Charles Farrell

For the Irish actor, Charles Farrell (1900-1988), see Charles Farrell (Irish actor). For the Australian rules footballer, see Charlie Farrell (footballer).
Charles Farrell
Born Charles Farrell
(1900-08-09)August 9, 1900
Walpole, Massachusetts, U.S.
Died May 6, 1990(1990-05-06) (aged 88)
Palm Springs, California, U.S.
Resting place Welwood Murray Cemetery, Palm Springs, California
Section 10-3, Lot F
Years active 1923–1957
Spouse(s) Virginia Valli (1931-1968) (her death)

Charles Farrell (August 9, 1900 – May 6, 1990)[1] was an American film actor of the 1920s silent era and into the 1930s, and later a television actor. Farrell is probably best recalled for his onscreen romances with actress Janet Gaynor in more than a dozen films, including 7th Heaven, Street Angel, and Lucky Star.



Born in Walpole, Massachusetts,[2] He began his career in Hollywood as a bit player for Paramount Pictures. Farrell did extra work for films ranging from The Hunchback of Notre Dame with Lon Chaney, Sr., Cecil B. DeMille's The Ten Commandments, and The Cheat with Pola Negri.

Farrell continued to work throughout the next few years in relatively minor roles without much success until he was signed by Fox Studios and was paired with fellow newcomer Janet Gaynor in the romantic drama 7th Heaven. The film was a public and critical success and Farrell and Gaynor would go on to star opposite one another in more than a dozen films throughout the late 1920s and into the talkie era of the early 1930s. Unlike many of his silent screen peers, Farrell had little difficulty with "voice troubles" and remained a publicly popular actor throughout the sound era.

Early 1950s

During the early 1950s, a decade after his career in motion pictures had ended, Farrell began appearing on the television series My Little Margie, which aired on CBS and NBC between 1952 and 1955. He played the role of the widower Vern Albright, the father of a young woman, Margie Albright, with a knack for getting into trouble, portrayed by Gale Storm. In 1956, Farrell starred in his own television program, The Charles Farrell Show.[3]

Personal life, public service and retirement

Farrell married former actress Virginia Valli on February 14, 1931; the couple were married until Valli's death from a stroke on September 24, 1968.

In the 1930s, Farrell became a resident of the desert city of Palm Springs, California. In 1934, He opened the popular Palm Springs Racquet Club in the city with his business partner, fellow actor Ralph Bellamy.[4]

A major player in the developing prosperity of Palm Springs in the 1930s through the 1960s, Farrell was elected to the city council in 1946 and elected mayor of the community in 1948, a position that he held until he submitted his resignation in 1953 to devote himself to his television series, My Little Margie. Farrell died from a heart attack in 1990. He was interred at the Welwood Murray Cemetery there.[5]


For his contribution to both motion pictures and television, Charles Farrell was awarded two stars on the Hollywood Walk of Fame in Hollywood at the following locations: 7021 Hollywood Blvd. (motion pictures), and 1617 Vine Street (television).

In 1992, a Golden Palm Star on the Palm Springs, California, Walk of Stars was dedicated to him.[6]



Short Subjects:

See also


  1. Palm Springs Cemetery District "Interments of Interest"
  2. Walpole Times Archived February 10, 2005, at the Wayback Machine.
  3. Folkart, Burt A. (May 11, 1990). "Charles Farrell, 89; Film and TV Actor, Developer, Former Palm Springs Mayor". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved February 5, 2013.
  4. Niemann, Greg (2006). "Ch. 25: Racquet Club Becomes a Hollywood Haven". Palm Springs Legends: creation of a desert oasis. San Diego, CA: Sunbelt Publications. p. 286. ISBN 978-0-932653-74-1. OCLC 61211290. (here for Table of Contents)
  5. Donald Greyfield (January 1, 2001). "Charles D. Farrell". silent screen star, politician, entrepreneur. Find a Grave.
  6. Palm Springs Walk of Stars by date dedicated

Further reading

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