Wednesday, January 8, 2020

You wanted to know . . . about Mayf Nutter (Bobby Bigelow) and Doney Oatman (Betsy Morgan) and their "Waltons" episodes

A reader wanted to know about two actprs who played secondary characters on The Waltons - Mayf Nutter (Bobby Bigelow) and Doney Oatman (Betsy Morgan).


Mayf Nutter was born Mayfred Nutter (Adamson) on October 19, 1941 in Jane Lew, West Virginia.  According to, his name was shortened to "Mayf" in 1957, when he was playing on the All-star Babe Ruth baseball team.  A sportswriter, who had difficulty spelling his name correctly, wrote "MAYF" and the name stuck.  In most sources, "Adamson" is shown to be Mayf's original surname and Nutter" his middle name.  However, according to his biography on  IMDb, the name "Adamson" was suggested by singer Pat Boone because"Mayf Nutter" sounded like a "comedic singer."

Mayf comes from a musical family. He was first heard on radio at the age of 12 and later hosted his own music show on a local television station.  Mayf cut his debut recordings in Atlanta, Georgia and then moved to California in the late 1960s.  In September of 1967, he joined The New Christy Minstrels.,an American ensemble folk group founded by Randy Sparks in 1961.  He also had a stint as lead guitarist for Del Shannon.  After leaving The New Christy Minstrals, Mayf  had his first solo hit in 1970 with a tribute to Johnny Cash entitled "Hey, There, Johnny." 

Mayf Nutter began his television career with appearances on episodes of a string of Westerns such as Gunsmoke (1967), Bonanza (1970) and The High Chaparral (1970).  From 1974 to 1975, Mayf portrayed  Bobby Bigelow in three episodes of The Waltons - "The Book" (Season 3, Episode 10, Air Date: November 14, 1974), "The Song" (Season 3, Episode 22, Air Date: February 20, 1975 and "The Breakdown" (Season 4, Episode 6, Air Date: October 16, 1975).  In 1976, he provided the voice of a jukebox vocalist in an episode of the series entitled "The Fledgling" (Season 4, Episode 23, Air Date: February 26, 1976).

Maif's character. Bobby Bigelow, was lead singer and founder of a band called Bobby Bigelow and the Haystack Gang.  The band played the Jefferson County, Virginia area, the fictional mountain-area community which provided the setting for The Waltons.  Bigelow hired Jason Walton for the salary of $3.50 a night to play guitar and sing in his band.

Mayf as Bobby Bigelow on The Waltpms

Mayf as Bpbbu Bigelow with Jon Walmsley as Joason Walton

In 1976, Mayf  appeared in an episode of yet another Western, How the West Was Won.  In the 1970s, he also had guest roles on Charlie's Angels (1976) and the Dukes of Hazzard (1979). In the 1980s, Mayf made appearances on such such series as The Fall Guy (1982), Murder, She Wrote (1984), Airwolf (1985) and Houston Knights (1987)/  From 1984 to 1985, Mayf had a recurring role on the prime time soap Knot's Landing.  He portrayed Parker Winslow, Valene Ewing's boyfriend.

* Mayf has been married to Omaha, Nebraska native Lindsay Bloom since 1980.  Lindsay (born August 28, 1950) is an actress and former beauty pageant contestant (Miss Arizona, Miss USA 1972). In the 1970s, she appeared in episodes of such television series as Barnaby Jones (1973), Emergency (1974), Wonder Woman (1976),  Rhoda (1976),  Police Story (1977) and Starsky and Hutch (1976, 1978).  From 1979 to 1981 she played Myrtle and Mabel Tillingham on The Dukes of Hazzard.  In 1982, she had a recurring role as Bonnie Robertson on Dallas.  She also portrayed loyal secretary Velda on The New Mike Hammer from 1984 to 1987.

Lindsay Bloom
Mayf and Lindsay have three children - daughters Sage and Haylee, and son, Chase.  Below is a 2005 photo that shows Mayf with "son, Jerry."  I haven't been able to determine if Jerry is Mayf's son from a previous marriage or relationship or if the photo caption is incorrect.

