political analyst before he became a spokesman for and an adviser to Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich (1990-1997). Blankley later served ...

42. Lauren Chapin

Actress | School Bus Diaries

Lauren Chapin was born on May 23, 1945 in Los Angeles, California, USA as Lauren Ann Chapin. She is an actress, known for School Bus Diaries (2016), Father Knows Best (1954) and The Amorous Adventures of Don Quixote and Sancho Panza (1976). She was previously married to Jerry Jones.

43. Don Grady

Actor | My Three Sons

Born Don Agrati in San Diego, California, Don Grady became a Mousekeeter, along with 23 others, when that show debuted in 1955. In 1960, he joined My Three Sons (1960), which debuted in 1960 and ran for 12 years. As an enthusiast of music after "My Three Sons" ended, he continued in music as a ...

44. Billy Gray

Actor | The Day the Earth Stood Still

Billy Gray was born on January 13, 1938 in Los Angeles, California, USA as William Thomas Gray. He is an actor, known for The Day the Earth Stood Still (1951), By the Light of the Silvery Moon (1953) and On Moonlight Bay (1951).

45. Wayne Newton

Actor | Licence to Kill

Wayne Newton was born on April 3, 1942 in Roanoke, Virginia, USA as Carson Wayne Newton. He is an actor, known for Licence to Kill (1989), The Adventures of Ford Fairlane (1990) and Vegas Vacation (1997). He has been married to Kathleen McCrone since April 9, 1994. They have one child. He was ...

46. Billy Chapin

Actor | The Night of the Hunter

Billy Chapin was born on December 28, 1943 in Los Angeles, California, USA as William McClellan Chapin. He was an actor, known for The Night of the Hunter (1955), Violent Saturday (1955) and Tobor the Great (1954). He died on December 2, 2016 in the USA.

47. Gayla Peevey

Soundtrack | Grumpy Cat's Worst Christmas Ever

Gayla Peevey was born in 1943 in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, USA as Gayla Rienette Peevey. She has been married to Clifford Henderson since August 25, 1963. They have one child.

48. Darlene Gillespie

Actress | National Velvet

Darlene Gillespie was born on April 8, 1941 in Montreal, Quebec, Canada as Darlene Faye Gillespie. She is an actress, known for National Velvet (1960), The New Adventures of Spin and Marty (1957) and Dr. Kildare (1961). She was previously married to Jerry Joseph Fraschilla, Donald MacDavid' and ...

49. Frazer Hines

Actor | Doctor Who

Frazer Hines was born and raised in England. He is of Scottish descent on his mother's side, because she came from Port Glasgow. He came to prominence as a child actor, appearing in several films before he was fifteen, including X the Unknown (1956) and Charlie Chaplin's A King in New York (1957). ...

50. Sally Jane Bruce

Actress | The Night of the Hunter

Former child actress and singer Sally Jane Bruce was born on December 2, 1948 in Los Angeles California, to country singer Jewell Edwards. Her big break came when she won a contest by singing with a full orchestra. She had already worked on TV, radio and on Kids Will Be Kids (1954) when she was ...

51. Geraldine Chaplin

Actress | Hable con ella

Geraldine Leigh Chaplin was born in Santa Monica, California, to Oona Chaplin (née O'Neill) and legendary entertainer Charles Chaplin (A.K.A. Charlie Chaplin). She is a granddaughter of playwright Eugene O'Neill and a great-granddaughter of stage actor James O'Neill. She attended the Royal Ballet ...

52. Kathy Garver

Actress | Family Affair

Kathy Garver was born in Long Beach, California Her break-through performance came as one of the young slaves in The Ten Commandments

She is most well known for starring as the teenage niece of Uncle Bill Davis, Cissy Davis on Family Affair (1966). The show was nominated for Emmys in various ...

53. Luana Patten

Actress | Fun & Fancy Free

One of the first two contract players for Walt Disney Studios, she made her debut in Song of the South (1946) as a poor white child fascinated by the stories told by Uncle Remus. She made three more films as a child star, then left film for over 10 years. She returned as an ingénue in Rock, Pretty ...

54. Richard Eyer

Actor | The 7th Voyage of Sinbad

Born in Santa Monica, California, in 1945, Richard Eyer was the kid with the clean-cut, all-American look who won a number of "personality contests" and other competitions before he made his film debut in the early 1950s. Mainstream audiences may remember Eyer best as the youngster who runs "afowl"...

55. Terry Burnham

Actress | Imitation of Life

Terry Burnham was born on August 8, 1949 in Los Angeles, California, USA as Elizabeth Teresa Burnham. She was an actress, known for Imitation of Life (1959), Boy, Did I Get a Wrong Number! (1966) and Shirley Temple's Storybook (1958). She died on October 7, 2013 in Long Beach, California.

56. Paul Petersen

Actor | The Donna Reed Show

He's been through practically the worst that can happen to a former child star when the Hollywood tide suddenly turns and one is no longer a part of the neat elite. Unlike others, however, such as Anissa Jones, Rusty Hamer and Dana Plato, he survived. As a result, actor Paul Petersen, today, is THE...

57. Mimi Gibson

Actress | One Hundred and One Dalmatians

One of the hardest working child actresses of the 1950s, Mimi Gibson earned over $100,000 (in 1963 dollars) from appearances in 35 movies and over 100 Television Shows. Her mother took Mimi and her sister to Los Angeles after her father's death when she was a baby. Her mother lived off her acting ...