Lum and Abner

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Lum and Abner Performed at 1935 Indiana State Fair

Chester Lauck and Norris Goff at the 1935 Indiana State Fair Saturday August 31, 1935, was the beginning of the Indiana State Fair, and was also quite a gala night for two boys from Mena, Arkansas. The Indianapolis Star and the State Board of Agriculture sponsored an amateur contest, to be held in the coliseum of the fairgrounds. And out of the world of headline radio stars, Lum and Abner were the unanimous choice to act as masters of ceremony. There they were, keeping the audience laughing and ... (read more)

The Audition That Changed the Lives of Chester Lauck and Norris Goff

A print ad for Lum and Abner A strange sight would have greeted the eyes of anyone entering the board of directors room of the Quaker Oats Company on a summer morning in 1931. On one side of the room you would have found all the staid and dignified directors of the company, seated with their faces to the wall. On the other side you would have seen two young men talking hillbilly dialect to a broom handle! That was the turning point in the careers of the two boys who have become famous in ... (read more)

When Wendell Niles Moved to Pine Ridge, Arkansas

Wendell Niles and Marilyn Monroe on NBC Radio in 1952 Radio announcer Wendell Niles worked on several radio series at one time; by the 1939-40 radio season he was featured on not only the Al Pearce Show, in which the rotund comedian Pearce portrayed Elmer Blurt, a reticent door-to-door salesman ("Nobody home, I hope I hope I hope"), but also on Gene Autry's brand-new Melody Ranch program (for "healthful, refreshing Doublemint Gum."). By 1942, Niles had landed his longest-running stint, ... (read more)