A Mayberry State Of Mind
Floyd Lawson / Howard McNear
27 January 1905- 03 January 1969
Howard McNear was born January 27, 1905 in Los Angeles, CA. He worked in radio stations in the late 1930’s. He distinguished himself in one radio show “Speed Gibson of the International Secret Police as ace operator Clint Barlow. Howard preferred character roles especially comic though.
He created the role of Doc Charles Adams in Gunsmoke from 1952-1961. He appeared frequently in other sitcoms including Leave it To Beaver where he portrayed a barber ironically and as Andy Griffith called prophetic.
Howard is best known as the chatty vague barber in TAGS. During production he suffered from a massive stroke with the production crew being accommodative of this disability. In early eps, you can see him walk around freely. In later eps, the production crew built special platforms for “Floyd” to sit down so in a lot of scenes he is seen seated. Although they would make special stands for him to stand which made him appear as though he was working.
Howard McNear suffered a second stroke and he passed away on January 3, 1969. He was a man loved by many and his friends on TAGS called him a “kind man” who made them laugh all the time and worked as hard as he could to portray Floyd for the show to the best of his ability regardless of his condition.
Floyd Lawson Mayberry Barber for 25 yrs, his clip joint was an institution, a gathering place for the locals to come and play checkers, tell stories and occasionally gossip.
Floyd had a wife Melba and a son Norman he was also an uncle to Warren Ferguson( who was Barney's replacement as Andy's deputy) he had a dog named Sam and sometimes lived in the back of the barber shop.
He is known to raise prize winning pansies and has even attempted to write a novel, but could not get anything flowing after his brilliant first sentence, “The sun is dropping lazily down behind the purple hills in the western skies.” he also wrote the song for the Miss Mayberry Pageant.
Hail to thee, Miss Mayberry
All hail to thee, all hail
Your loveliness, your majesty
Brings joy to every male
All hail, all hail, all hail, all hail,
All hail, all hail, all hail all hail
Now while Floyd was a professional barber he seemed to have some troubles with getting the side burns even. especially on Ole Barn.
Floyd was also a special Mayberry Deputy, trained in the strong arm of Law enforcement. While never issued a gun, he did apparently receive some rock throwing lessons from, you know who ol Ernest T.
When relaxing Floyd enjoys coffee or picks up a Nectarine Crush or Huckleberry Smash soda down at Wally's. He was also heard to say to Wally “You got the best pop in town,”