Our History

     I've been asked many times over the years about my interest in and the collecting of old time radio programs.  Here is a little background history of my involvement with collecting and saving programs from the "golden age of radio."  As time permits, additional information may be added.
     I remember listening to "live" radio near the beginning of the end of this pop culture we loved and listened to as television started it's climb for popularity.  I recall the excitement of the opening musical moments of The Lone Ranger before new productions ended on 09/03/54.  Although radio, as we knew it, still had a little less than ten years left, many programs started leaving the air in greater numbers each year until finally virtually nothing was left on that tuning dial by 1962.
     My personal interest started in the mid to late 1960's to collect copies of these programs.  Very little was available at that time for the early collectors and it was hard to find good sources with credible information about these programs.  You could purchase a few 33 rpm LP's with a couple of broadcasts per album and there were several small organizations and clubs that had formed with lending libraries, but the variety and audio quality available varied greatly.
     I lived out of the country for awhile in the early to mid 1970's and that made it all but impossible to continue the search for and collecting of programs for a time.  After my return the search for sources now reached a fever pitch.
     The largest break I had at this time was an article that appeared on the front page of the Saturday 10/09/76 edition of the Arkansas Democrat featuring an old time radio collector named Ted Davenport.  I contacted him and was invited over to see his collection.  He offered me advise on collecting and shared with me several publications that listed collectors around the country that were willing to share and trade their programs.  But the most important thing he offered was the ability to copy each and every one of the broadcasts in his collection.  Two conditions though.  One, as my collection increased in size that I would allow him to trade with me for programs he would be interested in, and two, to help anyone else that would need aid in starting their collections.  That started a friendship that has continued to this day and we're still sharing broadcasts.  All either one of us has to do is pick up the telephone, or email, and the requests are moving between us immediately.  Both of our collections continue to grow.
     A little over a year later I moved to St. Louis, MO.  My sources and trading contacts had increased tremendously and the collection continued to grow.  It wasn't long before the word started getting out about the programs I had gathered together and I started appearing on a few St. Louis radio broadcasts talking about radio broadcast history.  During these broadcasts I provided audio moments from these old time radio programs to share with the listening audience.
     For the next several years, Audio Classics catalogs started making it into collectors hands, I made additional radio appearances, print interviews and was ask to put together a short series of radio specials covering examples from the golden years of radio.
     Audio Classics finally began it's own radio series from St. Louis on 01/09/83 and continued for a number of years with a growing audience.  From time to time I would spotlight particular programs with live interviews with such personalities as Jim Jordan (Fibber McGee), Parley Baer (Chester on Gunsmoke), Raymond Edward Johnson (Inner Sanctum Mysteries), Frank Nelson (The Jack Benny Show, Lux Radio Theater), etc.
     As the programs popularity increased with the listening audience, so did its time slot length.  Starting out as a 60 minute program, it grew to 90 minutes, then a two hour program and eventually to three hours per show.  I also produced several other shorter versions of the program for morning drive time (Wireless Warehouse) and special one hour shows (The Inner Ear).
     More interviews followed.  I appeared several times on St. Louis' KXOK with Ron Elz (of Johnny Rabbit fame), and I was heard over Chicago's WBBM on Chuck Shaden's "Those Were The Days" broadcast talking about my involvement with The Lone Ranger programs.  I was also asked to speak before the Toast Masters Of St. Louis.
     The Ford Times, McDonnell Douglas Air Scoop, and interviews in several newspapers both big and small.  St. Louis Globe Democrat (09/25/84), Naborhood Link News (06/26/85), The New York Times (06/01/97), etc.
     During this period of time, I also found myself teaching a class at Meramac Community College about the golden days of radio.  Old time radio is truly my first love.
