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Mary White (1977)

1:15 | Trailer
The true story of the relationship between famed author William Allen White and his teenaged daughter Mary, who died in a horseback-riding accident at age 16, and the powerful effect the tragedy had on the life of her father.


Jud Taylor


William Allen White (inspired by the writtings of), Caryl Ledner
Nominated for 1 Golden Globe. Another 1 win. See more awards »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Ed Flanders ... William Allen White
Fionnula Flanagan ... Sallie White
Tim Matheson ... William L. White
Donald Moffat ... Sir James Barrie
Diana Douglas ... Jane Addams
Kathleen Beller ... Mary White
Howard McGillin ... Richard Sloan III
Kaki Hunter ... Selina
William Kuhlke William Kuhlke ... John Rice
Henry Strozier ... Mr. Andrews
Valerie Cotton Valerie Cotton ... Ellie Rogers
Paul Frederickson Paul Frederickson ... Tom
Jack Meyer Jack Meyer ... Tod
Barry McGuire Barry McGuire ... Mr. Bonner
Peggy Lang Peggy Lang ... Miss Peabody


The true story of the relationship between famed author William Allen White and his teenaged daughter Mary, who died in a horseback-riding accident at age 16, and the powerful effect the tragedy had on the life of her father. Written by frankfob2@yahoo.com

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis









Release Date:

18 November 1977 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Min dotter - Mary White See more »

Filming Locations:

Kansas, USA

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:




Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


In the scene where Mary drives to school, a window air conditioner can be spotted on one of the houses. See more »


Features In the Heart of a Fool (1920) See more »

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User Reviews

A Young Life Well Lived
5 January 2005 | by heinekerSee all my reviews

On November 18, 1977 everyone in Emporia tuned in to watch "Mary White", the made-for-TV movie about our hometown girl. That year was the only time I saw the work, but it stayed vivid in my mind. So, recently for a gift to myself, I bought the DVD of this movie filmed in my hometown.

From the beginning we know Mary dies. This film dramatizes what the White family, Emporia and, perhaps, the world lost. Because of her father's editorial fame and by her 16th year, Mary had dined with presidents, chatted with literati and consorted with the social thinkers of the day, all in her own home. She was bright, self-actualizing and a champion for doing the right thing. Then in 1921, she dies. Her father grieves in the only way he knows, through the press; and the world comes to know of Mary White, so much so that 56 years after her death, this work was filmed. Mary White was a remarkable young woman, and she is played superbly by Kathleen Beller.

The made-for-TV movie takes some dramatic license with the facts, has period gaffes and seasonal continuity problems (it was filmed in the spring); but, on the whole, is an inspiring and poignant portrayal of a teenage girl with a social conscience and the courage to work for change. I can only think of what contribution Mary would have made as an adult. Would her contribution have eclipsed her father and brother?

The William Allen White home is now an official site of the Kansas State Historical Society, open to the public. Many of the scenes in this film were shot within and on the grounds of Mary White's home.

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