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Remembering 1955

The year Disneyland opens, the FDA approved the Polio Vaccine, The first nuclear-powered submarine, the USS Nautilus, entered the seas, and many old time radio shows left the airwaves including The Jack Benny Program.

51 old time radio show recordings
(total playtime 20 hours, 32 min)
available in the following formats:

1 MP3 CD
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22 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.

1955 radioAlthough it may not seem like a very important historical landmark, in Anaheim, California, on July 17 the Disneyland theme park and resort opened its gates for the first time, but not open to the general public until the next day. Although it would come to be known as "the Happiest Place on Earth", on that Sunday the happiness was largely illusory. Construction on the park had begun just a year and a day before. 28,000 visitors were on the grounds that day, about twice as many as had been planned for (more than half the visitors had purchased counterfeit tickets or had simply jumped the fence to sneak in). Many of the attractions were not ready to be opened, the hot day and fresh asphalt meant that many lady's shoes became stuck to the pavement, and a recent plumber's strike meant that management had to choose between working drinking fountains and working toilets. Disney chose the toilets, which led many visitors to assume it was a ploy to sell more soft drinks (Pepsi was a sponsor). To help fund the project, Walt Disney agreed to produce a Sunday evening TV show for ABC, and the opening of the park was carried live over the network, which brought its own share of opening day troubles. Guests were tripping over television cables, there was a traffic jam on nearby Harbor Blvd which meant that many of the celebrity guests who were expected to show up for interviews every two hours or so all came through the gates at the same time, not to mention the typical trouble that can occur on a live broadcast.

1955 Disneyland opening

Disneyland eventually worked the bugs out and did, in fact, become one of the most important tourist destinations in the world, "the Happiest Place on Earth". Near the end of the decade, Soviet Premier Nikita Khrushchev paid a visit to the United States and made two requests, he wanted to meet John Wayne and he wanted to go to Disneyland (he was denied permission). The "Black Sunday" opening, however, shows that sometimes things are not quite as happy as they seem. 

Some great things happened in 1955. The Food and Drug Administration approved Dr. Salk's polio vaccine on April 12, effectively eliminating the terror of infantile paralysis. The Guinness Book of World Records is published for the first time on August 27.  Bill Haley and His Comets got their song "Rock Around the Clock" featured in the film Blackboard Jungle (1955) and teen audiences dance in theater aisles. Haley's band was featured at a concert in Cleveland with Pat Boone which was presented by disk jockey Bill Randle who films the show for his documentary film The Pied Piper of Cleveland (1955). Elvis Presley opened the show, marking not only his first time on film but one of his first appearances north of the Mason-Dixon Line.

On another Disney related note, Lady and the Tramp, Disney's fifteenth animated film was released on June 16 and The Mickey Mouse Club debuts on ABC-TV on October 3. The fact that Television was here to stay was driven home in 1955 when a black and white set cost $99.95 and on almost every block there was at least one family who had one. The NBC TV anthology series Producer's Showcase had been developed to promote the network's new color broadcasting technology, and on March 7 it presented the complete Broadway production of Peter Pan (1954, 152 performances) starring Mary Martin. Viewers got hooked on the quiz show The $64,000 Question, which was based on the popular radio program Take It or Leave It. On the radio version, the top prize was $64, but the greater incentive on TV made the weekly suspense that much greater, however, the program would become of a scandal when it came out that several popular quiz shows were rigged. In another transfer from radio, CBS put their gritty and realistic Western, Gunsmoke on the small screen, introduced by John Wayne on September 10. The program would remain on the air for twenty seasons, even though Gunsmoke's creators John Meston and Norman Macdonnell were convinced that the television medium would be too limiting for a show with as much scope. None of the actors from the radio production carried over to the TV show.

Foreshadowing the end of the Golden Age of Radio, The Big Story, Lux Radio Theatre, Sergeant Preston of the Yukon, Barrie Craig Private Investigator, Joyce Jordan MD, Break the Bank, and Dr. Sixgun all ended their radio broadcasts. Even The Jack Benny Program abandoned radio to become exclusively a television show.