     One of St. Louis' leading personalities on KMOX (CBS) was Jack Carney.  Just about everybody passing through the St. Louis area for years stopped and appeared on Jack's show.  On Saturday mornings, Jack Carney also produced a Saturday Morning Comedy show in which he utilized bits and pieces of old radio comedy programs from his personal collection.  The program was very popular.  Jack Carney died suddenly on 11/27/84 at age 52.  Some months later I was contacted by Robert Hyland, Regional Vice President of CBS.  Several telephone calls and face to face meetings took place about the possibility of putting together a program that I would host using programs from my collection.  I was offered a contract, I still have it, but for a variety of reasons, I didn't exercise it at that time.  I've thought about that since, after all, KMOX is one of the most powerful 50,000 watt clear channel stations in the country.  The show would have been heard over a large portion of the country.
     In 1983 I was asked by Fran Striker, Jr. to participate with the families 50th anniversary celebration of The Lone Ranger on radio as the radio history representative in Arcade, NY over June 24th, 25th and 26th.  The weekend was a great success and one of the highlights was a live re-creation of the first Lone Ranger radio script.  This live re-creation was heard over WEBR on Saturday 06/25/83 at 6:00 p.m. from the site were many of the early scripts were written.  Also that weekend I interviewed John Barrett.  During the early broadcasts from a number of different stations that produced their own independent productions of the scripts, before WXYZ took over control the of series, John Barrett played The Lone Ranger on WEBR from early 1933 to November of 1934 in Buffalo, NY.
     My next Lone Ranger event was from Mount Carmel, IL the birth place of Brace Beemer.  The Chamber of Commerce for Mount Carmel put together a weekend (May 1, 2, 1993) celebrating The Lone Ranger program and ending with a live broadcast of an original script from 03/29/54 #3309/2529 Burly Scott's Daughter.  This original broadcast featured the programs announcer, Fred Foy, in the title role when Brace Beemer contracted laryngitis.  For this special weekend, Fred Foy appeared again on this live re-broadcast.  A real thrill for me was helping with the live sound effects under the supervision of master sound effects artist Barney Beck.  Also with us that weekend was Dick Beals.
     We were invited back by the Mount Carmel, IL Chamber Of Commerce during the weekend activities of May 14 & 15, 2004.  A memorial dedication to Brace Beemer united The Lone Ranger's radio announcer Fred Foy, Brace Beemer's daughter Barb Daniel and myself for the event.
     On October 8, 2011 I made my third visit to Mount Carmel, IL in conjunction with the dedication of a new museum to Brace Beemer and The Lone Ranger.  Took part in the ceremonies with Bob Daniel (Brace Beemer's grandson) and Sinclair Daniel (Brace Beemer's son-in-law).
I have contributed articles to the following publications with the earliest year noted:
  Collector's Corner (became contributing editor in May 1979 issue #15)
  Bob Burnham's Technical Guide To Collecting Old Time Radio Programs (1984)
  The Sounds Of Yesterday (1985)
  The Golden Days Of Radio & Television (1988)
  The Old Time Radio Digest (1988)
  Listening Guide Newsletter (1989)
    Issue # 2 12/85 - In Search Of The Lone Ranger by Terry Salomonson
    Issue # 3 04/86 - Information And Help To The New Collector
I have authored the following copyright radio broadcast logs:
  The Lone Ranger (07/22/85) Revised (05/06/2004)
  The Challenge Of The Yukon (10/17/88)
  The Green Hornet (04/16/90)
  Dragnet (10/06/91)
  The Great Gildersleeve (03/08/97)
  The Lum 'n' Abner log (03/08/97)
  Radio Western Broadcasts (09/15/98)
  Yours Truly, Johnny Dollar (09/15/98)
     I have provided master recordings of programs to Radio Spirits for their product collections and for their national radio program "When Radio Was."
     Master recordings were also provided to KNX - Los Angeles for their nightly old time radio broadcasts, and master recordings for Adventures In Cassettes for their product collections.
I am the recipient of the following awards:
     Received the Allan Rockford Award at the 14th Annual Friends Of Old Time Radio Convention at Newark, NJ on October 21, 1989.

