BW – EP86: Home For the Holidays—December 1945 On the Air

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In Breaking Walls Episode 86, we spotlight what was on the air over the US’ major radio networks during December of 1945.

• The First Peacetime Holiday Season in Five Years Begins
• Radio’s Three Main Production Hubs
• Macabees
• Frank Nelson, Lurene Tuttle, and Mandel Kramer
• I Can’t Stand Jack Benny
• Soap Operas and Kid’s Shows
• NBC Dominates Sunday and Tuesday Nights
• Falling Mid-Week Ratings Open the Door for CBS
• Victory Bonds and Bing’s Strike
• Christmas Draws Closer
• Fibber, Molly, Red and Christmas Day
• Dinah Shore and Groucho return Christmas Gifts
• I Still Can’t Stand Jack Benny
• New Year’s Eve
• What Comes Next
The WallBreakers:
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To support the show:
The reading material used in today’s episode was:
• On The Air: The Encyclopedia of Old-Time Radio – by John Dunning

• Christmas 1945: The Greatest Celebration in American History – by Matthew Litt

• Network Radio Ratings, 1932-1953 – by Jim Ramsburg

• The Museum of Broadcast Communications Encyclopedia of Radio – by Christopher H. Sterling

• And several articles from The New York Times, Broadcasting Magazine, and Radio Daily from 1945.
The Interviews
Chuck Schaden was with:
Mel Blanc
Himan Brown
Phil Harris
Danny Kaye
Barbara Luddy
Mercedes McCambridge
Shirley Mitchell
Frank Nelson
Olan Soule
Larry Stevens
Lureen Tuttle
and Don Wilson

All of Chuck’s Interviews can be found at
Dick Bertel and Ed Corcoran were with:
Jackson Beck
Edgar Bergen
Mel Blanc
Staats Cotsworth
Howard Duff
Jim Jordan
Mandel Kramer
and Jan Miner

All of their interviews for WTIC’s The Golden Age of Radio can be found at
SPERDVAC was with
Harry Bartel
and Jack Johnstone

For more information please go to
Jo Stafford was with Matthew Feinstein for Jo Stafford’s “Ballad of the Blues”
Fran Carlon was with Westinghouse for their 1970 50th Anniversary Production
And Bing Crosby was interviewed for Same Time, Same Station in 1972.

Special thanks to our Sponsors:

• Join The Party

• Twelve Chimes, It’s Midnight

• The Fireside Mystery Theatre

Selected music featured in today’s episode was

• Kay Starr’s The Man With The Bag
• Nancy Wilson’s What Are You Doing New Year’s Eve?
• Bing Crosby’s White Christmas and I’ll Be Home For Christmas
The clip of CBS’ Cimarron Tavern came courtesy of Jerry Haendiges. Visit his site at I’ve been visiting since 2002. Thank you Jerry.

I’d also like to thank Walden Hughes and John and Larry Gassman. Listen to their shows on the Yesterday USA radio network.
A Special Thank you to:
Ron Baron
Ryan Kramer
Christian Neuhaus
Aimee Pavy
Rebecca Shield
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