General Motors was the first American company to declare $1 billion in profits for 1955. Ford launches the Crown Victoria while Volkswagen's practical line-up of the Beetle and the Microbus was supplemented by the fun and sporty Karmann Ghia. Japanese musical instrument manufacturer Yamaha, whose factories had been converted to produce aircraft parts during the War, develops the YA-1, a 123cc two-stroke engine motorcycle which helped put War-torn Japan and Europe back on wheels. In Munich, the BMW company adapted the powerful two-cylinder "boxer" motor which was used so successfully for sidecar motorcycles during the War into a refined and sporty frame to create the R69, basis of one of the most desired touring motorcycles of all time.

The first nuclear-powered submarine, the USS Nautilus, got underway for the first time on January 17. President Eisenhower sent advisors from the Army's Military Assistance Group (M.A.A.G.) to Vietnam. The Soviet Union was joined by seven of its "satellite states" on May 14 in signed the Warsaw Pact, a treaty of "Friendship, Co-operation, and Mutual Assistance" which is seen in the West as a military compact designed as an answer to the NATO agreement of 1949. Following the State of Vietnam Referendum in October Prime Minister Ngô Dình Diệm declared South Vietnam to be a Republic with himself as the first President. On November 1, war between the Army of the Republic of Vietnam and the Viet Cong from the North breaks out.

USS Nautilus 1955

  • On January 17, the USS Nautilus launched for the first time and sent the historic message: "Underway on nuclear power".
  • Rosa ParksThe Mickey Mouse Club debuted on ABC in the fall. In July, The Happiest Place on Earth, Disneyland, opened its gates in Anaheim, California.
  • In December, Rosa Parks refused the bus driver's order to give up her seat to make room for a white passenger. She was arrested and the Montgomery Bus Boycott begins.
  • Businessman Ray Kroc opened the first franchised McDonald's restaurant in Des Plaines, Illinois. Well known for agressive business practices, Kroc will eventually buy out the McDonald brothers and run the entire corporation.
  • In one of his first appearances north of the Mason-Dixon Line, Elvis Presley opened for Bill Hailey & His Comets and Pat Boone at the auditorium of Brooklyn (Ohio) High School in Cleveland, Ohio. The performance was filmed for a documentary about the hosting DJ, Bill Randle of WERE Cleveland, "the Pied Piper of Cleveland".
  • The Soviet Union and seven of its satellite states in Central and Eastern Europe signed the Warsaw Pact, a Treaty of Friendship, Co-operation, and Mutual Assistance. Although the Warsaw Pact was created in reaction to NATO, there was no direct military confrintation betweeen East and West. However, Warsaw Pact militaries were kept busy enforcing the will of the USSR on her client states.
  • The Salk Polio vaccine was approved and goes into widespread use after extensive testing to ensure its safety by the Food and Drug Administration. Infantile Paralysis or Polio is effectively eliminated.
  • Ford debuted the Crown Victoria as part of the Fairlane range while Volksvagen expanded beyond Beetle and the Type 2Transporter by introducing the Karmann Ghia sports car. Rolls Royce launched the Silver Cloud as the epitomy of luxury. In Japan, musical intrument company Yamaha whose factories had been converted to war-materiel production and subsiquently bombed by the Allies, develops the YA-1, a 123cc single cylinder 2-stroke motorcycle to met the transport needs of post War Japan and Europe.
  • 1955 Vietnam MAAG soldierPresident Eisenhower sent members of the US Military Assistance Advisory Group (M.A.A.G.) to Vietnam in February. Ngo Dihn Diem declared himself president of the newly formed Republic of Vietnam in October. On Noveber 1, troops of the Army of the Republic of Vietnam and the North Vietnamese Army (alligned with the Viet Cong) clashed for the first time, beginning the Vietnam War.
  • Monitor debuted on NBC-Radio, but The Big Story, Lux Radio Theatre, Sergeant Preston of the Yukon, Barrie Craig Private Investigator, Joyce Jordan MD, Break the Bank, and Dr. Sixgun  all went off the air. Jack Benny made his last regular radio broadcast and his program now shows only on television.
  • Gunsmoke debuted on CBS TV.
  • The first edition of The Guinness Book of World Records was published in London...
  • CJack Paar of TAKE IT OR LEAVE ITongress authorized President Eisenhower to use force to protect Formosa (Taiwan) from the People's Republic of China...
  • The Broadway musical Peter Pan starring Mary Martin was presented in its entirety on NBC TV...
  • The film Blackboard Jungle debuts featuring Bill Haley & His Comets' "Rock Around the Clock" as its theme, teens in the audience danced in theater aisles...
  • The Detroit Redwings won the Stanley Cup for the seventh time, but will not win again until 1997.
  • The last elevated train in Manhatten ended service in May.
  • The $64,000 Question which is based on radio quiz show Take It or Leave It debuted on CBS TV and was later the center of the TV Quizshow scandal...
  • Independent Commercial Television (ITV) began broadcast in the UK.
  • Bo Diddley appeared on Ed Sullivan's Talk of the Town on CBS TV.
  • General Motors declared a profit exceeding one billion dollars, the first American company to do so.

