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Remembering 1951

The Post-War economic boom booms to a high point in 1951.

50 old time radio show recordings
(total playtime 23 hours, 38 min)
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25 Audio CDs


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About this Old Time Radio Show

Text on OTRCAT.com ©2001-2017 OTRCAT INC All Rights Reserved. Reproduction is prohibited.

1951 RadioAmerica is working in 1951! According to some sources, the unemployment rate in 1951 dips to 3.3%. There are many ways to calculate this important economic indicator, but it will rarely if ever, look as sunny as it does now, even in the boom years of the Johnson Administration. Even more important than a low jobless rate is the fact that Americans are spending and enjoying their incomes.

New roads and highways are being built across the nation, and Detroit is supplying more newer and bigger cars to fill them. The big automakers are also making it easier to buy a new car by offering extended finance options, allowing more people to actually buy a new vehicle but making the purchase of a fancier, better-equipped vehicle a reasonable option. Speaking of options, these bigger, more luxurious cars were not the safest place to put your family. Safety glass and hydraulic braking systems had been introduced years earlier and were in common use, disc brakes had only recently been introduced as an option in top-of-the-line vehicles, concepts like collision crumple zones and collapsible steering columns are years in the future. Turn signals are beginning to be offered in many vehicles, but if a driver does signal his intentions it is usually by waving his arm out the window. Seat belt installation will be optional until 1966, and even then, salesmen will point out how easy they are for drivers to tuck out of the way!

Atomic VegasLoading the family in the car for a trip to Las Vegas is an option you probably will not consider in 1951. The first casinos and resorts have opened on what will become "the Strip", mostly as an outgrowth of the building of Hoover Dam and WWII-era Army Air Corp Flexible Gunnery Range which will become Nellis Airforce Base at the end of 1950. Serious development of the Strip will begin in 1952, but the biggest "boom" will begin on January 27 when the Atomic Energy Commission detonates the first of more than 100 atmospheric atomic test shots at the Nevada Test Range. Many of the tests will be conducted underground and cause casino floors to shake, but mushroom clouds from the Atmospheric tests are often visible from the Strip and become a tourist attraction.

Atomic testing is serious business, especially now that the Soviets have detonated their own atomic device less than two years ago. The Nevada Tests provide a very visible demonstration of American might but will lead to decades of health problems for "down-winders" in surrounding communities. Even more important testing is going on out of sight in the South Pacific as part of Operation Greenhouse. The explosions of April and May at Eniwetok Atoll will prove the concepts which lead to the first hydrogen bomb.

Jackie BrenstonPerhaps a reaction to the growing menace of atomic weapons, several studios release science fiction films which contrast with the hopeful explorations of the usual "space-opera" fare. The Man From Planet X (United Artists), The Thing (from Another World) (RKO), The Day the Earth Stood Still (20th Century Fox), and Flight to Mars (Monogram) are closer to horror pictures, which will help to ensure their classic status as drive-in movies became popular.

The biggest explosion in the entertainment world would begin at the Sun Studios in Nashville in March when "Jackie Brenston and his Delta Cats" cut the song "Rocket 88", widely considered the first Rock and Roll record. Over the next few years, studio owner Sam Phillips will discover and record a number of Rock and Roll pioneers, including Carl Perkins, Johnny Cash, Jerry Lee Lewis, Elvis Presley, and Roy Orbison. The studio was founded so that "negro artists of the South" would have a recording facility when they were denied entry at other local studios. Phillips real genius was his quest for a white artist who could sing the rhythm and blues numbers which were popular in the African American market. In just a few years, Phillips will find the talent he is seeking in Elvis Presley and Carl Perkins, cementing Rock and Roll in the popular consciousness.

One byproduct of the rise of Rock and Roll will be the rising popularity of disc jockey and "Top 40" format radio stations. This new emphasis on recorded music for broadcast will be one of the nails in the coffin of network radio drama, but the most important factor will be the migration of sponsors to Television. The program is based on the popular CBS Radio situation comedy My Favorite Husband starring Richard Denning and Lucille Ball. The network was convinced that the show would be a good fit on the small screen, but there was a snag, Lucy refused to do the show unless she had her real-life husband, Cuban jazz musician Desi Arnaz, as co-star. They also refused to move to New York because Lucy was pregnant with their first child during the early production. In order to maintain the broadcast quality demanded by sponsor Philip Morris, the show would have to be shot on film, which Lucy and Desi would have to foot the bill for (however, it also allowed them to retain 80% ownership of the filmed episodes). To facilitate filming, they formed Desilu Studios and pioneered the "three camera format" which allowed the actors to do their business as though they were on stage and eliminating the cuts and reshoots which plagued single-camera productions.

