Name at birth: Gretchen Michaela Young
Loretta Young was the Oscar-winning star of The Farmer's Daughter, Call of the Wild, and other films of the mid-20th century. Loretta Young was an ingenue in the silent film era before she made the transition to 'talkies' and more mature roles in the 1930s and 40s. She won the best actress Oscar for the 1947 film The Farmer's Daughter, playing a farm girl who is hired as the maid to a Congressman and eventually becomes a member of Congress herself. She won another Oscar nomination for playing a French nun building a children's hospital in New England in the 1949 movie Come to the Stable. Her other notable films of the era include Three Blind Mice (1938, with David Niven) and The Bishop's Wife (1947, with Cary Grant). From 1953-61, Young hosted her own popular TV series, The Loretta Young Show, winning three Emmy Awards for her performances. Loretta Young retired from show business in the 1960s and in later years she was especially known for her work with Catholic charities. Her memoir, Forever Young, was published after her death in 2000.
Loretta Young was married three times: to actor Grant Withers (from 1930 until their divorce in 1931), to producer Tom Lewis (from 1940 until their divorce in 1969), and to fashion designer Jean Louis (from 1993 until his death in 1997). She and Tom Lewis had two sons, Christopher (b. 1944) and Peter (b. 1945). Peter Lewis was a founding member of the 1960s rock band Moby Grape… Loretta Young also had a child with actor Clark Gable, conceived while they were filming the 1935 movie Call of the Wild. Gable was married at the time; Young hid the pregnancy from the public and gave birth to their daughter, Judy, in 1935. She raised Judy as her “adopted” daughter, and the truth of the story remained private until Judy Lewis revealed it in her 1994 memoir Uncommon Knowledge… Loretta Young is not related to actor Robert Young.
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