Today in Soap Opera History (June 20)

1984: All My Children's Erica was curious about Adam's first
wife. 1990: General Hospital's Frisco planned a surprise for
Felicia. 1994: Days of our Lives' Alice found her husband
dead in their bedroom. 2003: The Young and the Restless'
Jill tried to stop a wedding.
"If you don't know history, then you don't know anything. You are a leaf that doesn't know it is part of a tree."
― Michael Crichton

"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...

1963: James Pritchett made his first appearance on NBC soap opera The Doctors. He played a corporation president running away and having a broken back that brought me to the hospital. Pritchett returned to The Doctors on July 9, 1963, as Dr. Matt Powers when the serial was still was still a one-story-a-week show.

1963: On Ben Jerrod, Adele Pike's (Jo Helton) plan backfired.

Thanks to Jeff for sending in the item above.

1966: Another World became the first daytime soap opera to make the transition to color broadcasts from black and white.

1969: Audra Lindley aired for the final time as Aunt Liz Matthews on Another World. When the character returned in August, Nancy Wickwire was playing Liz. Lindley later became best known for her role as Mrs. Roper on Three's Company.

1978: On Guiding Light, Jackie (Cindy Pickett) revealed her feelings to Mike Bauer (Don Stewart), who told her he only considered her a friend.

1984: On All My Children, Adam (David Canary) was surprised Erica (Susan Lucci) knew his first wife's name was Althea.

1988: Joseph Hardy took over as executive producer of Loving.

1990: On General Hospital, Frisco (Jack Wagner) planned an anniversary surprise for Felicia (Kristina Wagner), how set up a surprise birthday party for him.

1994: On Days of our Lives, Alice Horton (Frances Reid) found her husband, Tom, dead in their bedroom.

2001: Actor Bert Kramer, who played Alex Wheeler in Texas and Another World, died at age 66.

2003: On The Young and the Restless, while speeding by car to stop "cousins" Billy and Mac from getting married, John and Jill Abbott encountered a road obstruction. This delay, however, would not deter Jill (Jess Walton), who decided to take off her heels and run the rest of the way on foot.

Thanks to FoxCrane for sending in the item above.

2008: On One Life to Live, "Todd" (Trevor St. John) continued to take care of amnesiac Marty (Susan Haskell).

Celebrating a birthday today are:
Bonnie Bartlett (ex-Miriam, General Hospital; ex-Vanessa/Ellie, Love of Life) - 87
Olympia Dukakis (ex-Barbara, Search for Tomorrow) - 85
Brett Halsey (ex-John, The Young and the Restless; ex-Adam, General Hospital) - 83
John McCook (Eric, The Bold and the Beautiful; ex-Lance, The Young and the Restless) - 71
John Goodman (ex-Glenallen, The West Wing) - 64
Michael Corbett (ex-David,  The Young and the Restless; ex-Warren, Search for Tomorrow; ex-Michael, Ryan's Hope; ex-Brent, One Life to Live) - 60
Chuck Wagner (ex-Randall, General Hospital; ex-Klaus, One Life to Live; ex-Chad, Dynasty; ex-Reporter, Capitol; ex-Dr. Gordon, All My Children) - 58
Peter Paige (Executive Producer, The Fosters; ex-Emmett, Queer as Folk) - 47
Tika Sumpter (Candace, The Haves and the Have Nots; ex-Raina, Gossip Girl; ex-Layla, One Life to Live) - 36
Dreama Walker (ex-Becca, The Good Wife; ex-Hazel, Gossip Girl; ex-Karen, One Life to Live; ex-Janie, Guiding Light) - 30

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

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