Just down the road from our place is the small town of Chimacum, Washington. Just a few buildings at an intersection make up the town, but what is remarkable about the place are two former residents, Ma and Pa Kettle. Yep, they were real people living here in our county—a hillbilly couple with fifteen children. If you are not familiar with them, Ma and Pa Kettle are comic film characters of the successful film series of the same name, produced by Universal Studios, in the late '40s and '50s.
Ma and Pa Kettle were featured by Betty MacDonald in her 1945 best-selling novel, The Egg and I. (Chimacum has a road called the Egg and I.) The success of the novel spawned the 1947 film The Egg and I starring Claudette Colbert and Fred MacMurray, also co-starring Marjorie Main and Percy Kilbride as Ma and Pa Kettle.
The little grocery store in Chimacum has actual photographs of the Kettles posted on their wall. And the actors portraying the couple do resemble the originals. Read the book and watch the movies—they are a hoot!
Some locations across the country have famous historical figures…we have Ma and Pa Kettle.