The Beverly Hillbillies – The Real Story
The Beverly Hillbillies
What’s it all about?

The Beverly Hillbillies is an American sit-com that ran on the CBS television network between 1962 and 1971. The show revolves around the main character, Jed Clampett (portrayed by Buddy Ebsen), who is a widow. In the intro to the show, While trying to shoot some game, Jed discovers crude oil pumping out of the ground. Strangely though, in the first episode, the oil well is discovered by a surveyor working for the OK Oil Company

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Video: The Beverly Hillbillies Opening & Closing Song 1962 – 1971
Striking it rich

After oil is discovered on his property, Jed is offered $25 million and gladly accepts it. In 2022, that amount would be worth $200 million. Not bad at all!

Off to Beverly Hills

After selling his oil-rich land, Jed and his family move to Beverly Hills, right next to two people who despise hillbillies. Mr. and Mrs. Milburn Drysdale are not ideal neighbors. Many episodes highlight a clash of the classes with some great humor ensuing


Granny is Jed Clampett’s mother-in-law, whose name is Daisy May Moses. She’s got a hair-trigger temper and flies off the handle but is often overruled by Jed. It’s a really funny family dynamic! Granny also proclaims herself to be a bona fide Hillbilly Doctor, using things like leaches as medicine and pliers to pull teeth. Incidentally, she’s also a pretty good dancer (see below)

The Beverly Hillbillies granny dancing gif
Beverly Hillbillies Theme Song Lyrics

Opening Theme

Come and listen to my story about a man named Jed
A poor mountaineer, barely kept his family fed,
And then one day he was shootin at some food,
And up through the ground come a bubblin crude.

Oil that is, black gold, Texas tea.

Well the first thing you know ol Jed’s a millionaire,
The kinfolk said “Jed move away from there”
Said “Californy is the place you ought to be”
So they loaded up the truck and they moved to Beverly

Hills, that is. Swimmin pools, movie stars.

The Beverly Hillbillies

The Beverly Hillbillies shirt

Closing Theme

Well now it’s time to say good bye to Jed and all his kin.
And they would like to thank you folks fer kindly droppin in.
You’re all invited back next week to this locality
To have a heapin helpin of their hospitality

Hillbilly that is. Set a spell, Take your shoes off.

Y’all come back now, y’hear?

Fun Facts about the show

The Beverly Hillbillies shot to #1 in the TV ratings after only 3 episodes!

Jethro, the half-witted nephew of Jed Clampett often tried to impress women with his education (elementary school) and also by telling them he was a Secret Agent

55 of the show’s first episodes are “public domain” because CBS never renewed the copyrights for them. Nobody receives royalties from these 55 episodes

The role of Jed Clampett was offered to Buddy Epsen after producers saw him portray a similar character in the 1961 film Breakfast at Tiffany’s

During it’s 9 year run, The Beverly Hillbillies got 7 Emmy Award nods

The show’s theme song was sung by Foggy Mountain Boys, which included Lester Flatt and Earl Scruggs

The show was universally given bad reviews by TV critics, despite it’s high ratings

In 1971, CBS canceled the show and began a publicity campaign to rid itself of the reputation of being a “rural” network. Similar shows that were also canceled in the same time period were “Petticoat Junction,”Green Acres”, “Gomer Pyle” and “Mayberry RFD

The show produced an amazing 274 episodes!

In 1981, CBS decided to bring back the show with a film entitled Return of the Beverly Hillbillies. It received luke warm reviews

In 1993, a television special called Legend of the Beverly Hillbillies aired on CBS-TV. It received much better reviews than the 1981 film

The cast

Buddy Ebsen – Jed Clampett
Irene Ryan – Daisy May “Granny” Moses
Donna Douglas – Elly May Clampett
Max Baer Jr. – Jethro Bodine
Raymond Bailey – Milburn Drysdale
Nancy Kulp – Jane Hathaway
Harriet E. MacGibbon – Mrs. Margaret Drysdale
Judy the Chimpanzee – Cousin Bessie
Bea Benaderet – Cousin Pearl Bodine
Shug Fisher – Shorty Kellems
Danielle Mardi – Helen Thompson
Linda Henning – Jethrine Bodine
Sharon Tate – Janet Trego
Frank Wilcox – John Brewster
Elvia Allman – Elverna Bradshaw
Roger Torrey – Mark Templeton
Larry Pennell – Dash Riprock
Frank Cady – Sam Drucker
Judith Jordan – Patricia Switzer
Bill Baldwin – Announcer
Bruno The Bear – Fairchild
Arthur Gould-Porter – Ravenswood

The Beverly Hillbillies Trivia

  • 1. The Beverly Hillbillies was the most watched television show in the United States during its first season.
  • 2. The show was created by Paul Henning and ran for nine seasons from 1962 to 1971.
  • 3. The Beverly Hillbillies was set in the fictional town of Hooterville, located in the Ozarks.
  • 4. The show’s theme song, “The Ballad of Jed Clampett,” was written by Paul Henning and performed by Flatt & Scruggs.
  • 5. The Beverly Hillbillies starred Buddy Ebsen as Jed Clampett, Irene Ryan as Granny, Donna Douglas as Elly May Clampett, and Max Baer Jr. as Jethro Bodine.
  • 6. The show was nominated for seven Emmy Awards and won two.
  • 7. It spawned a feature film in 1993, titled The Beverly Hillbillies.
  • 8. The Beverly Hillbillies was ranked number 17 on TV Guide’s 50 Greatest TV Shows of All Time list.
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2 responses to “The Beverly Hillbillies – The Real Story”

  1. […] the Golden Globe Awards, where it won the award for Best Motion Picture – Musical or Comedy. Beverly Hills Cop was followed by two sequels: Beverly Hills Cop II (1987) and Beverly Hills Cop III (1994). The […]

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