Korean War: Flame ThrowerWhile so many positive things are happening back home, the war on the Korean Peninsula drags through what will be its first full year. The fighting is mostly a back and forth scrum near the Thirty-Eighth Parallel and in the summer devolves into a protracted and bloody stalemate. Supreme Commander Douglas MacArthur is relieved by President Truman in April for making public statements which went against administration policy. Still, neither side could bring sufficient force to bear to bring the war to a satisfactory conclusion, miring both sides in constant losses.

  • A 100 kiloton atomic device is dropped and detonated at Frenchman Flats, Nevada, on January 27, marking the opening of the Nevada Test Site. The majority of the bomb tests at the Site will be underground, seismic disturbances are felt in downtown Las Vegas, just 65 miles away, and mushroom clouds from atmospheric tests are often seen from hotel windows on the Strip. Ethel and Julius Rosenberg are convicted of conspiracy to commit espionage on March 29, information provided to the Soviet Union by the couple from the Manhattan Project accelerated development of a Soviet atomic bomb by several years. The principles which will lead to the development of the hydrogen bomb are tested during Operation Greenhouse at Enewetak Atoll in the Marshall Islands beginning in May. Back in Nevada, infantry troops preparing for atomic warfare become involved in testing for the first time in November.
  • Nevada 1951 Atomic Bomb Test SiteThe 22nd Amendment to the US Constitution is ratified on February 27, limiting Presidents to two full terms in office. Hank Ketcham's
  • During the Third Battle of Seoul on January 4, North Korean forces capture the Southern Capital for the second time. In UN Resolution 498, the General Assembly declares that China is an aggressor in the war on February 1. During "Operation Ripper", UN forces retake Seoul on March 14. On April 11, President Harry Truman relieves General Douglas MacArthur from command of UN forces for making public statements which were contrary to Administration policy. Cease-fire negotiations began at Kaesong on July 10, but the talks will move to Panmunjom on October 25. The  Battle of Heartbreak Ridge takes place from September 13 to October 15.
  • United Artists release The Man From Planet X on March 9. RKO's The Thing (From Another World) comes out on April 29. On September 28, 20th Century Fox's The Day the Earth Stood Still opens. Flight to Mars from Monogram Pictures opens November 11, and When Worlds Collide from Paramount hits theaters on November 22. These Science Fiction films vary greatly in the quality of their production and stories, but tend towards the horror genre than displaying a hopeful future. This shows a growing distrust of science in reaction to the terror resulting from the proliferation of atomic weapons.
  • Clement Atlee's Labour Government, which had held power and instituted reforms in England since the end of the War, is defeated in a snap election on October 26, and Winston Churchill as leader of the Conservatives is reelected as Prime Minister.
  • African Queen with Bogart and HepburnIn early March, producer Sam Phillips of Sun Records in cuts "Rocket 88" by Jackie Brenston and His Delta Cats (the band is actually Ike Turner's "Kings of Rhythm" and Brenston is Turner's sa player), which is widely considered the first Rock and Roll record. The first UNIVAC I computer is delivered to the US Census Bureau on March 31. The Catcher in the Rye is published in on August 12. Baseball's "Shot Heard 'Round the World" occurs on October 3 when the NY Giants take the National League Pennant with a 9th inning 3-run line-drive homer by Bobby Thomson off Dodger's pitcher Ralph Branca. I Love Lucy debuts on October 15. Four 200 watt light bulbs illuminate in Arco, Idaho, on December 20 as Experimental Breeder Reactor 1 (EBR1) becomes the first nuclear power plant to produce electricity. The African Queen starring Humphrey Bogart and Katharine Hepburn opens in Hollywood two days before Christmas.
  • Hudson Hornet 1951Drake University Quarterback and preseason Heisman Trophy Candidate Bobby  Bright is violently assaulted on the field at Oklahoma A&M on October 20, resulting in a broken jaw. African-American Bright was a "marked man" before the game according to reports, but even after the assault he was able to throw a 61 yard touchdown pass a few plays later. The Civil Rights Congress, a group of American activists, submit a paper to the United Nations titled "We Charge Genocide", highlighting lynchings and other atrocities in the American South. The accusations have merit, but the CRC's association with radical elements, including the Communist Party of the USA, may have done as much damage to the Civil Rights movement as the paper did good.
  • Volkswagen Beetles begin rolling off the line at a plant in South Africa on August 31. The wood trim on Ford's new Country Squire Station Wagon is replaced by an all-steel body with simulated wood grain. The low-slung Hudson Hornet is introduced and will soon dominate stock-car racing. Mercedes-Benz launches the W-187 with a single overhead cam six-cylinder engine, their first luxury model since before the War. Packard launches the Mayfair to compete with Cadillac, Buick, and the Chrysler Imperial.

