Helen Hayes Net Worth at Death – Salary, Income, Earnings

Helen Hayes Net Worth

Helen Hayes had an estimated net worth of $10 million at death. Helen Hayes was an American actress best known for being one of two women to have received all four entertainment awards: an Emmy, a Grammy, an Oscar and a Tony. She earned most of her income from her movies. 

Helen Hayes was an American actress born in Washington, D.C., on October 10, 1900. An accomplished entertainer, she acted from the age of 5 until 85. At the age of 8 she appeared on Broadway, and in the following years she received much acclaim for her performances. With the rise of film in Hollywood, Hayes moved to California to make movies.

In 1931, she won an Academy Award for Best Actress for The Sin of Madelon Claudet. Hayes also won awards for her Broadway performances in Mary of Scotland (1933) and Victoria Regina (1935). She is the first woman to receive all four entertainment awards: an Emmy, a Grammy, an Oscar and a Tony Award. Hayes died on March 17, 1993, in Nyack, New York.

To calculate the net worth of Helen Hayes, subtract all her liabilities from her total assets. Investments, savings, cash deposits, and any equity she has in a house, car, or other similar asset are included in the total assets. All debts, such as personal loans and mortgages, are included in total liabilities.

Here’s the breakdown of her net worth:

Name: Helen Hayes
Net Worth: $10 Million
Monthly Salary: $100 Thousand
Annual Income: $2 Million
Source of Wealth: Actress

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Early Life and Career

Helen Hayes, who was born on October 10, 1900, in Washington, D.C., was known as the “First Lady of the American Theater.” She spent decades giving outstanding performances on stage, television, and in films. She began acting as a child, encouraged by her mother, who was once an aspiring actress herself. Hayes made her professional debut at the age of five in a production of The Prince Chap.

Hayes returned to Broadway several years later to appear in Old Dutch in 1909. She quickly rose to prominence as a talented actress with a flair for comedy. Hayes played the title character in Bab, one of her first leading roles, in 1920.

Leading Actress

Helen Hayes made a significant career breakthrough with Coquette in 1927. This tragedy demonstrated her ability to deal with serious dramatic material. In 1931, Hayes brought this talent to the big screen with The Sin of Madelon Claudet. She plays a woman who turns to crime to support her son in this emotional melodrama. Hayes received her first Academy Award nomination for this film.

More significant roles followed in two well-received historical dramas. Hayes played the tragic royal in Mary of Scotland in 1933. Two years later, she landed one of her most famous roles. In 1935, Hayes made her debut as Queen Victoria in Victoria Regina. This demanding role required her to play the legendary monarch from childhood to old age. Hayes appeared in numerous productions of this drama over the years.

Hayes was devoted to her family away from the stage. In 1928, she married playwright Charles MacArthur. Mary, their daughter, was born two years later. A short time later, the family relocated to Nyack, New York, and adopted a son, James, in 1939.

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Triumphs and Tragedies

Helen Hayes won her first Tony Award for Happy Birthday in 1947, after decades in the theater. Around this time, she also had the opportunity to share the stage with her daughter Mary. In 1946, they appeared in Alice-Sit-By-The-Fire, and in 1949, they appeared in Good Housekeeping. Sadly, Mary began to feel ill during Good Housekeeping. She soon discovered she had polio and died from it a short time later. Hayes and her husband handled their grief in very different ways. He began drinking heavily after she dedicated herself to raising funds for polio research.

Hayes suffered another loss when her husband died in 1956. She quickly channeled her grief into her work. In Anastasia, she co-starred with Ingrid Berman. A few years later, Hayes won her second Tony Award for another royal role in Time Remembered, this time alongside Richard Burton.

Later Career

Hayes left the stage in the early 1970s after discovering she was allergic to the dust in theaters, but she never stopped acting. She won her second Academy Award for her performance in the 1970 film Airport, and she has appeared on numerous television shows over the years. She appeared in episodes of The Love Boat, Highway to Heaven, and Hawaii Five-O, all of which starred her son, James.

Hayes shared a Grammy Award for best spoken word album Great American Documents with Henry Fonda, Orson Welles, and James Earl Jones in 1976. With this victory, she joined a select group of entertainers. Few performers have won all four major American awards: the Academy Award, the Tony Award, the Grammy Award, and the Emmy Award.

In her later years, Hayes received special recognition for her contributions to the arts. In 1988, President Ronald Reagan awarded her the National Medal of Arts. She also had the distinction of having several awards named after her. The Helen Hayes Awards recognize those who excel on the Washington stage.

Hayes, an avid gardener, collaborated with Lady Bird Johnson in the early 1980s to establish the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center. She also assisted in raising funds for the center.

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Final Years

Helen Hayes’ final triumph was the publication of her autobiography My Life in Three Acts in 1990. The memoir went on to become a best-seller. Hayes’ health had begun to deteriorate by early 1993. She was admitted to a hospital in Nyack, New York, in early March with congestive heart failure. Hayes passed away there on March 17, 1993. She was 92 years old at the time.

Her son James led a tribute to Hayes at a New York theater that June. Hayes was honored by over 1,500 people, including Douglas Fairbanks Jr., Tony Randall, Lynn Redgrave, and Jason Robards. The petite actress was remembered for her successful career and warm personality. Hayes once told the Los Angeles Times that her success was due to her “everywoman” appeal. “I used to be the stereotypical daughter, then the easily identifiable wife, and finally the stereotypical mother… Perhaps I am ‘Plain Jane’s’ triumph.”

Further Reading

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