HARRIET HILLIARD Biography - Actors and Actresses


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Name: Harriet Nelson                                                               
Born: 18 July 1909                                                                 
Harriet Nelson (also known as Harriet Hilliard) was an American singer and         
Born Peggy Lou Snyder in Des Moines, Iowa on July 18, 1909, to Roy Hilliard         
Snyder and Hazel Dell McNutt. By 1932, she was performing in vaudeville when she   
met the saxophone-playing bandleader Ozzie Nelson. Nelson hired her to sing with   
the band, under the name Harriet Hilliard. They married three years later.         
Harriet Hilliard had a respectable film career as a solo performer, apart from     
the band. RKO Radio Pictures signed her to a one-year contract in 1936, and she     
appeared in three feature films, the most famous being the Fred Astaire-Ginger     
Rogers musical Follow the Fleet. She was very much in demand during the World       
War II years for leading roles in escapist musicals, comedies, and mysteries.       
In Ozzie's book, he wrote that Harriet was quite popular during the short time     
at RKO and they wanted her to continue her solo film career, but decided that it   
was more important for her to continue with the band and subsequent radio show.     
Although Ozzie and Harriet occasionally appeared together in movies, either as a   
duo (in Honeymoon Lodge) or as separate characters (in Hi, Good Lookin'), they     
are best known for their broadcasting efforts. In 1944 the Nelsons began a         
domestic-comedy series for radio, The Adventures of Ozzie and Harriet. It was       
highly popular and made a successful transition to television. It was one of the   
stalwarts of the ABC-TV schedule through 1966. The Nelsons' two sons, Eric "Ricky" 
Nelson and David Nelson, were featured continuously on the show.                   
Ozzie and Harriet also appeared in the syndicated 1973 sitcom, Ozzie's Girls.       
In the 1980s Harriet Nelson lived in Laguna Beach, California. She died of         
congestive heart failure on October 2, 1994, at the age of 85.                     
She is interred with her husband and younger son Ricky (who died in a plane         
crash) in the Forest Lawn - Hollywood Hills Cemetery in Los Angeles, California.