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About this Famous Person

Jayne MANSFIELD

American Jayne MANSFIELD

born Vera Jayne PALMER

American actress

Born: on April 19, 1933 in Bryn Mawr, Pennsylvania, USA
Died: on June 29, 1967 in Near Slidell, Louisiana, USA


Biography

Mansfield, of German and English ancestry, was the only child of Herbert William and Vera (née Jeffrey) Palmer. Her birthname was Vera Jayne Palmer. A natural brunette, she was born in Bryn Mawr, Pennsylvania, but spent her early childhood in Phillipsburg, New Jersey. When she was three years old, her father, a lawyer who was in practice with future New Jersey governor Robert B. Meyner, died of a heart attack while driving a car with his wife and daughter. After his death, her mother worked as a school teacher. In 1939, when Vera Palmer remarried, the family moved to Dallas, Texas. Mansfield's desire to become an actress developed at an early age. In 1950, Vera Jayne Palmer married Paul Mansfield, thus becoming Jayne Mansfield, and the couple moved to Austin, Texas. She studied dramatics at the University of Dallas and the University of Texas at Austin. While attending the University of Texas, she won several beauty contests, with titles that included "Miss Photoflash," "Miss Magnesium Lamp" and "Miss Fire Prevention Week." The only title she ever turned down was "Miss Roquefort Cheese," because she believed that it "just didn't sound right." In 1954, they moved to Los Angeles and she studied dramatics at UCLA.

Mansfield's acting aspirations were temporarily put on hold with the birth of her first child, Jayne Marie Mansfield, on November 8, 1950 at the age of 17. She juggled motherhood and classes at the University of Texas at Austin, then spent a year at Camp Gordon, Georgia during her husband's service in the United States Army. She attended UCLA during the summer of 1953 then went back to Texas for fall quarter at Southern Methodist University. In Dallas she became a student of actor Baruch Lumet, father of director Sidney Lumet and founder of the Dallas Institute of the Performing Arts. On October 22, 1953, she first appeared on stage in a production of Arthur Miller's Death of a Salesman. Frequent references have been made to Mansfield's very high IQ, which she advertised as 163. She spoke five languages, and was a classically trained pianist and violinist. Mansfield admitted her public didn't care about her brains. "They're more interested in 40-21-35," she said.

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See Also :

- Category Actor