The Adventures of Sam Spade, Candy Matson, The Adventures of Philip Marlowe, and The Fat Man all conclude their network radio runs. Meet Frank Sinatra, Death Valley Days, Screen Directors Playhouse, and The Carnation Contented Hour also go off the air. Paul Harvey begins broadcasting his News and Commentary over ABC on April 1, while disk jockey Alan Freed begins the night-time broadcast of "The Moondog House" over the summer, introducing his huge white teenaged audience to Rock and Roll. NBC begins broadcasting Barrie Craig, Confidential Investigator.

Text on OTRCAT.com ©2001-2017 OTRCAT INC All Rights Reserved. Reproduction is prohibited.

These classic recordings are available in the following formats:
  • MP3 CDs are delivered by mail. These archival quality MP3 CDs are playable in your computer and many MP3 player devices.



    50 recordings on 1 MP3 CD for just $5.00
    total playtime 23 hours, 38 min
    Add MP3 Collection to Cart

    Click here to see disc contents


      50 shows - total playtime 23 hours 38 minutes
      1. Archie Andrews 510527 Babysitting To Earn Money.mp3
      2. Bergen McCarthy 510600.mp3
      3. Big Show 510225 Jack Haley And Paul Kelly.mp3
      4. Bill Stern 510629 606 Final Show For Colgate.mp3
      5. Bing Crosby 510502 Walter O'Kieff.mp3
      6. Bob Hope 510605 498 Johnny Desmond.mp3
      7. Bob Ray 510601 Diet Expert Dr. Claudis Von Sturdley.mp3
      8. BV 510528 10 Sailor Is Framed for Murder.mp3
      9. COTY 510913 0921 The Landlady.mp3
      10. Defense Rests 510417 Client Joseph Moriano.mp3
      11. Dimension X 510712 39 TimeAndTimeAgain.mp3
      12. Dragnet 510208 e087 Big Cast.mp3
      13. Duffys 510216 397 Archie Hypnotist.mp3
      14. Escape 510114 141 Bullet For Mr Smith Afrs.mp3
      15. FMM 510515 0661 Hole In One.mp3
      16. GG 510411 401 Gildy Worried That Kids Want To Leave.mp3
      17. Guest Star 510318 0208 First Of April.mp3
      18. If Freedom Fails 01 1951 Matter Fact G Peck R Burr.mp3
      19. Jack Benny 510114 2219 King Solomon 2o2.mp3
      20. LR 510205 Rough Diamonds.mp3
      21. Man Called X 510113 14 Five Ounces Of Treason.mp3
      22. My Favorite Husband 510324 124 Iris And Lizs Easter.mp3
      23. Mysterious Traveler 510828 319 Fire In The Sky.mp3
      24. News 510112 CBS Hear It Now.mp3
      25. News 510202 CBS News Don Hollenbeck.mp3
      26. News 510320 CBS Edward R Murrow UN Troops Stiff Opposition.mp3
      27. News 510411 CBS KOOK Truman MacArthur Interruption.mp3
      28. News 510411 MBS Truman MacArthur Commentary.mp3
      29. News 510419 CBS MacArthur Congress.mp3
      30. News 510419 Douglas MacArthur Old Soldiers.mp3
      31. News 510420 CBS Hear It Now.mp3
      32. News 510629 NBC Bill Sterns Sports Newsrl Final Show Colgate.mp3
      33. News 511003 WMCA The Shot Russ Hodges.mp3
      34. News 511025 CBS Edward R Murrow News.mp3
      35. News 511104 MBS UN Radio Windows World Fairbanks Corwin.mp3
      36. News 51xxxx 2UW These Were Their Yesterdays ep42 HMAS Sydney.mp3
      37. News 51xxxx AFRS Special Troop Infor 103 We Take Our Stand.mp3
      38. News 51xxxx NBC 25th Anniversary Silver Jubilee Broadcast.mp3
      39. Our Miss Brooks 510318 123 Miss Enright's Birthday Party.mp3
      40. Philip Marlowe 510915 Sound And Unsound.mp3
      41. Proudly We Hail 511209 e166 Terror At Polgar.mp3
      42. Red Skelton Show 510408 319 Town Social.mp3
      43. Richard Diamond 510216 086 The Gray Man.mp3
      44. Saint 510325 Intruder.mp3
      45. Sam Spade 510202 C012 String of Death Caper.mp3
      46. Sdp 510315 E094 Thelma Jordan.mp3
      47. Susp 510405 423 Murder In G Flat.mp3
      48. Truman 510507 Address At Dinner Of Civil Defense Conference.mp3
      49. Whistler 510107 449 Hit And Run.mp3
      50. YTJD 511013 118 Millard Ward.mp3
  • MP3 downloads are available instantly after purchase!



