James Maitland "Jimmy" Stewart[N 1] (May 20, 1908 – July 2, 1997) was an American film and stage actor, known for his distinctive drawl and down-to-earth persona. He starred in many films that are considered to be classics, and is known for portraying an American middle-class man struggling with a crisis.
Stewart was born on May 20, 1908, in Indiana, Pennsylvania, the son of Elizabeth Ruth Jackson (1875–1953) and Alexander Maitland Stewart (1871–1961), who owned a hardware store. Stewart had Scottish and Irish ancestry, and was raised as a Presbyterian. He was descended from veterans of the American Revolution, the War of 1812, and the American Civil War. The eldest of three children (he had two younger sisters, Virginia and Mary), he was expected to continue his father's business, which had been in the family for three generations. His mother was an excellent pianist but his father discouraged Stewart's request for lessons. When his father accepted a gift of an accordion from a guest, young Stewart quickly learned to play the instrument, which became a fixture offstage during his acting career. As the family grew, music continued to be an important part of family life...
Quotes by James Stewart
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