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.



    51 recordings on 1 MP3 CD for just $5.00
    total playtime 20 hours, 32 min
    Add MP3 Collection to Cart

    Click here to see disc contents


      51 shows - total playtime 20 hours 32 minutes
      1. aa550300 Kingfish Sapphire Both Rent Cottage Out.mp3
      2. aa550711 Kingfish's Day At Coney Island.mp3
      3. American Adventure 551027 Thebattle.mp3
      4. Americana 550205 017 Notable Books.mp3
      5. Bergen McCarthy 551104 Hellish Dreams.mp3
      6. Bergen McCarthy 551111 Gossip.mp3
      7. Bing Crosby 550117 (15 min.).mp3
      8. Bing Crosby 550118 (15 min.).mp3
      9. Bob Hope 550407 629 Maureen Ohara.mp3
      10. Bob Hope 550414 630 Debra Paget.mp3
      11. Bob Hope 550421 Bobs Last Radio Show Jim Backus.mp3
      12. Cisco Kid 550906 327 Hermit Of Tall Tree Mountain.mp3
      13. Dinah Shore 550304 Chevrolet Hold My Hand.mp3
      14. Dragnet 550201 e285 Big Bird.mp3
      15. FMM 550117 1075 Appetitekiller Pills.mp3
      16. FMM 550120 1078 Planning a Sleigh Ride.mp3
      17. Ft 550112 403 Stranger In Town.mp3
      18. GG 550000 00x Vacation Time.mp3
      19. GG 551020 00x Floyds Inheritance.mp3
      20. Grand Ole Opry 550709.mp3
      21. Grand Ole Opry 550716.mp3
      22. Guest Star 550327 0418 Desiree.mp3
      23. Guns 550730 ep172 Tap Day For Kitty.mp3
      24. Guns 551225 ep194 Twelfth Night.mp3
      25. Jack Benny 550417 2830 Hope Benny Double Date.mp3
      26. Jack Benny 550424 2831 Renting Maxwell To A Movie Studio.mp3
      27. Jack Benny 550522 924 Trouble With Twombly Sound Effects Man.mp3
      28. Lux 550208 War Of The Worlds.mp3
      29. lux550208 910 War of the Worlds.mp3
      30. News 5502xx SYN Common Virtue Battle Iwo Jima Anniv Tribute.mp3
      31. News 551231 MBS KHJ News Gabriel Heatter Virgil Pinkley.mp3
      32. News 5512xx AFRTS VA Hospitals Christmas Crosby Shore.mp3
      33. News 55xxxx UN Radio The Birthday Party Julie Harris.mp3
      34. Our Miss Brooks 550313 280 The School Board's Psycholoogist.mp3
      35. Our Miss Brooks 550327 282 Mr Boynton's Moustache.mp3
      36. PAF 550000 Getting People for Wedding.mp3
      37. Sp 550108 119 Prison Planet.mp3
      38. Susp 550510 597 Going, Going, Gone.mp3
      39. Susp 550531 600 Beirut By Sunrise.mp3
      40. Susp 550614 602 Whole Towns Sleeping.mp3
      41. Susp 550712 606 Kaleidoscope.mp3
      42. X 1 550818 014 Courtesy.mp3
      43. X 1 550915 018 The Castaways.mp3
      44. X 1 551103 023 Hello Tomorrow.mp3
      45. You Bet Your Life 551123 Face.mp3
      46. You Bet Your Life 551207 Chair.mp3
      47. YTJD 551212 283 Lansing Fraud Episode 01.mp3
      48. YTJD 551213 284 Lansing Fraud Episode 02.mp3
      49. YTJD 551214 285 Lansing Fraud Episode 03.mp3
      50. YTJD 551215 286 Lansing Fraud Episode 04.mp3
      51. YTJD 551216 287 Lansing Fraud Episode 05.mp3
  • MP3 downloads are available instantly after purchase!



