Today in Soap Opera History (September 21)

1979: Dallas' Sue Ellen neglected baby John Ross Ewing III
1979: Dan Stewart was mourned on As the World Turns.
1981: General Hospital's Luke Spencer saved the world!
2011: All My Children's Martin family reflected on the past.
"History, despite its wrenching pain, cannot be unlived, but if faced with courage, need not be lived again."
― Maya Angelou

"Today in Soap Opera History" is a collection of the most memorable, interesting and influential events in the history of scripted, serialized programs. From birthdays and anniversaries to scandals and controversies, every day this column celebrates the soap opera in American culture.

On this date in...

1939: Radio station WJSV in Washington, D.C. recorded their entire broadcast day. From 6 a.m. to 1 a.m. the following day a "time capsule" was created for posterity. Of important note is Franklin D. Roosevelt's speech to Congress encouraging repeal of the U.S. Neutrality Law. Here are synopsis for the daytime soap operas that aired that day:

Bachelor's Children - Sam explained to his wife, Janet, how bills were brought before the legislature.

Big Sister - Ruth and her fiance, Dr. John Wayne, planpned a day in the country, when a young friend collapsed while talking with them. Ruth visited a seamstress who was his close family friend, who offered to make her wedding dress.

Brenda Curtis - Brenda's husband, Jim, was fearful of losing his biggest case and was annoyed with Brenda's receiving an offer to return to the stage.

The Goldbergs - Molly Goldberg became suspicious of the new chauffeur, George Stark, who was delivering a mysterious baby somewhere, and had nervous mannerisms. Jake disregarded Molly's concern.

Life Can Be Beautiful - Steven Hamilton was depressed about his having been crippled and unable to work in Henderson's law office. Kate Henderson visited, and convinced both Chichi and Steve that he was still useful to the firm.

The Romance of Helen Trent - Helen had set up a dress shop in partnership with Chris Wilson, and she was faced with the dilemma of whether or not to hire a spoiled girl to help with design.

This Day is Ours - Eleanor had reservations about her coming marriage with Curt which were aggravated by their friends' (the Simpsons) marital problems.

When a Girl Marries - Joan and Harry discussed their plans for marriage, and Harry was troubled by a client's possible change of lawyers.

1967: On Days of our Lives, Mickey Horton (John Clarke) discovered that his niece Julie was carrying the child of her dead adulterous lover, David Martin.

Thanks to Scott for sending in the item above.

1976: On Another World, Pat Matthews (Beverly Penberthy) was disgusted when her husband, John (Michael M. Ryan), brought up saving her from a murder charge in the past.

1979: On Dallas, Sue Ellen Ewing (Linda Gray) returned to Southfork but neglected baby John Ross, much to the chagrin of the rest of the family. Bobby Ewing (Patrick Duffy) took it upon himself to run interference for for his brother, J.R. (the Larry Hagman, who was born 84 years ago today), when Cliff Barns (Ken Kercheval) continued poking around the hospital.

1979: On As the World Turns, friends and family remembered Dan Stewart at his funeral service.

1981: On General Hospital, Luke Spencer (Anthony Geary) finally figured out the correct password to the weather machine saving Port Charles...and the world!

1984: On Another World, Marley Love (Ellen Wheeler) continued to secretly meet Ben McKinnon (Richard Steen) in the stables, in order to keep her "sister" Donna (Anna Stuart) from finding out about their relationship.

1988: On Santa Barbara, Cruz Castillo (A Martinez) cleaned the house and tried to make things better for Eden (Marcy Walker) following the rape.

1989: On All My Children, Nico Kelly (Maurice Benard) warned Tad Martin (Michael E. Knight) not to try to see Dixie Cooney at Laurel Hill. Elsewhere, Cliff Warner (Peter Bergman) told Angie Hubbard (Debbi Morgan) than he was going to marry his ex-wife, Nina (Taylor Miller).

2006: On Days of our Lives, Jack (Matthew Ashford) and Jennifer (Melissa Reeves) Deveraux left for England.

2011: On All My Children, the Martin family reflected on the past.

Celebrating a birthday today are:
Stephen King (Writer, Under the Dome; Haven) - 68
Bill Buell (ex-Judge Walker, Guiding Light) - 63
Gregory Mortensen (ex-Paul, Days of our Lives; ex-Dale, The Young and the Restless) - 60
Rebecca Balding (ex-Carol, Soap) - 60
David James Elliott (ex-Ripp, GCB; ex-Terry, Melrose Place) - 55
Susan Batten (ex-Connor, As the World Turns; ex-Luna, One Life to Live) - 54
Rob Morrow (ex-Joel, Northern Exposure) - 53
Stan Cahill (ex-Bascombe,  One Life to Live) - 51
Jason MacDonald (ex-Young Larry/Principal Fletcher, One Life to Live; ex-Bailiff Evans/Chip, All My Children; ex-Minister, As the World Turns; ex-Harry, Guiding Light) - 49
Adam Lazarre-White (ex-Nathan, The Young and the Restless) - 46
Billy Porter (ex-Billy, Another World) - 46
Bradford Anderson (Spinelli, General Hospital) - 36
Scott Evans (ex-Oliver, One Life to Live; ex-Trey, Guiding Light) - 32
Maggie Grace (ex-Shannon, Lost) - 32

EDITOR'S NOTE: If you would like to submit a soap history entry for this date or a future date, email

No comments:

Post a Comment