Amanda Blake Biography

Amanda Blake was an American actress best known for the role of Miss Kitty Russell on the TV series ‘Gunsmoke’. Check out this biography to know about her childhood, family life, achievements and fun facts about her life.

Quick Facts

Birthday: February 20, 1929

Nationality: American

Famous: Actresses American Women

Died At Age: 60

Sun Sign: Pisces

Also Known As: Beverly Louise Neill, Kitty, The Young Greer Garson

Born in: Buffalo, New York, USA

Famous as: Actress

Height: 5'6" (168 cm), 5'6" Females


Spouse/Ex-: Don Whitman (1954–1955), Frank Gilbert (1967–1982), Jason Day (1964–1967), Mark Spaeth (1984–1985)

father: Jesse

mother: Louise Puckett Neill

Died on: August 16, 1989

U.S. State: New Yorkers

More Facts

education: Claremont High School, Pomona College

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Amanda Blake, born as Beverly Louise Neill, was a popular American actress. She was best recognized for playing the role of Miss Kitty Russell in the TV series ‘Gunsmoke’. Besides this, she was known for appearing in television projects ‘The Red Skelton Show’, ‘Tattletales’ and ‘The Edge of Night’. She also acted in dozens of films including ‘Stars In My Crown’, ‘Duchess of Idaho’, ‘Cattle Town’, ‘Miss Robin Crusoe’, ‘About Mrs. Leslie’, ‘The Adventures of Hajji Baba’, ‘High Society’ and ‘The Boost’. A former telephone operator, Blake was an avid animal lover. She, along with her husband Frank Gilbert, was one of the first to successfully breed cheetahs in captivity. The American actress was also one of the co-founders of the Arizona Animal Welfare League (AAWL). She was even a one-time board member of Humane Society of the United States. Talking about the honours Blake had received, she was once inducted into the Hall of Great Western Performers of National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum. She was also awarded with a ‘Courage Award’ by the American Cancer Society.

  • Amanda Blake first appeared onscreen in the 1950 movie ‘Stars In My Crown’. The same year, she did the movies ‘Duchess of Idaho’ and ‘Counterspy Meets Scotland Yard’. After this, she got featured in the drama ‘Schlitz Playhouse of Stars’. In 1953, the American actress got the opportunity to act in the films ‘Lili’ and ‘Sabre Jet’. The following year she did a few movies, namely ‘Miss Robin Crusoe’, ‘About Mrs. Leslie’, ‘A Star Is Born’ and ‘The Adventures of Hajji Baba’.
  • Soon after this, Blake was cast as Kitty Russell in the drama series ‘Gunsmoke’. Then from 1957 to 1963, she played the role of Ruby in ‘The Red Skelton Show’. After this, she did the TV film ‘Clown Alley’. Then she hosted the game show ‘Tattletales’. In the year 1982, the actress appeared in the TV Movie Documentary ‘The Best Little Special in Texas’. Two years later, she played Dr. Juliana Stanhower in the drama ‘The Edge of Night’. Then in 1988, she did the film ‘The Boost’.
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Animal Welfare
  • Amanda Blake, along with her husband Frank Gilbert worked on an experimental breeding program for cheetahs and successfully bred the animals in captivity. The couple eventually raised seven generations of cheetahs! In 1971, Blake co-founded Arizona Animal Welfare League (AAWL), a ‘no-kill’ animal shelter in Arizona. She also helped the Performing Animal Welfare Society financially.
  • During that time, she also became a one-time board member of the Humane Society of the United States. In 1997—several years after the death of the actress—a wildlife refuge was opened in her memory in California. The Amanda Blake Memorial Wildlife Refuge offers sanctuary for the free-ranging African hoofed wildlife originally meant for exotic animal auctions or hunting ranches.
Personal Life
  • Amanda Blake was born as Beverly Louise Neill on February 20, 1929 in Buffalo, New York, USA, to parents Jesse and Louise. She completed her education from Claremont High School and Pomona College. In 1954, the actress got married to Don Whitman. After the couple’s divorce the following year, Blake moved on to marry Jason Day in 1964. After separating from him as well, the American beauty married Frank Gilbert in 1967. Unfortunately, her relationship with her third husband was also for a short duration. Then in 1984, she married Mark Spaeth and a year later, he died. A heavy chain-smoker, Amanda Blake was diagnosed with oral cancer in 1977 and had surgery for the same. She died on August 16, 1989 at the Mercy General Hospital of California, at the age of 60.

1. A Star Is Born (1954)

  (Musical, Drama, Romance)

2. Stars in My Crown (1950)

  (Drama, Family, Western)

3. Lili (1953)

  (Musical, Drama, Romance)

4. About Mrs. Leslie (1954)

  (Drama, Romance)

5. High Society (1955)


6. Criminal Lawyer (1951)

  (Drama, Crime, Romance, Mystery, Action)

7. Never Trust a Gambler (1951)

  (Drama, Thriller, Crime, Film-Noir)

8. The Glass Slipper (1955)

  (Romance, Musical)

How To Cite

Article Title
- Amanda Blake Biography
- Editors,
Last Updated
- October 24, 2017
Amanda Blake

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