Donna Ione <I>Smith</I> Douglas

Donna Ione Smith Douglas

Original Name Doris Ione Smith
Pride, East Baton Rouge Parish, Louisiana, USA
Death 1 Jan 2015 (aged 82)
Zachary, East Baton Rouge Parish, Louisiana, USA
Burial Bluff Creek, East Feliciana Parish, Louisiana, USA
Memorial ID 140788264 · View Source
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Actress. She had an acting career in television and motion pictures that was highlighted by her role as 'Elly May Clampett' in the popular 1960s CBS television situation comedy series "The Beverly Hillbillies". Born Doris Smith in Pride, East Baton Rouge Parish, Louisiana, she attended a Catholic High School where she was active in sports. In 1957, she was named "Miss Baton Rouge" and was later crowned "Miss New Orleans". Shortly thereafter, she moved to New York City, New York to pursue a career in acting and started out as a model for toothpaste advertisements. She was featured on NBC's "The Perry Como Show" in 1957, and on NBC's "The Steve Allen Show" in 1959. These and other television appearances led New York photographers and newspaper reporters to award her the "Miss By-line" crown, which she wore on CBS's "The Ed Sullivan Show" which led to her being cast in the movie drama "Career" (1959), which was followed by a bit part in the musical comedy "Li'l Abner" (1959) and a role in the romantic comedy, "Lover Come Back" (1961). In the late 1950s and early 1960s, she made numerous television appearances including a memorable episode of "The Twilight Zone", entitled "The Eye of the Beholder". Other credits include "Checkmate", "U.S. Marshal", "Tightrope", "The Adventures of Ozzie and Harriet", "Bachelor Father", "Adam 12", and "Route 66", before landing the role of 'Elly Mae' in "The Beverly Hillbillies" which she played from 1962 through 1971. In 1966, she made her only starring motion picture appearance, cast as Frankie in "Frankie and Johnny", opposite Elvis Presley. Douglas received her real estate license after "The Beverly Hillbillies" went off the air, but did not work in that field long. She remained in show business and frequently performed as a gospel singer and spoke at churches across America. In the 1970s and 1980s, she recorded a few minor country music records and several gospel albums. She also wrote two children's books, "Donna's Critters & Kids: Children's Stories with a Bible Touch" and "Miss Donna's Mulberry Acres Farm". Donna Douglas died from complications of pancreatic cancer.

Bio by: Louis du Mort

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  • Maintained by: Find a Grave
  • Originally Created by: Louis du Mort
  • Added: 2 Jan 2015
  • Find a Grave Memorial 140788264
  • Find a Grave, database and images ( : accessed ), memorial page for Donna Ione Smith Douglas (26 Sep 1932–1 Jan 2015), Find a Grave Memorial no. 140788264, citing Bluff Creek Community Cemetery, Bluff Creek, East Feliciana Parish, Louisiana, USA ; Maintained by Find A Grave .