People kept giving Don Knotts bullets

The deputy's single bullet was such a beloved running joke that fans gave him hundreds of single bullets.

While Sheriff Andy Taylor was the "Sheriff Without a Gun," Deputy Barney Fife has no such reservations. Barney's gun handling is one of the most well-known running gags on The Andy Griffith Show. He loves to flex his authority by carrying one, but since he more often ends up shooting walls, windows, or his own foot, Andy makes a strict rule that Barney is to carry only one bullet in his shirt pocket.

Of course, when the situation arose where a loaded gun would be handy, Barney starts shaking and fumbling as he tries to put his single bullet in the gun. It's just another part of what makes Barney Fife such a memorable character.

Fans loved the deputy and his single bullet, to the point where Don Knotts amassed an unusual collection.

Daniel de Visé, in his book Andy and Don: The Making of a Friendship and a Classic American TV Show, wrote about the fans who would bring Knotts a single bullet.

Actress Dodie Brown, who worked with Knotts onstage, said that fans "would line up along the hotel, three blocks, and wait in line to get an autograph from him. They would come up and say, 'I’m your best fan.' Every single person would say that. Every policeman would bring him bullets."

According to de Visé, Knotts held on to these gifts. "Don [Knotts] never knew what to do with the bullets... Hundreds of them rattled around the drawers of his Century City condo."

Sheriff Taylor would have been mighty upset if his deputy had started carrying those hundreds of gifts in his shirt pocket.

Watch The Andy Griffith Show on MeTV!

Weeknights at 8 & 8:30, Sundays at 6 & 6:30 PM

*available in most MeTV markets
Are you sure you want to delete this comment?


bagandwallyfan52 17 months ago
Betty Lynn
Thelma Lou
The Andy Griffith Show
ELEANOR 18 months ago
I was watching "First 48" when it was in Dallas and they, of course, filmed the office and there on the detective's cubical wall was a giant photo of Don Knotts as Barney Fife.
Zip 18 months ago
Now we know who to blame if there is ever an ammunition shortage.
FrankensteinLover 18 months ago
Don Knotts was A Comic Genius, he took Barney Fife to a whole New Level. When you can be funny without being Provocative that says it all.
327053 18 months ago
Loved how his Barney Fife and Mr. Furley characters were one in the same.🤣
Runeshaper 18 months ago
That's both hilarious and AWESOME at the same time! (-:
JHP 18 months ago
barney is nothing more than a insolent gilligan
JHP 18 months ago
in todays climate - Barn and a AR - now that would be something
Andybandit 18 months ago
I love Barney and his one bullet.
country46 18 months ago
barney and his one dam bullet ha ha
KMT6600 18 months ago
I love to hear about Barney Fife he was almost the star of the show but then you have Andy & Opie & all the rest ! I just loved that show
MrsPhilHarris KMT6600 18 months ago
The show was certainly not as entertaining after Barney moved away.
twiggins84 MrsPhilHarris 8 months ago
The Andy Griffith show was before my time, I'm 38 years old but have watched reruns more times than I can ever count. Any episodes after season 5 I can go without watching though. Without Don Knott's it just isn't the same. For some reason it just isn't the same in color either. I grew up watching reruns of Petticoat Junction and Green Acres weeknights with my mom and have always loved both shows. The Dick Van Dyke show is another of my favorites. They don't make shows like they used to.
MrsPhilHarris twiggins84 8 months ago
They certainly don’t make shows like they used to. And I agree about Andy Griffith. I only watch the black & white episodes. I also love The Dick Van Dyke Show. I wanted to live in their house. 😁
Are you sure you want to delete this comment?