    51 recordings on 1 MP3 Collection Download for just $5.00
    total playtime 20 hours, 32 min
    Add MP3 Collection to Cart

    Click here to see disc contents


      51 shows - total playtime 20 hours 32 minutes
      1. aa550300 Kingfish Sapphire Both Rent Cottage Out.mp3
      2. aa550711 Kingfish's Day At Coney Island.mp3
      3. American Adventure 551027 Thebattle.mp3
      4. Americana 550205 017 Notable Books.mp3
      5. Bergen McCarthy 551104 Hellish Dreams.mp3
      6. Bergen McCarthy 551111 Gossip.mp3
      7. Bing Crosby 550117 (15 min.).mp3
      8. Bing Crosby 550118 (15 min.).mp3
      9. Bob Hope 550407 629 Maureen Ohara.mp3
      10. Bob Hope 550414 630 Debra Paget.mp3
      11. Bob Hope 550421 Bobs Last Radio Show Jim Backus.mp3
      12. Cisco Kid 550906 327 Hermit Of Tall Tree Mountain.mp3
      13. Dinah Shore 550304 Chevrolet Hold My Hand.mp3
      14. Dragnet 550201 e285 Big Bird.mp3
      15. FMM 550117 1075 Appetitekiller Pills.mp3
      16. FMM 550120 1078 Planning a Sleigh Ride.mp3
      17. Ft 550112 403 Stranger In Town.mp3
      18. GG 550000 00x Vacation Time.mp3
      19. GG 551020 00x Floyds Inheritance.mp3
      20. Grand Ole Opry 550709.mp3
      21. Grand Ole Opry 550716.mp3
      22. Guest Star 550327 0418 Desiree.mp3
      23. Guns 550730 ep172 Tap Day For Kitty.mp3
      24. Guns 551225 ep194 Twelfth Night.mp3
      25. Jack Benny 550417 2830 Hope Benny Double Date.mp3
      26. Jack Benny 550424 2831 Renting Maxwell To A Movie Studio.mp3
      27. Jack Benny 550522 924 Trouble With Twombly Sound Effects Man.mp3
      28. Lux 550208 War Of The Worlds.mp3
      29. lux550208 910 War of the Worlds.mp3
      30. News 5502xx SYN Common Virtue Battle Iwo Jima Anniv Tribute.mp3
      31. News 551231 MBS KHJ News Gabriel Heatter Virgil Pinkley.mp3
      32. News 5512xx AFRTS VA Hospitals Christmas Crosby Shore.mp3
      33. News 55xxxx UN Radio The Birthday Party Julie Harris.mp3
      34. Our Miss Brooks 550313 280 The School Board's Psycholoogist.mp3
      35. Our Miss Brooks 550327 282 Mr Boynton's Moustache.mp3
      36. PAF 550000 Getting People for Wedding.mp3
      37. Sp 550108 119 Prison Planet.mp3
      38. Susp 550510 597 Going, Going, Gone.mp3
      39. Susp 550531 600 Beirut By Sunrise.mp3
      40. Susp 550614 602 Whole Towns Sleeping.mp3
      41. Susp 550712 606 Kaleidoscope.mp3
      42. X 1 550818 014 Courtesy.mp3
      43. X 1 550915 018 The Castaways.mp3
      44. X 1 551103 023 Hello Tomorrow.mp3
      45. You Bet Your Life 551123 Face.mp3
      46. You Bet Your Life 551207 Chair.mp3
      47. YTJD 551212 283 Lansing Fraud Episode 01.mp3
      48. YTJD 551213 284 Lansing Fraud Episode 02.mp3
      49. YTJD 551214 285 Lansing Fraud Episode 03.mp3
      50. YTJD 551215 286 Lansing Fraud Episode 04.mp3
      51. YTJD 551216 287 Lansing Fraud Episode 05.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