     Received the Stone/Waterman Award at the 15th annual Old Time Radio & Nostalgia Convention at Cincinnati, OH on April 21, 2001

     Received the Parley E. Baer Award at the 20th annual Old Time Radio & Nostalgia Convention at Cincinnati, OH on April 22, 2006
     Received the Dave Warren Award at the 24th annual Old Time Radio & Nostalgia Convention at
Cincinnati, OH on May 9, 2010
     Received the Ray Stanich Award at the 35th Annual Friends Of Old Time Radio Convention at Newark, NJ on October 22, 2010
Parley E. Baer Award:
     I established the annual Parley E. Baer Award in 1997, with the permission of Parley Baer to use his name.  Parley handed out the first award personally.
     Produced and hosted Audio Classics from St. Louis, MO beginning 01/09/1983.
     Interviewed by Chuck Schaden on "Those Were The Days" - WBBM - Chicago 05/22/1993
     Produced and hosted Audio Classics on Yesterday USA Sunday from 3:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m. EST
        (02/04/2007 to 06/27/2010)
     Interviewed by Robert Siegel on NPR's All Things Considered 01/14/08
     Interviewed by Ron Elz on KMOX - CBS, St. Louis, MO 04/10
     Interviewed by Ron Elz on KMOX - CBS, St. Louis, MO 01/16/2011
     Produced and hosted Audio Classics on Radio Once More
        Monday through Friday from Noon to 3:00 p.m. EST) (From 01/04/2010 to 11/16/10)
       (237 three hour programs produced of which 225 aired)
Radio Recreations:
    May 1 - 2, 1993 Mount Carmel, IL live radio recreation of The Lone Ranger
      Provided live sound effects, with Barney Beck, during the broadcast of The Lone Ranger script
        "Burly Scott's Daughter" originally heard on radio 03/29/54 #3309/2529.
    Friend Of Old Time Radio, Newark, NJ 10/23/2004
      I played the announcer / narrator for the live recreation of The Green Hornet with professional
        actors Fred Foy, Elaine Hyman, Paul Carnegie, and Hal Stone.
    Mid Atlantic Nostalgia Convention, Aberdeen, MD 09/20/2008
      I played a used rocket dealer in a X Minus One re-creation before a live audience.
Presentations Given:
    Mid Atlantic Nostalgia Convention, Aberdeen, MD 09/14 - 16/2006
      Presented a 1 hour talk on the history of The Green Hornet and played an un-circulated
        broadcast for the audience followed by a question and answer session.
    Mid Atlantic Nostalgia Convention, Aberdeen, MD 09/13 - 15/2007
      Presented a 1 hour talk on the history of The Lone Ranger and played an un-circulated
        broadcast for the audience followed by a question and answer session.
    Mid Atlantic Nostalgia Convention, Aberdeen, MD 08/ 27 - 29, 2009
      Presented a 1 hour talk on the history of The Challenge Of The Yukon (Sgt. Preston)
        followed by a question and answer session.
I have provided audio, and/or graphics, for the following projects:
Live Stage Productions:
  Stage Play Production of "Annie" (09/00/1985)
    Alpha Players - Florissant Center Theater (Missouri)
    (Vintage Radio Broadcast for sound effects)
  Stage Play Production of "God Have Mercy On The June Bug" (06/21/2007)
    (Provided my voice for 5 news broadcast audio segments for sound effects)
  Stage Play Production of "Norma Jeane Enlightened" (03/20/2009)
    (Vintage Radio Broadcast for sound effects)
  Stage Play Production of "Narragansett 1937" presented by the Viking Theater Company (11/20/2013)
    (Provided my voice for 4 news broadcast audio segments for sound effects)
  WGTE Toledo, OH (PBS): Toledo On The Air (Aired 1996)
  Frontline: My Father, My Brother, and Me (Aired 02/03/2009)
Television movie:
  A Season For Miracles (Hallmark Christmas 1999)
Motion picture / television collection:
  DVD Criterion Collection Movie Release (11/2002)
    This special collection of Ernest Hemingway's The Killers contains:
