Wednesday, May 7, 2008

Redhead of the Week

Amanda Blake (February 20, 1929 – August 16, 1989) was an American actress best known for the role of the red-haired "Miss Kitty" on the longest-running television drama of all time, CBS's Gunsmoke series (1955-1975).

Born Beverly Louise Neill in Buffalo, New York, she was a telephone operator before taking up acting. Nicknamed "The Young Greer Garson," she became best known for her 19-year stint as the fictitious "Kitty Russell" on Gunsmoke. Miss Kitty was owner-operator of the Long Branch Saloon, from which she dispensed wisdom, whiskey, and — though not overtly — boarding room keys and "fancy" women. Like Perry Mason and his secretary Della Street, Kitty and Dodge City's U.S. Marshal, Matt Dillon, seemingly carried on a cloaked relationship.

I thought Matt loved only his horse?

In 1968, Blake was inducted into the Hall of Great Western Performers at the National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum in Oklahoma City. This was six years before the legendary John Wayne was inducted in 1974 and more than a decade before Gunsmoke co-stars James Arness, Ken Curtis, Dennis Weaver, and Milburn Stone in 1981. Blake was the third performer welcomed into the Hall, after Tom Mix and Gary Cooper.

Hey, Miss Kitty. Can I have a double shot of your love?

Thanks to Wikipedia and the late Beverly Neill.

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