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Henry Travers Overview:

Character actor, Henry Travers, was born Travers John Heagerty on Mar 5, 1874 in Berwick-Upon-Tweed, Northumberland. Travers died at the age of 91 on Oct 18, 1965 in Hollywood, CA and was laid to rest in Forest Lawn Memorial Park (Glendale) Cemetery in Glendale, CA.


Henry Travers came to films when he was almost 60 and specialized in wisdom and whimsicality, combining both in memorable fashion as Clarence the Angel in Capra's "It's a Wonderful Life". He died from complications following arteriosclerosis. Received an Oscar nomination for "Mrs Miniver.

(Source: available at Amazon Quinlan's Illustrated Dictionary of Film Character Actors).



Although Travers was nominated for one Oscar, he never won a competitive Academy Award.

Academy Awards

YearAwardFilm nameRoleResult
1942Best Supporting ActorMrs. Miniver (1942)Mr. BallardNominated

BlogHub Articles:

By Bogart Fan on Nov 14, 2013 From The Bogie Film Blog

Birth Name:  Travers John Heagerty Birthdate: March 5, 1874 Number of Films that Made with Humphrey Bogart:  3 The Lowdown It probably shows how little I truly know about classic film to admit that I learned was an English actor while researching this post!  I’m embarrass... Read full article

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Best Supporting Actor Oscar 1942

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Henry Travers Film Quotes
[George has discovered his brother Harry's tombstone]
Clarence: [explaining] Your brother, Harry Bailey, broke through the ice and was drowned at the age of nine.
George Bailey: That's a lie! Harry Bailey went to war! He got the Congressional Medal of Honor! He saved the lives of every man on that transport!
Clarence: Every man on that transport died! Harry wasn't there to save them, because you weren't there to save Harry.
-- Henry Travers as Clarence

Clarence: Ohh, there must be some easier way for me to get my wings.
-- Henry Travers as Clarence

Baron Cesarea: I think you're all wrong to be afraid. I talked to him about dying, and he said "Has it ever occurred to you that Death may be simpler than Life and infinitely more kind?"
Duke Lambert: He said that?
Baron Cesarea: Yes... and when he spoke, I had a curious feeling that somehow he knew.
-- Henry Travers as Baron Cesarea

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Henry Travers Facts
Active on Broadway from 1901-38 (early in his career credited as Travers Heagerty, his birth name).

Fondly remembered as Clarence, James Stewart's guardian angel ("angel second class"), in Frank Capra's It's a Wonderful Life (1946).

Of Irish extraction.

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