      The Killers (1946) the motion picture starring Burt Lancaster & Ava Gardner
      The Killers (1964) the television production starring Lee Marvin & Angie Dickinson
      The Killers (1949) the radio production (which Audio Classics Archive provided):
        Screen Director's Playhouse of 06/05/49 # 22 The Killers
On camera interviews for the following productions:
  The Double Life Of Moe Berg
    FlashRock Films (2006)
  For The Record: A Film By Leah Biel
    Biel Productions (2009)
I have conducted, in no particular order, both audio and/or video interviews with the following people:
  Burgess Meredith,  Parley Baer, Eve Arden, Arnold Stang, Walter B. Gibson, Soupy Sales,
  Mandel Kramer, Grace Matthews, Gale Storm, Les Tremayne, John Archer, Gwen Davies,
  Richard Osgood, Fred Foy, Richard Beals, Lee Allman, Rosa Rio, Bob Hope, Sybil Trent,
  Raymond Edward Johnson, Frank Nelson, Veola Vonn, Jim Jordan, Joan Benny,
  Arthur Anderson, Willard Waterman, Louise Erickson, Marylee Robb, Kay Kyser,
  Shirley Mitchell, Tom Dougall, Fred Flowerday, Ralph Jewell, Ernie Winstanley,
  Francis H. Striker, Jr., Tony Caminita, Louise Fletcher, Virginia Gregg, Alice Faye,
  Sam Edwards, Herb Ellis, Jeanette Nolan, Eleanore Tanin, Charles Michelson,
  Bob Hastings, Peg Lynch, Rosemary Rice, Jackson Beck, Ken Roberts, Dwight Weist,
  Barney Beck, Hal Stone, Paul Carnegie, Elaine Hyman, Ezra Stone, Eddie Carroll,
  Georgia Ellis, Harry Bartell, Ray Kemper, Margaret Whiting, John Barrett, Shirley Russell,
  Lee Meriwether, Donna Douglas, Barbara Daniel, Janet Cantor, Paul Peterson, Bill Owen,
  John Dunning, Jon Provost, Julie Adams, Ed Nelson, Lana Wood, Fayard Nicholes,
  Anne Jeffreys, Joan Leslie, Kathy Carver, Ty Hardin, Don Stroud, Dennis Miller,
  Sara Karloff, Karolyn Grimes, Harold Reid, Don Sherwood, John Calvert, Richard Anderson,
  Noel Neill, Frankie Thomas, Jimmy Lyon, Beverly Garland, Jan Merlin, Peggy Stewart,
  Richard Herd, Conrad Brooks, Cassandra "Elvira" (Mistress Of Darkness) Peterson,
  Kevin McCarthy, Virginia Davis, Erin Gray, Annette Andre, Lassie (She just barked her
  answers at me), John Rayburn, Betty Lynn, Edd "Kookie" Byrnes, Larry Storch, Jay North,
  Margaret Kerry, Lucianna Paluzzi, Chuck Schaden, Leonard Maltin, Lou Ferrigno,
  Celeste Holm, Johnny Whitaker, James Best, Clint Walker, Clayton Moore, Will Hutchins,
  Billy Gray, Hugh O'Brien, Patty Duke, Davey Jones, Tony Dow, Lauren Chapin, Shirley Jones
  Carlton E. Morse, Margot Stevenson, John Hart, Mason Adams, Court Benson, Arthur Tracy,
  Bob Prescott, Ralph Bell, Ward Byron, Frank Bresee, Bill Lipton, Arnold Moss, Kenny Delmar,
  Terry Ross, Alice Reinheart, Gertrude Warner, Lucille Fletcher, Lon Clark, Fran Carlon,
  Joyce Randolph, Ray Erlenborn, Hildegarde, Jackie Kelk, Tyler McVey, Lillian Buyeff,
  Bela Lugosi, Jr., George Ansbro, Art Gilmore, Elliott Reid, Joyce Van Patten, David Parker,
  Marsha Hunt, Mark Goddard, Dawn Wells, Michael Constantine, Karen Valentine, David Hedison,
  Jeff Connors
Current and future projects:
  Completed digital photography of Earle Graser home (Radio Lone Ranger)
  Completed digital scan of Brace Beemer's personal scrape book collection
  Currently digitally restoring the entire Phil Harris - Alice Faye broadcast collection
  Currently digitally restoring the entire The Lone Ranger collection
  Currently digitally restoring the entire The Green Hornet collection
I have donated information or helped with the following publications:
Listed in the dedication section:
  On The Air: The Encyclopedia Of Old-Time Radio
      by John Dunning, 1998 Oxford
  The Shadow: The History And Mystery Of The Radio Program, 1930 - 1954
      by Martin Grams, Jr., 2011 OTR Publishing
Listed in the introduction:
  Have Gun, Will Travel
     by Martin Grams, Jr. & Les Rayburn, 2000 Kirby Lithographic Co.
