Frank Cady became a star because he began balding at 24 years old

The veteran character actor attributed his success to his "dome."

In the 1960s, character actor Frank Cady achieved more than any TV star when he began regularly appearing in not one, not two, but three Top 20 rated TV shows, all on air at the same time.

On Green Acres, Petticoat Junction and The Beverly Hillbillies, Cady portrayed Sam Drucker, the general storekeeper, newspaper editor, mayor and postmaster of Hooterville, appearing in hundreds of episodes.

At the same time, Cady could be seen on other hit shows like The Andy Griffith Show, Gunsmoke and Wagon Train. And before all that, his first recurring TV role came on The Adventures of Ozzie and Harriet.

In 1969, a TV writer for United Press International described Cady as "a force to deal with in television through sheer quantitative appearances."

Through all of this newly acquired fame, Cady remained humble, claiming, "I don’t have a big impact. I’m not a flashy guy."

But while Cady wasn’t ready to consider himself a "force" on TV, he did partly attribute his success to one notable characteristic: his baldness.

In 1970, Cady told The Cincinnati Enquirer that when he began balding at the age of 24, he considered it lucky because he never thought he was good-looking enough to become a leading man, anyway.

His baldness helped him stand out in another way.

"I’m not that handsome type, the collar-ad kind," Cady said. "The dome has helped. I know I’m the character type."

In his home life, Cady married his soulmate Shirley after they met putting on musicals at Stanford University. By that point, Cady was already bald, but fully embraced it.

Both liked to sing and write songs, and soon after marrying, they had a boy and a girl to complete their little family.

In 1970, they’d been married for more than 30 years, and Cady was just as excited talking about his wife as he was the first time that he heard her sing. He gushed about what he thought it was that kept their marriage going so strong despite his busy Hollywood career.

"We have a lot of common interests," Cady said. "We like each other very much. We both love to golf, camp and travel together. Music is both our hobbies. We’re both interested in writing."

Out of all the characters Cady played across his career, which stretched from 1947 to 1990, Sam Drucker was the character he said was the most like himself.

"I’ve never had more fun in my life than playing this character," Cady said. "He’s closer to me than any other roles I ever played."

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Mimi1130 2 months ago
Good ol' Sam Drucker, what a terrific character. I always wanted him and Kate to get together. lol
DDDDDuane 4 months ago
Frank was hilarious on those great shows...He was a unique character actor that lived a great long life...
AnnaRentzVandenhazel 5 months ago
He was very funny in the episode of "Andy Grifith" where Otis Campbell got mad at Barney and turned himself in to a jail in another county. Sam played his cellmate "Luke", at the end he brought a bunch of other drunks to the Mayberry jail because he liked Otis's description.
Nala92129 5 months ago
Couldn't stand him and his mush-mouth schtick.
WilliamHogan 5 months ago
Frank Cady's character on Ozzie and Harriet was Doc Williams.
JHP 5 months ago
Cady played Otis Campbell's best buddy in the Mount Pilot klink
AnnaRentzVandenhazel JHP 5 months ago
Thanks, I just posted a comment about that episode before I saw this, I couldn't remember for sure if it was Mount Pilot.
JHP AnnaRentzVandenhazel 5 months ago
yup Otis took his "business" to the Mt Pilot jail after BARNAY pee-oed Otis

Cady looked like the perfect drunk in the klink with Otis and then he really acts it at the mayberry jail:)
RichLorn 5 months ago
He is grateful he started his career before Hair Club for Men opened for business.
Bill 5 months ago
I’ve always liked the Petticoat Junction theme song.....”Lotta curves, you bet, n’even more when you get to the Junction, Petticoat Junction!” 😀
JHP Bill 5 months ago
that train scene was filmed in and around Portland OR
AnnaRentzVandenhazel JHP 5 months ago
Actually, it was filmed in northern California. I rented the first season of Petticoat Junction from Netflix, the DVD is hosted by Linda Kaye Henning ("Betty Jo" and daughter of creator Paul Henning), she said that the train donated by the hotel in Portland (as shown in the credits) was actually a plastic model used for scenes where they showed the engineer talking to someone after dark.

