Jo-Carroll Dennison

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Jo-Carroll Dennison (born December 16, 1923), was a beauty queen and actress originally from Tyler, Texas.

Dennison, a self-supported student at the Federal Institute in Tyler, Texas was lured into competing in the Miss Tyler pageant by the offer of a free swimsuit from Swartz Department Store. She won the pageant, and reluctantly agreed to represent Tyler in the Miss East Texas pageant.

Although Dennison was an involuntary participant, she won over the judges and took the East Texas title. As Miss East Texas, Dennison then competed in the Miss Texas pageant held at Austin Stadium in the August of 1942 where she won her third pageant crown.

Unenthusiastic at the idea of competing in state pageants, Dennison then faced a three-day train trip to compete for the title of Miss America in the national pageant held in Atlantic City, New Jersey. She won both the swimsuit and talent sections of the contest, and ultimately the Miss America crown. As a Wartime Miss America, Dennison traveled to visit defense plants, hospitals and service camps and sold war bonds. She was the first Miss Texas to win the Miss America crown.

Dennison later moved to California and signed with Twentieth Century-Fox and became a successful actress, with appearances in the acclaimed Winged Victory and the Oscar-winning The Jolson Story.

Dennison, who was briefly married to comedian Phil Silvers from 1945-1950, later re-married and successfully raised a family. For many years, she was involved with hospice care in her community and was later involved in writing a book entitled "Finding My Little Red Hat".

Pin-up Gallery


  • "The Adventures of Kit Carson" .... Jennie Bailey (1 episode, 1953)
... aka Kit Carson
- Bad Men of Marysville (1953) TV episode .... Jennie Bailey
  • "The Abbott and Costello Show" (1 episode, 1952)
- The Actors' Home (1952) TV episode (as Jo. Carroll Dennison)
  • "Adventures of Wild Bill Hickok" .... Kirby (1 episode, 1951)
- Ex-Convict Story (1951) TV episode .... Kirby
  • A Millionaire for Christy (1951) (uncredited) .... Nurse Jackson
... aka Golden Goose (USA)
... aka No Room for the Groom (USA)
  • Pickup (1951) .... Irma, Betty's friend
  • "Stars Over Hollywood" (1 episode, 1951)
- Prison Doctor (1951) TV episode
  • Prehistoric Women (1950) .... Nika
... aka The Virgin Goddess (USA: reissue title)
  • "Dick Tracy" .... Breathless Mahoney (1 episode)
- Dick Tracy and the Stolen Emeralds (????) TV episode (as Carroll Dennison) .... Breathless Mahoney
  • Beyond the Purple Hills (1950) (as Jo Dennison) .... Mollie Rayburn
  • The Jolson Story (1946) .... Ann Murray
  • The Missing Lady (1946) (as Jo Carroll Dennison) .... Gilda Marsh
... aka The Shadow and the Missing Lady
  • State Fair (1945) (uncredited) .... Girl
... aka It Happened One Summer (USA: TV title)
... aka Rodgers and Hammerstein's State Fair (USA: complete title)
  • Winged Victory (1944) .... Dorothy Ross
  • Ladies of Washington (1944) (uncredited) .... Frieda
... aka Ladies in Washington
  • The Song of Bernadette (1943) (uncredited) (unconfirmed) .... Young Nun
... aka Franz Werfel's The Song of Bernadette (USA: complete title)

External links

Jo-Carroll Dennison at the Internet Movie Database


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