  I Led 3 Lives: The True Story Of Herbert A. Philbrick's Television Program
     by Martin Grams, Jr., 2007 BearManor Media
  The Twilight Zone: Unlocking The Door To A Television Classics
    by Martin Grams, Jr., 2008 OTR Publishing, LLC
  Car 54 Where Are You?
    by Martin Grams, Jr., 2009 BearManor Media
  The Time Tunnel
    by Martin Grams, Jr., 2012 BearManor Media
  Duffy's Tavern: A History Of Ed Gardner's Radio Program
    by Martin Grams, Jr., 2014 BearManor Media
Listed in the acknowledgement, bibliography and/or preface sections of the following:
  A Pictorial History Of The Lone Ranger Book - Dave Holland March 1989
  Handbook of Old-Time Radio: A comprehensive Guide to Golden Age Radio
      Listening and Collecting
      by Jon D. Swartz & Robert C. Reinehr, 1993 Scarecrow Press
  Lux Presents Hollywood: A Show-by-Show History of the Lux Radio
      Theatre and the Lux Video Theatre 1934 - 1957
      by Connie Billips & Arthur Pierce, 1995 McFarland
  The Lone Ranger's Code Of The West:
      An action-packed adventure in values and ethics with the legendary
      champion of justice.  by Jim Lichtman, 1996 Scribbler's Ink
  The History Of The Cavalcade Of America
      by Martin Grams, Jr., 1998 Morris Publishing
  Radio Drama: American Programs, 1932 - 1962
      by Martin Grams, Jr., 2000 McFarland
  The Great Gildersleeve
      by Charles Stumpf & Ben Ohmart, 2002 BearManor Media
  The Official Guide: Inner Sanctum Mysteries: Behind The Creaking Door
      by Martin Grams, Jr., 2002 Morris Publishing
  The Sounds Of Detection
      by Francis M. Nevins & Martin Grams, Jr., 2002 OTR Publishing
  Gang Busters
      by Martin Grams, Jr., 2004 OTR Publishing
      by Darryl Shelton, 2007 BearManor Media
  Straight Arrow: The Definitive Radio Log And Resource Guide For That
     Legendary Indian Figure On The Trail Of Justice
      by William H. Harper, 2007 BearManor Media
  The Railroad Hour: A History Of The Radio Series
      by Gerald Wilson & Martin Grams, Jr., 2007 BearManor Media
  The Radio Adventures Of Sam Spade
      by Martin Grams, Jr., 2007 Kirby Lithographic Company
  Flights Of Fantasy: The Unauthorized But True Story Of Radio & TV's Adventures Of Superman
      by Michael J. Hayde, 2009 BearManor Media
  Hollywood Madonna Loretta Young
      by Bernard F. Dick, 2011 University Press of Mississippi
  Jimmy Stewart On The Air
      by Charles and Erna Reinhart, 2012 BearManor Media
      (Referenced as Audio Classics Archives)
  Tuning In The Great Gildersleeve
      by Clair Schulz, 2013 McFarland
Authored the section on The Lone Ranger:
  Radio Rides The Range - A Reference Guide To Western Drama On The Air, 1929 - 1967
    Edited by Jack French & David S. Siegel, 2014 McFarland & Company
Co-authored the following book:
  The Green Hornet: A History of Radio, Motion Pictures, Comics, and Television
     by Martin Grams, Jr. and Terry Salomonson, 2010 OTR Publishing


Audio Classics® LLC Archive
Copyright © 1997-2012 Terry Salomonson
Home Page: http://www.audio-classics.com 
Email: terryotr@earthlink.net
Last Updated: 04/27/15 07:37:41 PM