The many characters who populated the fictional town of Mayberry in “The Andy Griffith Show” are very well known to fans of the beloved show.
And in the majority of cases, the actors and actresses behind those characters are also very well known. For example, actor Hal Smith as the character Otis Campbell and actress Betty Lynn as Thelma Lou both come to mind.
There is, however, one very famous exception to this rule. See, there is one character who appeared in “The Andy Griffith Show” many times. That character is Mr. Schwamp – or Mr. Schwump depending on which credit you see, according to MeTV.
However, the name of the actor who brought Schwamp to life still remains a mystery many decades and decades after the show ended its original television run.
Mr. Schwamp appeared in 26 episodes of “The Andy Griffith Show.” The character also appeared in two of the beloved sitcom’s spinoff series. These, of course, are “Mayberry R.F.D.” and “Gomer Pyle, U.S.M.C.”
Also, the character of Mr. Schwamp had a part in the film, “Christmas in Connecticut.”
Even so, the mystery of who played the character in “The Andy Griffith Show” and other series continued. And it still does as of October 2021.
Mystery About the Identity of an Actor from ‘The Andy Griffith Show’ Inspired an April Fools’ Joke
Some fans of “The Andy Griffith Show” decided that the mystery surrounding Mr. Schwamp was perfect for an April Fools’ joke. So in April 2012, a fan club dedicated to the series decided to play a prank. They claimed that they had discovered the name of the actor who portrayed Mr. Schwamp.
“Mr. Schwamp’s Identity Discovered!!! After decades of painstaking investigation and research by dozens of Mayberry enthusiasts, we have finally identified the actor who played Mr. Schwamp! With funding from TAGSRWC’S own Weaver’s Dept. Store (thanks, ol’ Ben!) and with several people working to assemble small pieces of the puzzle from a huge number of sources, we finally solved Mayberry’s Greatest Mystery!” the Facebook post used for the prank began.
When reading the joke post, it is clear that the people behind the prank were very aware of how much fans of “The Andy Griffith Show” wanted to know the name of the actor who brought Mr. Schwamp to life. And, they made sure they did all they could to make their post appear accurate. They even came up with a name for the actor.
“We’re pleased to announce that the actor who played Mr. Schwamp was a man named…Patch S. Wimmers. Through U.S. Census records from 1950 and 1960 (found on Ancestry.com), we found that Patch S. Wimmers lived in North Hollywood, just blocks from the Desilu-Cahuenga Studios, where ‘The Andy Griffith Show’ was filmed. He could’ve literally walked to work in Mayberry, which means he could’ve been available to work as an extra on a given episode on very short notice,” the joke message reported.
Of course, it turned out that the mystery had not been solved. Maybe it will be solved one day. We will just have to wait and see.