Melissa Gilbert Net Worth (2024)

Melissa Gilbert Net Worth (2024)

Melissa Gilbert, a name synonymous with American television history, has etched her legacy through her impeccable acting career and significant contributions to the entertainment industry. This article delves into the various facets of her life, career, and financial achievements, providing a comprehensive look at what makes Melissa Gilbert an enduring figure in Hollywood.

NameMelissa Ellen Gilbert
OccupationActress, Producer, Director
Date of BirthMay 8, 1964
Birth PlaceLos Angeles, California
CountryUnited States
Net Worth (2024)$500,000
Source of IncomeActing, Producing, Directing, Writing
Height5 ft 4 in (163 cm)
Weight125 lbs (57 kg)
Family MembersHusband: Timothy Busfield, Sons: Dakota Brinkman, Michael Boxleitner

Early Life and Background

Melissa Ellen Gilbert was born on May 8, 1964, in Los Angeles, California. She was adopted one day after her birth by actors Paul Gilbert and Barbara Crane. Growing up in a family steeped in the entertainment industry, Melissa’s foray into acting seemed almost predestined.


Gilbert attended The Buckley School, a prestigious private school in Sherman Oaks, California. Her schooling laid a solid foundation for her acting career, providing her with the necessary skills and discipline.

Career Beginnings

Melissa’s acting career began at a tender age. She appeared in several commercials and guest-starred on television series such as "Gunsmoke" and "Emergency!" Her early roles helped her build a strong portfolio and gain invaluable experience.

Breakthrough Role: Little House on the Prairie

In 1974, Melissa landed the role of Laura Ingalls Wilder in the NBC series "Little House on the Prairie." This role catapulted her to fame, making her a household name. The series ran for nine seasons, and Melissa’s portrayal of Laura remains iconic.

Career Milestones

After "Little House on the Prairie," Melissa faced the challenge of transitioning from a child star to an adult actress. She successfully navigated this phase by taking on diverse roles in television movies and series.

Notable Works

Some of her notable works include "The Miracle Worker" (1979), "Choices of the Heart" (1983), and "The Diary of Anne Frank" (1980). These roles showcased her versatility as an actress and solidified her position in the industry.

Financial Achievements

Melissa’s primary source of income has always been her acting career. During the peak of "Little House on the Prairie," she reportedly earned $75,000 per episode. Her earnings from other significant roles have also contributed substantially to her wealth.

Producing and Directing

In addition to acting, Melissa ventured into producing and directing. She produced several television movies and directed episodes of popular series. These ventures added to her income, with some projects earning her upwards of $500,000.

Writing Career

Melissa has authored several books, including her autobiography "Prairie Tale" (2009). The book was a commercial success, earning her significant royalties and contributing to her net worth.

Investments and Assets

Melissa has made several smart real estate investments over the years. In 2013, she purchased a home in Howell, Michigan, for $98,000. She later sold this property for a profit, showcasing her acumen in real estate.

Business Ventures

Melissa has invested in various business ventures, including a line of organic skincare products. These investments have diversified her income streams and added to her wealth.

Net Worth Breakdown

  • 2020: $400,000
  • 2021: $450,000
  • 2022: $475,000
  • 2023: $490,000
  • 2024: $500,000

Factors Contributing to Net Worth Growth

  • Consistent Acting Roles: Regular income from acting projects.
  • Book Royalties: Earnings from book sales.
  • Smart Investments: Profitable real estate and business investments.

Personal Life

Melissa has been married three times. Her first marriage was to Bo Brinkman, with whom she has a son, Dakota Brinkman. She later married Bruce Boxleitner, and they have a son, Michael Boxleitner. Currently, she is married to actor Timothy Busfield.

Health Struggles

Melissa has been open about her health struggles, including her battle with alcoholism and her decision to undergo spinal surgery. Her resilience and determination to overcome these challenges have been inspirational.


Melissa is actively involved in various charitable organizations. She has supported causes related to children’s health, animal welfare, and veterans’ rights. Her philanthropic efforts reflect her commitment to giving back to the community.

Advocacy Work

In addition to financial contributions, Melissa has used her platform to advocate for important causes. She has been a vocal supporter of the Screen Actors Guild and served as its president from 2001 to 2005.

Future Projections

Melissa continues to work in the entertainment industry, with several projects lined up for the coming years. These projects are expected to boost her income and net worth.

Financial Outlook

With her diverse income streams and ongoing projects, Melissa’s net worth is projected to grow steadily. By 2025, her net worth is expected to reach approximately $525,000.

FAQs About Melissa Gilbert

  1. What is Melissa Gilbert’s current age?

    • Melissa Gilbert is 59 years old (as of 2024).
  2. What is Melissa Gilbert’s height and weight?

    • She stands at 5 ft 4 in (163 cm) and weighs 125 lbs (57 kg).
  3. Who is Melissa Gilbert’s spouse?

    • She is married to actor Timothy Busfield.
  4. Who are Melissa Gilbert’s parents?

    • She was adopted by actors Paul Gilbert and Barbara Crane.
  5. What is Melissa Gilbert’s estimated net worth in 2024?

    • Her estimated net worth in 2024 is $500,000.
  6. What are some of Melissa Gilbert’s notable works?

    • Notable works include "Little House on the Prairie," "The Miracle Worker," and "Choices of the Heart."
  7. What are Melissa Gilbert’s main sources of income?

    • Acting, producing, directing, writing, and investments.
  8. What philanthropic causes does Melissa Gilbert support?

    • Children’s health, animal welfare, and veterans’ rights.


Melissa Gilbert’s journey from a child star to a seasoned actress, producer, and writer is nothing short of remarkable. Her financial achievements, coupled with her enduring presence in the entertainment industry, make her a fascinating figure. With smart investments and a diverse portfolio, Melissa continues to build her legacy, both on and off the screen.

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