Fast Facts

  • Began performing in chorus lines at 13 (under the legal age); she was fired when her true age was discovered.
  • Signed by Samuel Goldwyn in 1931; appeared in industrial films and shorts under the alias Frances Dean.
  • Her trademark was her famous legs, which MGM insured with Lloyd's of London for $1 million. 
  • Her 1943 bathing-suit photo was a favorite of soldiers during World War II.
  • Retired from films after making 1955's How to Be Very, Very Popular; continued her career on stage, most famously in Hello, Dolly! on Broadway.


  • Marjorie L. Grable — Sister
  • Victoria James — Daughter
  • John Conn Grable — Father
  • Jackie Coogan — Ex-husband
  • Lillian Rose Hofmann Grable — Mother
  • Jessica James — Daughter
  • John Karl Grable — Brother
  • Harry James — Ex-husband

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  • Birth Name: Elizabeth Ruth Grable
  • Birth Place: St. Louis, MO
  • Died: July 2, 1973
  • Profession: Actor, Dancer, Singer

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