Actress. A cute blonde, she is remembered as the female 'stooge' of a number of Laurel and Hardy comedies from the early 1930s. Born Dorothy Violet Wannenwetch, she was raised mostly in Virginia Beach, her father's job in the insurance business necessitating frequent moves, before graduating from a convent school in Reisterstown, Maryland. In 1929 she went to California for a short visit and ended up staying; soon dating well-connected Hollywood lawyer Roger Marchetti, she was able to obtain screen-tests and skilled help with her make-up and gowns. Designated a "WAMPAS Baby Star" (promising starlet) for 1932, and taking the name "Layton" from a great-grandmother, she received an MGM contract and began appearing in Hal Roach comedy shorts. Dotty's formal silver screen debut came in Laurel and Hardy's 1932 "Chickens Come Home" while that same year saw her join the comedic duo for "The Chimp", "County Hospital", and the feature "Pack Up Your Troubles", and take part in the Charlie Chase film "Young Ironsides". She was to appear in "Pick-Up" (1933) with George Raft, but a romantic break with Marchetti spelled the end of her career. She was in Roach's "Fallen Arches" and Louis Lewyn's "Hollywood on Parade" in 1933 then left Hollywood as well as show business and moved to Baltimore. Dotty married businessman Howard Taylor, was entertainment director for a Maryland health care facility prior to her 1977 retirement, was an avid gardener, and kept her good looks into advanced years. She died in a Towson nursing home in which she had lived since 1996.
Bio by: Bob Hufford