Arthur Morton Godfrey

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Arthur Morton Godfrey

Death: March 16, 1983 (79)
Mount Sinai Hospital in Manhattan (Emphysema)
Place of Burial: Leesburg, Virginia
Immediate Family:

Son of Arthur Hanbury Godfrey and Kathryn Godfrey

Managed by: Private User
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Immediate Family

About Arthur Morton Godfrey

Arthur Morton Godfrey (August 31, 1903 – March 16, 1983) was an American radio and television broadcaster and entertainer who was sometimes introduced by his nickname, The Old Redhead. No television personality of the 1950s enjoyed more clout or fame than Godfrey until a famous on-the-air incident undermined his folksy image and triggered a gradual decline; the then-ubiquitous Godfrey helmed two CBS-TV weekly series and a daily 90-minute television mid-morning show through most of the decade, but by the early 1960s found himself reduced to hosting an occasional TV special.

Arguably the most prominent of the medium's early master commercial pitchmen, he was strongly identified with many of his many sponsors, especially Chesterfield cigarettes and Lipton Tea. After many years for Chesterfield (during which Godfrey came up with the idea and slogan "Buy 'em by the carton"), he severed the relationship during one of his television programs, when his doctors convinced him that his lung cancer was due to smoking. Subsequently, he became a prominent spokesman for anti-smoking education.




Behind the scenes

Later in life

Personal life and Awards


Emphysema, thought to have been caused by decades of smoking and the radiation treatments for Godfrey's lung cancer, became a problem in the early 1980s. He died of the condition at Mount Sinai Hospital in Manhattan on March 16, 1983 at the age of 79. Godfrey was buried at Union Cemetery in Leesburg, Virginia, not far from his farm in Waterford, Virginia.

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Arthur Morton Godfrey's Timeline

August 31, 1903
March 16, 1983
Age 79
Mount Sinai Hospital in Manhattan
Union Cemetery, Leesburg, Virginia