Fast Facts

  • Birth certificate was lost in the San Francisco earthquake of 1906. As a result, her birth year is often cited as anywhere from 1895 to 1905.
  • Was in a vaudeville act with her sister Bessie in 1909; and branched out with a solo vaudeville act in 1911.
  • Always wore long sleeves to hide the scar from a pot of hot tea that fell on her when she was a child.
  • In 1923, while attending secretarial school in Hoboken, N.J., she met George Burns at a vaudeville theater in Union City, N.J.; called Burns "Nattie" (his real name was Nathan Birnbaum), he called her "Googie."
  • In his memoir Gracie: A Love Story, George said that "Gracie was the whole act...I didn't have to be a genius to understand that there was something wrong with a comedy act when the straight lines got more laughs than the punch lines."
  • Known primarily for radio and TV, Allen and Burns also appeared in several films, including an impressive turn in A Damsel in Distress (1937), Fred Astaire's first RKO musical without Ginger Rogers.
  • Star on Hollywood Walk of Fame is located at 6672 Hollywood Blvd. (Burns has three.)
  • Married Burns in 1926 (her first marriage; his second). They starred in a weekly radio show from 1932 until 1950; starred in TV's The Burns and Allen Show from 1950 until 1958, when she retired.


  • 1958, Emmy — Best Continuing Performance (Female) in a Series by a Comedienne, Singer, Hostess, Dancer, M.C., Announcer, Narrator, Panelist, : Nominee
  • 1959, Emmy — Best Actress in a Leading Role (Continuing Character) in a Comedy Series: Nominee
  • 1955, Emmy — Best Actress Starring in a Regular Series: Nominee
  • 1956, Emmy — Best Comedienne: Nominee
  • 1957, Emmy — Best Continuing Performance by a Comedienne in a Series: Nominee
  • 1956, Emmy — Best Actress - Continuing Performance: Nominee


  • Ronald John Burns — Son
  • George Burns — Husband
  • Pearl Allen — Sister
  • Sandra Jean Luckman — Daughter
  • Bessie Allen — Sister
  • Hazel Allen — Sister


  • Birth Name: Grace Ethel Cecile Rosalie Allen
  • Birth Place: San Francisco, CA
  • Birthday: July 26, 1902, Leo
  • Died: August 27, 1964
  • Profession: Actor, Comedian
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