PS - The real train that moved was also used in "The Wild Wild West" and "Little House on the Prairie".
JHP Bill 5 months ago
Pat Woodell - the Mt Everest of yummo:)
1926ModelT 5 months ago
He played a tax man on the classic Jimmy Durante film "The Great Rupert", in which Uncle Sam tries to collect taxes on seemingly miraculous money from "above" which was acquired by Durante and his family.
justjeff 5 months ago
Here's Frank in his high school photo from 1933 with both hair AND glasses...
RobertM justjeff 5 months ago
Apparently his hair moved from his head to his upper lip.
Sway 5 months ago
He played a con man in a Perry Mason episode (Case of the Pathetic Patient) veering from his Sam Drucker type character.
Sorella 5 months ago
Frank Cady served in the Army Air Corps during WWII in England. He was my Dad's superior on one of our airbases there. On D-Day they were there working in supplies. I know this only because one day when Dad was much older and we were watching MeTV and saw him. My Dad blurted out "Oh, look! That's Frank Cady! He was my boss during the War when I was stationed in England."
MarkHenderson1959 Sorella 5 months ago
Which bomb group was he in?
Sorella MarkHenderson1959 5 months ago
I wish I knew. There were so many. I saw recently discovered colorized films of our bases from that era. They were being bombed by the Luftwaffe -German Air Force- at night and some of our men were killed.
Sorella MarkHenderson1959 5 months ago
The films aired on the History Channel.
Runeshaper 5 months ago
Frank Cady was a truly talented man. I'm so glad that he found love in his life in addition to enjoying his career (-:
Pacificsun 5 months ago
Cady played so many of the same (type of) characters you got the feeling that you knew him anyway!!
327053 5 months ago
My favorite Green Acres character 😀
JHP 327053 5 months ago
him and Hank KImball
15inchBlackandWhite 5 months ago
I know a guy who went bald at that age. The ladies loved him! I think it was just because he embraced it and didn't try to do anything stupid like hairpieces or comb-overs.
Sway 15inchBlackandWhite 5 months ago
Yes, bald is masculine and can be sexy.
But didn't Drucker do a GA episode fooling around with a toupee? I thought I remembered it slipping all around. I don't remember the plot though.
justjeff Pacificsun 5 months ago
The just ran it recently. Lisa's spot remover. Sam's newly-bought toupee gets dunked into the pickle barrel, turning it green - and the "spot remover" removed the green... and later on, most of the hair...
Pacificsun justjeff 5 months ago
Thanks to you, now I remember and it was funny!
1926ModelT Pacificsun 5 months ago
Yes, he did. He was trying to court an old flame, and was competing with Uncle Joe, and I believe Floyd Smoot, the conductor on the Cannonball.
JHP 15inchBlackandWhite 5 months ago
I am sort of bald like Cady (don't have his accent) but mother nature plays bad jokes on males ; the eyebrow hair and ear hair NEVER fall out! :)
It was Petticoat Junction where Sam had the wig, unless there's a Green Acres episode I don't know about. Uncle Joe believed he'd discovered a secret formula for growing hair, both Sam and Floyd were using the same wig to pretend the stuff had worked for them.
Andybandit 5 months ago
Cool story. He was a nice guy on Green Acres. I never watched Petticoat Junction. Even though it was from the same place as Green Acres.
RobertM 5 months ago
This story reminds me of the “Green Acres” episode where Sam showed his high school yearbook to Oliver, who comments on the former’s prematurely bald head; Sam answered that with, “We Druckers thin out early”.
KJExpress 5 months ago
I remember this actor advertising Fit 'n Trim (I think that was the name) dog food back in the 70's. Why I remember that all these years later I do not know. I wish I would remember more important things. 🤔
michaelevensen KJExpress 5 months ago
We used to feed that food to our overweight dog.
KJExpress michaelevensen 5 months ago
Thanks for posting. What a blast from the past. ☺
ETristanBooth KJExpress 5 months ago
The little bit of voice-over narration at the end sounds like William Schallert.
KJExpress ETristanBooth 5 months ago
It does sound like WS. I hadn't noticed.
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