Lindsay with daughter, Sage


* Back in 1970, Mayf Nutter recorded an anti-pollution number called "Simpson Creek (Won't Ever Run Clear Again)"

* During the early 1970s, Mayf guested on Buck Owens' Ranch Show; a weekly country TV series, over 50 times.

* On September 29, 2012 Mayf Nutter and Lindsay Bloom  attended The Waltons 40th anniversary reunion at the Wilshire Ebell Theatre in Los Angeles, California.  Mayf also attended the October 19, 2018 Bobby Bigelow and the Haystack Gang Walton's reunion. at the Nelson County High School in Lovingston, Virginia.

* Mayf and Lindsay both appeared in Lone Star Bar & Grill, a 1983 television series - the first Showtime produced series. Based on a true story, it was about a group of housewives prostituting themselves out of a bar in Dallas, Texas.  However, due to a management changed at Showtime, the R-rated show was not picked up, despite high ratings.

* In 1982. Mayf became the first American country performer to appear on Chinese television.

* Mayf is a 2020 inductee of the West Virginia Music Hall of Fame  He is also a member of Nashville's Country Music Hall of Fame's Walkway of Stars..  He has returned to West Virginia regularly for the Wheeling Jamboree's "Jamboree in the Hills."

* Mayf and Lindsay currently reside in Southern California.


Doney Oatman (born 1958) made her name as a child actor in the 1970s.  She played Felix Unger's (Tony Randall) daughter, Edna, in three episodes of The Odd Couple, from 1972 to 1975.  Doney was the second actor to play the role of Edna,  The first Edna was Pamelyn Ferdin,

In a 1974 episode of The Odd Couple, Doney, as Edna Unger, runs away because her father keeps her from attending a Paul Williams concert.  The episode is entitled "The Paul Williams Story" (Season 5, Episode 9, Air Date: November 7, 1974).

Below is a photo of Doney with Paul Williams in the Odd Couple episode.

Doney appeared as Betsy Morgan in two 1975 episodes of The Waltons - "The Song" (Season 3, Episode 22, Air Date: February 20, 1975 and "The Breakdown" (Season 4, Episode 6, Air Date: October 16, 1975).  Mayf Nutter played Bobby Bigelow in both of those episodes.

Doney Oatman as Edna Unger on The Odd Couple

Betsy Morgan, Doney Oatman's character was a schoolgirl who ran errands Bobby Bigelow and his band.  Below is a photo of Doney as Betsy Morgan and Jon Walmsley as Jason Walton in an episode entitled "The Breakdown."  In the episode, Jason spends too much time playing with his band.  As a result his school work, music lessons, and health begin to suffer.  At a barn dance, Betsy Morgan's date, Ralph, becomes rowdy and jealous after drinking too much.  Jason protects her by taking her home and insists that she sleep on the porch.

Daney Oatman with Jon Walmsley in Waltons episode

After The Waltons, Doney appeared as Jackie in a 1977 TV movie entitled The Spell, a horror/drama film starring Lee Grant and Helen Hunt.  That same year, she portrayed McCain in another television movie, Delta County, U.S.A,, about life in a small community in the American South.  She also had a role in a television mini-series called Little Vic. about the life of Gillie Walker, a 14-year-old orphan from Harlem who becomes a jockey.  Doney played Julie Sayer in the February 23, 1977 episode of the 6-part series.

In 1977, Doney Oatman had guest roles in episodes of Eight is Enough, Charlie's Angels and James at 16.  In 1978, she appeared in episodes of Maude and The Rockford Files.  Her appearance on The Rockford Files is her last television acting credit, after which she walked away from the limelight.  Her exit seems sudden and abrupt.

Doney acting career was short-lived and there is very little information on her online. That leads me to believe that she wishes to lead a private life.  A blogger posted this photo and identified the woman in it as Doney Oatman.  I cannot verify that this is indeed Doney.


* From 1974 to 1977, Doney Oatman appeared in three ABC Afterschool Specials.

SOURCESAll Music website (, biography of Mayf Nutter by Sandra Brennan; West Virginia Music Hall of Fame website (www,; The Parkersburg News and Sentinal, West Virginaia's Music Hall of Fame announces inductees, March 31, 2019; Wikipedia, Internet Movie Data Base (

- Joanne

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