Josephine Hull was an American actress. She had a successful 50-year career on stage while taking some of her better known roles to film.
Hull was born as Josephine Sherwood in Newtonville, Massachusetts to William H. Sherwood and Mary Elizabeth Tewkesbury. She attended the New England Conservatory of Music and Radcliffe College, Cambridge, Massachusetts.
Hull made her stage debut in stock in 1905, and after some years as a chorus girl and touring stock player, she married actor Shelley Hull in 1910. After her husband's death as a young man, the actress retired until 1923, when she returned under the name Josephine Hull. She and Shelley Hull had had no children.
Josephine Hull had her first major stage success in George Kelly's Pulitzer-winning Craig's Wife in 1926. Kelly wrote a role especially for her in his next play, Daisy Mayme, which also was staged in 1926. She continued working in New York theater throughout the 1920s. In the 30s and 40s, Hull appeared in three Broadway hits, as a batty matriarch in You Can't Take It With You, as a dotty, charming but homicidal little old lady in Arsenic and Old Lace, and in Harvey. The plays all had long runs, and took up ten years of Hull's career.