    50 recordings on 1 MP3 Collection Download for just $5.00
    total playtime 23 hours, 38 min
    Add MP3 Collection to Cart

    Click here to see disc contents


      50 shows - total playtime 23 hours 38 minutes
      1. Archie Andrews 510527 Babysitting To Earn Money.mp3
      2. Bergen McCarthy 510600.mp3
      3. Big Show 510225 Jack Haley And Paul Kelly.mp3
      4. Bill Stern 510629 606 Final Show For Colgate.mp3
      5. Bing Crosby 510502 Walter O'Kieff.mp3
      6. Bob Hope 510605 498 Johnny Desmond.mp3
      7. Bob Ray 510601 Diet Expert Dr. Claudis Von Sturdley.mp3
      8. BV 510528 10 Sailor Is Framed for Murder.mp3
      9. COTY 510913 0921 The Landlady.mp3
      10. Defense Rests 510417 Client Joseph Moriano.mp3
      11. Dimension X 510712 39 TimeAndTimeAgain.mp3
      12. Dragnet 510208 e087 Big Cast.mp3
      13. Duffys 510216 397 Archie Hypnotist.mp3
      14. Escape 510114 141 Bullet For Mr Smith Afrs.mp3
      15. FMM 510515 0661 Hole In One.mp3
      16. GG 510411 401 Gildy Worried That Kids Want To Leave.mp3
      17. Guest Star 510318 0208 First Of April.mp3
      18. If Freedom Fails 01 1951 Matter Fact G Peck R Burr.mp3
      19. Jack Benny 510114 2219 King Solomon 2o2.mp3
      20. LR 510205 Rough Diamonds.mp3
      21. Man Called X 510113 14 Five Ounces Of Treason.mp3
      22. My Favorite Husband 510324 124 Iris And Lizs Easter.mp3
      23. Mysterious Traveler 510828 319 Fire In The Sky.mp3
      24. News 510112 CBS Hear It Now.mp3
      25. News 510202 CBS News Don Hollenbeck.mp3
      26. News 510320 CBS Edward R Murrow UN Troops Stiff Opposition.mp3
      27. News 510411 CBS KOOK Truman MacArthur Interruption.mp3
      28. News 510411 MBS Truman MacArthur Commentary.mp3
      29. News 510419 CBS MacArthur Congress.mp3
      30. News 510419 Douglas MacArthur Old Soldiers.mp3
      31. News 510420 CBS Hear It Now.mp3
      32. News 510629 NBC Bill Sterns Sports Newsrl Final Show Colgate.mp3
      33. News 511003 WMCA The Shot Russ Hodges.mp3
      34. News 511025 CBS Edward R Murrow News.mp3
      35. News 511104 MBS UN Radio Windows World Fairbanks Corwin.mp3
      36. News 51xxxx 2UW These Were Their Yesterdays ep42 HMAS Sydney.mp3
      37. News 51xxxx AFRS Special Troop Infor 103 We Take Our Stand.mp3
      38. News 51xxxx NBC 25th Anniversary Silver Jubilee Broadcast.mp3
      39. Our Miss Brooks 510318 123 Miss Enright's Birthday Party.mp3
      40. Philip Marlowe 510915 Sound And Unsound.mp3
      41. Proudly We Hail 511209 e166 Terror At Polgar.mp3
      42. Red Skelton Show 510408 319 Town Social.mp3
      43. Richard Diamond 510216 086 The Gray Man.mp3
      44. Saint 510325 Intruder.mp3
      45. Sam Spade 510202 C012 String of Death Caper.mp3
      46. Sdp 510315 E094 Thelma Jordan.mp3
      47. Susp 510405 423 Murder In G Flat.mp3
      48. Truman 510507 Address At Dinner Of Civil Defense Conference.mp3
      49. Whistler 510107 449 Hit And Run.mp3
      50. YTJD 511013 118 Millard Ward.mp3
  • Standard Audio CDs are delivered by mail on archival quality media with up to 60 minutes on each CD and play in all CD players



