Saturday, June 30, 2012

THE GUIDING LIGHT: 60th Anniversary of Television Premiere

THE GUIDING LIGHT had already been a successful radio soap opera for more than 15 years, first on NBC Radio then CBS, before it premiered on the CBS Television Network on June 30, 1952. Today marks the 60th anniversary of the show's TV premiere (we think it was a hit!) and We Love Soaps is celebrating by taking a look back at what was happening on that day, and year, in history.

Here is the CBS Daytime schedule on the day a 15-minute GUIDING LIGHT debuted (ET):

11:30 a.m. STRIKE IT RICH
12 p.m. pm THE EGG AND I
2:45 p.m. MIKE AND BUFF

Later that Monday night, CBS aired a full slate of primetime programs (NBC and ABC weren't even running a full three hours of primetime yet):

8 p.m. Lux Video Theatre ("I Can't Remember")
8:30 p.m. Arthur Godfrey's Talent Scouts
9 p.m. My Little Margie ("Radioactive Margie")
9:30 p.m. Claudia, the Story of a Marriage
10 p.m. Studio One ("The Blonde Comes First")

In sports action, the Boston Red Sox defeated the New York Yankees 4-3 at Yankee Stadium that day.

Pop Culture
* The #1 song the week THE GUIDING LIGHT premiered: "Here in My Heart" by Al Martino
* "The Diary of Anne Frank" published
* THE TODAY SHOW debuted on NBC
* KFC Fried Chicken Franchise Opens ( Kentucky Fried Chicken )
* MAD Magazine first issue
* Agatha Christie's murder-mystery play "The Mousetrap" opened and became the longest continuously production running play in history
* The TIME and Life magazines pictured are both dated June 30, 1952

Popular Films
* The African Queen
* Greatest Show on Earth
* The Quiet Man
* Singin' in the Rain

* The worlds first passenger jet is produced in UK ( The Comet )
* Atom Bomb Developed by Britain
* The worlds first successful use of a mechanical heart in US
* The first “Don’t Walk” sign is installed in New York City
* The First Holiday Inn is opened in Tennessee
* SS United States wins Blue Ribband crossing the Atlantic in 3 days 10hrs and 40 minutes
* The United States successfully detonates the first hydrogen bomb, code named "Mike" ["m" for megaton],
* The first Patent for a bar code used to identify products issued in 1952 to Joseph Woodland and Bernard Silver but the industry standard till 1970 when the Universal Grocery Products Identification Product Code or UGPIC was written which evolved into the UPC or Universal product Code
* First Roll On Deodorant introduced under the brand name Ban-Roll-On

* Hydrogen Bomb by Edward Teller's team
* Mr Potato Head Game by George Lerner
* Polio Vaccine by Jonas Salk

Cost of Livivng
Average Cost of new house $9.050.00
Average wages per year $3,850.00
Cost of a gallon of Gas 20 cents
Average Cost of a new car $1,700.00
Average Cost of Rent $80.00 per month

On THE GUIDING LIGHT in 1952, Kathy Roberts married Bob Lang, but he was later killed in an car accident.

It would be another 14 years before the setting of THE GUIDING LIGHT would move to Springfield, and two more after that until the show expanded to 30 minutes.  The Bauer family, which joined the radio version of the show in the late 1940s, would remain an important part of the series for its entire 57 year run on television.

Below are a couple of GUIDING LIGHT clips from 1952:

1 comment:

  1. What a great tribute to this endearing classic that should never be forgotten.