    51 recordings on 22 Audio CDs
    total playtime 20 hours, 32 min

    1955 Disc A001

    1. News 5502xx SYN Common Virtue Battle Iwo Jima Anniv Tribute
    2. News 5512xx AFRTS VA Hospitals Christmas Crosby Shore
    3. News 55xxxx UN Radio The Birthday Party Julie Harris
    4. GG 550000 00x Vacation Time

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    1955 Disc A002

    1. PAF 550000 Getting People for Wedding
    2. Sp 550108 119 Prison Planet

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    1955 Disc A003

    1. Ft 550112 403 Stranger In Town
    2. Bing Crosby 550117 (15 min.)
    3. FMM 550117 1075 Appetitekiller Pills
    4. Bing Crosby 550118 (15 min.)

    Add Audio CD to Cart - $5.00
    1955 Disc A004

    1. FMM 550120 1078 Planning a Sleigh Ride
    2. Dragnet 550201 e285 Big Bird
    3. Americana 550205 017 Notable Books

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    1955 Disc A005

    1. Lux 550208 War Of The Worlds

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    1955 Disc A006

    1. lux550208 910 War of the Worlds

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    1955 Disc A007

    1. aa550300 Kingfish Sapphire Both Rent Cottage Out
    2. Dinah Shore 550304 Chevrolet Hold My Hand
    3. Our Miss Brooks 550313 280 The School Board's Psycholoogist

    Add Audio CD to Cart - $5.00
    1955 Disc A008

    1. Guest Star 550327 0418 Desiree
    2. Our Miss Brooks 550327 282 Mr Boynton's Moustache
    3. Bob Hope 550407 629 Maureen Ohara

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    1955 Disc A009

    1. Bob Hope 550414 630 Debra Paget
    2. Jack Benny 550417 2830 Hope Benny Double Date

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    1955 Disc A010

    1. Bob Hope 550421 Bobs Last Radio Show Jim Backus
    2. Jack Benny 550424 2831 Renting Maxwell To A Movie Studio

    Add Audio CD to Cart - $5.00
    1955 Disc A011

    1. Susp 550510 597 Going, Going, Gone
    2. Jack Benny 550522 924 Trouble With Twombly Sound Effects Man

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    1955 Disc A012

    1. Susp 550531 600 Beirut By Sunrise
    2. Susp 550614 602 Whole Towns Sleeping

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    1955 Disc A013

    1. Grand Ole Opry 550709
    2. aa550711 Kingfish's Day At Coney Island

    Add Audio CD to Cart - $5.00
    1955 Disc A014

    1. Susp 550712 606 Kaleidoscope
    2. Grand Ole Opry 550716

    Add Audio CD to Cart - $5.00
    1955 Disc A015

    1. Guns 550730 ep172 Tap Day For Kitty
    2. X 1 550818 014 Courtesy

    Add Audio CD to Cart - $5.00
    1955 Disc A016

    1. Cisco Kid 550906 327 Hermit Of Tall Tree Mountain
    2. X 1 550915 018 The Castaways

    Add Audio CD to Cart - $5.00
    1955 Disc A017

    1. GG 551020 00x Floyds Inheritance
    2. American Adventure 551027 Thebattle

    Add Audio CD to Cart - $5.00
    1955 Disc A018

    1. X 1 551103 023 Hello Tomorrow
    2. Bergen McCarthy 551104 Hellish Dreams

    Add Audio CD to Cart - $5.00
    1955 Disc A019

    1. Bergen McCarthy 551111 Gossip
    2. You Bet Your Life 551123 Face

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    1955 Disc A020

    1. You Bet Your Life 551207 Chair
    2. YTJD 551212 283 Lansing Fraud Episode 01
    3. YTJD 551213 284 Lansing Fraud Episode 02

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    1955 Disc A021

    1. YTJD 551214 285 Lansing Fraud Episode 03
    2. YTJD 551215 286 Lansing Fraud Episode 04
    3. YTJD 551216 287 Lansing Fraud Episode 05
    4. Guns 551225 ep194 Twelfth Night

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    1955 Disc A022

    1. News 551231 MBS KHJ News Gabriel Heatter Virgil Pinkley

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