    50 recordings on 25 Audio CDs
    total playtime 22 hours, 11 min

    1951 Disc A001

    1. If Freedom Fails 01 1951 Matter Fact G Peck R Burr
    2. News 51xxxx 2UW These Were Their Yesterdays ep42 HMAS Sydney

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    1951 Disc A002

    1. News 51xxxx AFRS Special Troop Infor 103 We Take Our Stand
    2. News 51xxxx NBC 25th Anniversary Silver Jubilee Broadcast

    Add Audio CD to Cart - $5.00
    1951 Disc A003

    1. Whistler 510107 449 Hit And Run

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    1951 Disc A004

    1. News 510112 CBS Hear It Now

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    1951 Disc A005

    1. Man Called X 510113 14 Five Ounces Of Treason
    2. Escape 510114 141 Bullet For Mr Smith Afrs

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    1951 Disc A006

    1. Jack Benny 510114 2219 King Solomon 2o2
    2. News 510202 CBS News Don Hollenbeck
    3. Sam Spade 510202 C012 String of Death Caper

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    1951 Disc A007

    1. LR 510205 Rough Diamonds
    2. Dragnet 510208 e087 Big Cast

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    1951 Disc A008

    1. Duffys 510216 397 Archie Hypnotist
    2. Richard Diamond 510216 086 The Gray Man

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    1951 Disc A009

    1. Sdp 510315 E094 Thelma Jordan
    2. Guest Star 510318 0208 First Of April

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    1951 Disc A010

    1. Our Miss Brooks 510318 123 Miss Enright's Birthday Party
    2. News 510320 CBS Edward R Murrow UN Troops Stiff Opposition

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    1951 Disc A011

    1. My Favorite Husband 510324 124 Iris And Lizs Easter
    2. Saint 510325 Intruder

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    1951 Disc A012

    1. Susp 510405 423 Murder In G Flat
    2. Red Skelton Show 510408 319 Town Social

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    1951 Disc A013

    1. GG 510411 401 Gildy Worried That Kids Want To Leave
    2. News 510411 CBS KOOK Truman MacArthur Interruption

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    1951 Disc A014

    1. News 510411 MBS Truman MacArthur Commentary
    2. Defense Rests 510417 Client Joseph Moriano

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    1951 Disc A015

    1. News 510419 CBS MacArthur Congress
    2. News 510419 Douglas MacArthur Old Soldiers

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    1951 Disc A016

    1. News 510420 CBS Hear It Now

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    1951 Disc A017

    1. Bing Crosby 510502 Walter O'Kieff
    2. Truman 510507 Address At Dinner Of Civil Defense Conference
    3. FMM 510515 0661 Hole In One

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    1951 Disc A018

    1. Archie Andrews 510527 Babysitting To Earn Money
    2. BV 510528 10 Sailor Is Framed for Murder

    Add Audio CD to Cart - $5.00
    1951 Disc A019

    1. Bergen McCarthy 510600
    2. Bob Ray 510601 Diet Expert Dr. Claudis Von Sturdley

    Add Audio CD to Cart - $5.00
    1951 Disc A020

    1. Bob Hope 510605 498 Johnny Desmond
    2. Bill Stern 510629 606 Final Show For Colgate
    3. News 510629 NBC Bill Sterns Sports Newsrl Final Show Colgate

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    1951 Disc A021

    1. Dimension X 510712 39 TimeAndTimeAgain
    2. Mysterious Traveler 510828 319 Fire In The Sky

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    1951 Disc A022

    1. COTY 510913 0921 The Landlady
    2. Philip Marlowe 510915 Sound And Unsound
    3. News 511003 WMCA The Shot Russ Hodges

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    1951 Disc A023

    1. YTJD 511013 118 Millard Ward
    2. News 511025 CBS Edward R Murrow News

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    1951 Disc A024

    1. News 511104 MBS UN Radio Windows World Fairbanks Corwin

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    1951 Disc A025

    1. Proudly We Hail 511209 e166 Terror At Polgar

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