Denver Pyle
"Uncle Jesse Duke"
Denver Pyle Filmography
    Denver Pyle was born on May 11, 1920 in a town called Bethune, Colorado.  He got the unusual name Denver, because his parents always liked that city. 
     Pyle attended Colorado State University for a while, until he went to work in the oil fields of Texas and Oklahoma.  He later moved to Los Angeles in 1940 where he briefly worked as a page at NBC before enlisting in the Navy.  He fought in World War II and was wounded in action off Guadalcanal and received a medical discharge in 1942.
     Pyle later work at a aircraft plant in Los Angeles.  He accompanied a friend who tested for a play and, to his surprise, he received a part as well.  Pyle's friend had a sister who was studying acting with Josephine Dillon, who was then married to Clark Gable.  He began taking acting lessons from her for fifty dollars a week.  Pyle in 1946 opened the Glendale Community Theatre, playing he father in the play
Ring Around Elizabeth and was noticed by a talent scout from Columbia Pictures.  Pyle received a small role in The Guilt of Janet Ames in 1947.  Six months later he was featured in the western The Man From Colorado in 1948.  After that western, Pyle became a mainstay on such western series as The Roy Rogers Show and The Gene Autry Show.  He was a frequent guest star on You Are There. Pyle played supporting roles in Johnny Guitar, The Alamo, The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance, and Cheyenne Autumn.  In Bonnie and Clyde he was seen as one of the federal agents who ended the fugitives' crime wave in a hail of bullets.
     Pyle also played in TV series such as
Tammy, as Tammy's grandfather on the series, and played another father role on The Doris Day Show. The Andy Griffith Show as Brisco Darlin.  He was Mad Jack in the series The Life and Times of Grizzly Adams.
     When the
Dukes of Hazzard came with there series, Pyle met up with James Best.  They had played in many western shows together.  Pyle spent his whole interview talking about how good James Best would be in any series.  Pyle then read his lines and left.  They loved Pyle on the spot.  Thus became Uncle Jesse.
Information from the Dukes of Hazzard Unofficial Companion.
    Jesse L. Duke (Uncle Jesse) was the uncle to Bo, Luke, and Daisy Duke.  He was the patriot of the Duke family.  The boys and Daisy always listened to their Uncle Jesse.  Jesse could make the best moonshine this side of the Mississippi.  Boss Hogg and Jesse were old moonshine buddies in the 40's.  Jesse was head strong about the old ways of life and expected Bo, Luke, and Daisy to follow them.