Arleen Whelan, 78, titian-haired actress of screen and stage for two decades. A native of Salt Lake City, she was discovered in 1937 because of a portrait of her when she worked as an $18-a-week manicurist in a Hollywood barbershop. Her first film was “Kidnapped” opposite Warner Baxter in 1938. She earned critical acclaim in the theater starring in the comedy “Doughgirls” during World War II. Her other films included “Young Mr. Lincoln” with Henry Fonda in 1939, “Charley’s Aunt” in 1941, “Ramrod” in 1947, “The Sun Shines Bright” in 1953 and her final film, “Raiders of Old California,” in 1957. She was married and divorced three times--to actor Alex D’Arcy, film distributor Hugh Owen, and Warren O. Cagney. On April 8 in Orange, Calif., after a stroke.