rand’s esoteric otr

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Yankee Doodle - Pgm 1

February 22nd, 2017

Finally, this week, a forgotten little fifteen minute public service series from World War II.

When I first saw the US Office of Civilian Defense logo on these discs, I thought they might date from the Cold War period when so many government public service programs were distributed.  However, after listening to the shows on the discs, I discovered they were produced during World War II in the early days of the Office of Civilian Defense, promoting work with local and neighborhood coordinators on areas such as blackouts, recycling, and learning first aid and firefighting.  Based on internal references, the shows date from 1942.  The label credits Clinton Johnston as director, but I didn’t really turn up anything else on him.

Program 1 in the series is “What’s This Civilian Defense?” and uses dramatic vignettes to show how the listener can become involved in the War effort on the home front.

Our show was transferred from an original sixteen inch vinyl transcription pressed by Allied, matrix number G-6004.

I believe this series isn’t in circulation and might be previously lost.  One reason it might not have turned up before is the information printed at the bottom of the label:  “The vinylite in this pressing is a strategic material allocated by the WPB.  Help us conserve it.  As soon as the pressing has been used, please return it to Allied Record Mfg. Co, Hollywood, Calif., with the enclosed “frank”.”  I wonder how many of these were recycled and simply lost to modern old time radio researchers and collectors.


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